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Kolchak: Tales of The Night Stalker #4

Posted: Friday, August 6, 2004
By: Ray Tate



"Scratch"

Writer: Dave Ulanski
Artists: Pat Oliffe(p), Keith Williams(i), Ken Wolak & Dawn Groszewski(c)
Publisher: Moonstone

The second Kolchak book this week and the fourth in the ongoing series takes a daring move by relying upon the continuity of previous issues. Dave Ulanski seems to be taking the opposite approach to writing that many of his peers have chosen. He knows what continuity is for, how to use and how to annotate it so as not to scare away potential faithful fans.

This investigation centers on a popular urban legend. The plot unfolds at a leisurely pace and includes Carl's usual brilliance when it comes to disposing the monsters. The real surprises comes from an admission by Tony Vincenzo. Many readers may find this admission sacrilege, but it's been implied in the canon since Night Stalker and certainly confirmed in Night Strangler.

Pat Oliffe from Untold Tales of Spider-Man and Spider-Girl details the scary and shocking twist on the haunted house sub-genre. He keeps close to cuff of the characters' screen likeness and adds his own designs to the new frequent guests. He also times perfectly the horror of violence and the frenetic hunt for a supernatural killer.

In short, "Scratch" is a spectacular issue of Kolchak that doesn't actually seem that way. It sneaks up on you.



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