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Unexplored Marvel – Terror Inc

TerrorIt’s 1993, an era when Marvel were flinging whatever they could against the wall to see what would stick. And one of those potential stickers was a book that went by the name of Terror Inc. 

 

 

 

If you looked at the cover of a random Marvel book almost 15 years ago, you could be forgiven for thinking that Wolverine, the Punisher and a newly revamped Ghost Rider were the only characters they published. And little books like Terror Inc were hidden away in the schedule. Unless of course Wolverine, the Punisher, or Ghost Rider guest starred. Then, the little books were…well, one of the crowd really. Unremarkable comics that blended in with everything else on the rack.

 

Terror & Wolverine

Terror & Ghost Rider

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

Terror Inc is notable for an incredibly short run amongst those books. It only lasted 13 issues. And when you take a quick glane at the book, you can see why. I’m going to start here by saying that the art is absolutely awful. The first arc, completed in 1992, is the exception. Moody artwork reminiscent of a Vertigo title. Unfortunately, by 1993, the moodiness was just replaced by ordinariness.  And all of a sudden, the book was gone from the racks by issue 13.

 

There was potential in the series. Terror was a pretty whacked out character to appear in a Comics Code approved book. A demonic looking bloke, he would augment his natural self by attaching the body parts of other humans, thereby gaining their memories and abilities. Of course, this involved a heck of a lot of random slaughter as Terror acquired new limbs at a rate faster than Elizabeth Taylor acquired husbands. This made for a character with a fairly narrow moral compass, to say the least.

D.G. Chichester writes plots in the book that aren’t particularly easy to follow. Although, it has to be said, it’s a fair bet that editorial had a major hand in the plots. Wolverine, the Punisher and Ghost Rider all make guest appearances in stories that have little to do with Terror himself. And further indignity is forced upon the book with a terribly contrived crossover with horribly mis-matched characters in Silver Sable and Cage as they chase some sort of erotic mystic thingy. Trust me, you don’t want to know.

 

1993 was part of the post-Image trauma years for Marvel. While the top tier books like X-Men and Spider-Man could survive the exodus of top flight talent, due to some pretty able replacements in the Kubert brothers, for example, books like Terror Inc suffered notably. A strong concept devolves into a lot of mumbo jumbo about souls and redemption, that doesn’t really work.

The new series of Terror is part of the MAX line. It could well be a good fit for a character like Terror, who is very hard to find at all likeable in the 1993 issues. If you want to go back and have a look at Terror’s past, check out the first 6 issues from 1992. Leave the rest of them Unexplored. 

 Terror Nasty Terror The End

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