Nancy Collins, writer of the Vampirella Annual 2015, talks with writer Marguerite Bennett about Swords of Sorrow: Red Sonja/Jungle Girl #3, both on sale now. Cover by Jay Anacleto
MARGUERITE BENNETT: I had been a HUGE fan of Gail Simone's Red Sonja, but had not yet had the pleasure of Jana the Jungle Girl.
NC: Can you get us up to speed as to what is at stake in the final issue? Why are Sonja and Jungle Girl on a quest together and why are they being pursued by male versions of themselves?
MB: Yes! Mistress Hel seeks to conquer the island and have a frozen hellscape domain of her own. She has made a deal with a sinister Prince, who has provided his lackeys, shape-shifting Shard Men, to do so. As the Shard Men pursue Sonja and Jana, they take on their forms, preparing to replace them. Sonja and Jana hasten to the village of their companion, Bel'lok, to prevent Mistress Hel from taking an artifact that would give her control of the island.
NC: Red Sonja seems to have taken a big sister/mentor role with Jungle Girl. Was this your idea?
MB: It didn't begin as intentional, but in the first draft of issue #1, they fell in naturally to that rhythm. Sonja is so worldly, so decorated, while Jana is sheltered on her one little island. Jana might feel intimidated by such a person, but she's naturally frank and affectionate, and Sonja likes being in charge as much as Jana likes learning.
NC: Did you have any contact with your artist, Mirka Andolfo?
MB: Yes! Mirka is an absolute delight. I love her dearly and am delighted to also work with her on DC'S Bombshells series, about all of the DC Comics heroines in an alternate history WWII. Her style is quick and witty — she has a lovely sense of comedic timing and exaggerated charm.
NC: Now that you've wrapped up your part of the Swords of Sorrow story arc, what do you have planned next?
MB: Haha, I'm actually on too many books for my own good. At DC, I'm on Bombshells; at Marvel, I'm wrapping up A-Force, 1602: Witch Hunter Angela, and about to transition into Angela: Queen of Hel. I do have another forthcoming project at Dynamite which I am very excited to reveal. And through AfterShock, I have InSeXts, my first creator-owned ongoing, about a pair of Victorian lovers, Lady and Mariah, who go on a vengeful killing spree after discovering a form of shapeshifting body horror. And more announcements to come! Thank you much!
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