The Best Of The Rest! Web Of Horror, Atlas/Seaboard & Others

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Grave Tales

1. cover: Joe Staton (Oct. 1991)

1) Pretender To The Throne [Eric Dinehart/Joe Staton] 8p

2) Proper Test For A Demon [Link Yarco/Pat Boyette] 8p

3) Deadly Mistake [Bill Pearson/Gray Morrow] 8p

4) Grave Mails [Leonard Clark?] 2p [text article]

5) Physician Heal Thyself [Russ Miller/John Heebink & Dan Adkins]

6) Maggots/Dread Of Night Ad [?] 1p

7) Wanna-Be [Nat Gertler/Batton Lash] 8p

Notes: Publisher & Managing Editor: Bruce Hamilton. Editor: Leonard “John” Clark. $3.95 for 48 pages.

Grave Tales had its origins in a Bill Pearson edited/Hamilton published 1974 independent fanzine with the same title. {See he ‘Early Independents’ page!} This version {and its sister magazines, Maggots & Dread Of Night} was clearly an attempt to revive the early style of the Creepy/Eerie/Vampirella horror magazines. Instead of one host, however, this issue presented five, with short messages from each of them {supposedly} in the text article that would become the letters’ page. Each of the five hosts introduced one of the five stories here, beginning with the Grave Digger, an Uncle Creepy look-alike who was also cover featured; then Obadiah, a rather ugly gnome-like creature; followed by Echo, a female ghost; then the rather sleazy Ed the Window-Washer who was an ugly Peeping Tom character, and finally, Deadpan, a corpse with maggots crawling out of him who wore, naturally, a battered cooking pan on his head! The stories were a little on the tame side, although Gray Morrow brought in a very nice art job on his story. Pat Boyette & Joe Staton also delivered good work.

2. cover: Gray Morrow (Dec. 1991)

1) Deadly Developments [Nat Gertler/Sparky Moore] 6p

2) The Jolly Corner [Eric Dinehart/Joe Staton] 8p from the story by Henry James

3) The Haunting Of Henry James [Geoffrey Blum] 1p [text article w/photos]

4) Grave Tales History/Ad [Bruce Hamilton/Mike Roberts & Don Newton] 1p [Roberts art from the cover of the

original Grave Tales, Newton’s art is from the interior art from the same issue.]

5) Maggots #2 Preview Art [various] 2p

6) Black And White And Red All Over [Eric Dinehart/Steve Stiles]

7) Maggots #2 Preview Art [various] 2p

8) Simon’s Salvation [Jack C. Harris/John Heebink] 8p

9) The Springfield Werewolf [Bill Pearson/Russ Miller] 2p [text story]

10) The Monster Maker [James Van Hise/Tom Sutton] 8p

Notes: The Grave Tales History page notes that 115,000 copies of #1 were printed. The stories took an upturn in quality as both the adaptation of ‘The Jolly Corner’ by Eric Dinehart and Van Hise’s original ‘The Monster Maker’ were very good and the remaining stories weren’t bad either. ‘Black And White And Red All Over’ is a homage to EC artist Graham Ingels, right down to the lettering of Ingram {the Ingels’ doppleganger’s name} in the style of the Ghastly signature that Ingels used on his splash pages. Tom Sutton’s art is quite striking and is easily the best in this solid issue. The actual letters’ page debuts.

3. cover: Joe Staton (Feb. 1992)

1) Dog Gone! [John Cochran/Joe Staton] 8p

2) Grave Tales In Color Ad [Joe Staton & Gray Morrow] 1p

3) The Vigil [Steve Skeates/John Workman] 6p

4) Sredni Vashtar [Geoffrey Blum/Sparky Moore] 8p from the story by Saki

5) Salina, part 3 [Nicola Cuti] 2p [text story]

6) Dread Of Night In Color Ad [Joe Staton] 1p

7) Cycle Of The Vampire! [Jack C. Harris/Joe Heebink] 8p

8) Maggots In Color Ad [Joe Staton & Gray Morrow] 1p

9) Bios Of Our Creators: Joe Staton [Leonard Clark?] 1p [text article w/photo]

10) Role Model [Jeff Bailey & Marty Golia/Joe Staton] 8p

Notes: Final issue. Pretty darn good issue. ‘Role Model’ is a spoof/takeoff on Bill Watterson’s Calvin & Hobbes and is really quite good. The text story ‘Salina’ had its first two sections appear in Maggots #2 & Dread Of Night #2. Joe Staton provides the best artwork here with John Workman coming in close behind. Best story is the C&H spoof by Bailey & Golia although John Cochran & Steve Skeates’ stories {both of these guys were Warren Publications veterans} were also quite good. Apparently, the company planned a move to 32 page color comics for all three of their titles, since they ran ads with new covers for all three titles, but those versions were never published.


1. cover: Gray Morrow (Nov. 1991)

1) The Big Greasy [Matt Wayne/Steve Stiles] 8p

2) Scary-Go-Round [Gary Leach/Alfredo Alcala] 8p

3) Maggots Mail [Leonard Clark] 2p [text article]

4) Horror You Today [John Clark & Bruce Hamilton/Joe Staton] 6p

5) Sore Spot [Jack C. Harris/Joe Staton] 8p

6) Don’t Touch That Dial [Link Yarco/Russ Miller] 2p [text story]

7) Caged In [Link Yarco/Batton Lash] 8p

Notes: Publisher & Managing Editor: Bruce Hamilton. Editor: Leonard ‘John’ Clark. $3.95 for 48 pages. This magazine had possibly the most disgusting title in horror comics! Like Grave Tales, this magazine had not one, but five new horror hosts beginning with the cover featured sexy bird lady, Madraven Stark, then psychologist Dr. Pocks, talk show host Eval Reising, the alien parasite/human, Prof. Zschiesche {whose origin was told in ‘Horror You Today?’} and finally morgue keeper, Morgan. ‘Sore Spot’, hosted by Prof. Zschiesche, is an alternate version of ‘Horror You Today?’ This issue is a considerable improvement on the contents of Grave Tales #1, with generally decent stories & art from all involved.

2. cover: Gray Morrow (Jan. 1992)

1) A Dinner To Remember! [Al Ryan/John Workman] 6p

2) Dread Of Night #2 Preview Pages [various] 2p

3) Byte Of The Wolf [Robert Borski/Howard Bender & Neil Vokes] 8p

4) Salina, part 1 [Nicola Cuti] 2p [text story, continued in Dread Of Night.]

5) Under The Rug! [Donald Markstein/Steve Stiles] 8p

6) L. A. Flaw [Link Yarco/Terry Tidwell & Bud La Rosa] 8p

7) Dread Of Night Preview Pages [various] 2p

8) The Puppet Man [Nicola Cuti/Alfredo Alcala] 8p
Notes: The first actual letters’ page debuts. Nice two-page spread in the Stiles story.
3. cover: Gray Morrow (Mar. 1992)

1) Some Kind Of Beautiful [Jack C. Harris/Gray Morrow] 8p

2) Little Sara’s Dolls [Nicola Cuti/Dan Day & David Day] 6p

3) Perchance To Dream! [Russ Miller/Steve Stiles] 8p

4) Prima Facie Evidence [Gary Leach/Tony DeZuniga] 8p

5) Chemical Dependents [Janice Lane Miller/Russ Miller] 2p [text story]

6) Bios Of Our Creators: Gray Morrow [Leonard Clark] 1p [text article w/photo]

7) Identity Crisis [Al Ryan/Joe Staton] 8p

Notes: Final issue. One of only two painted covers to appear on the Hamilton magazines. This cover is very good. DeZuniga’s art looks very rushed and uneven. More like thumbnails than actual finished art. Best art & story comes from the Nicola Cuti/Day brothers’ effort, ‘Little Sara’s Dolls’.

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