Friday, June 6, 2008

Weekly Dose Of Weird!

Another in the time-honored tradition of cover stars who don't LOOK BEHIND THEM!  VAULT OF EVIL #19
Vault of Evil #19 -- I think I saw this in a movie once... it starred Abbott and Costello though.

I. "Inside The Tomb!" -- Two Egyptologists walk out of a crypt and promptly collapse as if in a waking death. Their partner, telling his girlfriend not to worry, enters the crypt and fumbles to the solution: his cohorts were hypnotized by the Pharaoh's mummified mentalists, their staring eyes still powerful some thousands of years after their death.

II. "Beware! The Ghosts Surround Me!" -- A German thief turns on his partner and hides out in an abandoned house. Needless to say he is surprised to find that the house is a weak point between two dimensions, and he has a conversation with spectral aliens! He's not conerned, since they can't touch him, but these things never work out well: when the police find him, it's only a matter of time before he discovers that he now exists in a limbo state between the two worlds.

III. "Strange Doings in Cell 4-B!" -- A viscious con is celled-up with an old man who seemingly has the power to wish whatever he wants into existance. The young con forces the old man to conjur him weapons and a getaway car, but just as he and his buddies are going to make their escape, everything vanishes. Should have gotten there sooner, as the wished-for items only lasted while the old man did.

IV. "The Evil Eye!" -- A shunned old hag is avoided like the plague -- literally -- thanks to her "evil eye." Driven from her hovel, she winds up in an old farm house, and discovers the strange object called a "mirror"... and promptly brings doom to herself in the process.

Overall Weird Factor: 2 (out of 5)

Not a bad reprint mag, as Marvel was known for at this time, featuring tales originally from Uncanny Tales, Strange Tales, World Of Fantasy, and Astonishing Tales. The second and fourth features are the best, while the first one is somewhat disappointing in that it really is not even close to the cover image, honestly. It's funny reading these, because just reading the anthologies makes it seem like Marvel was phoning in their Wierd stuff from this era, but of course that is not true; all the Weird talent was working on the Horror books like Werewolf By Night and Tomb Of Dracula. Also of note is a subscription coupon inside, which details just how many titles Marvel offered in 1975: 59 normal comics, plus Giant-Sizes and magazines. Yikes!

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