Spooky graphic novels or comics?
October 11, 2016 7:30 AM   Subscribe

Help me find some spooky graphic novels or comics to get me in the Halloween spirit

Last year, I read Emily Carroll's Through the Woods this time of year and loved it. The quietly creepy stories and artwork were great for reading on cool fall evenings leading up to Halloween. I also found the fairy tale quality of the stories pleasantly charming alongside the scares. The art was a really important part of how effective it was, so I'd like something in the graphic novel/comic vein rather than novel or short story.

Can you recommend any other graphic novels or comics with a similar creepy/spooky feeling? My preference is for answers that place a premium on creating a scary atmosphere rather than lots of gore/violence. I liked the anthology aspect of Through the Woods, but that's by no means a requirement.

posted by Bulgaroktonos to Writing & Language (17 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Have you read "The Sandman"?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:38 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

A Monster Calls. The graphic series of The Graveyard Book.
posted by BibiRose at 7:40 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

One of my favorite horror comics is Charles Burns' Black Hole. I don't know if I would call it gore, but it is very much rated NC-17. It is a body horror story about a sexually transmitted plague that is affecting a small town. It's not really violent, but there is a good amount of grotesque imagery (as one might imagine from body horror). It does succeed in creating a creepy atmosphere through the art and the story. There is a sense that something is unraveling in the small suburban setting, that gets increasingly spooky throughout the novel. It's number 7 on this list, and that gives a deeper plot explication and some non-NSFW art samples.

Junji Ito is also an option. He's a manga horror artist who deals with surreal, slowly building horror, usually focusing on small towns / everyday situations. There's a little gore, but most of the horror comes from the building of atmosphere. Just searching his name will lead you to sites where you can read his stuff online and get an idea of what his work is like. A lot of his work is in short story form, which would match your preference for anthologies.
posted by codacorolla at 7:43 AM on October 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

Locke and Key by Joe Hill is awesome. Spooky, but not grim. Classic feel, but original.
Locke & Key tells the story of Nina Locke and her three children, Tyler, Kinsey, and Bode, who survive an unspeakable horror and attempt to rebuild their lives at Keyhouse, their family home in Lovecraft, Massachusetts. It is a mysterious New England mansion, with fantastic and transformative keys hidden inside its walls that are also being sought by a hate-filled and relentless creature with ties to the Locke family’s past who will stop at nothing to accomplish his sinister goals.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:43 AM on October 11, 2016 [4 favorites]

Wytches is ongoing and super creepy.
posted by hobgadling at 7:49 AM on October 11, 2016

Creepy, Lovecraftian and adult, but spooky: Alan Moore's Providence. Two issues left to go. A slow burn, with moments of otherworldly horror.
posted by Hugobaron at 7:49 AM on October 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

Some friends of mine who do a comics podcast did a hallowe'en special last year. This post has a big list of recommendations (as well a widget so you can listen yourself if you fancy).

Otherwise, I'd second Wytches for sure.
Uzumaki is properly creepy and a bit body-horror-ish. (edit: Oh, I see Ito is recommended above)
Hannah Berry's Adamtine is great.
posted by parm at 8:11 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

Are kids comics OK? If so, there's The Creeps series by Chris Schweizer and The Creepy Case Files of Margo Maloo by Drew Weing.

In Your Wake by Tara O'Connor was definitely spooky, but I can't find a link to where you can buy it other than sending her a note.

Sarah Becan also has a couple good sets of mini comics: The Complete Ouija Interviews and Shuteye: Six Tales of Dreams and Dreamers.
posted by jillithd at 8:18 AM on October 11, 2016

Came to recommend Locke & Key, and saw someone beat me to it, but I will just note that author "Joe Hill" is Steven King's son, and it shows.
posted by ubiquity at 8:33 AM on October 11, 2016

Junji Ito’s The Enigma of Amigara Fault
posted by Going To Maine at 9:13 AM on October 11, 2016 [4 favorites]

Mercury by Hope Larson
Hopeless, Maine by Nimue and Tom Brown
posted by carrioncomfort at 9:28 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

The October Girl is only four issues, but they are good.
posted by soelo at 10:15 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

Izombie is so very Haloweeny
posted by Jacen at 10:26 AM on October 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

Cradlegrave is creepy as fuck and has the unusual setting of a Merseyside housing estate.
posted by Ted Maul at 10:59 AM on October 11, 2016

It's more a series of cryptic one-shots with a few stories sprinkled in than a sustained narrative, but the black and white pixel art of Uno Moralez is extremely creepy.
posted by Rhaomi at 3:33 PM on October 11, 2016

Anything by Julia Gfrörer.

Black is the Color is a good place to start, but looks like it's out of stock at Fantagraphics until 11/1.
posted by ljshapiro at 4:33 PM on October 11, 2016

Anything by Julia Gfrörer.

Recent FPP
posted by Going To Maine at 8:51 PM on October 11, 2016

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