Chicken Soup for Satan

    (Asylum, 2003)
™ and © Asylum Press

A problem with the previous Selected Readings from Satan’s Powder Room was that the cover was tongue-in-cheek and the contents were straight horror. That has been rectified here. The cover is both tongue-in-cheek and gory; so are the stories.

The first story, “The Haunted Hood,” is the tale of a courageous woman protecting her children from the horrors of the projects. You know: drugs, guns, ghosts, the usual. While well-written, it is rendered too cartoony to be considered horror.

The third story, “Boneyard Tours,” about a pair of gory young entrepreneurs, walks the line between horror and absurdity much better.

The middle tale, “Fast Acting Xilotripimene” is a much more straightforward horror tale, but it goes on perhaps one page longer than it should have. Rhine may have felt this was necessary to wrap it up, but it detracts from the story’s punch.

The gratuitous sex is less omnipresent (and less gratuitous) than in many other recent horror comics. That’s appreciated by people who buy horror comics to get their creeps, not their jollies.

— Jack Abramowitz

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