Down from the bleak Kentucky hills swept the stark-naked mob of murder-maddened Blancos—sacking and slaying as they came! Neither steel nor bullet could stem that terror-tide of man-made albino monsters, whipped to a frenzy of lust by their criminal chief. Eastward they crept until New York, itself, was at their mercy, and human victims, bloodied and outraged, lay in their path. Once again Richard Wentworth, in the Spider’s disguise of doom, fought alone to wipe out crime’s crowning horror and save mankind from death!
“Grey Horde Creeps” is the 54th Spider novel and was originally published in March 1938.
The novel begins in central Kentucky where 500 men have disappeared and where reports of demons are surfacing. Wentworth finds that the culprit are albino beast men, call Blancos. (Note: Page tells us that blancos means albino in Spanish, even though it really literally “whites,” but is used to describe albinos. Spanish in the middle of Kentucky in the 1930s is certainly odd. Both my mother, then 11, and father, then 15, were living in central Kentucky at the time that this novel was written. So, it is with interest that I read city-slicker Page’s description of 1930s’ Kentucky with his various stereotypes and inaccuracies.) The blancos are viscous and cannot be killed easily, not with heart shots or headshots; they keep coming even though decapitated.
The initial setting for the novel is derivative from “Hordes of the Red Butcher,” which opens in rural Kentucky where Wentworth is battling large beast men with the strength of gorillas, which are later classified as Neanderthals. Apparently rural Kentucky represents a very remote, wild location not too far from sophisticated New York City.
Nita flies a plane to see Wentworth to tell him that the blancos are also attacking NYC, not realizing that he is already fighting them in Kentucky. (Note: Only the hills of Kentucky and NYC are being attacked by the blancos.) She is immediately captured by the blancos, resulting in Wentworth questing to rescue her. He, too, is captured and is inoculated with the formula that turns men into blancos… which thickens the blood so that the blanco cannot bleed and whose mental facilities are impaired. Of course, Wentworth’s high mental prowess allows him to overcome the mental dullness although he struggles to do so.
The bad guy is using the blancos to loot small Kentuckian towns. The attack on NYC is a trial. After he has accumulated enough wealth, he intends to release any surviving blancos in NYC to act as cover as he flees the country with his loot. It is not stated as to why NYC has to be attacked… indeed, this raises the risk level to astounding levels.
The name of the novel and its cover is based on the blancos wearing grey garb when they attack NYC. The rest of the time, they were basically undressed. Rather odd!
Anyway, it does not work out for the criminal. The only-slighted-demented Wentworth tracks him down and kills him.
The end of this rather poor Spider novel is satisfying as there is a promise of a cure for Wentworth and any other blanco still living. The story ends with a weakened Wentworth crying tears of joy.
This Spider novel is not recommended to anyone except those who must read everyone of Page’s Spider stories.