Battling the minions of the Necronomicon and stocking shelves at S-Mart are a full time job for Ashley J. Williams.
At the New York Comic Con, we caught up with the ARMY OF DARKNESS creative team, writer, Mike Raicht, and artist, Scott Cohn, to talk about what is next for the horror hero, Ash.
The Big Bad Wolf: Did both of you guys
grow up fans of this movie franchise?
Cohn: I didn't know about the movie until college. A
film friend of mine introduced me to the movie. Since then, I have seen
it a bunch of times and I never thought I would be working on it.
I picked up the first Evil Dead movie in High School. I have been a big
fan of this franchise. When Army of Darkness came out that was like the
greatest thing of all times.
This is a cult classic.
Everyone knows Army of Darkness, so it is pretty cool.
The Big Bad Wolf: Which movie in this franchise
stands out as your favorite?
I like Evil Dead 2, I think it was the most fun. The second was a little more horror, and that is just more what I am interested in.
I like Army of Darkness. Ash's interaction with other people are great.
Like the Wizard scene, with the gunpowder, Ash moves the candle away.
Yeah, I love moments like that. When Ash interacts with people it makes
for a great time.
The Big Bad Wolf: How did each of you land
the job as creators on this series?
Last year at the New York Comic Con I ran into Dynamite Entertainment
President, Nick Barrucci. We had been emailing back and forth prior to
that. We talked about Army of Darkness and Lone Ranger. I liked horror more than westerns and decided to go with Army of Darkness.
I had written a four issue series for Marvel Comics Max line called Zombie.
I sent it over to Nick Barrucci and Joe Rybrandt at Dynamite and they
liked it. I was asked to come in and co-write the Army of Darkness book
with James Kurhoric. It was great to be put on a book like this.
Scott Cohn: The book is a lot of fun to work on, I have a ton of creative freedom.
We want to put Ash in a bunch of different situations that he has never
been in before.
Scott Cohn: Yeah, the book has sort of taken on a Lone Wolf and Cub feel.
The Big Bad Wolf: This next question is
for you Mike. Do you find yourself referencing the movies often in an
attempt to flesh out the character more?
I watch the movies probably once a month. I think sometimes fans want me to use the classic lines, bit we really need to save them for the right moments. I think comedy is harder to write than horror. You really have to hit the right moment.
The Big Bad Wolf: Scott, this question
is for you. What is it like to draw such an iconic horror figure like
Sometimes it is hard. I read a review where the guy was complaining that
it didn't look like Ash all the time. I can't draw twenty-two pages a
month that look like shots from the movie.
Ash is a great character to draw, he makes so many funny faces. It is so different than a character like Wolverine. Wolvie has like 2 faces, straight and pissed off. One of the great things about Ash is all this comical expressions he makes.
I went from drawing Ben 10 and Samurai Jack to this. I went from drawing all these kid stories to this so it takes a little transition time.
The Big Bad Wolf: What is the collaboration process like on this book?
I get a script that has already been approved. Mike and I will take a final look and see if there is something that can work better.
Scott sends over ideas of things to add in. He is also looking to add to the story which is great. We find funny bits together.
We are thinking of making an Ash super team. We talk about what types of characters we would like to bring in and see. Scott likes to draw werewolves so we went that route.
Yeah, it should be a collaboration. It shouldn't be as cut and dry as I get a script and I draw it.
Big Bad Wolf: At the Dynamite Entertainment panel they teased a Freddy
vs. Jason vs. Ash 2 series. In your book, Army of Darkness, do you guys
have any potential crossovers with any horror characters for 2009?
Not that we know of at the moment. We are really trying to build our own cast. This is almost like a supernatural super-team he has around him.
This will lay down the groundwork for other stories. This upcoming story
arc is not just a vampire story, it is a story about Ash.
We are trying to have more of an ensemble book with Ash as the lead. If
it is a love story, it isn't a love story, it is ASh screwing up a love
Sometimes he gets it right. (laughs)
Yeah, its just his personality. He wins, but he doesn't win.
The Big Bad Wolf: Can you bring us up to
date on the current storyline?
We have Sheila, the love of his life. She has been returned to her timeline.
The reason for this is that the Wizard tells Ash that all he sees from
the future is that the book kills Sheila. They were actually about to
get married and Ash was going to be king, but he decided he couldn't do
it because he didn't want to hurt Sheila. Ash thought that going home
and away from everyone with the book was the best thing he could do.
Upon returning home, Ash buries the book near some springs that are used
for bottle water. The book infects the town when the people drink the water,
so Ash has that problem to deal with.
From there we had Ash run into a new character called Hell's Prophet. Hell's
Prophet is almost like the Necronomicon's Chosen One. When there
is enough evil in one spot, the character will come and deal with Ash.
After that, there is a one issue break in Mexico. Then in issue nineteen,
Ash meets a new girl and some loose ends are wrapped up. Actually one truck
with bottled water from the current storyline gets out and Ash has to take
care of that.
Then in issue twenty Ash heads to England to try to find other Chosen
The Big Bad Wolf: Issue sixteen was just
released. How far ahead are you guys plotting this series?
I am starting issue twenty-one this week. I can tell you that in issue twenty-two he is going to Greece to look for someone.
After twenty-one we did a stretch of one issue stories where Ash meets these
certain people and starts to bring this group together.
The Big Bad Wolf: Another question tailored for new readers... What can we expect from this book in terms of blood and gore. Does it stay on pace with that of the movies?
There is blood in there, but not all that bad.
My mom is a nurse and my dad is a doctor so they are like my horror crack
team. (laughs) I drew someone with their legs sliced off any my mom said
"No, it doesn't look like that at all." So I ended up re-drawing it so
it looks anatomically correct.
The Big Bad Wolf: What would you like to say to our readers that may not have checked out this book yet?
How dare you? (laughs) Where have you been all my life?
If you like horror mixed with comedy I think you should give it a try.
You have such an iconic character here to follow.
This is a direct link to the movies. The character talks like he does
in the movies and I like to think he looks like Bruce Campbell
as well. (laughs)
The Big Bad Wolf: Thank you for your time,
guys! Best of luck with the Army of Darkness comic!
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Raicht and Scott Cohn - Army of Darkness Comic Interview.