5

Intrepid female reporter and hapless male photographer side-kick investigate mysterious goings on at college campus. A mysterious figure is murdering students (the killer wants the pituitary gland from the victims) and the college authorities and campus police are covering up the crimes. There is also a gang of female pirates with flower names such as Daisy and Rose who take orders from a puppet called Auntie.

Very stylized art work gave it a Gothic wood-cut feel. I date it as 90s because a key plot element in the first chapter is the switching of cameras and then developing the wrong roll of film.

2

The book is Mad Night by Richard Sala. It was actually published in 2005.

For those who always thought the animated introductions to PBS's Mystery! series were cooler than the actual shows themselves, Richard Sala's marvelously dark and stormy novel-length thrillers are just the ticket. In Mad Night, his follow-up to The Chuckling Whatsit, Sala follows ace detective Judy Drood and her reluctant companion Kasper Keene as they try to unravel a string of mysterious occurrences and heinous murders in the usually tranquil Lone Mountain College. What is the sinister secret of Professor Massimo Ibex? How is the (literal) puppet mistress Aunt Azalea and her bevy of beauteous pirate girls involved? Where does the lithping, er, lisping, corrupt cop Pinch fit in? And what exactly is the significance of the Glass Scorpion? Sala's superbly elegant, shadowy draftsmanship and wittily spooky storytelling make Mad Night a wonderful romp for fans of gothic horror — part Dario Argento (stabbings! eye-gougings! decapitations!), part Edward Gorey (eerie creatures of the night! sinister alleyways!), but all fun from the first page to the last.

Here is the cover, showing the stylized artwork:
*Mad Night* cover

  • Can you elaborate on why this is correct? – FuzzyBoots Mar 27 at 16:53
  • @FuzzyBoots I'm guessing cause he is the OP and found the comic :) – UnhandledExcepSean Mar 27 at 18:30
  • 1
    Ah, good point. Still... we do ask that answers indicate why they are the correct answer. – FuzzyBoots Mar 27 at 19:08
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    Also, Handsome Jim, don't forget to accept your self-answer by clicking on the checkmark by the voting buttons. – FuzzyBoots Mar 27 at 19:08
  • Please forgive me, I am a bear of very little brain. The checkmark is now checked. – Handsome Jim Mar 28 at 15:36

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