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Tomb of Dracula (1972) - #8
"The Hell-Crawlers"

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Marv Wolfman

Gene Colan - 'Adam Austin'

Ernesto 'Ernie' Chan - 'Ernie Chua'

Glynis Wein

Charlotte Jetter

Roy Thomas

Cover Artist(s):
Gene Colan - 'Adam Austin'
Thomas 'Tom' Palmer Sr.

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Cover Date: May 1973
Cover Price: US $ 0.20

Issue Tagline: Out of the Earth Itself They Came! The Hell-Crawlers!

Format: Color; Standard Comic Issue; 32 pages

Story Arc(s):    Add/remove story arcs to this issue

Letters Column: Tomes to the Tomb!

Dracula has left the vampire hunters to die at the hands of an army of hypnotized children, however not before Quincy Harker has struck Dracula with a poison tipped dart. Although it cannot kill Dracula, it has indeed poisoned him and will continue to poison him for all eternity unless he can get it expunged from his system. When Clifton Graves tries to offer his master aid, Dracula angrily swats him aside and escapes in his bat form. Dracula seeks out a doctor named Heinrich Mortte, crashing into his office window when the pain becomes too great and passes out as he resumes his human form. The horrified people witnessing the spectacle are sent away by Heinrich. While back in Grave's home, the hypnotized children advance on Quincy Harker, Frank Drake, Rachel van Helsing and Taj. Not wanting to harm these innocent victims of Dracula, Quincy orders Rachel to snuff out the candles in the room so they they can escape the children under the cover of darkness. They send Rachel out a window to run around and unlock the door to the room they are trapped in while the others fend off the children. Rachel runs into Clifton Graves who tries to stop her to no avail. Unlocking the door to the room the others are trapped in provides a distraction enough for the others to break free. Locking the children back in the room, they make their escape, Quincy expressing a need for haste as the children will likely break free of the room and continue to follow Dracula's orders to kill them. While at Dr. Mortte's office, Dracula demands that Heinrich perform a total transfusion to cure him of the poison. When Heinrich initially refuses, Dracula threatens to reveal to his daughter Adrian that her own father is also a vampire. Not wishing his daughter to know his shaming secret Heinrich agrees to perform the transfusion on Dracula. As the operation is being done, Quincy and the others get to Quincy's car to find that the car will not start. As Quincy calls for help, the others continue to futilely start the engine as the children, having broken out of the room, descend on them. While back at the doctors office, the operation is a success and Dracula is free from the poisons effects. The king of vampires then demands that Mortte dismiss his waiting patients and his daughter as well. With them gone, Dracula orders Heinrich to take him to a device called the Projector. Unable to disobey Dracula's commands, Heinrich takes Dracula to his lab hidden in a cemetery mausoleum, where he gives Dracula the Project. The device would allow Dracula to raise the dead from the graves to create an army of zombie vampires to do his bidding. While back at Harker's car, the children attempt to break into the car, but to no avail until they start throwing rocks at the windshield. Their attack is stopped however due to the timely arrival of Edith Harker who arrives in a helicopter equipped with a sonic device that knocks out the children. After the others are rescued Quincy assures his daughter that the children will awake back to normal and free of Dracula's control. With the threat ended, Quincy orders the others to go back to Dracula's fortress to wait for his return. While in the graveyard not far away, Dracula and Heinrich are about to use the Projector, when Heinrich is spotted by his daughter who had come to prey at her mothers grave. Caught by his daughter, Heinrich is forced to explain that he is a vampire and must bow to Dracula's rule. Dracula uses the Projector to raise the dead as an army of vampires and orders them to kill Heinrich's daughter. Horrified, Heinrich grabs the projector and flies off in bat form. Furious, Dracula turns into a bat also and chases after Heinrich. As the two fight, Heinrich drops the Projector on the ground smashing it to pieces. With the device destroyed, all the newly risen vampires dissolve into dust. With the menace over, Heinrich, no longer wishing to live the life of a vampire then impales himself on the pointed fence posts on the cemetery fence. With his opponent dead, and his plot foiled, Dracula flees the scene leaving Adrian to mourn her father's death.

by Nick Peron

Reprinted/Collected in:
Dracula [FIN] (2004) TPB
Essential The Tomb of Dracula (2003) TPB vol. 01
Essential The Tomb of Dracula (2003) TPB vol. 01 (Third Printing)
Le tombeau de Dracula (1973) #8
Tomb of Dracula (1972) HC Omnibus vol. 01
Tomb of Dracula (1972) HC Omnibus vol. 01 (Gene Colan Variant)
Tomb of Dracula (1972) TPB vol. 01
Tomb of Dracula: The Complete Collection (2017) TPB vol. 01

Characters:    Add/remove characters to this issue
An image for Dracula (Marvel) exists Dracula (Marvel)
An image for Frank Drake (Marvel) exists Frank Drake (Marvel)
An image for Clifton Graves exists Clifton Graves
An image for Edith Harker (Marvel) exists Edith Harker (Marvel)
An image for Quincy Harker (Marvel) exists Quincy Harker (Marvel)
  Heinrich Mortte
An image for Taj Nital (Marvel) exists Taj Nital (Marvel)
An image for Saint (Marvel) exists Saint (Marvel)
An image for Rachel Van Helsing (Marvel) exists Rachel Van Helsing (Marvel)

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