If you read my review for Eerie Archives Volume 9, and you’re familiar with the magazine, you should know about it’s sister magazine Creepy. I won’t patronize you by repeating what I had to say about Eerie, but a lot of the problems I had with it are the same problems I have here, with Creepy Volume 12. I can say with certainty, however, that Creepy does have a lot of improvements over Eerie.
I enjoyed the comics within Creepy more so than Eerie. In terms of content, they’re more traditional horror tales, in lieu of Eerie‘s fantasy-esque horror stories. Some of them are written in the more traditional comic styles with not as many word balloons, and every once in a while you’ll get a full color section (something the Eerie Archvie didn’t offer).
The comics inside are about as predictable as ever though.
They play like rejected Twilight Zone episodes because they follow such a similar formula most of the time. While this isn’t a bad thing, it gets tiresome after about three stories in. Not only do the comics feel like a machine churned them out, but the art does too. Very seldom does the art in one comic look much different at all from the previous story. There are breaks every once in a while where a different artist, representing a different style, draws the comic and they are a welcome addition.
My favorite part of looking at the collection was the reprints of the classic board games from the magazine. They are the “cut out and use tape, brads, staples, and paper clip” type of board games. It’s the kind of thing that you would have tried playing with your friends when you were a kid to convince them that it’s awesome. Just reading all of the rules and events of each game is a lot of fun, but it really made me want to play them (not exactly possible with the way the book is).
While the things that I hated about the Eerie Archives collection are present, but with improvements, there are positives about Creepy. Specifically, I loved the old adds from the magazine. Seeing the car decals, 16mm film prints, toys, models, and other junk that was being offered made me feel like a little kid again. It’s a shame there aren’t more of the ads because while they might have been reader’s least favorite parts of the magazine when it was originally in print, it’s my favorite part of the reprints.
I feel better about recommending the Creepy reprints to horror fans than I did Eerie. Since it retains a more conventional standard of horror, it’s more pleasing, but people that don’t care for the older style of comics will want to skip this. It’s an acquired taste and definitely something really interesting that you can have as a part of your genre collection. Of course, if you grew up reading Creepy it’s a must own, but its charm quickly dissipates if you read the volume in one sitting.
Creepy Archives Volume 12 goes on sale February 15.