Monday, October 20, 2014
Sunday, October 19, 2014
BLACK MAGIC WOMAN
Supernatural investigator Quincey Morris and white witch Libby Chastain battle a practitioner of black magic who is continuing her family’s vendetta against the descendants of the woman who exposed her ancestress as a witch during the trials in Salem. Quincey owes a debt to a man named Jack, whose crew travels in semis and four-wheel-drive jeeps. Quincey thinks that none of the experts who have written about the vampire’s nature, such as Van Helsing, Blake, and Tregarde, have been able to explain why the undead are vulnerable to certain natural substances. A flashback details Quincey’s namesake and great-grandfather’s death while helping to kill Dracula, as well as the aftermath of those events. Morris once spent an hour in a townhouse in Washington’s Georgetown section where two Jesuit priests died performing an exorcism to save a young girl. Quincey and Libby visit occult investigator Barry Love, whose bookshelves hold two different editions of the Bible, Stone’s Practical Demon-Hunting, the Bhagavad-Gita, Newman’s The Vampire in Victorian England, Wellman’s biography of John the Balladeer, books by Hegel and Sartre, Black’s Approaching the Millennium, and the third edition of Investigating the Occult: Principles and Techniques by Scully and Reyes. Later, the black witch uses her magic to force the driver of an SUV to attempt to run over Quincey and Libby. The SUV smashes through the front of Del Floria’s Tailor Shop. After Libby is hospitalized, a pair of N.Y.P.D. detectives question Quincey about the “accident.” One is named Clark, while the other’s last name is something that ends with “witz.”
Novel by Justin Gustainis, 2008. The modern-day Quincey Morris is a descendant of the courageous Texan of the same name in Stoker’s Dracula. The original Quincey’s wife died in childbirth, thus explaining his bachelorhood in the original novel. Jay Lindsey notes, “There is some conflict with Quincey Morris, Vampire, by P.N. Elrod. In Gustainis’ book, Morris is survived by his parents and one son. In Elrod’s account, Morris claims his parents died long before. I think we can get around that, though. Given that the Morris family picked up a generational monster hunting legacy, it’s obvious that at some point the original Quincey, in his new state of undeath, attempted to make contact with his parents and son, and it did not go well. A century later, while relating his account to Elrod, vampire Quincey chose to gloss over those painful memories.” Jack is vampire hunter Jack Crow from John Steakley’s novel Vampire$. Van Helsing needs no explanation at this point. Blake is a reference to the protagonist of Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake: Vampire Hunter novels. However, Blake’s exploits take place in a world where the existence of the supernatural is widely known. The Blake referenced here must be her CU counterpart, whose exploits are vastly different from the “Blake-verse’s” Anita. Diana Tregarde appears in a series of novels by Mercedes Lackey. The two Jesuit priests are from William Peter Blatty’s novel The Exorcist. Stone is Ezekiel Stone from the television series Brimstone. Newman is doubtless the CU counterpart of Kim Newman. The exploits of Manly Wade Wellman’s John the Balladeer, aka Silver John, are well-established as part of the CU. Black is Frank Black from the television series Millennium. Scully and Reyes are FBI Agents Dana Scully and Monica Reyes from The X-Files. Earlier in the book, Special Agent Dale Fenton refers to The X-Files as a television series; presumably, this was a spin-off of the movie starring Garry Shandling and Téa Leoni. Del Floria’s Tailor Shop houses the secret entrance to the headquarters of U.N.C.L.E. The N.Y.P.D. detectives are John Clark, Jr. and Andy Sipowicz from the television series NYPD Blue.
Saturday, October 18, 2014
Friday, October 17, 2014
Vampirella’s friend Cryssie Collins and special effects expert Harold Swillman find themselves in possession of the Hellbands created by Jedediah Pan, each of which can summon three demons. Swillman uses his Hellband to murder the guests at a gala party, and unintentionally causes Cryssie to be possessed by a demon herself. Jedediah Pan and the Hellbands are from “The Demons,” a strip by Bill DuBay and Jose Ortiz that appeared in five installments in the Warren magazine Eerie in 1976. The story continues in #93, but I haven't included that cover because it highlights a non-Vampirella story in that issue.
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Dark Horse and Dynamite are collaborating on a crossover between Conan and Red Sonja. Of course, the duo teamed up many times when Marvel had the comic rights to them both, but it's cool to see a new one happening.
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Jackie Estacado, wielder of the Darkness, finds himself in the nightmare world of Kingdom Pain, where he frees Ariel Darkchylde from her slumber. Together, they battle Darkchylde’s fellow coma patient Breathtaker. Their opponent is finally killed by Sara Pezzini, wielder of the Witchblade, who vaguely remembers Ariel from their previous encounter in a 2000 one-shot.
Monday, October 13, 2014
Sunday, October 12, 2014
Early June-Early September 1882
THE ISSUE OF DR. JEKYLL
Several English professors travel to Massachusetts, where they wind up examining a comet that landed on the Gardner farm. Appearing or mentioned are: Doctor George Edward Rutherford; Doctor Henry Jekyll; Mr. Banks; Mr. Darling; Professor Henry Higgins; Doctor Moreau; Doctor Perry; Denton; Causton; Arkham; Evangeline West’s uncle; Miskatonic University; Witch’s Hollow; Bolton; Kingsport; Innsmouth; Derrie; Axel Lidenbrock; Ammi Pierce; Nahum Gardner and his wife Nabby; Chapman’s Brook; Professor Selwyn Cavor; Karel Colceag; Herbert West; and Gabriel Utterson.
Short story by Pete Rawlik at the HorrorTalk website. Doctor George Edward Rutherford is meant to be Arthur Conan Doyle’s Professor Challenger; Farmer revealed that the Professor’s true last name was Rutherford in Tarzan Alive. Doctor Henry Jekyll and Gabriel Utterson are from Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Mr. George Banks is from P.L. Travers’ Mary Poppins books, while Mr. George Darling is from J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan. Professor Henry Higgins is from George Bernard Shaw’s play Pygmalion. Doctor Moreau is from H.G. Wells’ The Island of Doctor Moreau. Moreau’s first name is given as Jean-Paul in this story, whereas he is identified as Alphonse Moreau in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume II and other sources. The Jean-Paul reference must be considered an error. Doctor Abner Perry is from Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Pellucidar novels. Denton is the English town where R.D. Wingfield’s Jack Frost novels and the television series A Touch of Frost take place. The English town of Causton is the setting of the Chief Inspector Barnaby novels by Caroline Graham, as well as the television series Midsomer Murders. Arkham and Miskatonic University are staples of H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos. Evangeline West’s uncle is James West from the television series The Wild Wild West. Witch’s Hollow is from the story of the same name by August Derleth. Bolton and Herbert West are from Lovecraft’s “Herbert West—Reanimator.” Kingsport is from Lovecraft’s “The Festival.” Innsmouth is from another Lovecraft story, “The Shadow over Innsmouth.” The town of Derry (spelled “Derrie” here), Maine appears in many of Stephen King’s novels and short stories. Axel Lidenbrock is from Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth. Ammi Pierce, Nahum and Nabby Gardner, and Chapman’s Brook are from Lovecraft’s “The Colour Out of Space.” Professor Cavor is from Wells’ The First Men in the Moon; his first name was given as Selwyn in The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume I. Karel Colceag’s name is a nod to Carl Kolchak, although the two are not meant to be the same character.