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Tomb of Dracula #23: Review

Aug 1974
Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan

Story Name:

Shadows in the Night!

Review & Comments

4 stars

Tomb of Dracula #23 Review by (December 28, 2020)

Review: Oh, that cover! The Gothic romance artwork backed by a very un-Dracula shade of robin’s egg blue! It makes me wince every time I see it. The story is quite good, a very effective haunted house tale, again showing that Dracula is the star of the comic and can get along quite nicely without the regular supporting cast. Marv Wolfman continues to provide the thrills in a title that could easily have been ruined by formula. The most offbeat part? Dracula kills a wife and mother, Carolyn Bascombe. A footnote describes how she returns as a vampire, preys on her family…and then we are told their fates over the next century and a half. That’s going above and beyond the call of duty. 

Comments: GIANT-SIZE DRACULA #2 takes place right after this issue.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Tomb of Dracula #23 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Story continues from GIANT-SIZE CHILLERS #1.

At Castle Dunwick, Count Dracula has been protecting Shiela Whittier from her unseen tormenter and with the death of Lord Henry, it seemed the trouble was over—but the house itself gives out with sinister laughter and things aren’t done yet. And then Shiela is again attacked by an unseen hand. Dracula puts her to bed, still intending to make her his slave. Dracula is then assaulted by an invisible foe….

Taj Nital arrives at his home city of Jajpur, India, ready for a long-delayed meeting with his wife….

At the castle, Dracula tries to fight back against his unseen assailant but he continues to be buffeted, and the chandelier drops on him. A deadly wind rushes through the windows of the bedroom, sending Shiela screaming. She reveals to Dracula the source of the torment: her late uncle Alestar Dunwick. On his death, he willed her the castle; she didn’t like the look of it but her boyfriend Freddy liked it and persuaded her to stay. Then a ghostly hand pushed him down the stairs to his death. Dracula heads off to town for a victim, preying on a late-night motorist by pretending to be hit and then seizing her and drinking her blood when she stops….

While Dracula is gone, Shiela encounters the ghost of Uncle Alestar, finally strong enough to take on a visible form. He reveals that he is actually her father, murdered by her fortune-hunting mother. He sold his soul to Satan to be able to return and haunt her to madness and now he has to sacrifice Shiela to keep his pledge to the Darkling Gods. Alestar throws Shiela into a dungeon filled with skeletons of previous sacrifices—and Alestar’s own body, turned to gold and preserved for the ages. Dracula returns and confronts Alestar; the ghost insists Dracula must worship Satan but the Vampire Lord worships no one. The two battle and Dracula determines that Alestar’s existence is tied to his golden body and he destroys it. As Alestar dies once more Dracula stands over him and mocks….

Gene Colan
Vince Colletta
Petra Goldberg
Gil Kane (Cover Penciler)
Tom Palmer (Cover Inker)
Tom Palmer (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: John Costanza.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Plus: Shiela Whittier.

> Tomb of Dracula: Book info and issue index

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