Unfortunately, too many carvers have turned to lives of crime, adopting the glowing jack o’ lantern for fiendish purposes—especially in comic books.
It seems like no universe is safe from pumpkinheaded hoodlums and their equally affable and/or evil ways. That said, Splash Page counts down five pumpkinheads of note on this, the spookiest and most pumpkin laden week of the year.
Perhaps the most recognizable menace to casual comic readers, this pumpkinheaded Hobgoblin compatriot has flown around on a glider and tossed pumpkin bombs in his various incarnations, fighting Spider-Man, Captain America and Ghost Rider a few dozen times along the way. The original Jack O’Lantern, along with his predecessor Mad Jack both met untimely ends more or less, but there’s a new demonic Jack on Norman Osbourn’s payroll who has yet to be identified.
The Real Ghostbuster’s powerful foe is a repeat offender, tormenting the team on more than one occasion as the ghost of Halloween. A friend to ghosts, trolls, goblins and other supernatural cretins, Samhain attempted to use his dark powers to transform the world into a place where the supernatural ruled over humans. Fortunately, the Ghost Busters were able to defeat him in both their animated and comic book adventures.
Like his Marvel Comics rival of the same name, many DC villains have donned the Jack O’Lantern mantle over the years. The newest cat to bear the JOL name has taken to heroism, however, internalizing his predecessors’ mystical lantern-based powers to fight crime and protect his native Ireland – even if he eventually gets smacked around as part of the Ultramarine Corps.
One of the Ultraverse’s (remember Malibu Comics?) most iconic villains, Lord Pumpkin hails from a medieval dimension where he was created by sorcery.
After a lifetime of torment at the hands of an evil child, the scarecrow-like being snapped and decided to conquer kingdoms and travel to other worlds where he confronted the super human “Ultras.”
Perhaps the most clearly-labled of all pumpkinheaded comic characters, Jack makes his Marvel Comics debut in the upcoming “The Marvelous Land of Oz” based on Frank L. Baum’s series of novels. A kind of spiritual successor to The Scarecrow, Jack isn’t big on brains, but is known for a generous and sometimes brave spirit. Unlike the others on this list, Jack is nice guy who helps his friends. It’s a good thing too, because, like real pumpkins his heads routinely rot and need to be replaced by skilled carvers.
Who are your favorite pumpkin-fied comic book characters? Carve your insights into the comment section or let us know on Twitter!