Bela Lugosi’s Tales From The Grave is an anthology of stories in the classic horror comics tradition, presented by horror film icon Bela Lugosi . With issue four quickly approaching we decided to catch up with the team behind the book, Kerry Gammill and Sam Park.
Horror News Network: Monsterverse is soon to be four issues into Bela Lugosi’s Tales from the Grave. How has the fan reaction to this series been?
Kerry Gammill: It’s been great. All the feedback has been very positive. Most people seem to get what we are doing and really enjoy it. The fans of classic horror like our new incarnation of Lugosi but younger people who have read it really seem to like it too.
Sam Park: We’ve had a terrific build to finding an audience while selling out the first issue and now we’re on to issue 4. Numbers are up at the Monsterverse Facebook page and on our Twitter. With the new creator books we hope to grow the audience even more. But please know we appreciate the fans telling other fans about how much they love the Monsterverse books!
Horror News Network: Have you heard from Bela Lugosi Jr. in regards to the book?
Kerry Gammill: The book came about through my dealings with Bela Jr. on some other projects several years ago. When I approached him about using his father as the host of a horror comic he liked the idea very much and granted us a license. So far he has been very pleased with the book and is happy with the way we are presenting Lugosi in a new medium.
Sam Park: Bela and the Lugosi family are very happy with the book. We all want to get the book out more often!
Horror News Network: Issue four is due out soon. What can you tell us about the stories in this issue?
Kerry Gammill: We have a really fun story called FOUR-WAY SPLIT that’s set in the jungle. It’s beatutifully drawn by my buddy John Lucas and it reminds me of some of Al Williamson’s work in the old EC and Warren comics. I did the colors on it myself and realy worked hard to do John’s art justice. We also have a weird little story by Lowell Isaac called THE EVIL EYE about a little girl with a special ability. Ed Polgardy and Rob Brown did THE MONSTER about a kid who thinks he’s a decendent of Dr. Frankenstein. The issue ends with Lugosi reading a sort of demented nursey rhyme called PRICE VLAD’S BANQUET with incredible art by the Bill Sienkiewicz.
Sam Park: As always we have an eclectic blend of styles and kinds of horror stories with amazing work in each. I have to pat Kerry on the back for the script he wrote for PRINCE VLAD’S BANQUET which features the superb art of comic book legend Bill Sienkiewicz. It is quite a humorous take on Bill’s very scary art! And Kerry draws a beautiful splash with Lugosi that has a wonderful sort of “Mobeius” feel to its lines and color.
Horror News Network: Who are the monstrous creators in this issue?
Kerry Gammill: Beside the ones I mentioned above, Mark Finn who wrote the story John Lucas drew, Alex Tuis, who did the cover art, Carlos Valenzuela, who did the back cover and Micael Leal and Nik Polikwo, who did another instalation of Lugosi’s Legends and Lore. Besides the colors for Mark and John’s story and the intro page for the Bedtime Story, I also did a piece of art for the contents page.
Sam Park: Superb talents all. Now if only the publisher could find the time to do more artwork…
Horror News Network: What can we expect in terms of blood and scares?
Sam Park: It’s creepy strange scares with EVIL EYE that goes for the bizarre. FOUR-WAY SPLIT brings the blood with the splits. MONSTER will shock you with its crazy bloodlust. Only Lugosi could come up with a story that you can “lose your head” over in a bedtime story.
Horror News Network: What talent will we see contribute to future issues of Tales from the Grave?
Kerry Gammill: Steve Niles will be making his Lugosi comic debut soon. And Michael Swofford has a story in the works that is goig to be great. Mike is a Disney artist and a major talent who just happens to love horror. More to be announced later.
Sam Park: We’ve got artist Rob Brown back and working with writer Jim Krueger on a wonderful vampire story (not what you expect). Me and Henry Mayo have something twisted we’re working up. And Benton Jew told me at Comic-Con that he has something wicked to follow up on his last story, SECOND TO NONE (from issue #3). Kerry has some fun stories he’s working up starring Lugosi and a nasty werewolf story written by Steve Niles.
Horror News Network: In closing, what would you like to tell our readers about Bela Lugosi’s Tales from the Grave?
Kerry Gammill: Mainly I’d just like people to know that this is a comic we do because we are passionate about it. We love classic horror movies and comics. We want to carry on the great horror comic tradition, but also create something original and contemporary that will appeal to modern horror fans. I think any horror fan who gives it a look will find it a fun read.
Sam Park: Make sure you tell your comic shop to order it when the latest issue is announced for ordering in PREVIEWS magazine. Check our COMICS FROM THE MONSTERVERSE page on Facebook to get the news on announcements and then let your comic shop managers know to order copies (We’re not DC or Marvel so we need the fans to nudge the shops when possible). Write us, too! At firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us what you want to see and hear in the book! And thanks for the kind words for all the hard work that goes into making the best horror anthology comic on the stands today!
Horror News Network: Thank you for your time guys! We wish you continued success with this title. Here is additional information to find out more about the company:
MONSTERVERSE STORE ON AMAZON – Printed Comics
MONSTERVERSE COMICS on COMIXOLOGY! Digital Download MV books!
MONSTERVERSE ON COMICS PLUS – Digital Download
MONSTERVERSE ON GRAPHICLY – Digital Download
MONSTERVERSE IN THE UK & EUROPE Hemlock Books