The Cure’s swooning, Baudelairean camp — which pours from Robert Smith’s voice and radiates from his overdone, ghoulish aesthetic — has greatly informed the broad scope of camp horror sensibilities, beyond just music. Without a generation having grown up learning to emote “darkly” from The Cure, would American Horror Story‘s nonsensical, morbid melodrama (which has used The Cure for its soundtrack) make as much sense, culturally? Would I cringe every time I see a Spider-Man, associating him with the cannibalistic Spiderman of “Lullaby”? Would Tim Burton have made Edward Scissorhands? Would Tim Burton have made Tim Burton, for that matter?
Tales from The Smith Comic Book Series, by designer/illustrator Butcher Billy, is an “homage to the goth legend who truly taught us love and darkness.” The featured illustrations, which we discovered via Laughing Squid, show Robert Smith and The Cure’s songs comfortably inhabiting the kitschy sensationalism of classic comic book horror. (Some images, like the cover for “Pictures of You” — which envisions Smith taking a selfie with a group of skulls — are a little less classic.) So many Cure songs seem to be their own miniature gothic tales, and these comic covers illustrate that notion quite literally: every one of them is titled after a certain song.
Enjoy “Friday, I’m in Love” as you marvel at the corresponding comic (above), and do the same, as you click through, with the ensuing covers.