The EC Archives: The Haunt of Fear—Volume 2

ec archives the haunt of fear volume 2 cover trade paperback
10 Overall Score
Story: 10/10
Art: 10/10

Another classic EC entry filled with horror stories


Comic Info

Comic Name:  The Haunt of Fear

Publisher:  EC Comics/Dark Horse Comics

Writer:  Al Feldstein/Johnny Craig

Artist:  Graham Ingels/Jack Kamen/Johnny Craig/George Roussos/Ed Smalle/Jack Davis/Joe Orlando

# of Issues:  6

Release Date:  2022

haunt of fear #7 cover review

The Haunt of Fear #7

Reprints The Haunt of Fear #6-12 (May 1951-April 1952).  The Old Witch, the Vault-Keeper, and the Crypt-Keeper have a whole bunch of new tales to spin for their friends.  From cheating wives to devious business partners, the world is full of sin and murder.  The good are the meek and the evil are the ones holding the power…but even those that are evil face the end someday.

Written by Al Feldstein and Johnny Craig, The EC Archives:  The Haunt of Fear—Volume 2 is a Dark Horse Comics reprint of the classic EC Comics horror series The Haunt of Fear.  Following The EC Archives:  The Haunt of Fear—Volume 1, the volume features art by Graham Ingels, Jack Kamen, Johnny Craig, George Roussos, Ed Smalle, Jack Davis, and Joe Orlando.  The collection features an introduction by Tim Sullivan.

I always loved anthologies growing up.  The Twilight Zone (though primarily science fiction) was probably introduction to the genre of anthology “horror”, and the idea of short, compact stories that generally house a twist (though often easy to guess) were always a big thrill to me.  The legendary series of course was Tales from the Crypt, but all of EC’s line were in the vein of its best known series.  While as a whole many of the stories begin to run together and the titles don’t feel very distinct, The EC Archives:  The Haunt of Fear—Volume 2 is another perfect collection of the classic comic.

The stories are fun but often develop themes that carry throughout all the EC line of comics.  There are cheating wives, people after money, and general greed.  The good are few and far between and the bad are always plentiful.  The series received criticism from groups from the grueling nature of the stories, but in general, the bad are punished and sin leads to death…so it isn’t the most unwholesome message overall.

haunt of fear #10 cover ec horror

The Haunt of Fear #10

The artists involved in the series amplify the horror of the story.  While most of the stories are rather mundane, there are some real moments of gore.  Things like the melting man in “Forbidden Fruit” from The Haunt of Fear #9 or the shambling, burning man of “What’s Cookin’?” from The Haunt of Fear #12 are actually rather hardcore (illustrated by Joe Orlando and Jack Davis respectively).  It is easy to see why it could have promoted moral issues when they were released in the 1950s.  The new versions are clean and sharp and look better than they did when they were released.

As a whole, you could argue that there isn’t anything special volume to volume of The EC Archives, but reading them all, you see how consistently well done the comic was.  There is a lot of repetition, but each issue provides some decent chills.  This volume has one story (“Poetic Justice”) which was adapted for the original Tales from the Crypt film and featured Peter Cushing while other stories (at least in title) were used for the Tales from the Crypt TV series.  Young or old, these comics are worth checking out and reading…and remembering how big of a stink they caused upon their release.  The EC Archives:  The Haunt of Fear—Volume 2 if followed by The EC Archives:  The Haunt of Fear—Volume 3.

Related Links:

The EC Archives: The Haunt of Fear—Volume 1

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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