Haunt of Horror #2 (Gabriel the Devil Hunter)
Issue(s): Haunt of Horror #2 (Gabriel the Devil Hunter story only)
Gabriel's Haunt of Horror stories are straightforward exorcism tales (as an aside, it's just amazing how popular Satanism was - as a topic, not necessarily a practice! - and how much that reflected on Marvel's 70s output, from Ghost Rider to Son of Satan to this book). If there's anything beyond "exorcist fights devil" in this story, it's the elements of Gabriel's history that are teased.
Gabriel's office is on the 13th floor of the Empire State Building; he's said to be the only tenant on that floor due to superstition. Gabriel's secretary is Desadia, who shows signs of precognition.
Gabriel's client for this issue is a priest that has a history with Gabriel. It seems Gabriel was a priest himself, but he was driven out for his beliefs by another priest. It seems the idea that demonic possession was real was the point of contention. Ironically, that priest is now possessed by a demon.
Although i have to admit when i first saw the history between Gabriel and Father Artemis hinted at "I remember him -- and what he did to me", i immediately assumed that Gabriel had been an altar boy under Artemis and perhaps experienced some bad touches. Is that wrong?
The demon that has possessed Father Artemis is one that Gabriel has had personal experience with.
She's a former witch that was burned at the stake.
Gabriel doesn't really do the formal Latin rituals to exorcise demons. He seems to basically smart-ass them out. It also comes out during the session that Gabriel has a cross-shaped scar on his chest...
...and it turns out that Catherine once possessed him - and forced him to pluck out his eye - but he used a cross to drive her out.
This time, Catherine leaves Father Artemis and tries to possess Gabriel again, but finds that he's too strong, so she seemingly dies.
There's a basic format here that makes it easy to see how it can work as an ongoing series. The trick will be to see if it can be varied up enough each time to avoid feeling repetitive.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: N/A
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: Essential Marvel Horror vol. 2
Inbound References (3): show
The demon that Gabriel fights in Marvel Comics Presents 106 claims to be Catherine, so you might want to add her as a character appearing.
Posted by: Michael | January 28, 2015 11:34 PM
Added her (it?) but i gave that MCP story a read and it's definitely ambiguous. I guess more on that when i get to 1992!
Posted by: fnord12 | January 29, 2015 12:58 PM
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