For some, horror magazines are rather passe but there’s still a large primary core that embrace the articles, tidbits of collector’s these insightful interviews, fulfilling their daily life with wonderous enjoyment. There’s plenty to choose from, in the printed categories from Rue morgue to Classic Monsters and Darkside to Horror Hound, there’s a rebirth of Fangoria and Scary Monsters continues to produce issues. However, one thing is very common with them all, each well-established without any controversies concerning, well aside from where they’re carried as deemed them equal to pornography of course that’s an article for another time, a leftover ticket of a doozy from the 80s.
This time it is about the demise of horror comic magazine The Creeps, not due to loss of readership or lack of funding, rather from a copyright and trademark infringement. Let’s dive into this short lawsuit, by going back to the beginning, which was 32 issues ago, with registration date of September 11, 2018, I noticed the issue while browsing at a Barnes & Noble, and it immediately made think of the classic Creepy magazine from the 60s, which if found now in fine condition, a rarity the cost is exorbitant for many of the issues. In fact, a few more details of this magazine for those unaware, Creepy was launched in 1964 while a second similar anthology comic magazine launched in 1968, both were rich in creative detail presented in black and white. Nevertheless, I figure someone brought the rights, and resurrected the issues with a slight name change, however I did notice that there was a lot of similarities between the two magazines, it clearly didn’t separate itself from the original and hence the newest addition was a just a new version of the original. The suit of infringement started March 31, 2021 and by November 19th, there was a VOLUNTARY SURRENDER OF REGISTRATION.
How did it all come to sudden stoppage? Richard Sala, was sued by the current owner of the original CREEPY, which is New Comic Company LLC, however Sala [per settlement] “…will get to keep the Warrant Publications a version of the original Warren Publications, all under trademark infringements and therefore change names from The Creeps to Shudder…” As to the reasons why it happens likely never to be known to the general public, and settlement was agreed upon both parties. New Comics Company had acquired some rights back in 2007 and were seeking/open to new opportunities to explore creating content for more media avenues. The original creator Warren Publications went bankrupt in 1983.
By looking at an issue The Creeps and an original Creepy issue one can see many similarities, the Upper left corner, has a figure, the phrasing “A Warrant Magazine” always done in a manner to the original, the entire magazine looks like a Creepy rebirth, with the exquisite cover all leading to wonderful corny tales. One thing some might not notice without opening the actual issue some stories in The Creeps are done by some named Artie Godwin which is eerily similar to Archie Goodwin, from the Creepy famed. This first issue is a true homage and a fitting passionate nod to everything Warren’s Creepy and Eerie magazines created for a legion of fans all done; the whole magazine is almost exactly done in the fashion of the original. A wonderful cover, Table of Contents, all of it is a mirrored image of how they did back in the 1960s. The Creeps read just like the original, the stories had a mixture of camp and corny, but contain these tales seemed so similar to the originals, which inspired many modern horror authors.
From THE CREEPS:
IMPORTANT ALERT!!! This Fall, 2021, the name of “The Creeps” magazine will be changing to “Shudder” magazine. Warrant Publishing Company and New Comic Company (the “Parties”) have both determined that to avoid the potential costs and time involved in litigating a court case, it is in the mutual interest of both parties to finalize a private, amicable settlement, which has been negotiated by the attorneys representing both Parties and executed. The Parties agreed to a non-disclosure clause in this agreement, and in accordance with the same we are limited in what we can disclose with respect to the settlement. However, we are discontinuing use of “The Creeps.” The content of the magazine formerly published as “The Creeps” will continue to be published uninterrupted under the name “Shudder” magazine starting in Fall, 2021. The final issue of “The Creeps” magazine will be issue #32. The story contents of “Shudder” will be a continuation of the content in “The Creeps,” but the numbering of “Shudder” magazine will re-set at issue #1. Subscribers to “The Creeps” will continue receiving their copies of “Shudder” every two months, without interruption. Thank you for your attention. With the resolutions of this case, we are excited about entering a new phase of business here Warrant Publishing Company. We look forward to continuing to bring you the World’s #1 illustrated horror magazine for many years to come.
A side note, their other magazines Vampiress Carmilla and Dread appear to have no trademark issues, although Vampiress Carmilla, was formerly known as Vampiress but abandoned their trademark, on April 09, 2020.