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Saturday, 1 October 2011

Sheffield's Most Wanted. Part 9: Phantom Stranger #29.

Phantom Stranger #29, evil Devil Dolls of Dr Z
Follow me into strange worlds - for I am Steve What Does Comics, and many are the comics I never had as a child.

This time out, in the feature the whole world's talking about, it's The Phantom Stranger #29 that comes under scrutiny.

Keen readers of this blog'll know I was a bit of a Phantom Stranger fan, even though he hardly ever did anything apart from appearing from behind bushes to give people a futile lecture before disappearing again.

However, there was an issue of The Phantom Stranger that I always wanted but never had.

And this was it.

My finely honed senses tell me it features an evil doll.

In fact, the Grand Comics Database tells me it features, "The Devil Dolls of Dr Z," which implies there were more than one of them - and that none of them were very nice.

Speaking as someone who remembers, with the appropriate level of dread, the killer troll doll in Dr Who's Terror of the Autons, and thinks Karen Black's homicidal Zuni fetish doll in A Trilogy of Terror is a journey into fear that only the strongest can survive, I'm always going to be hooked by tales of evil dolls - even if I won't be able to sleep afterwards for fear of what my own treasured dollies might do to me while I'm insensible.

But rarely has a comic book cover flung such an air of malice and menace in the face of a potential reader as this one did. And rarely therefore have I felt so compelled to buy a comic as I would've done had it ever appeared in front of me, demanding to be bought.

6 comments:

Terence Stewart said...

Killer dolls? Nothing beats the killer dolls in Barberella with their sharp little teeth nipping at Jane Fonda.

Steve W. said...

I'd forgotten about them but you're right. They are a classic example.

Still, "The Trilogy of Terror" fetish doll's always going to be the champion for me.

Anonymous said...

I bought that issue of Phantom Stranger for the brilliant cover but as I recall it was a pretty average book not worth looking out - now some of the earlier Phantom Strangers with Adams and Aparo were cool - McScotty

Steve W. said...

I'll have to do a post about my favourite Phantom Stranger covers at some point.

R. W. Watkins said...

I have two old Phantom Stranger issues in my collection--Nos 33 and 34 (the latter features a Dr 13 backup story); as well as a few Golden Age PS stories reprinted in those 100-page House Of Mystery issues that were appearing around the same time.

I'm not sure exactly how I feel about the likes of The Phantom Stranger and Dr 13 today. As for Dr Strange, Dr Graves and Dr Spektor, one either likes them all or likes none; for they're basically the same character offered up through three different companies.

Steve W. said...

RW, there's a review of Phantom Stranger #33 somewhere on this site. It had one of my favourite Phantom Stranger covers.

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