Writer Cullen Bunn has carved out a nice creator-owned niche for himself with titles like the fantasy western The Sixth Gun (with co-creator Brian Hurtt) and the horror series Harrow County (with Tyler Crook). Now Bunn is teaming with artists Andy MacDonald and Nick Filardi for a horror-infused sci-fi story set in the farthest reaches of space. Rogue Planet is a new Oni Press series that tracks a team on a mining expedition to a distant world, and the dangers, natural and otherwise, waiting for the crew when they arrive.
Here’s how Oni describes the series:
Salvage vessel Cortes tracks the Lonely Orphan, a planet with no star system to call its own. Somewhere on this hostile rock is a payload fit for a king. To attain it, though, the crew of the Cortes must brave razor rock, poisonous vapors, treacherous footing, and… the most mind-numbing horrors imaginable. Something nightmarish is at work on Lonely Orphan. Something cruel. Something hungry.
The title Rogue Planet refers to a world that is not part of a solar system, orbiting the gravitational center of a galaxy (either a supermassive black hole or a cluster of stars) as opposed to a single star. In a statement, Bunn discusses the inspiration the term gave him, and he and MacDonald describe working on the series:
“Rogue Planet is a book I’ve been working on for quite a while, a sci-fi horror story that really digs into my roots as a horror fan” says co-creator and writer, Cullen Bunn. “I remember where I was sitting when I first wrote the title down–I was having coffee with my pal and frequent collaborator Brian Hurtt at Powell’s Books–and I couldn’t stop thinking about the possibilities. I spent a while kicking ideas around, and I came up with a chilling notion that I absolutely loved. It took a while to find the right artist, and I was so thrilled when Andy came on board to draw this title. I’ve been a fan of his work for so long. He really sold the hostility of the setting, the ghastliness of the horrors our intrepid heroes encounter. And then Nick took Andy’s pages and told stories with the colors. I cannot wait for readers to see this book. There are terrors to be discovered and mysteries to be revealed, if you have the stomach for it.”
Artist Andy MacDonald adds “Rogue Planet was an amazing opportunity for me to work with comic greats Cullen Bunn and Nick Filardi in the sci-fi horror genre that I truly love! It’s also the most difficult project to work on due to bouts of mind-bending fright-paralysis induced from the countless horrors Cullen’s spectacularly chilling script commanded I confront and draw. Stalwart champion of color and fearless comics comrade, Nick Filardi was there to bring beautiful and horrifyingly-vivid color to a project that I was too full of panicked dread to draw without peaking through one shaking hand!”
Space horror is a genre that I’m always interested in, and Rogue Planet sounds like an entertaining mix between movies like Alien and Sunshine. Check out the cover for the first issue below. Rogue Planet #1 is set to debut in comic shops and digitally on April 1st, 2020.
Disclosure: The Beat is owned by Polarity, which also owns Oni Press.