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    “YUREI: THE JAPANESE GHOST” (Book Review)

    The first image that usually comes to mind when someone mentions “Japanese ghost” is the long-haired, white-draped, female spirit a la Sadako from THE RING or Kayako from THE GRUDGE. With their deathly pale faces and blood thirsty drive to kill all who cross their paths, they have become the standard from which many J-Horror spirits have been built from. But, did you know that they are merely the newest interpretation of what is actually a centuries old folk tale? Or that the modern appearance of these ghosts, or better known as yurei, was born out of necessity due to the poor lighting at early kabuki theaters? YUREI: THE JAPANESE GHOST explores the darker side of Japanese folklore, creating one of the first, modern English texts to thoroughly explore the intricacies of Japans’ beliefs on death, dying, and the afterlife.

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    “CONSTANTINE” to Return via DC/CW Series “ARROW”

    It seems like you just can’t keep a good magical detective down, especially one who has been around the block as much as John Constantine. Despite NBC cancelling his eponymous show after a single season, it has been recently announced that he will be making an appearance in ARROW’s fourth season. Better yet, the role of Constantine will also be revived by the NBC series actor, Matt Ryan, who was beloved by fans in the part. While there are currently no plans to make him a regular staple of ARROW, fans can at least re-live all the chaotic magic in the fifth episode of the newest season titled “Haunted.”

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    “CYRUS PERKINS AND THE HAUNTED TAXI CAB #1” (Comic Book Review)

    Of all the popular horror genres, the one that gets the least attention is car horror. While few movies such as CHRISTINE and the 1986 camp favorite MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE (both based on Stephen King stories) take advantage of this rarely traversed trope, it’s still fairly uncommon, even more so for comic books (though with a notable shout out to TALES OF HOTROD HORROR). It’s perhaps this lack of shared tropes that makes CYRUS PERKINS AND THE HAUNTED TAXI CAB so noteworthy.

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    “THIS DAMNED BAND #1” (Comic Book Review)

    Satan and rock ‘n’ roll have gone hand in hand ever since Elvis wiggled his hips on TV to the screaming hysterics of girls everywhere. While some bands attempt to quell the fears of the masses by refuting that Dark Lord’s presence anywhere near their work, others like Black Sabbath and the Rolling Stones run with the premise and frequently invoked his unholy visage in their shows. But Satan isn’t actually real, right? Well, according to Motherfather, the stars of Dark Horse’s newest series THIS DAMNED BAND, it depends on who you ask. Exploring the world of satanic worship and its connection to the dark art of music (with a heavy dose of sex and drugs), this title asks the question, “What if Satan is not only real, but he’s been listening to your band all this time?” Perhaps it’s time to lay off the mushrooms.

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    “BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA #13” (Comic Book Review)

    BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA has been a staple of the cult genre since its commercial failing in 1986. Though considered a movie flop during its initial release, it was, in reality, taking its first baby steps into the heart of American kitsch culture. Even now, almost thirty years later, BTILC mania is still going strong and has not only become a favorite initiation watch for burgeoning Carpenter fans, but is even bringing in new fans thanks to BOOM! Studios comic series. An all-original work, the BTILC comic is currently on its unlucky 13th issue and boasts a new creative team and a new storyline for fans who have been wanting to read the series but are not sure where to start.

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    Grant Morrison boards HEAVY METAL as New Editor-in-Chief

    In keeping with HEAVY METAL’s tradition of exploring new and exciting territories, iconic comic writer Grant Morrison has been hired as the new Editor-in-Chief of the publishing powerhouse, according to Entertainment Weekly. Not only will he be in charge of the creative run of the magazine but he also plans on contributing to every issue with script and prose material. He has stated that he plans to dedicate a couple years of focus purely on HEAVY METAL and has already been looking at new talent, though no word on what that talent is.

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    “FRAGMENTS OF HORROR” (Comic Book Review)

    Japanese horror manga is a small but popular percentage of comics that come from the Land of the Rising Sun. While most fans are aware of the more popular titles such as ATTACK ON TITAN and HELLSING, there is a whole world of unexplored, smaller works that are more akin to the traditional horror of demons, ghosts, and madness. One of the most prolific creators to contribute to the genre is manga master Junji Ito. Most recognized for his works-turned-movies TOMIE and UZUMAKI, Ito has written and drawn an endless array of mind-boggling works ranging from black comedy to the perverted terrors of the human mind and the merciless universe and, thanks to Viz Media, we are once again graced with a new collection of his translated works titled FRAGMENTS OF HORROR. Both written and illustrated by Ito, it’s an easy introduction to his work for new fans while still keeping true to the intense nature to which seasoned fans have grown accustomed.

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    “KUROSAGI CORPSE DELIVERY SERVICE, VOLUME 14” (Comic Book Review)

    After a nearly two and half year wait between volumes, Kurosagi Corpse Delivery Service volume 14 finally hits US shores later this month. While many may fear that the wait would spoil the expectation, the newest arrival is just as good as the previous volumes. While definitely a horror comic, KCDS has always focused more on exploring Japanese death rites and fulfilling the last wishes of the dearly departed, and volume 14 expands on this premise as the five central figures go about finding fresh bodies and bringing them home, wherever it may be. It’s an exceptional piece of philosophic horror from our friends across the ocean and is an easy gateway for those who wish to read Japanese manga but prefer a more mature work.

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    “SANDMAN” Adaptation to Shun Clichés, Says Star/Producer Gordon-Levitt

    After months of silence on the SANDMAN movie, actor-turned-producer Joseph Gordon-Levitt has finally revealed details on the progress of turning DC/Vertigo’s monumental comic epic into a movie. In an interview with MTV, he announces his intention to make an action film without ever throwing a punch. While the source material certainly has its moments of octane thrills and dark chills, it’s generally regarded as a high art comic that focuses on philosophy and human frailty to push it along. So, how does our young new-comer intend to balance the two?

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    “FIGHT CLUB 2” (Comic Book Review)

    In this era of sequels, prequels, and re-makes, many are left wondering if every big franchise really needs to be revisited and forced to birth another media-frenzied child when the original was perfect all on its own. While some, like MAD MAX: FURY ROAD, successfully float to the top and rake in that sweet fandom money, others, such as POLTERGEIST, crash-and-burn before they even left the launch pad.

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    Double Take will Unleash the “ULTIMATE NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD” Comic Series!

    Kickstarting its way into your undead heart, up-and-coming comic publisher Double Take is crowdfunding a ten series simultaneous release of zombie comics all set in the NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD Universe. Collectively known as ULTIMATE NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, each series will feature a team of creators who will add their macabre spin on the growing mythos of George Romero’s universe. While several of the series will be featuring the same authors and artists, everyone will be working in collaboration with Double Take’s Bill Jemas.

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    “HARROW COUNTY #1” (Comic Book Review)

    Nothing quite hits the horror fan in the heart like a good Southern ghost story, what with their weeping willows, cursed towns and cemeteries that stretch for miles into the setting sun. Throw in a wise old man mumbling about how much “you don’t want to go down that road,” and you’re all set. HARROW COUNTY #1 takes all that classic imagery, paints it in earth-worn colors of the farmland and sets it free to terrorize your overly religious aunt. While perhaps more of an homage to classic horror than a wholly original piece, it is the comics dedication to giving its readers the perfect subtle scares while staying true to the old school ‘haints’ of the South that really gives it a voice.

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