Temples of Terror

SRB Online, In Print & On the Board

Still shipping free Swamp Thing sketches hither and yon to the lucky folks who jumped aboard the SpiderBaby Store test marketing earlier this month. I won’t be posting all the sketch scans—after all, the repetition of mossy mug shots isn’t that rich in variety—but thought some of you might enjoy seeing some of the fruits of my morning warm-ups at the board.


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* Two weeks into the first month of 2013, and there’s another bit of Bissette work in print already this year! I just received word yesterday morning from Richard Arndt that contributor copies of his new book, Horror Comics in Black and White: A History and Catalog, 1964-2004 (2013, McFarland), have just arrived, and my copy is en route to me.

I contributed a foreword to the book (which you can read in the amazon.com preview of the book’s contents), and Richard generously covers my respective role in that history, including my work on Bizarre Adventures, Taboo, Goreshriek, and Shriek, as well as the late Steve Perry‘s creative contributions as a writer to this legacy. In fact, Richard‘s book is the first-ever truly comprehensive, exhaustive history of the black-and-white horror comics from the 1960s to the early millennial era, and as such an essential work. Richard‘s rigorous decades of research included reading and reviewing the comics themselves and personally interviewing as many living participants in that body of work as possible.

Me, I’m waiting for the hard copy, and I’ll have much more to share about Richard‘s book once it arrives. Needless to say: highly recommended!

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* Bop on over to Temple of Schlock for my guest spot this week, writing about the rarely-seen made-in-Vermont 1970s horror opus Dark August (1976).

I’ve been a constant devotee of Chris Poggiali and Paul DeCirce‘s Temple of Schlock site, and it’s great to be invited aboard, however short and sweet my debut. Chris has been providing some much-needed research on one of my pet projects, which I’ll reveal more about later in 2013, when the time is right.

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* Speaking of Vermont cinematic curios like Dark August, I’ve also contributed a clutch of Vermont-specific horror movie reviews to Michael H. Price and John Wooley‘s forthcoming book Forgotten Horrors to the Nth Degree (2013), which I’ll shamelessly promote soon enough. Consider the Temple of Schlock posting a preview of what I’ve contributed to Forgotten Horrors to the Nth Degree!

If you haven’t been devouring Price‘s ongoing Forgotten Horrors volumes—launched in the 1980s in partnership with the late, great George Turner—it’s high time you do so.

Again, more in a later post, when the time is ripe.

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Finally, a sad note: a dear friend passed away this weekend, and I know Dave wouldn’t object to my saying so here.

David was a good friend I’d known for some time, but rarely got to visit, though we had many many mutual friends; given the geographic distance between us, we tended to run into one another at (appropriately enough) local showings of horror and monster movies, which is also how I met Kathryn; they were married on Halloween of 2010, and that was so Dave. Kathryn and Dave were an ideal match, and I only wish (as everyone does who knows them) they’d had decades more together to share.

We’d initially bonded over our mutual affection for Godzilla movies and oh so much more. Dave was also a military vet who never boasted about his service to his country; he was active in all sorts of media, including his work as a TV news photographer and extensive work with online media (most recently as a DJ for Atomicradio.us); he also was a giving, kind, and truly caring man, and he will be sorely missed.

Dave thankfully had me as a guest on his podcast Nine Panel Nerds (which, alas, seems to no longer be archived online), where we talked about—what else?—our favorite giant monster movies (Dave‘s special love for Yog, Monster from Space was legendary). I last saw David and Kathryn at the Keene NH Colonial Theater Saturday Fright Spooktacular showing of Killer Klowns from Outer Space; we’d ducked out for a bite to eat together before or after earlier Saturday Fright Special monster movie events in Keene, but we didn’t do so this time, alas, which I’ll forever regret.

Anyone who knew Dave was blessed, and my heart goes out to Kathryn and all in Dave‘s family and circle.

R.I.P., Dave.

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Swamp Thing® and ©DC Comics Inc/DC Entertainment Inc.; sketch art ©2012 Stephen R. Bissette. All other artwork and photographs © respective years by their respective proprietors, posted for educational and archival purposes only.


Discussion (5) ¬

  1. Jason Moore

    Hey Steve!

    Just curious if you know if there is any mention or info of Arrow Comics DeadWorld comic or the Arrow Comics horror title that I pencilled called The Dead. DeadWorld was released in the 80′s and the title that I worked on, The Dead was published in the early 90′s.
    With it covering comics from 1964 – 2004, I was hoping there would at least be a mention somewhere LOL =)

  2. Mark Nelson

    Steve –

    I’m shocked to hear of Dave Kraus’ passing. He was a great guy and a blast to talk to. I was also a guest on “a very special episode” of NINE PANEL NERDS, promoting one of our Spooktacular screenings a few years ago. Those screenings were the only time I was able to get together with him and Kathryn in person, too, and it was always a treat to talk cineschlock with him, and to see what a great match they were for each other. What a loss…

  3. Cricket

    Steve – Thank you so much for sharing the news of Dave’s passing. I LOVED meeting Dave and Kathryn, and their love and affection for each other was inspiring. I hope that the warmth of your memories help ease the loss. I’ll be thinking of you & Kathryn.

  4. srbissette

    Jason: I don’t have a copy of Richard’s book in hand as yet, so I can’t say what is or isn’t in the book. But I soon will!

    Mark, Cricket: thanks for your kind words, and I could have written much, much, much more. So, so sad, this.

  5. Rich Arndt

    Just to be clear, the book cover ONLY B&W horror MAGAZINES, not regular B&W comics. Had to draw a line somewhere, even though that left out some good stuff. As it is, it comes in at nearly 300 pages and was barely under the limit the publisher wanted. So,,,sorry, Jason, no Deadworld although it’s a pretty damn good book.

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