It’s easy to get excited by the newly released trailer for The New Mutants. It’s a horror film set in the X-Men cinematic universe, a completely different genre in a well-worn franchise, and a bold shift in tone for the lucrative and popular series.
But of course, comic book horror movies have been around for decades, even before the superhero genre dominated the landscape. The classic horror comic Tales of the Crypt came to the big screen way back in 1972, and inspired a hit HBO series nearly two decades later. Blade helped kick start the superhero movie revolution, and Hellboy capitalized on that good will with two cult favorite comic book horror movies. Constantine was a successful adaptation of the Hellblazer series, the Ghost Rider movies are… well, they’re mixed bags, but at least you’ve heard of them, right?
Indeed, all these high profile comic book horror movies do a good job of obfuscating all the other, relatively obscure films in the genre. The straight-to-video oddities, the anime adaptations, the films based on comics that never made a big splash in America, leaving audiences unaware that they were based on a comic book in the first place.
So while you’re waiting for The New Mutants to prove itself, why not dig a little deeper into the history of comic book horror movies and explore some flicks that might surprise you. Some are cool, some are campy, some are just plain awful, but they’re all a part of the rich tapestry of comic book adaptations we all seem to love so much.
Comic Book Horror Movies You Have Probably Never Heard Of:
Top Photos: Concorde Pictures / Miramax
William Bibbiani (everyone calls him ‘Bibbs’) is Crave’s film content editor and critic. You can hear him every week on Canceled Too Soon and watch him on the weekly YouTube series What the Flick. Follow his rantings on Twitter at @WilliamBibbiani.