Written by Drew Edwards
Published by Sugar Skull Media
This issue kicks off with the 27-page new story BURLESQUE THEATER OF BLOOD, drawn by series regular Sergio Calvet. This is a solo Lucy Chaplin story. While Solomon and Man-Goat are off on an adventure in another dimension, Morlack appears with a request for help. A traveling Burlesque show, run by a woman named Mimi Von Weird, is abducting women who come to audition for her so that her troop of dancers can eat them and absorb their beauty. That’s right, cannibal strippers! Lucy goes undercover as a perspective dancer and faces Mimi and her girls. I guess I shouldn’t spoil too much more, but I’ll say that I like this story because it showcases Lucy’s intelligence as we get to see her in action using her various high-tech inventions, including nano-ants, a jetpack, and ray guys, along with her brave wise-cracking attitude. My only complaint is that once again there are several references to Lucy’s new full-figured physique, and I still feel that it kind of defeats the purpose of saying that it doesn’t matter what Lucy looks like when every single issue has to draw attention to how she looks like now. But maybe that’s just me.
Up next is the original Halloween Man story, ONCE UPON A TIME IN TEXAS (ZOMBIE IN A BLACK LEATHER JACKET), which tells Solomon’s secret origin, how he became half-zombie in the first place and, with the help of Lucy, adapted to his new undead lifestyle and began his career as a pseudo-superhero. 19 pages, the first half drawn by Nicola Scott, and the 2nd half by David Baldeon, this story alone makes this issue a great jumping-on point for new readers. And it’s always a treat to see early Nicola Scott art.
BLOOD GOD ON VIRTUAL BEACH is a 12-page story drawn by Benjamin Hall, in which Solomon, Lucy, and Morlack go to a Virtual Reality beach which is somehow being terrorized by a very real sea monster that looks like the Creature from The Black Lagoon and is eating people. And then Sergio Calvet returns for the 5-page CON THING in which a bizarre comic-book monster comes to life at a comic-book convention.
As always, writer/creator Drew Edwards tries to give readers their money’s worth in each issue, packing it not only with multiple entertaining horror/humor/sci-fi stories featuring his unlikely hero and supporting cast but also with several extras including pin-ups and character sheets, all illustrated by a talented group of artists. Halloween Man remains one of the best independent comics on the market.