Comic Vine News



In part two of our interview with Mike Mignola, we talk about some of his other upcoming work at Dark Horse Comics and even discuss AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD and an exclusive look at the cover to ABE SAPIEN #21.

Yesterday, we first talked to creator Mike Mignola about his new series HELLBOY & THE B.P.R.D., which comes out on Wednesday, December 3rd. In part two of the interview, Mignola discusses, over the phone, HELLBOY IN HELL, which the first trade is currently available every, and his upcoming mini-series FRANKENSTEIN UNDERGROUND, which you'll be able to check out in 2015.

No Caption Provided

CV: The first trade for HELLBOY IN HELL came out and it's awesome to see you on art again. I read that the next few issues are going to be one-off or two-off stories that will be more approachable for new readers.

MM: It's a weird place for a new reader to pick up a book. I'd love to think that new readers will pick up that book, but that's what HELLBOY & THE B.P.R.D. is for. That's a good getting on board place. The HELLBOY IN HELL stuff is really what it's shaped up to be is four trade paperbacks worth of material that tell one, big story and kind of get Hellboy where he's going and resolve a lot of things and finally put certain things to rest and answer thing question and that question. It wasn't originally supposed to be like that. It was supposed be a prorate of small, little, odd stories and those stories started connecting up and certain events that happened in the first series, I realized they were very big events. They would impact this and they would impact that and here I am with this big-ass epic that I didn't really plan on. Issues 7 and 8 are a two-issue story and they do stand alone to a certain extent, but they do kind of resolve something that started in the first series, so it's done in small increments, in one and two issue stories, but they are telling one big story.

CV: When can we expect issue #7 to hit stores?

MM: Well, that's the question. I'm wrapping up issue 7. It's been amazingly slow because I had been writing B.P.R.D. and FRANKENSTEIN at the same time. 7 and 8 are a two issue story , so as soon as soon as I have a clear idea of when 8 is gonna be done, then we can schedule it. At this point, it's not scheduled because my schedule is so crazy and it's so unclear when certain things are going to get done. I'd love to think I've gotten through the writing period, I've got a lot more time to focus on the artwork, but you never know. Because it is a two issue story, I want to make sure that 8 is far enough along, so when they come out, 7 and 8 will come out a month apart. Anytime it's a two issue story or three issue story or whatever it's going to be, I need those things to come out monthly, so I don't want a big gap between issue 7 and 8.

CV: You brought up FRANKENSTEIN UNDERGROUND and you're doing this five issue mini-series with a very iconic monster. What was your process on taking that on?


MM: It's probably one of the stranger things I've done, tackling somebody else's literary character, which is not something I originally ever planned to do but did so sort of accidentally. What was just a Frankenstein-like character in the HOUSE OF THE LIVING DEAD graphic novel, when I wrote the back cover copy, it just sounded better to say it was Frankenstein's monster. Because of writing that back cover copy, suddenly, I turned that monster into the Frankenstein's monster. Once I had Frankenstein's monster, I thought, "Well, I should do something with him." Falling into the center of the Earth seemed like something nobody's ever done before. I had some center of the Earth kind of ideas that relate to the Hellboy universe so once I put the Frankenstein's monster together with a bunch of other stuff, the story kind of cobbled itself together pretty quickly and it actually turned into something unexpected in that by the end of that series, we create that's pretty significant in future the Hellboy/B.P.R.D. world.

CV: Does the character become intimidating to take on, considering how iconic he is?

MM: It's daunting, to a massive extent, and I did want it to be Mary Shelley's character even though the visual for the character is really nothing like I would have ever imagined Mary Shelley's character being. But again, when I created him, I didn't know he be Frankenstein's monster. As much as I love what Marry Shelley did, Frankenstein, to me, is really Boris Karloff. So trying to do Mary Shelley's character but hearing Karloff's voice is tricky because those two different versions are a million miles apart. And only in my scripting am I figuring out how much of this character is Karloff and how much is Shelley. He does talk and he talks more than Karloff did in Bride of Frankenstein, so I kinda gotta find some middle ground there, but I'm working on it.

CV: You've got Ben Stenbeck and Dave Stewart on the book with you and he works with you on almost everything you do.

MM: Dave is the glue that holds us all together.

CV: Definitely. Is Ben your first choice for art now on your side stories?

MM: I'm always much more comfortable working with guys I've worked with before and work with quite a bit. I know Ben's strengths and I know how to write for Ben, and the book came about because Ben and I were talking about what he would like to do. I wanted to bring him into the Hellboy universe after the long stretch on BALTIMORE. I think he was looking for something kind of different. There was no hole for him to fill in our regular books, so I said "here's this idea I'm playing with. Would you be interested?" He was very interested. I'm very happy to be working with him.

No Caption Provided

CV: One of my favorite things you ever did was AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD.

MM: Yes. It's one of my favorites too.

CV: The pilot for the Syfy channel was amazing as well. Would you ever consider going back, not necessarily to AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD who was a great character, to doing something a bit more comedic again?

MM: Yeah. That is my favorite collection of work, THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD AND OTHER CURIOUS OBJECTS. I would love to do more stuff in that vain and some of the HELLBOY IN HELL stuff is pretty close to that. Maybe not as overtly humor but certainly odd. A lot of HELLBOY IN HELL is inspired by the work I did in those stories. That world I sort of created in those odd stories is very much the world Hellboy is walking around in. It's just that Hellboy is darker part of that neighborhood. That's my goal. Right now, I really want to focus on getting through this giant HELLBOY IN HELL epic, and once I'm through that, I definitely want to go back to being a short story guy and just do these odd, little stories. I'd love to think I have one more collection of short stories, like the Amazing Screw-On Head book, in me.

CV: You seem to be working on so much stuff over at Dark Horse Where do you fit in time to sleep?

MM: You know, at night. I don't get as much sleep as I should. What the beauty is that I don't have deadlines really or I'm not trying to write a monthly book or anything so things move. That's part of the problem with the HELLBOY IN HELL stuff. Certain things pop up like this guy needs this script or this guy needs this plot. I'm going through this phase, right now, where I'll work on Hellboy for a few days then I'll go and do a cover or write a plot or script for these things. I've tried to get rid of most of the distractions, but at the same time, I keep making up new stuff. I'm going to write the next arc, a short arc, of HELLBOY & THE B.P.R.D. series. I'll do the first two issues of HELLBOY & THE B.P.R.D. '53 because I need to do that. There's stuff in there. I know what it is. I want to get it out there. So I need to do that. For the most part, I'm trying to limit the amount of writing I do that doesn't relate to Hellboy.

CV: I take it that it is a much different world for you now compared to when you were working with Batman or at DC or Marvel.

MM: Oh yes. It's such a different plan. I look back at that world or what I was doing then and it's kind of hard to imagine, though I never did the monthly grind, much. I think I was only on two monthly books and they were both nightmares. So the bulk of my work for Marvel and DC was special projects and mini-series. So in a sense, that stuff wasn't too different than what I'm doing now.

Thanks a ton to Mike Mignola for chatting with us on the phone and make sure to check out HELLBOY IN HELL, the first trade is currently available in your local comic shop, FRANKENSTEIN UNDERGROUND, which hits stores in early 2015, HELLBOY & THE B.P.R.D. #1, which you can buy on Wednesday, December 3rd and go find yourself a copy of THE AMAZING SCREW-ON HEAD & OTHER CURIOUS OBJECTS, we even wrote a piece about it last year you can check out.

Check out an exclusive cover reveal of ABE SAPIEN #21 featuring the art of Max Fiumara.

No Caption Provided