Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Ghostly Tales From The Haunted House!
Here is a simply outstanding ad drawn by the great Rocco "Rocke" Mastroserio, from Charlton Comics hawking the latest issue of Ghostly Tales. I've featured it here before. Ghostly Tales was still a relatively new magazine, less than two years old, at this time one of only two ghost host books from Charlton, the other being the direct spin-off of Ghostly Tales, The Many Ghosts of Dr.Graves. Dr.Graves was still an ongoing feature in Ghostly Tales.
The ad features this cover for the August 1967 issue of Ghostly Tales, what is to my mind perhaps Rocke Mastroserio's absolute best ghost comic effort. The outstanding perspective, the way Mr.Dedd is crouched in the corner as the ghost apparition exudes towards him from "The Shining Castle" all add up to a fantastic image. The colors on this one are really top-notch, something Charlton covers of this period don't get enough credit for. Whatever the cause, Charlton covers had deeper and richer colors often than most other comics of the period.
Here's that same image from a much later 1984 comic, the final year of this sturdy comic book's run, and as you can see the subtlety of coloring is missing, but the strength of the drawing's composition remains. If you'd like to read Ghostly Tales #62, then check out this link.
The ad also announced the coming of the "Big C", a remarkable bit of branding which did elevate Charlton at least in memory at a time when all comics were seeking to find a distinctive character in the marketplace. The very next issue of Ghostly Tales featured the "Big C", again gracing a Rocke Mastroserio cover. Mastroserio would soon die, much too young and his loss left a real void in the ranks of Charlton's cadre of great artists.