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Sep 05

My Janoon for the "Thrill Horror Suspense" Series

Posted by: Ajay_D

Tagged in: Untagged 

(Thrill Horror Suspense Series)

There were many Indians publications in India, Many published Misc comics on fairy tales and detective stories. But It was Raj comics, who put Horror series on the map. When the "Thrill Horror Suspense" series was launched, It was a Instant hit. After the success of this series, Many Indian publishers tried to follow this success and created their own Horror series. But their Horror series were always second rate in both stories and illustrations. But our Raj comics always managed to bring new and interesting horror concepts to the readers.

I would like to start by saying, I was originally a Nagraj fan since my early childhood, I was crazy for Nagraj series, But that changed on a one milestone day. I remember my first THS comic "Hytaari Gend", It was the issue which made me a huge fan of the series. I remember turning the pages and being amused by the spooky artwork. I remember getting up the very next morning and realizing that I had misplaced the comic book. I tried looking around the house, in every corner, But I could not find it. This really depressed me, But my mother, who was cleaning the house at the time, found the comic under my bed. Oh, How I was thankful to her! This one issue is all It really took, I had been won over by RC's Thrill Horror Series. It became a addiction for me, A very strong connection was made between a innocent child and the spooky ghosts of RC (hehe). Moreover, Whenever my father visited the market, I always requested Thrill Horror comics over Nagraj, and he never disappointed me. I will not forget to tell you, I love my father to death, Not just for the relationship, Because he understood my desire and the Janoon for Raj comics. He grew up with Phantom comics and he supported me for my addiction throughout my childhood. Even when my mother became upset and yelled at me over my craze, He was still there, After work he would be there with every new THS and Nagraj issue in his hand. I love him for that, thank you so much for looking out for me dear pops!

Once he picked me up from school, and we stopped at a local comics shop to purchase a new THS issue called "Bhago maut jagi". I have been waiting for this particular issue for a very long time (days turn to months when your comics crazy!) and I danced in joy as I held the issue in my little hands. As we were riding on his scooter back home, I told him that "This all looks like a dream", He was amused by my comment and he gently said "I know how you feel". I had read many Horror comics in other Indian publications, But honestly, none of them touched my heart like Raj comics did. Sanjay ji always managed to deliver something new, something different, something fresh to their fans. This was the difference between other publications and our RC. Raj comics did it for the fans, the profession, money never seen as their main objective. It was their genuine connection to the comics, which helped them survive through the journey. I remember when "Ek Katoora khoon" was released, I went to the market with my father and his friend. As much as I love my father, he had one weakness, He could never consider spending money for the SPCL issues. He always requested (request, because he did not deny either!) that I purchase general comics first. But this particular issue caught my eye, the cover was so horrific and creepy, that I had to have it in my hands. I kept demanding it, They kept trying to change my mind. Finally (thankfully) my father's friend stepped in and told my father "Kiyo bacha ko naraz ker raha ho...khreed do yaar". And that's all it took, I still thank my father's buddy for taking my side. This was the ultimate THS comics I had ever read, Raj comics really put their heart and soul into this issue and it showed! This is one of the personal experiences I cannot forget, and it will always sit comfortably in the corner of my mind.

There was even a time when I was very scared after reading a very scary THS comics called "Chumgadad". I went to sleep that same night and all I could see was the Chumgadad (Giant bat) flying around in my dreams, trying to get me! I woke up shaking and sweating. I did not waste a second and I rushed to my parents bed. I felt the comfort and security, as I lay between my mom and dad. It was amazing how Raj comics managed to scare the reader with their artwork and story lines. This was a art, a skill....not mastered by many at that time. That was also quite a near death experience for me (hehe). My janoon for this series even went over my head. It made me steal (gulp), Yes, It even made me steal...can you believe it!? What does a child like me needed, A comic book and I was willing to do anything for it. I had lost my most beloved THS issue called "Chamgadad" and I found out that my nebhiour (also a comics fan) had that issue. My nebhiour had a younger brother, I was friends with this crazy kid. I made a deal with him that If he steals me that issue, I will buy him candy. I knew it was wrong, But my demons out witted my angels. The victory seemed to sweet to a kid like me, Even If it meant letting my morals loose for one time. Eventually, I had my success and he had his...poor child! But guess what? I was so clumsy as a kid, I lost that same issue in few days. In fact, I had lost 80% of my THS issues just by damaging them or misplacing them.

I remember when the price of comics hiked from R.6 to R.8, It created a great confusion for me and my parents. I could not forget this one story, I was going to my after school tuition session and my mother gave me 10 rupees to purchase a comics on the way. I knew I will be late for my tution, But for me, Comics always came first...everything last. I went to my local shop and purchased the issue "Bhayanak Kutta" in THS, The issue said R.6 on it, But I ended up giving R.8 to the shop keeper. I remember I stuffed the comic in my bag in a hurry and rushed to my tuition, I was already 5 minutes late and I was waiting for the (well deserved) punishment. As I arrived there, My tuition teacher gave me the beating of my life...and I took it like a man! But you know what? To me, as a THS fan, The pain was nothing, The beating was every bit worth it! Even then, I could not focus on my tuition, I was constantly looking inside my Bag, trying to get a glimpse of the comic's artwork. When I came back home, My mother demanded the change back from me, Because The price tag said R.6 and I had paid R8 to the shop keeper. I did not want to feel embarrassed, So I told her that I purchased candy with rest of the money and she gave me a good spanking. As the years went by, Collecting THS comics and losing them became a hobby, until Raj comics closed the series down in 1995. I was heart broken, They forced me to read other substitutes such as Anthony series and Hauu series and they just did not have the same feel, I felt as if I had lost something important! But What could I do? I have been looking for a answer to the question to why Raj comics stopped my dear THS series? I have never felt to hurt in my life. I never would have known, Until I read the green page in one of the new THS issues. This explained everything and I felt that Raj comics had taken the right step. I am also thankful to RC for reviving this series and bringing it back for the hardcore fans. By this, you can tell that Sanjay ji respects its fan base and they are willing to bring back their favorite series in all its glory.

Now lets leave the past behind and move along to the present. In 2005, sitting in my house, reminisce on the past and the memories, I was wondering If I will ever see these old THS issues again, Because what I had left In India, My grandparents had given away to the poor kids. Sometimes I felt so emotional, that i wished I could go back in time and turn all my wrongs to right. I wish I never lost my THS issues, I wish I had preserved them properly. But it was all too late, there was no point in going back to the past. But as a human, you never let go of those dear memories, you still create alternate realities in your mind and wished they were true. In this respect, I was on the low, So I opened up the Raj comics website, I posted on the forums, sharing my experience with the other janooni friends, hoping to leave the painful past behind me. I was the one who created the thread called "What is your favorite Thrill horror comic?". Then one day I decided to open up Ebay India and search for Raj comics and to my surprise, Raj comics had set of 39 Thrill Horror comics up for sale. I danced in joy and It did not take long for me to hit the "Buy it now" Button. I cannot explain the wave of happiness which swept over me, It was as If, I had found my lost treasure. As Scientists are amazed by their big discoveries, This was my big discovery. I was very emotional at that time...reliving my days of innocence. Infact, The Thrill horror Suspense series is so damn amazing, that it inspired my brother to learn Hindi in order to read these comics. I would like to let you know, My young brother is a next generation child and he is into Manga and other English comics, But when he saw the THS comics, He was very amused by it. So he went on the internet and began to study Hindi alphabet day by day. He began to read basic Hindi words within one week of practice. I could not believe it, It was truly a amazing experience as he read the Hindi text out loud to me. This proved that motivation and person's will can prove to do wonders! As the years went by, I made friends with Janooni fans like Parijat, Karan, Mady, Suraj, Bunty, Anu, Shasid, Arun ji and among others. In my struggle to complete my THS collection, Parijat gave me a huge helping hand by purchasing old THS comics from his local shop and sending them to me. I mean love him for that, Any said positive remarks or words cannot do justice to my feelings for Parijat. He was a god sent for a fan like me, and I respect him for all he did for me! I also cannot forget to thank Karan, Shasid, Anu, Bunty, Arun ji and Mady. They helped me collect many old Raj comics, They are all amazing people, Much respect to all of these gem of friends!

I have many little memories to share, But If I did, I would end up writing a entire essay on it. But I let my heart bleed in the form of these words and presented youwith my most dear memories. I grew up with this series and it holds a special place in my heart, It's not the memories, But also the strong substance which Raj comics use to deliver in the past. It was not just the amazing stories and the artwork, It was Raj comics' Janoon, which made me a huge fan of this series. No matter what comics I purchased in Raj comics, It was worth everything to me. There are many few "Thrill Horror Suspense" fans out there and I am one of them. Many fans generalize on the quality of this series based on the sub-standard new issues, But I request that they go back and read all the old gems and understand what THS series truly was. Although Raj comics are working very hard to bring back that flavor, I feel that they will never succeed in fully getting this series on track. Because the beauty of this series lies in its simplicity! The artwork was simple, yet effective, and the stories were not long, But they were also quite deep. Nowadays, more emphasis is given to special effects and longer story plots, with moderate success . I hope to see a bright future for this series, Until then...good night my people. To all the Janooni fans, Heartfelt thanks for keeping Raj comics alive and well. And for the pirates, just remember, If Raj comics are not there day after tomorrow, and you are wondering what happened, Look in the mirror, and you will find the answer to your question. God bless!