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4.0 out of 5 stars The Sinister Six, 21 April 2009
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I. R. Kerr (Lancashire) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Essential Marvel Horror Volume 2 TPB: v. 2 (Paperback)
In the 1970's Marvel started their horror franchise and success with their main stars Dracula, Werewolf and Frankenstein's Monster led to a series of characters who had a far shorter initial run, six of whom are featured here.
The Living Mummy, an obvious choice as the missing Universal monster, had better longevity than most included here. He starred in 9 issues of Supernatural Thrillers and allowed Marvel villain The Living Pharoah to re-appear. The mummy N'Kantu was an African prince buried alive and several tales feature flashbacks to his past life.
Brother Voodoo features in 9 tales including a Team-Up with Spider-Man, some of these were reprinted in Essential Tales of the Zombie.
There are 4 tales with Gabriel, the Devil-Hunter a one-eyed former priest turned exorcist battling demons across the globe. Written for one of Marvel's horror magazines these were aimed at an adult audience so are more graphic.
The Golem, after being dug out of the desart sand, only appears in 3 tales including one featuring The Thing.
Modred the Mystic and the Scarecrow likewise star in just 3 tales here, including Two-In-One with The Thing. Modred a magician from Arthurian times who is disrturbed from his sleep in a cavern on the Isle of Wight, he is also important in the early years of Spider-Woman.
I loved the idea of The Scarecrow as an image painted over that of a demon to keep the demon imprisoned and had all of the 3 Scarecrow tales when they first came out as the covers were superb.
Several of these characters returned to the Marvel universe in later years, to mixed receptions but it is nice to have their original tales collected together.
For Marvel Horror 3 how about Morbius, the early Tigra tales, Man-Wolf and It, the Living Colossus.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth a look, short lived characters whose revival is overdue, 23 Aug 2011
By 
Lark (North Coast of Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Essential Marvel Horror Volume 2 TPB: v. 2 (Paperback)
This is an excellent collection of Marvel horror comics publishing comprising the less well known or shorter lived characters appearing in other Marvel titles, such as Tales of The Zombi (which along with Dracula and The Werewolf could sustain a readership following with titles of their own, also available in the Essential reprints series) and Supernatural Thrillers, Strange Tales, Marvel Chillers, Dead of Night and The Haunt of Horror marvel title (which featured Satana who along with the Son of Satan comics were collected and reprinted in Essential Marvel Horror vol.1).

The monsters and heroes featured in this collection include the last of the universal monsters to feature in comics, the living mummy, and another very obviously screen inspired creation Gabriel, The Devil-Hunter, which I expect is the closest The Exorcist ever came to a comics serialisation. Other protagonists include Brother Voodoo, Golem, Modred The Mystic (who reminded me a lot of Dr. Strange) and Scarecrow.

In addition to the comics reprinted there are covers, some letters page pieces and at the finish character bios for all but Gabriel, The Devil-Hunter. While some of the tales are more traditional costumed superhero fare, especially the team up tales featuring The Thing from Fantastic Four or Spiderman, others appear to have been intended as older readers material. There definitely is a difference in the artwork, the writing is not yet troubled, conflicted and contradictory characterisations like those in the post-Watchmen/Alan Moore world but it is distinctly horror writing as opposed to superheroes. For one I dont expect to see any titles featuring a former member of the Roman Catholic priesthood turned demonology scholar! Although perhaps there are parallels with the Hellblazer series and Constantine film.

These are not titles such as those featured in Eerie or Creepy comics (or even more obscure horror titles like those to be found mentioned in anthologies such as The Leather Nun: And Other Incredibly Strange Comics) which really worried the censors and resulted in the Comics Code but for anyone who likes horror comics (perhaps more of the DC showcase House of Mystery or Witching Hour comics) then I can recommend this for you.
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Essential Marvel Horror Volume 2 TPB: v. 2
Essential Marvel Horror Volume 2 TPB: v. 2 by Scott Edelman (Paperback - 12 Nov 2008)
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