With Halloween just around the corner, you might be in the mood to read a spooky story or two. Well, Marvel has you covered, folks, with this one-shot compilation of horror tales.

(This book contains several stories, each with a different writer and artist, so I’ll list each team by story.)

Tomb of Terror #1
Story One: Man-Thing – Descent of the Beast
Wrtier: Paul Hornschemeier
Artist: Mark Texeira
Story Two: Son of Satan – Silence
Writer: Rob Williams
Artist: Pablo Peppino
Story Three: Werewolf by Night – The Cure
Writer: Joe Pruett
Artist: Jordan Raskin
Story Four: The Living Mummy – The Heist
Writer: Joe R. Lansdale
Pencils and Tones: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Inks: Onofrio Catacchio
Entire Book
Cover: Travel Foreman with Nathan Fairbairn
Letters: Joe Caramagna
Editor: Jody Leheup

Publisher: Marvel Comics


So, let’s take each of these stories one by one. First up, Man-Thing – Descent of the Beast. This tale revolves, as the title suggests, features Man-Thing in a story where he mostly narrates about himself – having briefly gained control of his senses – saving a man about to die, only to loose control again and grab the man as he heads for freedom.

Not much of a plot, then. Whilst it is well-written, little actually happens throughout these ten pages: Man-Thing saves a man, before loosing control and seizing him, basically. Where the story does succeed, however, is in creating an atmosphere – Man-Thing’s narration is entertaining to read and does a good job of painting a picture of a man trapped in a torturous existence, and this is what really makes the story worth reading.

Part of that atmosphere, too, is the art. It is in black and white (like all the stories in this book), but features some lovely shading that really gives the impression of quality. The art has a realistic bent to it, and Texerira’s Man-Ting looks very imposing and creepy. Overall, the art does a great job of combining with the writing to create a story with a great atmosphere – whilst the plot may be pretty thin, this is still an entertaining piece.


Second comes Son of Satan – Silence. This story concerns our title character – quite literally the Son of Satan – tracking down a murderer, a man who claims to hear the voice of his father (an astronaut who went missing under seemingly-supernatural circumstances) telling him to kill. After a brief conversation the pair get into a scuffle, but the Son ultimately resists the urge to kill, instead handing him over to the police.

This story has a bit more substance, with some insight being gained into the mind of our protagonist, and even some character development in his refusal to kill. I will complain, however, that we don’t ever find out what happened to the missing astronaut (which this story devotes the better part of two pages to explaining) beyond a vague and short hand-wave at the end. The last panel is also somewhat confusing – it finishes on a line that I am sure is meant to be effective as a conclusion, but it doesn’t make a lot of sense to me and left me with a feeling of bewilderment rather than satisfaction.

The art is serviceable – more straight black and white here rather than shaded. Numerous panels are rather well-drawn and the black and white is used to great effect at times. This art does not combine with the writing like in the last story, but rather both parts work along their own lines and the end result is still something very enjoyable.


Next comes Werewolf by Night – The Cure, which features our werewolf out to kill another of his kind – if he does so, then he will be cured of his curse. He justifies this action by seeking out another werewolf whom he is sure has been responsible for several murders. He meets a Cherokee man who, despite being kind, attempts to use him to cure his own son. His plan goes wrong, however, and the Cherokee man ends up mortally injured. Ultimately, our protagonist abandons his plans of murder.

This story is entertaining enough, although I did find the main character’s narration to be a bit over-the-top at times. I wouldn’t say it’s as well-written as the previous two stories, though, and feels average at best in my book.

The art, though, is really what brings this story down. Everything seems to be in one of about five shades of grey, and it really makes the story difficult to follow when your characters are nearly the same colour as the background – especially during an action scene. Whilst I wouldn’t say this story brings the overall quality of the book down, it doesn’t do much to improve it either.

Fourth and Final

The fourth and final story, The Living Mummy – The Heist – is prose, with some illustrations included. Thus, I won’t discuss it in detail, but the text isn’t the best I’ve ever read – it’ll past the time but is hardly award-winning stuff. The three illustrations, however, are well-drawn and definitely pleasant to look at.

And the Rest

The cover is fairly average – featuring the three characters from the first three stories, and not much else. It’s colour scheme of browns ensures it doesn’t really stand out. Man-Thing is also drawn a bit thin for my liking, far from the formidable creature in the book. I do, however, like how the cover is presented in a that sort of old style, with a few exclamation marks and text promising “More pages, more chills!”

Overall, this book features a couple of entertaining stories and a couple of average ones. It is, however, 48 pages for $4, which isn’t a bad deal and the first story really does contain some nice art. If you’re in the mood for a few spooky stories this Halloween, then this is something you might want to pick up. It’s not a classic, but it is good for half an hour’s entertainment, and as such earns three stars out of five.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

The Author

Scott Hunter

Scott Hunter

He spells 'colour' with a 'u' and has the Queen on his money, but Scott Hunter loves pop culture all the same. His first memories of comics are of going down to the local corner shop to buy issues of The Beano and watching the 90s X-Men and Spider-man cartoons. He only recently started reading and collecting comics regularly, but has plunged himself heart and soul into the hobby, bagging and boarding with the best of them. Outside of comics, he enjoys sci-fi (reading, writing and watching), good-bad horror films playing with a brass band. Favourite writers include John Wagner, Alan Moore, Mark Waid, Alan Grant and (in non-comics literature) Philip K. Dick and H.P. Lovecraft. Colin MacNeil, Carlos Ezquerra, Brian Bolland and Alex Ross rank among his favourite artists.

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1 Comment

  1. Damascus
    November 19, 2010 at 11:35 pm — Reply

    It’s strange that the second story with Son of Satan had the strict black and white contrasting with the art and it was okay if a little simple, and to contrast that, the Werewolf by Night segment was a thousand shades of grey with added stippling which made many scenes look completely impossible to tell what was what. I couldn’t make much out in that one and it made me long for the previous artwork, maybe a happy medium between the two would have turned out some really good visuals.

    Yeah, I got to the final story and thought that the title page illustration for the Mummy was pretty great, but looked at the next page and my heart dropped. Geez louise, that’s a lot of text. I honestly skipped it entirely, if I wanted to read that much, I’d just go grab my copy of World War Z or something. Thanks, but no thanks.

    Definitely not worth $3.99 in my opinion, there really wasn’t enough here to warrant that much money. You didn’t get any character growth, and the vignettes being one shots and so short, you don’t even get a real story.

    A guy walks into the woods. He sees a werewolf. Attacks said Werewolf. Has a revelation and lets the Werewolf go so he can kill more hikers. Says a “deep” comment.

    Now gimme $4.00.

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