TOMB OF DRACULA ISSUE NUMBER FORTY THREE

"PAUL BUTTERWORTH, THE NIGHT STAKER!"

Cover Date: April 1976

Writer/Editor: Marv Wolfman

Artists: Gene Colan & Tom Palmer

Colorist: Tom Palmer

Letterer: John Costanza

.Main Characters: Dracula, The Drac Pack, Paul Butterworth

Synopsis:: Boston Bugle reporter Paul Butterworth recalls his encounters with a group of vampire hunters and a powerful vampire known as Dracula.    

His story begins with an encounter with aspiring writer Harold H. Harold who tells Butterworth of his encounter with Dracula after Dracula's battle with the scientist Dr. Sun.  He tells how Dracula fought Blade the Vampire Slayer and departed.  Butterworth dismisses Harold's story as nonsense until he encounters Dracula when he investigates a police radio call where Dracula is pummeling police officers.  Dracula attacks Butterworth but Butterworth drives him off with a cross.

Realizing that Dracula really exists, Butterworth seeks out Blade and Harker and learns of their battles with Dracula.  During his conversation, Butterworth again encounters Dracula, who is after Quincy Harker.  The Drac Pack drive off Dracula as Dracula swears that Butterworth will die for aiding Harker 

Later that night, Butterworth works on a story about Dracula when the vampire lord attacks him at the Boston Bugle.  Butterworth fights back with silver bullets but Dracula easily eludes them by turning into mist.  Dracula then chases Butterworth through the newspaper office and corners him.  Butterworth's attempts to slay Dracula with a cross/stake fail as Dracula grabs the cross from him, burning his hand in the effort.  Dracula is about to slay Butterworth when he realizes that it is nearly sunrise.  He is forced to leave Butterworth if he is to get to safety and he vows revenge on Butterworth.  

 NOTES This issue featured a thinly disgused Kolchak the Night Stalker battling the Lord of the Vampires.  Kolchak the Night Stalker was a cult tv show that featured a reporter who often encountered supernatural foes, but was never able to prove their existence.  In this story, Butterworth the Night Staker encounters Dracula and the Drac Pack and actually manages to survive the encounter, no mean feat for a mere mortal.  This story was an interesting departure from the comic's often seen "Let's hunt Dracula" storylines and it gave readers a bit of a view of an outside looking in at the battle between Dracula and Quincy Harker.  

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