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Planet of Vampires Comics

July 13, 2012 By V.J. Marchesano

On the surface, it might not seem like the most solid of concepts, but Planet of Vampires was one of the Atlas-Seaboard line’s properties with the greatest potential. Playing on the late-1960s and 1970s popular post-apocalyptic sub-genre of science fiction, the series managed to blend elements of Planet of the Apes, The Omega Man, and Buck Rogers into a very interesting concept.

Launched in 2010, a manned Mars mission returns to Earth after a five-year journey. The six astronauts aboard are tense, arguing with each other, and they can't raise Mission Control. They're forced to make a water landing just outside of New York, a city they find in ruins.

Following a nuclear war, society has split in two: those who live in a protective dome, and the savages outside it. The folks from the dome rescue the astronauts (well, five of them anyway) and present themselves as the saviors of mankind. Only the savages are actually the good guys, the "domies" have been mutated into vampires who prey on humans.

As with some of the Atlas comics, it starts to wander pretty quickly, but the underpinnings of something pretty cool are contained in the three issues that were published in 1975 (two of them feature covers by Pat Broderick inked by Neal Adams and the third was by Russ Heath).

All three issues and the unpublished cover for Planet of Vampires #4 were among the pieces included in the “Atlas At Last!” exhibit at Geppi’s Entertainment Museum in 2011.

I put this online because I had drawn, ghost drew the 4th issue fo Rich Buckler. I see the cover is available but I never did find out what happened to the art for that issue after Atlas went under. If anyone out ther happens to have the artwork or has copies of the pages, it sure would be nice to have it, so feel free to contact me.

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