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Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Horror Key Comics Part 13

This is Part 13 to this horror key comics or horror key issues series. During this time, Marvel did pump out a lot of titles and horror magazines to basically swamp the market and try to pluck the dollars from horror fans away from the competition.

I won't be going through all of them, nor will I be listing every key for horror related characters like Werewolf by Night, Dracula, Blade, and Ghost Rider. Some of those characters already have key issues lists done for them and Blade was a supporting character for Dracula for a long time.

Regardless, these are mostly Marvel horror titles with one exception. If you missed Part 12, click that link. Otherwise, here's the next batch for you horror fans out there. 

1st brief appearance of Daimon Hellstrom (Son of Satan)
1st issue to self-titled on-going series 

Another huge key issue for Ghost Rider and fans of the Spirit of Vengeance. It wouldn't take long for the supernatural comic character to get his own self-titled series.

To add to the importance of this already #1 key issue, Ghost Rider #1 has the first brief appearance of Son of Satan or Daimon Hellstrom. Son of Satan and Ghost Rider became supporting characters for each other early on.

Ghost Rider #1 also has the 3rd appearance of Witch Woman, who was detailed in the Marvel Spotlight key issues list along with her first appearance.

Ghost Rider #1 was published September, 1973. It's a definite must-have for fans of either character or even fans of the horror/superhero genre that spawned during the early Bronze Age.

1st full appearance of Son of Satan

Ghost Rider #2 has the first full appearance of Daimon Hellstrom or otherwise known as Son of Satan. Daimon was an early supporting character for the Ghost Rider as well as Witch Woman.

So we have the first full appearance of Son of Satan and the 4rth appearance of Witch Woman. A double whammy key issue, though the 4rth appearance of Witch Woman is highly minor. 

Since I already did a Ghost Rider key issues list, I won't be featuring anymore keys from the comic series. You can click that blue link to check out a more in-depth Ghost Rider key comic series. October, 1973 was when Ghost Rider #2 was published.

Werewolf by Night meets Dracula
Werewolf by Night vs. Dracula

In the previous issue of #17, Dracula and Jack Russell do pass each other unknowingly and briefly on a train bound for Transylvania. However, Jack Russell is in human form in that issue.

Tomb of Dracula #18 sees the first time the lord of vampires in the Marvel Universe meets Jack Russell as a werewolf and the two officially clash. The kings of Marvel's horror monsters go at it in this 3 part story that does continue in Werewolf by Night #15.

As we know in the Marvel Universe, the two would be further connected by the Darkhold scrolls or book of sins later. This issue holds the first epic battle between two of Marvel's most iconic horror characters, and has the cover date of March, 1974.

1st appearance & origin of Gabriel the Devil Hunter 

There is a digest and a magazine with the same title. This issue #2 is from the magazine series that only ran to five issues, and this key issue features the first appearance of Gabriel the Devil Hunter.

Okay, the character isn't that well-known to most comic fans, but before there was John Constantine, there was Gabriel. Created by Doug Moench and Billy Graham, Gabriel went around and provided exorcisms and fighting demons. Demons also tried to possess him constantly.

Of course, Gabriel would also be connected to the superhero realm of Marvel Comics and assisted Red Wolf, the Fantastic Four, and even came into conflict with Son of Satan.
The Haunt of Horror #2 magazine has the cover date of July, 1974.

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1st appearance as Tigra

She was simply the Cat before, but in this issue, Greer Grant is introduced as a Were-Woman by the name of Tigra and fights HYDRA agents alongside Werewolf by Night. A strange crossover of horror and superhero, but that's how it be.

So, first appearance of Greer Grant as Tigra. Some of the other stories in this issue were reprints of early Marvel horror stories pre-code. Definitely, not a horror character, but Greer Grant's first appearance as Tigra was in a horror-related comic. Giant-Size Creatures #1 has the cover date of
 July, 1974.

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John Byrne first artwork

X-Men fans! Here it is, and another legendary comic artist who got his break into comic via the horror route.

Yep, John Byrne's first comic artwork was a two page story in Nightmare #20. He did do a Fan Art Gallery piece in FOOM earlier, but I think this issue actually has first professional work in comics.

Not too sure about that, but Overstreet notes this as John Byrne's first artwork. This first John Byrne comic artwork is not that well-known in the comic market by most comic collectors, but as a fan, it should be.

I just realized I completely bypassed Skywald Publications, who also put out noteworthy black and white horror magazines during the Bronze Age to compete with Warren Publishing. Pretty gruesome decapitation cover for back then also.

Skywald's future demise in the horror genre would be directly caused by Marvel, who simply flooded the market with more titles and horror related superhero comics.

August, 1974 is the cover date for Nightmare #20 and this magazine was published by Skywald.

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As mentioned earlier, I completely bypassed Skywald who did put out some gruesome comic magazines (black and white) that somewhat kept the integrity of the horror genre that was published during the Golden Age. Warren Publishing was still the gold standard during the Bronze Age.

I will have to get back to the Skywald horror mags at a later date since this thing is on-going anyway. I'll figure something out. In the meantime, I'll take a brief break away from this series and write up a few other posts about something entirely different so this series doesn't get too overbearing and mundane.

So, Part 14 is ready so just click that blue link below. Have a good one all, and see ya soon!

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