Generations before us completely drove the bus into a lake and it’s somehow our fault everybody’s drowning.
Clive Barker’s HELLRAISER is one of the seminal films of the 1980s horror boom. Smart, sophisticated and visceral, Barker’s directorial debut became a cottage industry of its own, with multiple sequels (and the merchandise to go with them) , as well as two comics series (Marvel’s Epic Comics, 1989 – 1994 and Boom! Comics, 2011 – 2015). They say the third time’s the charm, as Barker reopens the doorway to the “the further regions of experience” next month in a new and ambitious outing that should leave the Cenobites’ acolytes very pleased indeed.
Hellraiser: Anthology, the inaugural project for Barker’s new graphic novel imprint, Seraphim Comics, is a 90-page hardcover collection featuring 11 original tales set in the universe first introduced with his novella, THE HELLBOUND HEART. The hardcover collection is priced at $35, while a limited edition (signed by Barker) will be going for $65. The digital edition ($15) is also available for those who like their comics on the portable side
As for who’s behind the wheel, Seraphim has lined up a solid list of contributors to play in Barker’s infernal playground. As well as tales from Barker himself (both writing and illustrating)and both Seraphim’s VP, Mark Alan Miller ( who just so happens to be interviewed right here) and Editor -In-Chief Ben Meares, there are also contributions from Blumhouse.com’s Editor-In-Chief, Rebekah McKendry and contributing writer, David McKendry, POW Entertainment’s Matt Murray. Art duties have been filled by Daniele Serra (responsible for the cover art shown above), Riley Schmitz, Sam Shearon, Nick Percival, Jim Terry and Jimm O’Dell.
While there have been previous four-colour forays into Hell’s Labyrinth, this one feels very different and exciting – not only because of Barker’s involvement in the process but this time out, as the original tagline for HELLRAISER reads …there are no limits.
“We had a very simple mission statement at the beginning of our journey with this comic” states Meares in discussing the project. “We set out to create something with no limits and no censorship that everyone involved, as both creatives and fans of the Hellraiser mythos, would be proud of.” And if the previews provided by Seraphim are any indication, it looks to do the sadistic and sensual series proper justice, with visions (and characters) both new and exciting and -as seen below – very familiar.
Miller seconds the notion. “We chose to publish this anthology in-house for one main reason…It frees us to tell stories that are entirely uncensored. Hellraiser, as a film and comic book franchise, has always needed to be censored to one degree or another. By producing this comic in-house, and distributing it straight to Hellraiser fans via our web store, the wide array of talented people on the book are free to tell the stories they want to tell, and dig as deep into their twisted imaginations as they please. And, let me tell you, the experience has been utterly freeing for all involved, and that creative freedom bleeds through the pages of this anthology.”
“I’ve been a part of a number of Hellraiser projects throughout my years with Clive… and this is easily the most personal project I’ve seen pass through these walls. It’s as lovingly curated as it is delightfully grotesque. I’m proud to have my name in its pages.”
HELLRAISER: ANTHOLOGY makes its grand debut on at this year’s Monsterpalooza convention in Pasadena, CA. Following its arrival at the weekend-long convention (April 7th to 9th 2017), it will go on sale on April 14th through, www.realclivebarker.com, in both hardcover and digital formats.
And, in a move that will shock absolutely no one who knows me, I will have a review in the coming weeks. So keep your eyes (and flesh) peeled..
Mark Alan Miller is a busy guy. On top of his “day job” as Vice-President of Clive Barker’s Seraphim Inc., Miller was the driving force behind the long-awaited “director’s cut” restoration of Barker’s 1990 cult classic, NIGHTBREED. But aside from overseeing the day-to-day operations of The House That Barker Built, Miller’s been flexing his own creative muscles.
And it’s a lot of flexing, too.
Starting off in somewhat familiar territory with BOOM! Studios HELLRAISER comics, Miller went on to collaborate with Barker on NEXT TESTAMENT, a twelve-issue series that introduces Mr. Wick, the true Old Testament God who’s not pleased with what he sees on his return… and sets about destroying it all.
Following that, Miller teamed up with Dark Horse and Joe R. Lansdale for THE STEAM MAN, a deliriously inventive and brutal mash-up of Steampunk & vintage pulp sci-fi/horror set in the Wild West based on Lansdale’s short story,“The Steam Man of the Prairie and the Dark Rider Get Down: A Dime Novel.”.
Oh lots. Always lots. The conversations we’re having are on another level. With any luck, there will be some incredible Barker television coming your way in the coming months. We’re also diving deeper into self-publishing. We’ve got The Thief Of Always anniversary edition that Christian Francis and Vicky Barker produced together which will be sold exclusively on our web store. I’ve held it in my hand. It’s amazing. And you can also keep your eyes peeled for a new Hellraiser anthology comic, also for sale through our web store – www.realclivebarker.com. It’s a love letter to EC comics and the old Epic Hellraiser comics as well. It’s a no holds barred anthology where bad things happen…and sometimes they even happen to good people. If all goes according to plan, it should get under your skin quite nicely and stay there.
It’s been said that to expunge an abstract yet malicious force, one must give it solidity.
A name. A face. Something solid to drive the stake through and end it, right and proper.
Such is the case with 2016, a year that’s best described as “a flaming clown car of misery”. We’ve spent a good chunk of the last 365 days trying to anthropomorphize this particular chronological cycle as some kind of metaphysical horror-movie slasher. Well, we’re nearing the end credits, folks, so before it gets one last swing in today, I’ve been working on a solution.
See, I’ve given 2016 a physical form, and a name to bind it to this plane…and we’re going to kill this motherfucker before he gets a chance to sabotage 2017 before it even starts.
This is Emmex Vei. The year, made tangible. And you’re going to help me kick him square in the balls and out the door.
Here’s the gist:
Having channeled all the hate, fear and tragedy of the past year into this well-dressed and infinitely vicious piece of shit and branding his real name on his head , I came up with the follow-up plan to thus destroy him. But Emmex is a strong and persistent malignancy, so it’s going to take more than I’ve got here.
Here’s where you come in.
I need you to print this effigy of pen/ink/Photoshop and defile/destroy it how you see fit. Light it on fire. Tear it to shreds. Grab a handful of crayons and cover him in crudely drawn penises. Whatever it takes to diminish and weaken him before you strike the final blow.
At the very least, it’ll be cathartic. There isn’t a person I know who hasn’t had an especially rough time of it this year, and I’m no exception. There will be no resurrections, no sequels, no carry-over into the new year. If we’re going to get the fresh start and the tiniest glimmer of hope… Emmex Vei/MMXVI/2016 MUST FUCKING DIE!
And maybe, just maybe, we’ve got a fighting chance starting tomorrow.
Happy New Year, one and all. May the fates protect us.
Share the hashtag. Put this fucking monster in the ground.
At age 18, Brittney-Jade Colangelo hit the ground running with Day Of The Woman, a blog that took a look at “the feminine side of fear”. It was raw, honest and gave no shits about your finer sensitivities. Most importantly, she was a a strong and unapologetic feminist who spoke her mind freely and with razor-keen intelligence. The writing, academic yet accessible. The world-view open and analytical, never one to take a side blindly.
Since that time, she has retired DOTW (which is still up and running in the archival sense) and has since been plying her trade online with Blumhouse, Playboy and – most recently – Birth Movies Death.
Sickening Pictures, the production company started by her and partner Zach Shildwachter, has already amassed an impressive list of horror shorts under their banner, with their most recent – LOVE IS DEAD – making the rounds on the festival circuit.
So, here we are again, full circle. Five Q’s. Five A’s.
1) A lot has changed in the blogosphere since you first hit the keyboards for Day Of The Woman. What do you think are the most notable changes found in the world of online critique and journalism?
Day of the Woman started in 2009 when I was only 18 years old. Saying that out loud feels incredibly foreign, and in the age of the internet, this is a lifetime away. That was pre-twitter, that was when Myspace was still hanging on by a thread. 2009 was around the time that the internet was really starting to EXPLODE and accessibility and connection speeds were at an all time high, so we were flooded with tons of sites and blogs popping up every day. Since then, most of the casual hobby sites have gone the way of the dodo. Sure, the market is still heavily saturated, but the ones that exist seem to hold themselves to a higher standard. People can’t get away with being assholes for the sake of being assholes anymore about a film, and because audiences have so many outlets to chose from, it forces writers to really step up their game and provide quality content or risk losing their readership. It’s still got a way to go, but I’m a much bigger fan of the “blogosphere” in 2016 than I was in 2009.
2) Often, you have come under attack for your views, most notably by those with and ax to grind against feminism. Has this changed for you since moving into other “respectable brand” venues (Blumhouse, Playboy, etc.)
My views haven’t changed, if anything, they’ve just gotten stronger and more refined. Writing about feminism as an 18 year old is ridiculously more different than writing about feminism as a 26 year old. I stride to incorporate intersectionality in my analyses of cinema and writing for more “respectable” sites rather than just an independently run website has encouraged me to do as much research as possible into my articles. I’m speaking on a much bigger soapbox these days, and it’s vital that I keep myself as educated and up to date as possible. It’s not about my “personal opinions” anymore, it’s a means to start a conversation with the masses through an entertaining medium.
3) How do you think your worldview has changed from the time you started DOTW to now?
I’ve done a lot of maturing since starting Day of the Woman, but I think this has a lot to do with growing older. Unlike a lot of my comrades, my growth and development from a high school senior to a functioning adult member of society is documented and on display for the world to see. I’m embarrassed by some of the things I’ve said years ago, as I’m sure everyone can relate to, but I see it as a physical representation of how I’ve grown as a person. I like to think I’m a bit kinder but stronger in my stance. I’ve gained a lot of confidence since finishing college, and I hope that shows in my writing.
4) Tell me a bit about your recent forays into indie film productions. The highs, the lows? Is there money to be made, or is it a “love of the game” sort of deal?
I’d love to one day say that I’m making money on indie film productions, but for the time being, it’s a labor of love. I see it as the ultimate education experience. Who am I to rate and review a film without ever having endured the filmmaking process? I have gained a better perspective and respect for cinema now that I’ve dabbled in making it both in front of and behind the camera. I love the creative process of making a film, the only trouble is trying to get the finished product in front of an audience that has more media at their fingertips than any other time in history.
5) With Day Of The Woman, you established yourself as one of the trailblazers for this kind of online journalism/critique. Where would you like to see things go, and what advice do you have for anyone looking to follow this path?
So here we are.
And no word of a lie, it’s going to get dark.
So dust yourselves off, suit up and get ready to fight.
Game on, good guys.
It’s been a long time since I’ve put fingers to keyboard here, so the three or four of you (and that is being incredibly generous) still here might be wondering ” Where have you been? What’s with all the silence?” The short answer: a lot. The longer one’s gonna require a paragraph, may be two. I promise to keep things less on the loquacious side and more “brevity is wit”-ish.
Let’s start off with terminal illness,shall we? Not mine, but close enough to home. Our family made the move to new accommodations at the end of December – bigger, more rooms and a kick-ass basement custom made for reclusive writer time – to help my wife’s mother with her ongoing treatment for two different types of cancer. Both rare, both found in single-digit percentiles of the population. Then the cancer got ballsy, made its way into the marrow, bumped things up from “concerning” to “this is going to kill you”. There were weeks left, if we were lucky. After a debilitating first round of chemo, we started to see improvements. Vast, “holy shit” honest-to-goodness miracle kind of improvements. And that trend continued for months, till we got the good news a couple of weeks ago. Zero traces. The marrow is clean. It’s over, and we couldn’t be happier at this outcome. We’re a tight little unit, this family. And every day, I’m glad to be surrounded by such strong and beautiful people.
As a result of the above, though, some things had to be placed on the back-burner while we waged this little war. With the fires put out, and a new “normal” slowly becoming commonplace, it’s time to get back to business. To quote Abraham Van Helsing, ” There is work – wild work – to be done.” First, and certainly not least – I’m plying my trade under a new umbrella. The folks at Blumhouse.com (specifically Editor-In-Chief, Rebekah McKendry) have been kind enough (and trusting -the fools…) to allow me to spew words on their website. Before the above-mentioned crisis shook up the status quo, I managed to post a couple of articles.
Should you feel the need to read assorted verbiage on genre-related fooferaw, take a gander at the menu:
They’re a good gang to hook up with – fans with a love of the genre who aren’t afraid to fly the flag for their personal favourites – and they trust me enough to let me occupy space on their real estate. I’m still not convinced that my style of writing could be labelled “journalism”. But it’s fun. I get to talk about things I like, and share it among like-minded individuals. So I’m going to keep at that for a while.
I also quit smoking. 25 years on the hook, now ten months nicotine-free. And I don’t miss it. Not a bit. It’s hard, but not impossible. So maybe I’ll write about it here.
And we got a dog. Her name is Maggie. And she’s awesome.
Aside from that? Who knows. If there’s anything I’ve learned over the past year, it’s that life is short and no one is going to hand anything to you. So there will be more writing, here and elsewhere. I could get all wordy about my intentions, or just get down to the work.
In the end, the work is the only thing that matters. So time to get back to it.
It feels good to be back.