REVIEW: Creepshow #4

The premier comic for short, sharp and satisfyingly horrific stories returns with Creepshow #4.  The opening story, “Killer Cart Corral,” delivers its thrills, spills and chills in satisfyingly gruesome tones as writer Nick Dragotta writes and co-illustrates a story that will give you Big Box Fever!

Creepshow #4Billy is the apple of his mother’s distracted eye.  He’s proud to take the plaudits of her affection, just as he’s proud to ram a shopping cart into a deluxe car in the big box parking lot down at his local mall while cackling like a madman.  Billy thought he was a bad seed…except, he’s about to confront someone far far badder than he.

So when Billy’s mom confronts the manager of the store, bespectacled Mrs Cartwright, she not only faces an indomitable woman intent on ensuring her store runs along, shall we say, extremely terminal lines, but also the truth about her bright eyed Billy.  Billy has been a very, very naughty boy, and under the merciless glare of the security cameras, his serial naughtiness is exposed for all to see.  Shoplifting and drug dealing in store to his fellow students marks Billy as one out of the (big) box.  But now, his time of reckoning has arrived…

Dragotta and the other illustrator, Jean-Francis Beaulieu, don’t flinch as they illustrate this satisfyingly nasty little morality tale.  We are all grist for Capitalism’s mill, none more so than those who dare seek to thumb their noses at it.  There is a definitely delightful snap, crackle and pop feel to the end of the story, as bones break and blood spurts as a reckoning crash lands on Billy’s mom at her terminal cost. Her gurgled final words demonstrate the Creepshow ethos – gory fun for all!

Creepshow #4 concludes with a fine little story called “The Amulet.”  We’re all going to get old, right, unless, you know, an uncaring universe intervenes at an unfortunately early age.  Still, our family loves us, right.  Right?  They might shove us oldsters into a state of the art retirement village, where the staff will treat us with the respect our golden years demand, and where the food we’re asked to eat isn’t a bizarre combination of applesauce and the cooked remains of our peers.

Oh dear.  We are in trouble.  However, new resident, retired archaeologist and sometime witch, Professor Alvina Madigan has just the thing to ward off the hammer wielding manager – the titular Amulet!

“The Amulet” is a fun little tale that does labour at some points, but still ends in a satisfyingly spooky manner in a soul swapping story that hits all the right buttons.  Mauricet’s clean artwork evokes a world as neat as a pin, laid over a dark, dark heart devoted to elder abuse, theft and dare I say it, cannibalism!  Overall, though, the reader is left feeling a sense of (misplaced?) triumph as the satanic Professor embarks on her new life.

Special shoutout in this review goes to cover artist for Creepshow #4, Guillem March, whose truly gnarly puppet show is one that sears itself onto your retinas and will stay with you forever.  Less The Muppets and more The Feebles!

Read Creepshow #4

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Robert Mammone

Robert Mammone

Robert Mammone reviewed comics for two years for the Major Spoilers website and has reviewed DVD and blu ray releases for Impulse Gamer since 2013. Reviewing aside, Rob dabbles in writing genre fiction.