In this video, you can watch a short history of EC comics (previously at Boing Boing) and why they were unmatched when it came to crafting excellent horror comics.
Despite inventing the form, America is lagging behind most comic book-producing countries when it comes to cultural acceptance. In Japan and France, comics – and the people that create them- are valued as much as "traditional" art forms. Compare that to the States, where comic books and their fans are regarded as juvenile and unrefined.
One of the principal reasons that American comics aren't afforded the same respect as their international counterparts is the industry's over-reliance on the superhero. After the Senate hearings in the 50s that branded comics a national scourge on youthful minds, publishers were forced to ditch practically every genre except the superhero to remain profitable. Consequently, whereas other markets kept producing a variety of genres for a diverse array of readers, American comics became an increasingly niche market.
Prior to American comics neutering copious genres that were routinely trouncing superheroes in sales, there was one comic publisher that could've saved the industry from becoming completely niche. EC–or Entertaining Comics–produced gangster, war, science fiction, and western comics that are still revered today. However, EC's crown jewel was its phenomenal line of horror titles.