Publication Dates: September-October 1971 – 1982
Number of Issues Published: 112 (#1 – #112)
Dimensions: Standard Silver and Modern Age U. S.
Paper Stock: Newsprint
Binding: Saddle-stitched (Squarebound #40 only)
Publishing Format: Was Ongoing Series
Information thanks to the Grand Comic Database
Ghosts is a horror comic book series published by DC Comics for 112 issues from September–October 1971 to May 1982. Its tagline was “True Tales of the Weird and Supernatural” (December 1978), changed to “New Tales of the Weird and Supernatural,” as of #75 (April 1979), and dropped after #104 (September 1981).
The first issue was written entirely by Leo Dorfman. To avoid having it seem that a single writer was monopolizing the comic, editor Murray Boltinoff had Dorfman use the pseudonyms “Geoff Brown” (Dorfman’s son was named “Geoff” and his wife’s maiden name was “Brown”) and “David George”.
Ghosts was one of several horror-mystery-suspense DC Comics series. According to DC Comics writer and executive Paul Levitz, Ghosts “wasn’t a fan favorite (then or in retrospect), it was a disproportionately good seller.” Nick Cardy was the cover artist for Ghosts for issues #1-6, 8-15, and 17-36.
Each issue of Ghosts carried multiple stories of the supernatural. The stories were prefaced by a short description introducing the premise and ended with a summation of how a mysterious justice was dealt to the evildoers of the tale. The first issue of this series carried the singular title Ghost in its indicia, but everywhere else, including advance promotional house ads and even on its own cover, it was the plural Ghosts, as even the indicia would read from #2 on. Limited Collectors’ Edition #C-32 (December 1974-January 1975) reprinted stories from Ghosts #1, 3-6 and featured new material by Leo Dorfman and artists Gerry Talaoc, E.R. Cruz, and Frank Redondo.
Starting with issue #37 (April 1975), a new regular feature was added. At the front of each book a page of single panel depictions of alleged ghost sightings were listed in the fashion of Robert L. Ripley’s Believe it or Not! features. These one-page introductory spreads were usually titled “Ghosts and the Supernatural.” A Ghosts Special was published in December 1977 as part of the DC Special Series umbrella title. Ghosts #95 (December 1980), introduced to the Ghosts readership its first continuing-character feature, “Dr. 13 – The Ghost-Breaker.” The character encounted the Spectre in a three issue storyline. The “Dr. Thirteen” feature last appeared in #102 (July 1981).
For the most part, Ghosts was not “hosted” by a recurring character used in a framing sequence. In issue #104 (September–October 1981), however, Squire Shade was introduced as the title’s host. He lasted in that position until the book was cancelled with issue #112 (May 1982).