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    CHRIS SEBELA talks KISS/VAMPIRELLA #4, on sale in SEPTEMBER from Dynamite!

    BYRON BREWER: Chris, the penultimate issue is arriving as of this writing: issue #4 in September. So, looking back, has this weird KISS and Vampirella mashup been the story you started to tell? Any musical or mystic side trips you took that were unintended, or roads never traveled that you would have loved to if given the space, etc.?

    CHRIS SEBELA: Some stories you figure out as you go, you only know how they start and where they end but you have no idea how to get from A to B. Others you bang your head against forever until they make sense. This one, it all fell into my head at once and it played along the entire way. So while Iíd definitely have loved to get more face time with Witchkraft or focus a bit on KISS in the studio, Iím really happy with how it turned out and like that it doesnít wander too much. Itís like a 3 minute rock song.

    BB: While I always love KISS, it is really rocking my world to see Vampi in a rock band. Was there any central inspiration for Witchkraft and which band do you hear playing when you imagine them performing?

    CS: The main inspiration was KISS themselves. Gene Simmons has this quote: ďI wanted to be in a band that gave bang for the buck. I wanted to be in the band who didn't look like a bunch of guys who, you know, should be in a library studying for their finals.Ē And I thought that made a lot of sense and as a shorthand to let you know just how badass Witchkraft is by giving them this dark, witchy theme that said more than anything else ever could. As far as who I hear when I think of them, maybe The Runaways but darker? Or an early incarnation of Hole.

    BB: Following up from above, would you like to do a Dynamite series on Witchkraft? If so, would you keep them in their time period or bring them forward into the 21st century (re: today)?

    CS: Iíd write a Witchkraft book all day long. I kind of built them with a lot of personality and potential built in and when you get to the end of issue 4, youíll see why I canít really answer the second part of your question. But in my dream book, Witchkraft could be like a bloodier version of Jem or Josie and the Pussycats with some deep dark secrets.

    BB: How has working with Vampi and Witchkraft in this adventure changed your iteration of KISS, would you say? Changed Vampirella herself?

    CS: I tried to treat KISS as if I was just peeking into an untold story from their early years. That time they went to Los Angeles to record an album and had a few interesting adventures while they were there. I think KISSí eyes really get opened by the end of this story, and maybe thatís me and my ďstories gotta make senseĒ hangup building in a thing where you can go look at any of the KISS comics that take place after 1974 and all that spins off from where they first figured out some secret stuff about the world, put them in touch with something bigger. Same for Vampi. I think my main focus with her was as a fairly new resident of Earth, seeing how she adjusts to this new world and all the people in it. As straightforward as stabbing a monster is, talking with someone you just met and becoming friends or bandmates or anything is far trickier and this is Vampiís crash course, itís the foundation everything that comes afterwards sits on.

    BB: In a non-spoilery manner, can you tell us anything about the mystery menace hellbent on taking down the rockíníroll of the era? At all? (wide smile)

    CS: Well, thereís no M. Night Shyamalan twist. There have been a lot of hints as to whoís behind all this, I think the bigger question mark is why and the why is sort of the main reason I latched onto this story so much. Which is a long way of saying I canít say a word but when you find out in issue 4, itís a thing that makes sense not just in the story but maybe also in real life.

    BB: Has Annapaola Martelloís art been awesome or what, especially in setting the current mood for this unusual team-up?

    CS: The very first panel of this book I saw from Annapaola was of KISS in the studio and it was amazing. And everything from her has been amazing ever since. Sheís really good at rock shows, the body language of bands and audiences, and sheís really good at action, including big bloody demon fights. I couldnít have hoped for a better collaborator. Esepcially with Valentinaís colors on them, theyíre a dream team.

    BB: So what ELSE is up with Chris Sebela?

    CS: Right now Iím working on my creator-owned book Heartthrob Season 2 and doing some co-writing on Detective Comics and getting a five issue solo run on a character at DC Iím pretty excited about. Otherwise, weíre hard at work on the comic we just crowdfunded, Short Order Crooks, and probably a couple of other things that I can talk about some day. Basically Iím busy all the time and sleep hardly ever.