Vampirella #666 Sneak Peek!
Preorders Due Now for Priest's Next Epic Chapter!
The Daughter of Drakulon has been through many stories in her life in comic books. We added them all up and were surprised to come to VAMPIRELLA #666 for the first issue of our next story! It's all heating up soon with Christopher Priest taking her on her newest epic, poetically returning to where he started in 2019 for the 50th anniversary while looking forward as we march toward #700!
Preorders are due this weekend with your favorite Local Comic Shop, so make sure to lock yours in ASAP and subscribe to the series to not miss out!
|PRIEST REWINDS THE CLOCK, CELEBRATES 666 ISSUES
& CHARGES FORWARD IN THE MOST HISTORIC VAMPIRELLA STORY YET!
|Priest, we must ask you of course what you think of the fun numbering here with Vampirella #666. You've been involved in a few big celebratory anniversary issues through your career, like Conan the Barbarian #200, the big #1,000 marks for Detective Comics and Marvel Comics, and we won't think too hard about how a #1,000,000 issue comes to be...
I think it apropos to give the comic the same number as my age :-) I don’t know, I think the biz has changed a lot over time. A lot of us older fans really enjoyed the issue numbering and felt it important to keep our sets complete. A Number One was a huge deal, and milestone numbering was an event to be celebrated. I think all the reboots have diminished this aspect a great deal, with younger generations of fans now not as invested or not invested in quite the same way.
You first took on the helm of the Vampirella franchise in 2019 for our big 50th anniversary. It all kicked off with an echo of origins fans had previously seen for the character, with her as the sole survivor of a tragic plane crash. We hear fans will be seeing that moment again here, maybe even more than once, with a big twist. What is going down this time?
For Vampirella, we’d completed our 50th anniversary volume with our issue #25, and that allowed us to stretch and explore a bit over the stretch of the pandemic through Vampirella/Dracula: Unholy, its bookend Vampirella/Dracula: Rage and the way-too-much-fun Vampirella: Year One.
But I knew that, presuming Dynamite didn’t ship me off to the Old Writers’ Home, what I would want to do most was get back to basics. Our 50th Anniversary run began with a fairly simple premise: a single girl trying to make it on her own in the big city. She just happens to be a vampire from outer space with a pushy, vengeful mother and a collection of supernatural enemies out to kill her.
After the heaviness of Rage, wherein a vengeful Vampirella becomes consumed by darkness, I wanted to get back to where we started with the wonder, fun, and poignancy of those first issues and Vampirella restored to her whimsical goodness. We’ve done that... sorta.
There’s always a catch. I mean, that’s the fun of reading ANY story, any novel or magazine or comic. There’s the story you think you know and then there’s the unexpected curve that creates the thrill ride. And that’s where we are with issue #666” back home, back where we belong. Sorta.
One of the working titles for this series and perhaps still for the story arc is "Beyond." Could you elaborate a bit on what that means for Vampirella?
The “Beyond” arc title was intended to reflect the idea of a woman having all her wishes granted. The basic gist of my Vampirella series has always been, ostensibly, wish fulfillment. Casper The friendly Ghost wants what we all want--community. Friends, family, love, purpose. The only problem is Casper is, in fact, a dead baby, and people find that sort of thing scary.
Vampirella’s quest for those very same things has always been complicated by the fact she is a vampire from outer space surrounded by and pursued by a wide ranging cast of characters that might be fright at home in the 60’s sitcom Bewitched. The suggestion is that Vampi might actually find the love and happiness she’s always sought if only these kooks would leave her alone, which of course they won’t do because they’re kooks and she’s a space vampire.
But, thought I, what if Vampirella could achieve those things, what if she could realize the fulfillment and happiness she sought? So what if we went all the way back to our beginning, strip away the tragedy, the heartbreak, the betrayals, even bring dead characters back to life? What if we did all of that...
...only to put Vampirella into a position where she has to un-do it all, lose everything, in order to save the world? We discover Vampirella’s new status quo has been engineered, and the mechanism which created her happiness is dooming the planet.
As a writer, the main thing you try to do is put your protagonist into a headlock and then drag him or her into a dark alley toward a brick wall. Then figure out how the protagonist overcomes certain doom before the series ends. Here, in Vampirella Beyond, we’re doing that in spades.
Turkish artist Ergün Gündüz is back as well, ready to tap back into the artistic vision he helped debut with you a few years ago, flipping it on its head a bit. While also tying together everything that has been seen to date from our Free Comic Book Day #0 all the way to Vampirella/Dracula: Rage #6. How important was it to bring him back in for this particular story?
Oh, it’s vital. I wouldn’t do this idea without Ergün because Vampirella Beyond is a deconstruction of the world Ergün created. Ergün’s characters play key roles in the story and the look and unique feel of Ergün’s world is what drives this arc. We will be revisiting specific landmark scenes in the early issues that Ergün must now match perfectly (and he has!) in a kind of Groundhog’s Day round-robin.
As part of the celebration of hitting this nontraditional #666 milestone, we're including a little extra for fans at no extra cost. The issue will feature a wordless short story you did with Alan Davis in 1999, originally published in Vampirella #19, within the series fans often call the "New Monthly." What do you possibly recall about that collaboration and story?
How terrified I was of them. Of Vampirella and of Alan Davis. I had the pleasure of hanging out with Mr. Davis in Memphis recently, where I expressed (again) my appreciation for his having taken on that assignment. Yes, I’m just as big a fanboy as the next comic geek, and working with Mr. Davis on that assignment -- which requires precise storytelling on his part since the story was to be “silent” -- is one of the high points of my career.
Vampirella's Next Epic Begins Here!
We Celebrated 50 Years in 2019 - Now Join Us For #666 & Road to #700!
A B C
A: LUCIO PARRILLO - DEC230232
B: FELIPE MASSAFERA - DEC230233
C: CARLA COHEN - DEC230234
D: COSPLAY (RACHEL HOLLON) - DEC230235
I 10 COPY INC: ERGÜN GÜNDÜZ - DEC230240
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