Pop Culture


And if that's not scary enough, a series of comic books made its name by leering at people getting hurt. The series was called "Tales from the Crypt." And like so many of the dead people it depicts, the comic has returned.

Mr. JOHN KASSIR (Actor): Hello, boils and ghouls. It's the Crypt Keeper, and I just wanted to say good morning to my MORNING EDITION listeners.

MONTAGNE: That's the voice of actor John Kassir. He played the Crypt Keeper on the television series that in turn was based on the 1950s horror comic by the same name. The Crypt Keeper served as a host, weaving grim stories together by inserting fiendish puns between them.

Mr. KASSIR: I'd like to insert you into my story.

(Soundbite of laughter)


The new "Tales from the Crypt" comic book maintains the format of the old. That series influenced generations of young readers, from Steven Spielberg to Stephen King, to horror film director John Carpenter.

Mr. JOHN CARPENTER (Film Director): I enjoyed "Tales from the Crypt" because they were graphic. I enjoyed that - the rotting corpses. I enjoyed the one where the intestines were spread all over the bases. I can't - "Foul Ball" or "Foul Play" or something like that. I really loved it because you got to see it.

INSKEEP: The newest comic offers several stories. There's the collector who buys a Japanese action figure only to see it come to life. There's the cheap landlord condemned to live in his own run-down property, which happens to be next to a cemetery. In a comic book like this, it's not giving away too much to predict that many of the main characters will end up dead. And along the way, many will do something to make you think they deserve it.

Jim Salicrup is the editor of the new "Tales from the Crypt" comics.

Mr. JIM SALICRUP (Editor, "Tales from the Crypt"): We're trying to make the "Tales from the Crypt" of today be sort of set in the very scary world of today. But at the same time, it's still a comic book and compared to reality, we're not that scary.

MONTAGNE: The resurrected "Tales from the Crypt" is out now to inspire and terrify a whole new generation.

(Soundbite of "Tales from the Crypt" theme music)

Mr. KASSIR: This is the Crypt Keeper. You're listening to MORNING EDITION. Happy horror day.

(Soundbite of laughter)

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