Supernatural Thrillers #1 (Dec. 1972).
Cover art by Jim Steranko.
|Publication date||Dec. 1972 - Oct. 1975|
|Number of issues||15|
|Writer(s)||Roy Thomas, Ron Goulart, Tony Isabella|
|Artist(s)||Jim Steranko, Marie Severin, Val Mayerik, George Tuska|
Supernatural Thrillers was an American horror fiction comic book published by Marvel Comics in the 1970s that adapted classic stories of that genre, including works by Robert Louis Stevenson and H.G. Wells, before becoming a vehicle for a supernatural action series starring an original character, the Living Mummy.
Supernatural Thrillers ran 15 issues, from December 1972 to October 1975. The title was one of four launched by Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Roy Thomas to form a line of science fiction and horror anthologies with more thematic cohesiveness than the company's earlier attempts that decade, which had included the series Chamber of Darkness and Tower of Shadows. Whereas those titles generally presented original stories, these new books would instead adapt genre classics and other stories.
With the four titles' debuts set to be staggered over the course of four months, Marvel premiered Journey into Mystery vol. 2 (Oct. 1972), Chamber of Chills (Nov. 1972), Supernatural Thrillers (Dec. 1972), and, with a late start, Worlds Unknown (May 1973). Originally slated to be titled Gothic Thrillers, the first issue of Supernatural Thrillers featured Theodore Sturgeon's 1940 short story "It!", adapted by writer-editor Thomas and penciler Marie Severin, with cover art by Jim Steranko.
Four of the next five issues likewise contained adaptations: H.G. Wells' 1897 novella The Invisible Man, by writer Ron Goulart and penciler Val Mayerik (#2), featuring another Steranko cover; Robert E. Howard's "The Valley of the Worm", co-written by Gerry Conway and Thomas and penciled by Gil Kane (#3); Robert Louis Stevenson's 1886 novella Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde , by writer Goulart and artist Win Mortimer (#4); and the quasi-adaptation "The Headless Horseman Rides Again", writer Gary Friedrich and penciler George Tuska's original sequel to Washington Irving's 1820 short story "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow".
The Living Mummy
Issue #5 (Aug. 1973) introduced the Living Mummy in a standalone story about an African tribal prince enslaved by Egyptians and mummified by an evil priest, who eventually reawakens in modern times. The character, created by writer Steve Gerber and penciler Rich Buckler, returned two issues later as the starring character in a generally 15-page solo series that ran from #7 to the final issue, #15 (June 1974 - Oct. 1975). The cover logo during this time was "Supernatural Thrillers featuring The Living Mummy". With issue #8, the creative team became writer Tony Isabella and artist Val Mayerik, who was occasionally credited as co-plotter. John Warner wrote or co-wrote the final two issues, with Tom Sutton drawing the finale. Len Wein scripted #10 from an Isabella-Mayerik plot.
The series went to 16 pages with issue #11, and became a full-length, 18-page feature the following issue. Backup stories generally were reprints from "pre-superhero Marvel" science fiction/fantasy anthologies, and one case a 1953, pre-Comics Code story from Marvel predecessor Atlas Comics.
- The two covers by Jim Steranko
- Masters of Terror #1 (May 1975)
- "The Invisible Man"
- Masters of Terror #2 (Sept. 1975)
- "The Valley of the Worm"
- Kull and the Barbarians #1 (May 1975)
- Roach, David A. (May 2001). "Shadows and The Darkness" (13). Comic Book Artist via OhTheHorror.com. Archived from the original on February 18, 2008.
- Per Marvel Comics "Bullpen Bulletins" item in The Avengers #105 (Nov. 1972) and other comics released that month. "For the foreseeable future ... virtually each and every issue of these two mags [Journey into Mystery and Chamber of Chills], plus the fast-upcoming GOTHIC THRILLERS already in the works, will headline an eerie adaptation of a masterpiece by a major fantasy author!"
- Supernatural Thrillers at the Grand Comics Database