Comics writer and editor Marv Wolfman's name will forever be associated with one pivotal work: 1985's Crisis on Infinite Earths. And that makes sense. It's the series that changed the face of the DC Universe for a quarter century, and remains the template for how that company carries out big events to this day.
But there's a lot more to Wolfman's career. Not only did Wolfman, born on this day in 1946, launch New Teen Titans; write a defining run on Tomb of Dracula; co-create characters including Bullseye, Tim Drake and Nova; and guide numerous comics-related projects in other media, Wolfman also played a major role in several creators' rights battles over the past 40 years.
Welcome to Cast Party, the feature that imagines a world with even more live action comic book adaptations than we currently have, and comes up with arguably the best casting suggestions you’re ever going to find for the movies and shows we wish could exist. Halloween is here, and we're celebrating by imagining a film based on Marvel's Tomb of Dracula, a classic Bronze Age series by Gerry Conway, Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan, and Tom Palmer.
Tomb of Dracula came out of Marvel between 1972 and 1979: start date, one year after the CCA let up on vampires. This was a year after Hammer’s increasingly psychological Karnstein Trilogy wrapped up with Twins of Evil, and the same year (obviously) that the studio released Dracula AD 1972. While Christopher Lee grew ever more dissatisfied with what he saw as his Dracula’s creep towards absurdity, Gene Colan and Marv Wolfman (along with Gerry Conway, Archie Goodwin and Gardner Fox) created a Gothic masterpiece in the comics; a soap opera that doubled as a perfect and precise character study. Dracula’s got problems, and he’s at the root of every one.
I know that we all love the Great Pumpkin, but if you ask me, Dracula is the Santa Claus of Halloween. I don't know what your family traditions are, but I always like to imagine the Lord of the Undead flying through the night of October 31, dragging bad children off to the depths of Castlevania and bringing the good children feasts of blood. It's... probably a good thing that I don't have children of my own.
Anyway, the point is that at this time of year, I'm even more into Dracula than usual, and I spend a pretty good amount of time diving back into comics featuring the King of All Vampires and looking for the best stories -- and there aren't a whole lot better than "Night of the Blood-Stalker."
Halloween is right around the corner, boils and ghouls, and that means that my fascination with the stranger side of comics veers ever so slightly towards the macabre. And for my money, there is nothing more laden with terror (and truly awesome comics) than Comicdom's #1 Fear Magazine, The Tomb of Dracula...
As the artist of 70 issues of Marve's Tomb of Dracula, the legendary Gene Colan defined the look of the world's most famous vampire in comic books. Teamed with equally legendary writers like Archie Goodwin and Marv Wolfman, Colan drew a Dracula filled with equal parts demonic menace, villainous arrogance and all-too-human regret, and became one of the greatest horror artists in comics -- no mean feat, considering that he was also one of the greatest super-hero artists in comics...
I've mentioned before that Marvel's long-running Tomb of Dracula comic by Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan features what's probably my favorite version of the Lord of All Vampires. I remember reading through the series for the first time and -- with the episodic nature, the Scooby-esque ensemble cast and the fact that Dracula was an antagonist that was both wholly evil and incredibly enjoyable to read about -- thinking that it would be a great source for a TV or movie adaptation...
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