- When the Mummy Walks… – Spellbound: #01 (25 Sep. 1976) – #10 (27 Nov. 1976)
- Art: Norman Lee
In Victorian London, Jenny Hunt gets a job as an assistant curator at Granville Museum. Miss Brisson her employer, makes it clear to Jenny that she is not happy that she was obliged to hire someone. She also lets her know that the Ancient Egyptian exhibit is under her supervision only. Luckily the other employees are friendlier such as Bob Clark, the odd job boy, and the people in her lodge who admire her ring, she got from her father, from Egypt. While walking through the Egyptian section, Jenny and Bob find the Mummy case is opened, Miss Brisson accuses them of opening it. She tells them the Mummy is the Golden Priestess of Manaton and is not to be messed with. Later from her room Jenny sees a light on in the museum, she goes to investigate and is horrified to see the Mummy walking about.
She tells the porter, Mr Pitt, who doesn’t believe her. She goes back to investigate herself, and sees the Mummy return and Miss Brisson with it, proving that her surprise at the open Mummy case earlier was an act. Jenny does finds an ally in Bob, meanwhile Miss Brisson is keeping a closer eye on Jenny. Jenny and Bob follow the Mummy the next night. The Mummy has hypnotic powers over a police man, who stops Jenny and Bob while the Mummy breaks into a house stealing a box from a safe. They manage to get away from the policeman and see the Mummy leaving the house. Later Jenny investigates finding out the house was Professor Brents, an Egyptologist who led the first party into the tomb of Maraton. Miss Brisson catches Jenny researching this.
That night they see Miss Brisson bring the Mummy to life with a totem, Miss Brisson knows they are watching though and she orders the Mummy to catch the spies. She has a plan to get the two fired by having the Mummy hypnotize them to steal things. Luckily Jenny’s scarab ring protects her, so she is able to play along and then slip back the stolen jewels later. With her plan backfiring Miss Brisson thinks its time for more drastic actions, ordering the Mummy to arrange an “accident” for Jenny. Jenny continues her investigation and has figured out the next victim is John Cresswell , who was another member of the tomb exploration party. Unfortunately they are unable to stop him being attacked and the treasure being stolen. Meanwhile they get trapped in the house.
They manage to escape Jenny heads to graveyard next, knowing this is where Mummy disappeared last time. They see it go down a grave and find lots treasure hidden there. She takes a ruby as proof. Jenny decides to head home for the weekend and get advice from her father. Unknown to her, the Mummy watches her. The Mummy attacks Jenny and Bob’s carriage and if not for Bob’s quick action they would have gone into a quarry.
They make it to Jenny’s parents but Miss Brisson has beaten them to it and talks to the Hunts discrediting Jenny. Miss Brisson has also found the ruby that Jenny had, so now knows they have found her hideout. Returning to the museum, Miss Brisson leads Jenny and Bob into a trap at the grave tomb. While Jenny almost convinces the Mummy not to attack, the Mummy collapses a wall sealing the two into the tomb. They manage to find a way out and coincidentally find the new hiding place for the treasure. They decide to let Miss Brisson think they are dead and lead the police to the treasure, although they don’t tell them about the Mummy as they don’t think they would believe such a story.
Miss Brisson is angry at these turn of event, she decides to do one more big robbery of the police station and get rid of Jenny once and all before leaving town. The first part of her plan goes well for her, as the Mummy hypnotises the police and gets back the treasure, but when she orders the Mummy to attack Jenny, the ring still protects her. Jenny swears by the scarab ring that she is not the enemy and Miss Brisson is going to take the sacred relics for herself. The Mummy turns on Miss Brisson, melting the amulet, destroying Miss Brisson’s power over her, before killing Miss Brisson. The Mummy having got its revenge goes back to its inert state.
I thought I should have a post that gets in the Halloween spirit. This was the first story in Spellbound and it s good creepy story with some mystery. Mummys were not the usual supernatural beings of choice for stories in girls comics so that makes it quite fresh. The design of the Mummy makes her both elegant and menacing. Of course the real villain in the story is Miss Brisson, who comes across as quite sinister in her own right, particularly when she towers over Jenny after catching her snooping. There is an eerie atmosphere built up, with shadows, foggy nights and the locations such as the graveyard and the empty museum. There is also some really nice and varied composition throughout.
It is a pity that the Mummy is just a puppet for Miss Brisson, she is not just seeking revenge on her own, but at least she gets to turn on Miss Brisson in the end (although I’m still not sure how it was capable of such reason). Since Miss Brisson is the true enemy, a lot of the Egyptian background is under developed, such as what is special about Jenny’s ring that it protects her. When Jenny goes to her father for help, I hoped to find out more about the ring and interested to know what Mr Hunt’s knowledge of Egyptian tombs and Mummys was. It seems that whole trip was a pointless diversion and adds nothing to plot, except for Miss Brisson showing her deviousness again. At least Jenny doesn’t let the setbacks deter her and she is determined to stop Miss Brisson. It’s a good story with mystery, interesting villain and atmospheres. It is a good introduction for readers to know what to expect from the Spellbound comic.