Writer's Commentary: Jeremy Whitley Talks Vampirella #9

Dynamite has sent us a new writer's commentary featuring Jeremy Whitley talking about Vampirella #9. It has covers by Philip Tan and Johnny Desjardins while interior art was done by Andy Belanger, Creees Lee, and Paulo Barrios.

Vampirella

Okay, let's do some commentary, shall we?

Page 1:

Every issue is someone's first issue, right? I like the challenge of recapping eight issues on one page while also setting the visual stage for the conflict. Huge props to Creees for squeezing a beautiful setup in between all my many captions. And Travis for fitting it all in there.

Page 2:

I really love this page, okay. The idea that Vampi would not only rip off a guy's jaw for calling her a "BIT**" but then use it to beat another guy. That's my aesthetic.

Page 3:

Nothing like a good highway chase scene. Again, props to Creees Lee for making this scene really sing. Sometimes chase scenes don't work in comics and this one (for me) really works.

Page 4:

Look, Vampi, I know you can't resist a good one-liner, but we're in the middle of something here. Honestly, as hard as chase scenes can be in comics, really demonstrating the pain of falling off a speeding vehicle is even harder. I think we got it here.

Page 5:

Here we take a page to demonstrate to you why Vampirella is more of a badass than your favorite character. It's sick and I love it.

Page 6:

"Well then … I can't afford to waste any bullets, can I?" is the single coldest line I will ever write. Also, Vampirella with wings is the best Vampirella.

Page 7:

Vicki is really earning her stripes as a sidekick here.

Page 8:

Superhero landings: Still cool 1,000 years in the future.

Page 9:

I love the way the dialogue and art in this image contrast. It makes me so happy. This is one of my favorite pages I've ever written, honestly. I don't write enough full pages that are just "Heroine does something really cool."

Page 10:

The premise of this story dictates that there are a half dozen dudes with broken everythings and wrecked cars slowly crawling through the desert. It's okay, I've included in each of their backstories that they kicked dogs with frequency and were known to steal from children.

Page 11:

Poor Derrick. I'll give him this: he had guts.

Page 12:

I'm really attached to the idea of Vampirella being low on blood functioning like a normal human being intoxicated. It makes sense in my brain and gives us a moment to interject silliness into really rough situations.

Page 13:

This page is important to me.

Page 14:

Can I just say that I didn't write that string of blood into this first panel BUT I literally clapped the first time I saw it. It's perfect and I love it. Also, when we first took the book over, Andy commented to me once that he thought the dress made Vampi look like a drunken sorority sister. This page completes that cycle.

Page 15:

Welcome Paulo Barrios to Vampirella, folks! They say Game of Thrones does "sexposition", we're more into "showerposition". Also, Vicki's eyes in this last panel.

Page 16:

I am constantly surprised by how rarely Vicki's last line here is said out loud in vampire fiction. I mean, we're all thinking it, right? That's the whole idea. She just says it out loud.

Page 17:

This page took a lot of back and forth. We didn't want to play it for exploitation, but we also wanted to give our heroine a chance to enjoy herself the way a male character would in this sort of story. I'll leave it to you to decide how we did.

Page 18:

In that respect, this page is maybe even more important. We could just jump back into the action, but I feel like this quiet moment raises the stakes in a way that makes the action more important.

Page 19:

Sure, sure, there's lots of important setup stuff on this page, but can we all take a minute to enjoy the amazing work Paulo and Lee did on this first panel? It's wonderful.

Page 20:

Vampi and Vicki experience the same frustration I find popping up as I struggle to make sure blood is the right color in this book.

Page 21:

Vampirella lives in an alternate world where flats have never been invented. That's my head canon.

Page 22:

And there it is, the big reveal! Next month, we explain the whys and hows and then we have a big fight!

About Dan Wickline

Has quietly been working at Bleeding Cool for over three years. He has written comics for Image, Top Cow, Shadowline, Avatar, IDW, Dynamite, Moonstone, Humanoids and Zenescope. He is the author of the Lucius Fogg series of novels and a published photographer.

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