1973 Issues of Journey into Mystery: Ron Goulart Triple Feature of Cosmic Terror

Ron Goulart, Science Fiction Mystery and Fantasy author, and historian of American popular culture (born 1933) was responsible for adapting two classic tales of terror – “The Shambler from the Stars!” by Robert Bloch and “The Haunter of the Dark!” by H.P. Lovecraft – and coming up with an original sequel to the latter, called “The Shadow from the Steeple!”.  All three were included in Journey Into Mystery, issues 3, 4 and 5, during 1973.

This isn’t Alan Moore’s Neonomicon which is genuinely disturbing (try reading it on a public bus without attracting seriously offended stares) and wonderfully in-tune with some of the twisted and degenerate aspects of Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos. No, this is 1970s comic style by an author who specialises in humour and the failings of technology through human stupidity, but they’re certainly worth a read.  I like them.  A glimpse into one interpretation of Bloch’s and Lovecraft’s work.  I’ve selected a leading image for each of the three tales.  Click on an image to see it full size.    You can read all three comics in their entirety, here (free!) thanks to the blog Diversions of the Groovy Kind.

The Shambler from the Stars! 1934 Robert Bloch classic adapted by Ron Goulart with art by Jim Starlin and Tom Palmer for Journey Into Mystery Issue 3 Feb 1973

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The Haunter of the Dark H P Lovecraft tale of cosmic terror adapted by Ron Goulart with art by Gene Colan and Dan Adkins for Journey Into Mystery Issue 4 April 1973

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The Shadow from the Steeple! original sequel to Haunter of the Dark written by Ron Goulart with art by Rich Buckler and Frank Giacoia for Journey Into Mystery Issue 5 June 1973

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The Haunter of the Dark

Written by H.P.Lovecraft in 1935 it is one of my absolute favourite shorts by the American author, whose work focused mostly on the idea of a cosmic horror lurking on the boundary of our (human) reality. Many of his tales explore the idea of what happens when  that horror breaks through – due to human arrogance / ignorance, maleficence or from lingering legacies of primordial days when certain Great Old Ones reigned within this part of Space & Time.  You can read The Haunter of the Dark in its entirety here, thanks to Dagonbytes: http://www.dagonbytes.com/thelibrary/lovecraft/thehaunterofthedark.htm

Every now and again I’ll see a church spire in the distance which looks more like a beacon of eerie portent than an icon of salvation. I photographed this one whilst traveling this year:

Photo by David J Rodger that conjures up a sense of Haunter of the Dark classic Cthulhu Mythos horror story by H.P.Lovecraft

Haunter of the Dark – Photo by David J Rodger, Gozo Island

I also wrote a short story, titled the Corrupt Moon, which is based on a church spire in Jesmond (Newcastle), in England, and explores the notion of the Influence of Hastur, as the King in Yellow, within the post-apocalyptic setting Yellow Dawn (where the Mythos has struck a devastating blow against Earth).

Corrupt Moon - short story download set in post-apocalyptic world of Yellow Dawn writen by cyberpunk horror author David J Rodger

You can download the story immediately or have a printed copy shipped to any address.

Short Story (4,200 words ) The tower looms above the wealthy settlement of Jesus Mound, drawing the eye and inspiring questions about why such a beautiful building of Faith should be locked up and shunned. One man struggles to grasp the truth as obsession makes him blind to the perils ahead. Within the baleful glare of the corrupt moon, reality can warp and leave an indelible stain of despair upon the unwary mind. Horror and madness fill the cup of the ragged King in Yellow.

New Great Old Ones & Tales of the Cthulhu Mythos

Five of the novels I’ve written tie neatly into the weird, unsettling and delirious fevered mystery of the Cthulhu Mythos, or introduce brand new Great Old Ones into this pantheon of arcane, primordial terrors. Take a look at them (links to spotlight articles below), you should find something to suit you taste in this particularly usual type of horror.

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