Vampirella is a legacy in the Frazetta family, with Frank Frazetta creating an iconic cover for the character a little more than 50 years ago. Now, his granddaughter Sara Frazetta is continuing the family’s connection to Vampi with Dynamite’s upcoming book Vampirella: Dead Flowers where she will act as writer and cover artist for the series. Co-writer and occult detective Bob Freeman joins Frazetta on the title and artist Alberto Locatelli takes on interiors.

Vampirella: Dead Flowers

Frazetta, who is also co-founder of the Frazetta Girls, and Freeman chatted with The Beat about the title.

Deanna Destito: Vampirella has been a part of your family’s legacy for decades. Why was it important for you to continue that connection? 

Sara Frazetta: Vampirella is not just an iconic character but a part of the Frazetta legacy due to my grandfather, Frank Frazetta. Continuing that connection honors his talent and vision. It’s about both preserving our family’s legacy and introducing Vampirella to a new generation. 

Vampirella: Dead Flowers

Destito: When you took on this series, how did you approach the story to make it fresh while also staying true to the feel of classic Vampi?

Frazetta: When I took on this series as a co-writer with Bob, he helped me dive deep into the history of Vampirella to understand her essence. From there, we looked for ways to weave in the themes we both loved. By respecting the foundations set by past creators and merging them with a gothic perspective, we aimed to create a story that’s both fresh and true to Vampirella’s roots in horror. 

Bob Freeman: Vampirella has a rich history, but she’s also been reinvented many times. I felt like our approach was to write our version of Vampirella, how we envision her, but sticking to the bullet points of what’s come before.

Vampirella: Dead Flowers

Destito: The vibe around this particular tale is very gothic horror. Why did you choose that direction? 

Frazetta: Bob and I found common ground in our desire to craft a gothic tale involving ghosts, demons, and werewolves. My fondness for series like True Blood coupled with his passion for the paranormal formed a perfect synergy. Additionally, I was really influenced by the classic novel Carmilla. There’s something irresistible about the gothic horror vibe.

Freeman: Sara and I were together on this from day one. We both have such a love for the genre; it felt right to bring Vampirella into it. Emotionally, it resonated with us, and we were able to delve a little bit into the psychology of her separation from the world and her need for familial connections.

Vampirella: Dead Flowers

Destito: How does this story fit with Vampi’s canon? 

Freeman: As Sara and I brainstormed, we were cognizant of the many layers that have been built up around Vampirella over the decades. We wanted to strip some of that away, leave her bare, to get at the root of her character.

Frazetta: A gothic story aligns naturally with Vampirella’s origins in horror. As a vampire, she’s intrinsically tied to themes central to gothic literature. I think introducing elements like ghosts and demons complements her world, while the emotional depth of gothic tales mirrors Vampi’s own internal struggles.

Destito: How was it working with this creative team?

Frazetta: Wonderful. Bob is such an empathetic, creative human being. Alberto Locatelli nailed the art. It’s the exact style we were hoping for. Cannot thank Matt Idelson and Nick Barrucci of Dynamite enough. 

Freeman: Working with Sara was a dream. She is amazingly creative and has a great eye and ear for detail, and I consider her a dear friend. When she invited me to join her on this, I jumped at the chance… and then when Alberto Locatelli’s pages were first shared with us, we knew our story was in the very best of hands. He has a modern style but with the sort of energy that comes from an understanding of the history of the medium. It was Matt Idelson who brought all of us together and kept us on point. He’s exactly the sort of editor every creative wants to work with.

Vampirella: Dead Flowers

Destito: If you could do a Vampirella crossover, who would you like to see the character either team up with or battle against?  

Frazetta: One of my grandfather’s creations, for sure! Maybe a crossover with Frazetta’s “Cat Girl.” Cat V Bat! 

Freeman: I love Sara’s answer, but I’d really love to take a shot at writing Vampirella in an occult detective tale, teaming her with and against Aleister Crowley. How’s that for out of left field?

Vampirella: Dead Flowers #1 will be available on October 4, 2023.