Overall, I am a sucker for the big oversized holiday themed specials. And since I am also a fan of horror comics, Halloween specials are about as good as it gets for me.
Usually these books have a couple of great stories, a lot of average ones, and a couple of stinkers. That is not the case with Cursed Comics Cavalcade.
While I have to admit that there is not one story in this book that is a absolute must read, there is also not a single story that made me wish it hadn’t been included. On a scale of 1 – 10, I would give every story in this collection a ranking of either 7 or 8. But my overall ranking for the book is a little higher than that. Partly because none of the stories was weak, but also because I love the cover.
The cover evokes the old EC line of books, although the title itself hearkens to the obscure “Cancelled Comics Cavalcade,” an ashcan volume of stories and covers that were not printed, due to the DC Implosion.
Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman each get tales in this book, but that was inevitable. They are DC’s holy trinity, after all. Zatanna, the Demon and Swamp Thing represent the horror characters. Robin gets a team up with Solomon Grundy, while Green Arrow, Black Lightning and Guy Gardner round out the book.
I guess I ought to pick my favourites. Two stories really stand out, the Batman tale, and the Demon one.
Gary Dauberman gives Batman a very intense tale, dealing with a serial killer. Riccardo Federici’s is perfectly suited to this outing, simple yet chilling.
The Demon story is a darkly fun outing, set in 1853 New Orleans. Jason Blood and his alter ego use their skills to help a woman whose husband is possessed. I love the use of the time period, which Gabriel Hardman brings to life with the art. Hardman is joined by Corinna Bechko in telling the tale.
And an honourable mention goes to the Zatanna tale, for the delightful Halloween decorations in the margins of the page, by Mark Buckingham.