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Tomb of Dracula #42: Review

Mar 1976
Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan

Story Name:

A Final Battle Waged!

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Tomb of Dracula #42 Review by (July 13, 2021)

Review: The final battle between the two supervillains is an epic one, with the possibility that Sun immolated himself to keep Dracula from his full victory. The big problem is a couple of major plot contradictions which derail the story. One is Frank mentioning that the heroes have given Blade enough time to infiltrate Sun’s lair…but they didn’t know Blade would follow Dracula there; Frank and company had no idea where Blade was or what he was planning to do, much less have plotted with him against the villain. And then we saw Blade fall through the trap door, a simple square stone shaft heading toward a floor full of spikes. We got a pretty good look back up the shaft several times yet when Blade is climbing back up all of a sudden there are landings, with ladders and a tunnel outside the building. Oddly convenient way to get Blade to spot his enemy on the roof but makes no other sense. Add to that the loose end of Juno’s missing head which, if I remember correctly, is never mentioned again even though the narration draws our attention to the mystery. All of that aside, this comic is still better than most of the other Marvel fare of this era; I just can’t help myself talking about the odd bits.

Comments: Quincy Harker does not appear in this issue. Doctor Sun appears to Dracula in DOCTOR STRANGE (1974) #14 then returns in NOVA #16, 22-25, followed by FANTASTIC FOUR #206-217; this is his final appearance in this title. One of the letters in the letter column is by future Marvel editor Ralph Macchio.





 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Tomb of Dracula #42 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Dracula and Blade fight together against hypnotized American soldiers in the lair of Doctor Sun, while Deacon Frost quietly waits on the rooftop. Sun triggers a trap door and Blade plummets toward a floor set with wooden spikes; he manages to press his hands and feet against the stone walls and halts his fall but also scrapes the skin off his hands. Upstairs, Dracula and Sun trade threats and insults. Dracula glories in his full power so Sun draws on the city’s power lines and blasts his opponent with energy that breaks him up into his misty form. Meanwhile, Blade slowly and painfully climbs up the shaft….

Having given Blade enough time to infiltrate Sun’s headquarters, Frank Drake and Rachel van Helsing enter the building, accompanied by Harold H. Harold, shamed into coming by Aurora Rabinowitz. They stumble across the body of Juno, killed earlier (issue #40) by Rachel but now his head is missing….

Blade climbs up the shaft and takes a detour which brings him onto the street where he is attacked by soldiers under Sun’s hypnotic command. He puts up a fight but is distracted when he spies Deacon Frost on the rooftop and is overpowered….

In his mist form, Dracula seeps into the plastic shell housing Dr. Sun’s brain and applies pressure and Sun is forced to marshal all of his strength to force him back out. Sun shines a huge cross of light on Dracula who, moving against severe pain, seeps once more into Sun’s shell….

Outside, the soldiers are recovering from their shared trance as Sun is too preoccupied to maintain his control over them. Blade awakens, does not see Frost, and hurries back inside where Frank, Rachel, and Harold are watching the final moments of the battle between the two villains. Sun’s shell casing explodes, hurling his brain onto the floor. But he isn’t out as he fires a laser beam at Harold, who is pulled out of the way by Dracula and the beam strikes the computer which explodes in flames—which are drawn into Sun’s brain and it crumbles into ash. And with Sun gone, Blade tells Dracula to help him find Deacon Frost or they fight right now….



Gene Colan
Tom Palmer
Tom Palmer
Gene Colan (Cover Penciler)
Tom Palmer (Cover Inker)
Tom Palmer (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: John Costanza.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Blade
Blade

(Eric Brooks)
Doctor Sun
Doctor Sun

(Dr. Sun)

Plus: Aurora Rabinowitz, Deacon Frost.

> Tomb of Dracula: Book info and issue index

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