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DF Interview: Tim Seeley reflects on career in comics
By Byron Brewer
A former illustrator of children’s books, writer/artist/creator Tim Seeley has most recently been heading up a renaissance of the former Chaos! Universe for Dynamite Entertainment.
A lover of the horror genre, it all started for Seeley during a specific moment at the old Chicago Comicon.
Dynamic Forces caught up with the scribe and discussed his ever-expanding career in comics. Here is the real 411.
Dynamic Forces: Tim, let’s first go back in time: Tell us how you got involved in comics, both as an artist and a writer.
Tim Seeley: Let's see...going WAAAAY back to 1982, I got my first comic book on a camping trip with my parents, and fell hopelessly in love. As soon as I'd read a comic, I was making comics, with no real idea that there was a difference between writers and artists. By the time I was in college, I was writing and drawing my own stories, pretty much for the entertainment of no one but me. I met Josh Blaylock at the old Chicago Comicon, and he and I kept in touch. When he got the rights to GI JOE he hired me away from my day job as a children's book illustrator and I started writing and drawing comics for a living. And I'm still damn here 12 years later!
DF: What project would you say was the one that headed you as a creator in the direction you are traveling today?
Tim Seeley: Lovebunny & Mr. Hell, which was my first published gig as writer and artist. It's a sexy superhero satire comic with a giant monster, and I think it sort of set the tone for what kind of creator I was.
DF: How important was Hack/Slash to your career?
Tim Seeley: Probably the single MOST important thing I've done in this job! Basically, H/S helped show that I wasn't just a penciler. I was a writer, and a creator. Also, a pervert.
DF: If memory serves, there was once talk of a Hack/Slash live action film. Any word on that?
Tim Seeley: Still plodding along. That's H'wood for ya.
DF: Talk a little about Loaded Bible, a series that gained a great deal of attention (for better or worse) for its political theme of Jesus vs. vampires in a post-apocalyptic Christian-run society.
Tim Seeley: Well, the book happened to come out the week that a cartoonist was killed for his illustrations of Mohammed, so I got calls from NPR and religious magazines to discuss satirizing religion. It was pretty surreal. The book was always intended to be controversial, but that really kicked it up a notch. That said, I wouldn't change anything, and I'm really proud of the book. Image Comics was great about supporting us, despite getting sh** for it.
DF: Tim, you are currently helping Dynamite Entertainment bring back an entire comics universe in Chaos! What was writing that initial miniseries like?
Tim Seeley: It was a blast for me to get to revisit a universe I had such fond memories of. I read the Chaos! books as a teenager, which was the perfect time for me to discover a horror/punk rock/goth/heavy metal comic like Evil Ernie.
My goal with the series are just to update it a bit, and add in a little more structure, but mostly I kept the characters the same.
DF: So many books are catering to the horror genre these days, like the early 1970s. Why the resurgence of popularity? Is it something you enjoy as a writer?
Tim Seeley: I love horror. And I think horror is always most popular during times of discontent and fear. And with the rise of cable news and the extreme political divide, people are more afraid of each other (for no good reason) than ever. I think that translates into a desire for a controlled, escapist fear.
DF: One of your many new projects, spinning out of Chaos!, is the return of Evil Ernie. Is this the first brother-on-brother writing collaboration you have had with your brother, Steve? How do the mechanics of that collaboration work?
Tim Seeley: Basically, Steve and I go out for beers. We talks about what we want to see in an issue of Ernie. Then I go back and write up a 5-10 page breakdown, and I pass it off to Steve to script. Then, when we get the art back, I go through and tweak things here and there and add a dick joke or two.
DF: Ooookay. Switching gears, did you enjoy working on Batman Eternal during the occasion of the character’s 75thanniversary?
Tim Seeley: Absolutely. Eternal is a really enjoyable collaborative project, and I like working with Ray, Scott, James, Kyle and John a lot. I've also discovered that, as far as superheroes go, I'm weirdly comfortable in the Batverse.
DF: What’s up next from the fertile mind of Tim Seeley?
Tim Seeley: I've got a series coming out from Dark Horse called Sundowners which is a superhero horror story with artist Jim Terry. I'm pretty excited for that one. And I'm drawing covers for Chastity and some other stuff for Dynamite. I'm also working on writing two other series, so everyone will have a chance to get good and sick of me over the next few years!
Dynamic Forces would like to thank Tim Seeley for taking time during his schedule to answer our questions.
Get your copy of Army of Darkness #1 Rare Tim Seeley Blood Red Edition right here!
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