Tom Sniegoski has a lot to be excited about. From his return to Vampirella to some top secret comic and novel projects in the works, the writer has plenty to keep him busy for the rest of 2019 and beyond.
The Summer of Vampirella from Dynamite wouldn’t have been complete without Sniegoski, who was the first writer to helm her ongoing series in the Harris Comics era. Sniegoski is also responsible for adding a leather jacket, giving her origin a jumpstart, and even killing her in a miniseries. Twenty-five years ago, he left the comic character in her original Vengeance of Vampirella run, but with her 50th anniversary this summer, it was the perfect time to return to the Daughter Drakulon. And he’s picking up right where he left her in the ‘90s.
Artist Michael Sta. Maria (Fathom, Jirni), colorist Omi Remalante Jr., and letterer Troy Peteri join him on the new series hitting this October that features an alternate continuity starting right after the finale where Vampi is fatally stabbed. Instead of Warren Ellis and Amanda Conner’s Vampi Lives, fans will see a version of the timeline where 25 years pass without Vampirella.
Sniegoski chatted with The Beat about Vampirella as well as a few of his other upcoming works to watch for.
Deanna Destito: Let’s start with Vengeance of Vampirella making a comeback. Why did you want to resurrect the title?
Tom Sniegoski: First off, it’s the 50th anniversary for the character of Vampirella, and the 25th anniversary of my run on Vengeance of Vampirella that I did at Harris Comics. Nick Barrucci over at Dynamite was planning all sorts of anniversary stuff for the character and asked if I might be interested in working on the book again as part of the celebration. I have an incredible fondness for the character of Vampirella and thought it would be a blast to return to her, and her world. So far I haven’t been wrong!
Destito: Why did you choose to pick up where you left off in the ’90s?
Sniegoski: Twenty five years ago my last Vampirella story was a mini-series that I did with Christopher Golden called, Vampirella: Death & Destruction. At the end of that series we’d set up some pretty horrible circumstances for the character, and the world that she lived in. The character of Vampirella actually ended up dying in the last pages of the final issue. So that’s where I left it, she was dead (until the new writers on the book brought her back). To celebrate 25 years of Vengeance of Vampirella, I thought it would be cool to pick up twenty five years after I left off. As if the horrible conditions that Chris and I introduced were allowed to continue. What has happened to the world and other characters that had managed to survive since Vampirella had died? I’m glad Nick agreed.
Destito: Did you feel the 25 year gap or was it as if no time had gone by?
Sniegoski: Y’know what? I was surprised at how easy it was to slip back into the character. I started remembering all this stuff that I’d been thinking about when originally writing her and applied it to this new scenario. It was really amazing and more fun that I had any right to have.
Destito: Can you give fans any teasers about what they can expect from Vampi?
Sniegoski: Well, if you enjoyed my take on the character and her supporting cast I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. I think I’m a much better writer now so I’ve turned everything up a few notches. Super creepy and exciting with characters not seen since I left. I’m doing my best throwback to the old, Marvel monster books of the ‘70s like Werewolf by Night, Tomb of Dracula, Supernatural Thrillers, etc.
Destito: Another comeback is Swords of Shar Pei. What can you tell us about that?
Sniegoski: Swords of Shar-Pei was a series that Mark Masztal and I did for Caliber Comics many years ago. It was about a genetically engineered fighting dog/human hybrid wandering a post apocalyptic world. It was our tribute to Jack Kirby’s Kamandi: The Last Boy on Earth, and strangely enough, Kozuo Koike and artist Goseki Kojima’s Lone Wolf & Cub. There were two sequels to the original, Guns of Shar-Pei, and then Dogs of War which was published by Billy Tucci’s Crusade Comics. The new book wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for Mark Masztal. He approached me about a year ago and told me that he wanted to put all the Shar-Pei stuff that we’d done over the years in one giant volume. I said, sure, knock yourself out. He worked tirelessly re-lettering and making the old work look amazing for new audiences. Reading through the proof not too long ago I was really happy with the stuff. Sure, it’s kind of clunky here and there especially since this was some of the first comics work that Mark and I had done, but there’s a real energy to the work. It was obvious that we were super serious about telling the best comic book story that we could tell.
Destito: What’s going on with Atomic Frenchie? After volume 2’s May release, can fans expect more in the future?
Sniegoski: Atomic Frenchie is my and Tom McWeeney’s baby. Book 2, The Cow With the Nuclear Heart, was released in May, and right how we’re waiting to see if the publisher, Insight Editions, is going to pick up books 3 and 4. Fingers crossed that this will happen; Kirby, the Atomic Frenchie’s story is far from over, and future books promise to be even crazier than what came before. Stay tuned for more info!
Destito: Do you have anything else coming up that you can share with us?
Sniegoski: I’m also working with creator and publisher of Albatross Comics, Eric Powell, on a story arc for his re-launch of the Goon. I’ll be working with him on issues 5 through 8 and hopefully some even cooler stuff down the line. I’ve also got some cool novel stuff currently in development, but nothing I can really talk about just yet. One of which might involve a certain Bone-y character that I worked on in the past.
Vengeance of Vampirella #1 is set to debut in October. Fans can select their favorite covers from top artists like Joshua Middleton, Frank Cho, Ben Oliver, Lucio Parrillo, and Buzz, who is returning for a special incentive cover. There is also a cosplayer cover featuring Joanie Brosas. For more on the author’s other works, head to his website.