Thursday, October 15, 2015

Vampire Tales #5 - Blood Tides!

Vampire Tales #6 is dated June, 1974 and sports an average Esteban Maroto cover which is lush with hues of green.

A two-page tale drawn by Win Mortimer and written by Doug Moench decorates the inside front and inside back covers, a somewhat ho-hum telling of a possible vintage vampire preying upon children in France.

Morbius the Living Vampire returns again in a story by Don McGregor and this time art by Rich Buckler and finishes by Ernie Chua /Chan. This is an elaborate yarn (and frankly an overwritten one as McGregor was wont to do from time time) that finds Morbius and Amanda Saint still in Malevolence, Maine up against the Demon-Fire cult and its local leader the kelp-headed Blood-Tide. The narrative perspective changes page by page as we also follow up on not only Morbius and Amanda but two folks we met in the last story, two young adults in Maine to assist with a political campaign but who are disillusioned with their candidate. It turns out they had reason to be. All the characters head to a local cinema to watch a movie titled "Trail Dust" but which from the stills used is a Hopalong Cassidy effort. You'll find the complete tale at this groovy link.

Next up is an article by Don Glut on the merits and demerits of the Count Yorga movies. Inspired by reading these reviews I dug out my VHS copy of Count Yorga and gave it a look after many years and I'd forgotten how cheap the movie making was. Sheesh! Count Yorga gets credit for being a new vampire face and leading a vanguard of such in the 70's, but on its own merits the movie is pretty tepid. The movie began as a soft core porn effort and though star Robert Quarry demanded that element be dropped before he became involved the erotic roots of the movie still show through in its construction.

The next story is an adaptation of a tale by Robert Block called "The Living Dead". This one is scripted by Roy Thomas and features artwork by Alan Kupperberg with heavy inks by Dick Giordano. This is a story of a vampire in World War II, a fake one who uses the mythology to scare the locals to make room for the Nazi war machine to maintain an intelligence operation. But as we learn the locals are not as dim as we thought and the end of the war proves problematic for our wannabe vamp. Read the whole story in the original art form here.

The "Devil's Den" by Carla Joseph is a regular feature which details the horror offerings in movies, books, and suchlike in the then modern day. This installment details movies from Hammer and AIP and others. 

The reprint offering in this issue is a black and white retelling of the origin of Morbius by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane. Kane's artwork looks great in black and white.

The final story is "The Vampire Wants Blood!" by Doug Moench and Val Mayerik. This one tells of an old castle in which a vampire's bony remains are staked out and which are undone by the rising water of a flood releasing the vampire to exact revenge on the locals. Read it at this groovy link.

And that's a wrap for another issue. More to come as Morbius is out and Dracula's Daughter moves in.

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