CGC Registry

Comic Set Manager >

Precode Horror

Category:  Horror
Owner:  GAM
Last Modified:  4/10/2021
The gallery tab shows only items with images. Click the thumbnails to enlarge.
1 2 3 Next
Slot: ACE, 4/1954
Item Description: Baffling Mysteries 20
Grade: CGC 8.0
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Baffling Mysteries #20’s cover art, drawn by Lou Cameron, is recognized by Overstreet as a Classic Cover. While Cameron’s cover art depicts an enticing scene of a beautiful women being bound by green pygmies in search of their lost jewel, the interior work contains no such story linkage. The closest match is the last story in the book entitled “When Voodoo Drums Rumble”. It tells the story of Stefan Hootner and the consequences he faces as a result of his disrespect for native customers and beliefs. Suffice it to say that it doesn’t turn out well for Mr. Hootner.
Slot: ACE, 1/1955
Item Description: Baffling Mysteries 24 Universal
Grade: CGC 4.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Baffling Mysteries #24 is the last pre-code issue in the series. The opening story, “The Sacred Fingers of Princess Thais”, is original to this issue but all the other full-length stories are reprints from other ACE Magazine publications. None of the stories tie back to the cover art.
Slot: Youthful/Trojan, 10/1952
Item Description: Beware 12 Universal
Grade: CGC 8.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Beware #12, published by Youthful Magazines, is referenced in Fredric Wertham’s “Seduction of the Innocent” (SOTI) in the text on page 388. On page 388, Wertham itemizes comic book storylines and images that he finds troubling and describes one such story as follows “In one comic book ‘the top horror artist in the entire comic book field’ is confined in the ‘state home for mental defectives’ where his little son goes to visit him. Dialogue at the gate between the guard and the boy: Guard: ‘Yes, I know it’s visiting day. But he’s still too violent.’ Little boy: ‘I-I-just wanted to tell him he’s won the ‘ghoul’ for the most horrible comic book script of the year.’”This example is taken from the story “My Daddy Should Have Listened” contained in Beware #12. The story tells the tale of a comic book artist and writer, aptly writing for Beware Comics, that runs out of ideas and turns to his son and his new found playmate “Willie” for storylines. He gets more than he bargains for when he pays a visit to Willie and finds that his monsters are not imaginative but real! I have included a scan of the page that contains the dialogue described by Wertham.
Slot: ACE, 1/1953
Item Description: Beyond 18 Universal
Grade: CGC 4.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Beyond #18 is referenced in Geoffrey Wagner’s “Parade of Pleasure” (POP) in the text on pages 81-82.

Wagner describes Beyond #18 as follows “These crime-terror booklets, seemingly on the increase, show a monstrous reiteration of the morbid, of tombs, electric chairs, mortuaries, surgeries, and so forth. Take The BEYOND no 18: its first story tells of a girl who tries to murder her husband, only to find him turn into a phoenix which finally burns her in its embrace… The second is a welter of murders committed by a ‘ghost’. The third concerns a man who finds a severed hand in a Ming dynasty box. This hand steals his girl-friend in a fine scene and eventually strangles the man himself while he is in a strait-jacket in a lunatic asylum… The fourth story starts off with a man dying in the electric chair, but he proves unkillable and returns to life to run a gang of crooks in a city where the police are powerless to stop him with mere bullets. In the end his body decays, rather contradictorily, and ‘Jules Scholler dragged his rotting body to the dump. There, amidst the burning garbage, he committed his tortured soul to the flames.’

As described by Wagner, I have included a scan of the panel of Jules Scholler committing his rotting body to the dump.
Slot: ACE, 7/1954
Item Description: Beyond 27 Universal
Grade: CGC 6.0
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
The Beyond #27 is referenced in Fredric Wertham’s “Seduction of the Innocent” (SOTI) in the text on page 111.

Wertham offers a story from The Beyond #27 as an example of extreme violence in the comics of the 1950s. He describes a passage as follows “In many comics stories there is nothing but violence. It is violence for violence’s sake. The plot: killing. The motive: to kill. The characterization: killer. The end: killed. In one comic book the scientist (‘mad,’ of course), Dr. Simon Lorch, after experimenting on himself with an elixir, has the instinct to ‘kill and kill again.’ He ‘flails’ to death two young men whom he sees changing a tire on the road. He murders two boys he finds out camping. And so on for a week. Finally he is killed himself.”

Wertham is clearly describing the story “Strange Potion of Dr. Lorch” from The Beyond #27. I have included a scan of the page where a bestial Dr. Lorch flails to death two young men changing a tire as described by Wertham on page 111.
Slot: Harvey, 6/1952
Item Description: Black Cat Mystery Comics 36 Universal
Grade: CGC 7.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Black Cat Mystery Comics #36 is referenced in the text of the “Seduction of the Innocent” (SOTI) on pages 270-271. In this section of the SOTI, the author Fredric Wertham provides his analysis on why parents don’t take steps to stop their children from reading comic books. Wertham attributes the inaction to a feeling of “helplessness” by parents particularly mothers. He describes how mothers that raise their voice in objection to comics are attacked by experts for the defense (i.e. comic book publishers) that use “pseudo-Freudian lore” to explain why comic book reading is healthy for children.Wertham goes on to describe how a fictitious mother (Mrs. Jones) would feel reading Black Cat Mystery Comics #36 to her child Bobby (the comic is not identified directly but can be discerned from the descriptions of the stories and art). In this fictitious reading, the mother selects a comic that appeals to her because it has a full page add showing “forty-four smiling and happy children’s faces”. Upon selecting this comic she is distressed to find that the cover starts with “The Battle of Monsters!” and depicts “an enormous bestial colored human being who is brandishing a club and carrying off a scared blonde little boy in knee pants”. She goes on to read the first story filled with anxiety provoking language: “Look!! Their bodies are crumbling away!!”, “Kill! K-AARGHH!”, “YAIEE-E-E”. Skipping this story the mother begins another entitled “Whip of Death” where a young boy is tied to a mast and whipped to death by a captain. Wertham goes on to describe how the mother gives up reading the comic and decides that if the child-psychiatry and child-guidance expert say: “Bobby needs this to get rid of his aggressions he has to go through with it alone. She can’t take it.” Wertham sums up this section of the book with a simile that reading a comic book violates a child’s mind in a way similar to how a sexual assault violates a young girl - pretty strong stuff even for Wertham. In closing, to help you experience the trauma this comic inflicted on Bobby and his mom, I have include a scan of the front cover and the first page of the monster story. Prepare to be violated…
Slot: Harvey, 9/1952
Item Description: Black Cat Mystery Comics 39 Universal
Grade: CGC 8.0
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Black Cat Mystery #39 is referenced in Fredric Wertham’s “Seduction of the Innocent” (SOTI) on pages 386-388. The reference is contained in chapter XIV of the SOTI and this chapter, entitled “The Triumph of Dr. Payn”, takes its name from a character in a story from Black Cat Mystery #39. Wertham begins the chapter with a detailed description of the story “The Body Maker” from Black Cat Mystery #39. The story details the exploits of Dr. Payn, a Frankenstein monster inspired individual, as he goes about murdering and collecting the body parts of beautiful women. After describing the story, Wertham goes on to point out that this gruesome tale is clearly addressed to children by quoting from the letters page of the comic “I enjoy your books very much and read them in bed at night before I go to sleep. I am eleven years old.” Of the many examples that Wertham uses throughout the SOTI, I found “The Body Maker” to be perhaps his best example of a story that is not suited for young children. The story is well crafted but quite graphic in its lust-murder imagery. Although, as he is apt to do, Wertham is error prone is his description of the story. For example, he describes the opening scene as follows “When you first meet Dr. Payn, he is in his laboratory wearing a white coat. On a couch before him lies a blond young woman with conspicuous breasts, bare legs and the lower part of her skirt frazzled and in tatters, as if she had been roughly handled in strenuous but unsuccessful attempts to defend her honor.” I have included a scan of the opening page of the story. I think Wertham missed the point that the woman looks roughly handled not from defending her honor but because she’s been sewn together in a Frankenstein monster like way. In addition to “The Body Maker” another story, “The Witch Killer”, from Black Cat Mystery #39 is referenced on pages 387-388. Wertham quotes a passage from the story to provide an additional example of the age inappropriate material contained in comic books “A young solider ‘keeping watch in his foxhole in Korea’ is exterminated by a ghost: ‘The fangs and talons of the evil witch sank deeper into his jugular vein and then came out, withdrawing rich red blood. The young man sank forward, face up, dead!”
Slot: Harvey, 10/1954
Item Description: Black Cat Mystery Comics 52 Universal
Grade: CGC 6.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Black Cat Mystery #52 reprints stories originally contained in Black Cat Mystery #34. The reprinted stories are: Jack of Horror, Shadows of the Tomb, Hand of the Yogi and Halloween Nightmare. Of the four stories, I rate Halloween Nightmare the highest as I found the scavenger hunt story element entertaining.
Slot: Prize, 5/1953
Item Description: Black Magic 24 Universal
Grade: CGC 6.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Black Magic #24 is featured on a poster board prop used in the 1954 U.S. Senate subcommittee hearings exploring the link between comics and juvenile delinquency.

The poster board, displaying 24 comics of the “Crime, Horror & Weird Variety”, appears in a picture with Senator Robert C. Hendrickson (Chairman of the Senate subcommittee). Standing alongside Senator Hendrickson is New York State Assemblyman James A. Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick chaired a similar juvenile delinquency subcommittee of the New York State Legislature. The cover of Black Magic #24 is located on the poster board at row 2, 3rd in from the left.
Slot: Prize, 3-4/1954
Item Description: Black Magic 29 Universal
Grade: CGC 5.0
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
In 1954 and 1955 the U.S. Senate convened hearings and issued a report on comic books and juvenile delinquency. Noteworthy participants in the hearings included Fredric Wertham, author of the book “Seduction of the Innocent” and William Gaines, publisher of EC Comics.

Black Magic V4#5 (#29) is cited by Richard Clendenen, Executive Director of the U.S. Senate Subcommittee investigating juvenile delinquency. Clendenen references Black Magic #29 during his testimony to the Senate Subcommittee on Wednesday, April 21, 1954 and describes the comic as follows “The first such comic is ‘Black Magic’. This is a picture showing the cover or title page of this comic. Now, one story in this comic is entitled ‘Sanctuary’, and the cover shots relate to this particular story. You will note that this shot shows certain inhabitants of this sanctuary which is really a sort of sanitarium for freaks where freaks can be isolated from other persons in society. You will note 1 man in the picture has 2 heads and 4 arms, another body extends only to the bottom of his rib. But the greatest horror of all the freaks in the sanctuary is the attractive looking girl in the center of the picture who disguises her grotesque body in a suit of foam rubber. The final picture shows a young doctor in the sanitarium as he sees the girl he loves without her disguise. The story closes as the doctor fires bullet after bullet into the girl’s misshapen body”.

While Clendenen refers to the story as “Sanctuary” the actual story title is “The Greatest Horror of Them All!”
Slot: Star, 12/1952
Item Description: Blue Bolt 116 Universal
Grade: CGC 4.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Blue Bolt Weird Tales #116 opens up with a horror story by Jay Disbrow that tells the story of Corporal Willy Jacks and his encounter with the Ghostly Guardians of the Korean War. Willy, on patrol with his platoon, comes under intense enemy fire. Soon all of Willy’s comrades are killed and Willy himself is rendered unconscious. Willy awakens hours later and begins to make his way back across enemy lines. Along the way, he learns of an imminent attack by the Red army and is gravely wounded trying to warn the Marines of the surprise attack. He is about to give up when a group of ghostly figures visits him while he lays wounded on the battle field. They tell Willy that they are soldiers that have given their life in the pursuit of freedom and that he must do the same to save a Marine regiment from certain death. Willy, inspired by the Ghostly Guardians, rallies his courage and detonates a grenade that ends his life but warns the Marines of the pending attack. The story ends with Willy learning that, through his sacrifice, his spirit will now be accepted into the hallowed ranks of the Ghostly Guardians.
Slot: Star, 2/1953
Item Description: Blue Bolt 117 Universal
Grade: CGC 6.0
Research: View Comic
Slot: Star, 4/1953
Item Description: Blue Bolt 118 Universal
Grade: CGC 4.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Jay Disbrow’s “The Creature in the Ferns” cover story introduces Tagona the Titan and Zafara Zaran in a epic battle that stretches over millennia and a swamp or two.
Slot: Harvey:Chamber of Chills
Item Description: Chamber of Chills 7
Grade: CGC 9.0
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Chamber of Chills #7 is referenced in Fredric Wertham’s “Seduction of the Innocent” (SOTI) in the text on page 389. On page 389, Wertham provides a narrative on comic book murder as follows “The stories of murder go from the simple through the gruesome to the weird. One man kills his wife with a poker, another shoots a wolf which is his wife, a third becomes transformed into a huge crab and eats her.” The crab reference comes from the story “Crawling Death” contained in Chamber of Chills #7. I have included a scan of the page from the story that shows the man being transformed into a crab and dining on his wife.
Slot: Ziff-Davis:Eerie Adventures
Item Description: Eerie Adventures 1 Universal
Grade: CGC 6.5
Research: View Comic
Owner Comments
Eerie Adventures #1 is referenced in Fredric Wertham’s “Seduction of the Innocent” (SOTI) on pages 316-317. In this section of the SOTI, Wertham is lamenting the legal protections that comic book publishers enjoy and the resistance society has to passing new laws to protect children from the harmful effects of comic books. He references Eerie Adventures #1 to underscore his point as noted below: “Although in many children’s lives comic books play a role, no adult court, no children’s court, has ever made or ordered a full inquiry in a child’s case. But when the publishers of the comic book Eerie sued the publisher of the comic book Eerie Adventures for using the word eerie on the cover, the New York Supreme Court gave a learned and comprehensive opinion bristling with details and citations: Justice Frank arrived at the truly Solomonic verdict that both publishers could use the word; but that the second publisher must print it ‘reduced in size.’ If the psychological effects on children would receive the same meticulous concern as the financial interests of publishers, some court would have long since ordered that what has to be ‘reduced’ is not the eerie title but the eerie contents!”
1 2 3 Next

To follow or send a message to this user,
please log in