Roger Langridge, writer of KING: Mandrake the Magician #1, talks with writer Steve Seeley about Evil Ernie #4, both on sale now.
ROGER LANGRIDGE: I'm not normally a reader of horror comics, and in Evil Ernie I had trouble figuring out who I was supposed to care about, since everyone seemed pretty awful. Can you suggest a way in for someone who might be struggling with the same thing?
STEVE SEELEY: Good point. Mary's not too awful. You can care for her. Ernie is pretty awful, but somewhere under all the evil and awfulness he has (relatively) good intentions. And Smiley, despite being a potty-mouthed demon button, is probably the [most likeable].
RL: One character I do like, mainly because he has the potential to be very funny (in a sardonic, snarky way), is Smiley. I was slightly disappointed that he was only in a couple of panels here. Will he have a bigger role through the series?
SS: Absolutely. Smiley's roll is substantial. And if anything, he's the perfect bridge between Ernie and Mary. This issue is definitely light on Smiley, but he has plenty of smart ass remarks coming up in the next few issues.
RL: Lots of guts flying around this issue! Do you have any thoughts on the argument that sometimes the best horror merely suggests horrible things and that your imagination is better at filling in the gaps? Or do you prefer to see it all on the page?
SS: With this book, it's good to see it. It's Evil Ernie, which has always been heavy on gore. In general, though, I go back and forth. I grew up on "guts flying" horror movies, so I think that's a fundamental building block; however, I've grown to also love the "implied" horror over the years.
RL: Can you suggest a good album or soundtrack for reading this story to?
SS: Oh damn. Great question. Honestly, any heavy metal album. I remember back in the day blasting "Corrosion of Conformity" and "Slayer" while reading EE. I'm hoping both those bands would still work with these issues.
A lot of times when I write I'll just put albums on repeat. I'm pretty sure this issue it was "We Butter the Bread With Butter" and Lamb of God's "New American Gospel".
For more on Evil Ernie #4, click here.