Monday, June 27, 2011

Reviews: Marvel Masterworks Atlas Era Strange Tales Vol. 3; Nosferatu- Plague of Terror

MARVEL MASTERWORKS: ATLAS ERA STRANGE TALES VOL. 3 (Marvel, 2010; Hardcover)
Collects Strange Tales Nos. 31-30 (cover dates August, 1953- July, 1954)
I adore '50s Pre-code Horror! These are not as good as my beloved EC Comics but are still a blast to read. There is some considerable talent that contributes to this title. Artists such as Joe Maneely, John Forte and Joe Sinnott are all regular contributors to this series. Stan Lee, Bill Everett, John Buscema, Gene Colan and Dick Ayers also contribute at least one story. That's quite an impressive ensemble of creators. Some of the lesser known artists, forgotten to the mists of time, whose work that I enjoyed are Ed Goldfarb, Myron Fass, Chick Winter, Harry Anderson, Robert Q. Sale and Mort Lawrence. Any serious students of the artform should take a peek at the work that these cats did, as it is impressive and deserves to be remembered in the history of the medium.
My favorite story in this book is White On Black by Louis Ravielli (on artwork, writer unknown) from Strange Tales #23. It features a truly unique photographic negative look to it (white lines, black solids) and is just stunning to look at. I also love how it tells of a terrible future event that was set to occur on May 3, 1975. Awesome.
As per usual with this line of hardcovers, everything is perfect and of the highest quality. Superb restoration, paper, and sewn binding. I lay in my bed at night and am comforted by the knowledge that this treasured family heirloom will be enjoyed by my great-grandchildren.
NOSFERATU: PLAGUE OF TERROR (Millennial, 2009; Softcover)
Collects Nosferatu Nos. 1-4 (cover dates May- November, 1991)
This is a decent read, but nothing to really write home (or on my blog) about. This is about average for a black and white independent comic book for the era. It doesn't offend the senses or make you want to shout how great it is from the rooftops. It's just there. Some of the production values in this book are subpar. The blacks are a tad too dark, and some of the pages look pixelated due to poor scanning. I am a frickin' snob when it comes to this type of stuff, demanding the best. Your average comic book fan will likely not notice these things, but I suffer from acute OCD with this sort of thing. Your mileage may vary. I would recommend this to the diehard vampire of Horror fan.

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