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    ERIK BURNHAM & ANTHONY MARQUES talk SAVAGE TALES: VAMPIRELLA one-shot, on sale in MAY from Dynamite!

    BYRON BREWER: Erik and Anthony, tell me how this one-shot with the iconic Vampirella came to be.

    ERIK BURNHAM: This was a whirlwind. I got an email that was basically “how fast can you come up with a one-shot about Vampirella fighting barbarians for an out-of-continuity story?” I got the email at lunch and had a rough outline sent over before I paid the tab. The only down side was, of course, there were more ideas than 20 pages would allow, so I had to pare things down!

    ANTHONY MARQUES: I’ve been doing covers for Dynamite and IDW for a while now on titles such as Doc Savage, Green Hornet, Back to the Future, Army of Darkness, etc. and had really been wanting to make a move to interiors. I got an e-mail from Joseph Rybandt, the executive editor at Dynamite, about doing the interiors for this and I jumped at it! Especially once I heard that it was Vampirella and was being written by Erik! I’ve been wanting to work with him for a while now so it was just a perfect series of events.

    BB: Give me your take on Vampirella. She has had so many iterations, who is she to you (and especially as regards this book).

    EB: I enjoy Vampirella as a sci-fi creature that can rip people apart, yes, but really would rather not. Someone that’s not dark or violent as the first option.

    AM: I would agree with that. I think she’s, first off, a really good “person” in the same way that most alien vampires would be.

    In all seriousness, she’s just an awesome character. She has elements of an anti-hero and has her own way of doing what’s right while having these beautiful moments of sincerity that let you see she’s not a monster.

    BB: Erik, tell us the storyline, if you would, of this very special Vampi adventure.

    EB: Since there wasn’t space to draw things out, we start with a fight! Vampirella has woken up in some kind of fantasy world (the likes of which is seen more often in Red Sonja) and has no idea how she got there. Next thing she knows, she’s set upon by barbarians! And that’s where we open the book. She senses something controlling their minds, and sets off to see what it is, and if it has answers as to how she came to this place. (She’ll meet this something, of course!) Simple plot, but there’s room for some action, some creepiness, and at least one surprise.

    BB: What can you tell us about this world you and Anthony Marques are building here?

    EB: It’s pure pulp-fantasy. Barbarians, bazaars, wizards, castles, dead cities… the exact kind of world a sword and sorcery hero would be right at home in. But Vampi isn’t a sword and sorcery hero...

    BB: Anthony, spinning out of the above question, tell me how you as artist make this world you are building a unique place, almost a character, with the use of design, layout, etc.

    AM: When you think of Vampirella, you don’t think of her being set back in time in a place like the one we’ve created for her here. So going into it, especially in the opening, I want it to seem vague, kind of lost, to help give the same feeling to the reader that she’s going through. Then as the story develops more I try to tighten up the environments to help establish just where we are and what kind of world we’re in.

    BB: Is there one character or set piece you really enjoyed designing/rendering for this one-shot? I have seen many covers for Dynamite and IDW by you. Is this your first time at sequentials?

    AM: This isn’t my first run at sequentials. I love doing them but due to a pretty busy life schedule (I own Dewey’s Comic City in Madison, N.J., edit at Dynamite, draw covers, and most importantly am a husband to my wife and dad to my awesome kids) I haven’t been able to do them. You gotta know your limits!

    This project offered the perfect amount of lead time and something I could really sink my teeth into. I’m about halfway through right now and Erik wrote an awesome opening sequence that has Vampi taking on a bunch of barbarians. I’m also incredibly lucky to have J. Bone inking my pages. He’s seriously just so great and it’s an honor to be able to work with him. Every time I send the penciled pages his way, I feel like a little kid waiting for Christmas morning to see what I’m going to get.

    BB: Since this is a one-shot, I will go ahead and ask: Did you enjoy working with Dynamite’s resident iconic vampire and would you like to do so again, if the situation presented itself?

    EB: I always enjoy playing in new sandboxes, so most I most assuredly had fun -- and what a crew to work with! Anthony is penciling up some great pages, J. Bone is inking with some kind of sorcery, and as of this writing I haven’t seen Chris O’Halloran’s colors on these pages (but I have seen his colors and know he’s gonna knock ‘em out of the park). It makes for a great experience. I wouldn’t complain a bit if we all got to hang out with Vampi again.

    AM: That would be a dream if we could all keep on working on this character/title! I’ve loved working with everyone involved and I think it really shows just how much fun we’re all having by looking at what’s going on in the pages. If people enjoy this book, spread the word and let Dynamite know you want more!