Sunday, October 19, 2008

You can, but should you find yourself in a horror situation, chances are running will only prolong the situation. I'm sure that's all any cackling villain meant when they discouraged the hiding option, but I wonder if maybe those stalking maniacs are just too lazy to play hide-and-seek.

The maniac comes in many different sizes and shapes, ranging from the traditional stalking serial killer, to the more patient variety who will savour the preperation as much as the kill.

Here on the Infinite Wars we've been casting a ghoulish eye over the back catalogue, surveying some of the spooktacular smackdown we've featured previously. As a stalwart of comics, mental illness and maliciousness go together perfectly to offer a broad sampler of maniacs for your Halloween reading. We hope it sufficient (or else)!

Adventures of the X-Men #7 (October 1996)
"Rites of Passage" Macchio/Kuhn

In their last confrontation, Sabretooth and Wolverine battled in the snowy ranges of Alaska, where the X-Man was able to out maneuver his old foe to send him hurtling down an icey ravine.

Having finally clawed his way back to the surface, Sabretooth is madder than ever, and intent on getting revenge on his arch-nemesis.

Stalking his way across America, Sabretooth returns to the X-Mansion he once infiltrated under orders of Magneto. Ironically, the X-Men are abroad in Russia tending to matters concerning the master of magnetism, leaving Professor Xavier and Jubilee alone in the mansion -- with Sabretooth!

Batman: Dark Victory #3 (February 2000)
"Toys" Loeb/Sale

With the Holiday killings still fresh in the memory of Gotham city gangsters, freaks, cops, and heroes; the Dark Knight Detective finds himself confronted with a brand new slew of serial killings committed in conjunction with the calendar -- and this time the killer is a Hangman!

The cast of the Long Halloween reunite as the Falcone empire becomes embroiled in a new battle with Batman, Catwoman, and the police, as the lines between mobster and freak begin to blur.

In the early goings Batman is launching a preemptive assault, seeking answers wherever they may lie, beginning with the gangled silence of Jonathan Crane: Scarecrow!

Detective Comics #796 (September 2004)
"... And Red all Over." Gabrych/Woods

When Jack Drake discovers his sons secret identity as Robin; the boy wonder is forced to reluctantly retire the mantle in order to prevent his father exposing all involved with Batman's troupe of crime-fighters.

Stepping into the void is Robin's on-again/off-again girlfriend, Stephanie Brown, who is better known to the Gotham underworld as the vigilante, Spoiler.
In the tradition of the industrious Tim Drake; Spoiler dons a makeshift Robin costume and infiltrates the stronhold of the Batcave, successfully compelling Bruce Wayne to accept her as his newest sidekick.

So begins the ill-fated career of the fourth Robin, and first girl wonder!
Stephanie is included in Batman's patrol routes, but as he will soon find, the new Robin bares some striking resemblences to a former ward. A solo career has bred a stubborn Stephanie Brown, and as Batman will soon come to realise, her inexperience may prove deadly...

Ultimate X-Men #49 (September 2004)
"The Tempest" Vaughan/Peterson

A mysterious serial killer called Sinister has been murdering mutants throughout the Manhattan district, raising the concerns of the X-Men. Though reluctant, Professor Charles Xavier solicits the deployment of six of his most notable and seasoned students in the pursuit of the killer.

Though Wolverine and Storm track Sinister to his lair, they are horrified to discover the killer has already eluded them, and unbeknownst to the youthful X-Men left behind, he's coming for them.

Unable to detect Sinister's presence, Professor X is unable to prepare his mutants for the threat that is coming for them. Dazzler, Angel, Kitty Pryde, Rogue and Ice Man will have to fend for themselves, or die trying.

Batman #663 (April 2007)
"The Clown at Midnight" Morrison/Van Fleet/Klein

Want to know how Joker got his scars?
In this all-prose pulp-inspired special; Grant Morrison unveils the potential for a new, terrifying chapter in the Joker's ever-changing strategum of personage.

Having survived a point blank shotgun blast from a disgruntled police officer posing as Batman, the Joker finds himself in the unlikely position of undergoing radical reconstruction that cures him of his gastly grin. Discontented with his new visage, the Joker tolerates hospitalization in a mental institute, long enough to fool workers into believing he is pacified, but in truth, nothing could be more false.

The Joker launches a horrific escape while the Dark Knight tracks his cryptic clues spread across horrific murder scenes. It's a race against the clock as Batman attempts to curb the Joker's rebirth, marked with self-mutilating slices, and the manipulations of his conflicted accessory, Harley Quinn.

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