Alan Robert's latest comic series, Killogy wraps up this week with the fourth and final issue. The voodoo zombie comic had its main characters cast from real actors Frank Vincent, Marky Ramone, and Brea Grant. I spoke with Alan about the series now that it’s wrapped and what we can expect next.
James Ferguson: When we first discussed Killogy, you said that it started as a three-part story and then expanded into a fourth issue. What changed to need the extra room?
Alan Robert: I definitely wanted to showcase each one of the core characters' backstories in a way that felt natural and not contrived, with enough breathing room to have them all interact in some over-the-top action sequences for the grand finale. My goal for this mini-series was to set a certain tone, storytelling pace, and ultimately set the stage for an even bigger dilemma for these characters to face. So, yeah, we've established the basic premise here with the first story arc, but I think there's lots of room to grow in this world and for these characters.
JF: Did the final product change much from what you had originally set out to do?
AR: The ending changed a lot, and a bit of Brea's story got edited down just because I didn't want it to feel crammed. Before this mini-series started, I had written a short story called Voodoo Summer, in prose, and used that as an inspiration for Brea's character. There's a lot of details that I didn't include. But, I feel that the underlying theme of that original short story comes through.
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JF: Was it difficult drawing the connections between the three main characters? I'm imagining a wall covered in post-it notes and images linked together with red yarn. Am I that far off?
AR: Ha! Kind of... except it was all in my head. Then you wonder why I have trouble sleeping!
I would make post-it note reminders for myself and stick 'em around my computer, just so I wouldn't forget some of the subtle details I came up with. There are some clues that didn't make it in there... but, they were probably so subtle that only I would notice anyway.
But, I really did try to drop hints throughout the series that tied them all together. For instance, the opening panel of Frank Vincent's issue (#1) shows a billboard sign of a Mega-Lotto Jackpot. Frank's character makes no reference to the lotto, but in issue #2, during Marky's story, Marky brings it up in his dialogue. Eventually, we see that same billboard in the last shot of issue #4.
Same thing with the car that Santo The Saint is driving in Brea's issue (#3), if you notice the license plate, it reads Sno-Cones, referring to Frank's character. There's lots of little Easter-eggs hidden in there, and homages to my friends, too.
The point of dropping all these hints was that I wanted each of the character's stories to feel like they existed in the same world. And all that, in my mind, helped to create the feeling that everything was connected for these three.
JF: I noticed a billboard towards the end for Ryall Imports & Exports, presumably a nod to IDW Chief Creative Officer / Editor-in-Chief Chris Ryall. What other Easter Eggs spread across the issues that fans should keep an eye out for?
AR: Ah... you caught that, eh? Yeah, there's a ton in there! In issue three, for example, there's a sign on the street that says "Frank's Shoe Shines", an obvious homage to Billy Batts' famous shine box line in Goodfellas. They're all there, you just gotta look for 'em.
JF: How did your cast react to Killogy?
AR: They all loved it! I probably had the most contact with Frank throughout the whole process. He is a class act, man. I'm so lucky that he came on board. He was an absolute pleasure to work with. They all were total pros. But, I'd really look forward to chatting with him. We probably spoke once a week, every week over these last six months. We hit it off well and did the Chiller Theatre Expo together.
JF: The final pages of Killogy have the characters going from the frying pan to the fire. Any plans to continue their story or should fans speculate as to what their final fate might be?
AR: I would definitely love to continue the Killogy story. It was such a blast to draw. I have some unannounced plans in the works for 2014, so that project will definitely come first. But, I think it would be safe to say you haven't seen the last of these three...
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JF: Any news on a possible Killogy film adaptation?
AR: Man, I wish I could tell you some of the amazing things brewing lately behind the scenes, but it's all just a little too early to announce. We'll let everyone in on our plans real soon though. It's gonna be insane. Watch.
JF: With Killogy wrapped up, what's next for you?
AR: Like I mentioned, I have a new project I'll be coming out with in 2014. I'd like to announce that at San Diego this summer. 'Crawl to Me' film adaptation is coming along well. The script is awesome and we've been meeting with directors and hearing their take on the material. Lots more info soon on all the adaptations... I promise!
Thanks so much for the interview and for all the great reviews. So glad you dug the series. You guys have always thrown a lot of love my way... so I appreciate that.
For the latest updates on Killogy, check out http://www.killogycomic.com and follow me on twitter: @arobert
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