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Exclusive trailer, creator comments: Dark Horse Comics’ “CARMILLA: THE FIRST VAMPIRE”

Friday, February 10, 2023 | Uncategorized

By MICHAEL GINGOLD

It’s tied to the trade paperback’s arrival in bookstores everywhere February 28.

Dark Horse Comics/Berger Books gave RUE MORGUE the first look at its new trailer for CARMILLA: THE FIRST VAMPIRE, a graphic novel written by Amy Chu and illustrated by Soo Lee, inspired by J. Sheridan Le Fanu’s trendsetting 1872 Gothic novella. The synopsis: “At the height of the Lunar New Year, an idealistic social worker turns detective when she discovers young, homeless LGBTQ+ women are being murdered and no one, especially the police, seems to care. A series of clues points her to Carmilla’s, a mysterious nightclub in the heart of her neighborhood, Chinatown. There she falls for the next likely target, landing her at the center of a real-life horror story–and face to face with illusions about herself, her life, and her hidden past.”

“After doing so much superhero stuff,” says Chu, whose credits include WONDER WOMAN, POISON IVY and GREEN HORNET comics, “I really wanted to get back to writing more horror. I remember someone at a comic con a while back saying women were just not into horror–or superheroes, for that matter. I thought, well, that’s just ridiculous. I knew I wanted to do something with Carmilla somehow, and not as some kind of sidekick to Dracula. It was [editor] Karen Berger’s idea to incorporate some of the original Sheridan Le Fanu text into our story. The wonderful part about working with public-domain stories is that we can build new lore while paying homage to the source material.”

Adds Lee, “I wanted this world Amy and I had created to be as tangible as possible by leading the readers into every scene by moment. Each scene has a certain ambience, kind of like in movies. You have a red for danger, blue for somber, etc. I wanted the readers to follow visually with the pop of colors first when they turn the page.”

Michael Gingold
Michael Gingold (RUE MORGUE's Head Writer) has been covering the world of horror cinema for over three decades, and in addition to his work for RUE MORGUE, he has been a longtime writer and editor for FANGORIA magazine and its website. He has also written for BIRTH.MOVIES.DEATH, SCREAM, IndieWire.com, TIME OUT, DELIRIUM, MOVIEMAKER and others. He is the author of the AD NAUSEAM books (1984 Publishing) and THE FRIGHTFEST GUIDE TO MONSTER MOVIES (FAB Press), and he has contributed documentaries, featurettes and liner notes to numerous Blu-rays, including the award-winning feature-length doc TWISTED TALE: THE UNMAKING OF "SPOOKIES" (Vinegar Syndrome).