Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Featured Comic: Child's Play 2 #1


Released in 1991, Innovation Comics published a three-issue adaptation of Child's Play 2. Chucky's horrific exploits were later re-published by Innovation in one complete volume.

Monday, May 28, 2012

VHS OF THE WEEK: Batman and Robin Serial



VHS RELEASE DATE: 1989

There were two Batman serials released in the '40s - one in 1943 (simply titled Batman) and another in '49 (Batman and Robin). Though both are valid attempts at the character, the second is largely superior, even including a masked villain known as 'The Wizard.' Goodtimes Home Video released a number of the cliffhanger serials in the late '80s and early '90s, most of which were split into two volumes.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Featured Book: Spook Night



Disappointed that Halloween's still a number of months away? Well, David Robbins' novel Spook Night is sure to get you into the Halloween spirit, no matter when you read it! First published in 1995, this one might be a little difficult to find nowadays, but it's worth the trouble. Spook Night moves at a brisk pace and is a solid page turner.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Featured Comic: The Shadow and Doc Savage #1


After The Shadow feature film was released in 1994, Dark Horse Comics hoped to cash in on the character as much as possible. They published a number of Shadow titles, but none so daring than The Shadow and Doc Savage crossover. The 2-issue mini-series was released in 1995.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Batman in S.O.S.: Save Our Snakes!


The Joker has his fiendish plan foiled once again, thanks to Robin's clever thinking and a Magic Snake (also known as a Rubik's Snake). While useful in saving one's life when kidnapped by the Clown Prince of Crime, this toy puzzle was certain to populate the furthest, darkest corner of every kid's room.
The many 'fun' designs you can create with the Magic Snake!

Monday, May 21, 2012

VHS OF THE WEEK: Rodan



VHS RELEASE DATE: 1995

Paramount Home Video released a number of the Godzilla films in the early-to-mid '90s, some even made it to VHS for the first time! Unfortunately, for collectors, most were released in EP/SLP (extended play/standard long play), which was vastly inferior to SP (standard play).

On the other hand, Paramount had some great artwork on their VHS covers!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Featured Comic: Shazam The Beginning #1


By the mid '80s DC Comics had decided to reboot most of their titles. Shazam: The Beginning was a 4-issue mini-series that modernized the origin of Captain Marvel. It's a superior effort over both the earlier Shazam comics and the '90s iteration, when the character's history was once again tweaked for The Power of Shazam.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Godzilla Kingdom: Series 2 Figures


Released by Bandai in 1999, these Godzilla Kingdom figures are a rare find! Never made available outside of Japan, each figure stands at approximately 1 1/2 inches to 2 inches tall and is featured in their own unique box with accessory and Japanese candy.

Monday, May 14, 2012

VHS OF THE WEEK: Witching Time - Hosted by Elvira



VHS RELEASE DATE: 1985

Witching Time was released under the Thriller Video label, hosted by Elvira - Mistress of the Dark. This striking gem came in one of the vintage VHS over-sized boxes, which was far bigger than the standard VHS packaging. Within the cardboard box was a plastic clamshell case which, in turn, held the cassette. 

The original receipt from 1988:


Sunday, May 13, 2012

Advertising Wasteland: Johnson Smith Company 1975


Say what you will, most of the stuff in the old Johnson Smith Company ads (typically found in comic books) was junk - but some of it was also really great!

Okay, sure...the joy buzzer didn't work, nor did the automatic hypnotizer, x-ray goggles, air car, or electric motor (or just about any other product that claimed to 'do' something). Nevertheless, the horror record was a pretty sweet deal for 95 cents, and the greedy fingers bank was a nice novelty for $1.95. A 170 page book on Bruce Lee for $1.25? Sold! Both the Star Trek exploration set and crime detection lab might have had some potential. Of course, one wonders how realistic the so-called "realistic" Frankenstein mask was for only $3.95 - even if we're talking about 1975 currency. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Featured Comic Book: King Kong


The 1960s was a good time for King Kong, providing the 'Eight Wonder of the World' with a newfound popularity. The big ape soon had his very own cartoon, Aurora model kit, boardgames, posters and, lastly, a comic book movie adaptation. 

This Gold Key publication was first available in 1968 and for a mere 25 cents a lucky kid would have been able to relive the entire film in comic format.

The mighty Kong "graaaws" his way into a monstrous battle.

Monday, May 7, 2012

VHS OF THE WEEK: Alien



VHS RELEASE DATE: 1980

By far the oldest VHS we've featured thus far! This copy of Alien is from 1980 (over thirty years old!) and was released by the utterly forgotten Magnetic Video Corporation. The back of the video box doesn't even give a description of the film, but a listing of what other "videocassette programs" are available. 

What's even more fascinating is that, at the time, it looks like they didn't even master the art of packaging yet! On the front cover, the 'running time' text is slightly cut off at the bottom (notice the 'g' in 'running'), and what's more - the VHS hardly fits in the box! The box was made about a centimeter too short, so the VHS tape sticks out a tiny bit at the bottom. 

However, the true surprise has been saved for last. Observe the receipt:


$59.99 for a VHS tape back in 1980!? And we thought some Blu-Rays were overpriced...!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Featured Comic: The Avengers #80


Marking the first appearance of Red Wolf and Lobo, The Avengers #80 (published in September 1970 - back when a comic was only 15 cents) may have been short on action but made up for it in the grandeur of John Buscema's impressive artwork. A great cover too, featuring Thor, Captain America, Iron Man, and the Vision!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Featured Comic: The Bat #1


Published in 1992 by Adventure Comics, The Bat is a one-shot adaptation of Mary Roberts Rinehart's Broadway play and novel of the same name. Rinehart's The Bat was made into a silent film back in the '20s, an early 'talkie' in the '30s, and remade yet again in the 1950's starring Vincent Price and Agnes Moorehead. Be sure to check out Shadowland Magazine #3 for an in-depth article on Rinehart's work and The Bat!

Adventure Comics' The Bat is inked in black-and-white and, while changing much of Rinehart's story (not for the better), it's still worth seeking out just for the mind-blowing cover artwork.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

More Horror In The U.K.


If you're a horror fan and fortunate enough to be in the U.K. near the Brighton area this spring and summer, you'll be in for a treat...or should we say, treats

First up, on May 6th, the Classic Horror Campaign is teaming up with Bedabbled! magazine for the Classic British Vampire Double Bill, featuring Blood of the Vampire and Vampyres. This is a creature feature any vampire fan can sink their teeth into!


Next, on June 3rd, the Roxy Bar & Screen will be hosting The Cyberschizoid Birthday Party Monster Mash, showing not one, but two delightful classic horror pictures: How To Make A Monster and Dr. Phibes Rises Again


And, last but not least - Frighten Brighton will be stirring up some scares on August 11th with a monstrous marathon that can not be missed! Attendees will be able to see Mad Love (1935), Cat People (1942), Them! (1954), Plague of Zombies (1966), and Phantasm (1979). 

Be sure to visit www.ClassicHorrorCampaign.com and FrightenBrighton.wordpress.com for more information!