Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac

Elliott Kalan, writer of The Daily Show With Jon Stewart and Mystery Science Theater 3000, and Hellblazer artist Andrea Mutti will be launching a new comic book, Maniac From New York, from AfterShock Comics in February next year. But a few people saw some similarities with another Maniac,. This is the cover to Maniac In New York.

Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac.
Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac. Image from Aftershock.

And this is the poster to the 1980 slasher movie, also set in New York, Maniac, directed by William Lustig, written by C. A. Rosenbeg, starring co-writer Joe Spinell as Frank Zito, an Italian-American serial killer residing in New York City who murders and scalps young women. The film was remade in 2012 by director Franck Khalfoun and produced by Alexandre Aja, starring Elijah Wood.

Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac.
Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac. Image from eBay.

Kalan certainly knows his horror stuff. The comic book seems to be quite apposite for our times and the opinions of certain politicians, Kalan telling The Hollywood Reporter that its "a horror story about how crisis situations become our new normal. A slasher movie-style unstoppable killer is marauding through New York City, and since nobody knows how to solve the problem, everyone in power has given up and decides to just live with New Yorkers occasionally being hacked to death by an ax-wielding maniac. The series will look at how life changes, and doesn't change, in the city from different angles — starting in our first arc with a story about an idealistic mayoral aide, a jaded police detective, and a very bad day for commuters on the subway." But Kalan says his inspiration is from "my extreme adolescent disappointment with Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan, which promised a citywide metropolitan bloodbath and delivered a couple shots of Jason walking through Times Square in a bad mood".

Separated At Birth used to be called Swipe File, in which we presented two or more images that resemble each other to some degree. They may be homages, parodies, ironic appropriations, coincidences, or works of the lightbox. We trusted you, the reader, to make that judgment yourself. If you were are unable to do so, we asked that you please return your eyes to their maker before any further damage is done. The Swipe File didn't judge; it was interested more in the process of creation, how work influences other work, how new work comes from old, and sometimes how the same ideas emerge simultaneously as if their time has just come. The Swipe File was named after the advertising industry habit where writers and artist collect images and lines they admire to inspire them in their work. It was swiped from the Comic Journal, who originally ran this column, as well as the now-defunct Swipe Of The Week website.

Here's a preview of the comic… and a trailer for the movie, both of them,

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Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac.
Separated At Birth: Maniac Of New York and Maniac. Image from Aftershock and ebay.

About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.