Let’s briefly meet the author of this wonder. Erik Kriek, born in Amsterdam in 1966, the city where he lives and works, in 2008 he won the award of the association Stripschap. Very important prize for the author as it has made him one of the most famous and influential Dutch authors. Kriek has always loved gothic literature and related settings so much as to create a work dedicated to Lovecraft and has created a second comic book that reincarnates some settings, In The Pines, also published by Eris.
Let’s do a little dusting also to give you small useful information for those who still do not know this author. Howard Phillips Lovecraft, born in the small town of Providence, was a poet, essayist and writer and is one of the main exponents of the literary genres horror, sci-fi and weird, although his success came only after his death.
Lovecraft never enjoyed much popularity among critics, but was appreciated by his closest friends such as August Derleth, Clark Ashton Smith and Robert E. Howard (Conan). While the authors who often take inspiration from H.P.L.’s stories are mainly Stephen King and Neil Gaiman.
From Elsewhere and Other Tales
Lovecraft, in his stories manages to create a particular world made of mysterious and terrifying creatures, a bizarre cult and a new psychology really interesting so much to go crazy in the true sense of the word.
H.P. Lovecraft – From Elsewhere and Other Tales presents itself right away with a wonderful evocative cover, thanks to the solid figure of the author and immersed among several tentacles and some signs that will accompany us throughout the duration of the volume, giving us clues to the eventual stories we are going to read shortly.
From Elsewhere and Other Tales contains five tales: The Stranger, The Color Came from Space, Agon, From Elsewhere and The Mask of Innsmouth, all risky choices, we start from the best known works to the less known ones, which despite such are a real pleasant and interesting discovery.
Before entering Lovecraft’s mind, we are introduced to the work by the wonderful and clear preface by Gerard Soeteman, a Dutch screenwriter who has collaborated as many and the same record Paul Verhoeven, to delve into the world created by the author and finally we are greeted at the conclusion of the novel by a short essay dedicated to the life of Lovecraft, written by the Dutch illustrator, writer and cartoonist Milan Hulsing.
From Elsewhere and Other Tales
As many Lovecraftian fans will understand, we start with the shorter tales such as The Outsider and Dagon, and end with the longer ones written in the author’s more mature period. Above all, we have the chance to read The Mask of Innsmouth through balloons and drawings, a real treat for those who love the author and his tales.
The illustrator chooses two types of style. One is to use black and white and the other is to be inspired by EC Comics. Those who are familiar with Lovecraft’s settings will know that this black and white style is very reminiscent of that rotten green and light fog that reminds us of Chtulhu and the atmospheres that are often presented to us when we have the opportunity to play a video game dedicated to it. While referring to EC Comics, we mean Entertainment Comics, an American publishing house founded by Wiliam Gaines in the forties.
This publishing house specialized in comics of various genres such as crime stories, horror, humorous, science fiction and revolutionized the comics market with titles such as Tales from the Crypt, The Vault of Horror, Weird Science and Weird Fantasy, which entered into competition with the big publishers of the time, Timely Comics, future Marvel Comics and especially National Allied Publishing, future D.C. Comics.
Having said that, the stroke of the work predominates for the most part in all five stories. The traits used for the realization of the characters are well delineated and not too realistic in order to trace the Lovecraftian universe.
From Elsewhere and Other Tales is a work for lovers of the reclusive author from Providence, but also for lovers of horror stories. Kriek succeeds in making you feel uneasy even if they are revisited by the author, especially the details of the characters’ expressions, objects and the surrounding environments that make the work a small treasure with disturbing and terrifying stories as if they give that dose of madness that you wouldn’t need, but while reading you might incur in this small deviation remaining slightly perplexed. Happy reading.