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Exclusive: Go gothic in artist Hayden Sherman's AfterShock comic Mary Shelley: Monster Hunter
Mary Shelley's gothic nightmare of Frankenstein, conjured up during one stormy Geneva evening in 1816 alongside her husband, Percy Bysshe Shelley and fellow free-spirit Lord Byron, has endured for over two centuries as one of the founding science fiction classics and a cautionary tale on science exceeding the reach of natural laws.
Now AfterShock Comics has reimagined the renowned author as a fearless huntress of a bizarre corpse creature in Mary Shelley: Monster Hunter #1 and SYFY WIRE has a lurid look inside the covers to see what horrors await.
Written by Adam Glass (Rough Riders, The Normals) and Olivia Cuartero-Briggs and stitched together with arresting art by Hayden Sherman (Cold War, Wasted Space), this tantalizing tale answers the question of exactly how the 19-year-old feminist pioneer was able to craft perhaps the most enduring horror stories ever imagined.
The solution is simple: Mary Shelley actually lived this shocking life and with the recent discovery of the famed horror novelist's long-lost secret memoir, the truth will finally be revealed. Inside we'll travel back to that momentous 19th century Geneva winter when Mary, her fiancé Percy, sisters Claire and Fanny, and the notorious poet Lord Byron, discover themselves captive guests of the freaky old Frankenstein Estate.
The macabre events that follow lead Mary to a gruesome encounter that sheds a gloomy light on the fact that their enigmatic host is not exactly what they expected, which might alter the fate of her life forever.
“Mary Shelley was a rock star even before she wrote Frankenstein at 19," Glass tells SYFY WIRE. "Yup, you heard me right. She wrote a masterpiece at 19. So we decided to take this amazing woman and place her in the greatest horror story ever written.”
This fresh spin on a legendary story inspired some incredibly unnerving, atmospheric art to match the smooth narrative and Hayden Sherman was perfectly up to the task.
“Mary Shelley, Monster Hunter is a book that, while set in a realistic depiction of the early 1800s, is full of all the fantastic and horrifying things we've come to love from the story of Frankenstein," Sherman explains to SYFY WIRE.
"In reaction to that, my goal has been to illustrate this story in a way that carries on that sense of unease, where ideally even the most regular conversation could feel odd and oppressive. Frankenstein has always been a story of the looming uncertain fear that is felt in reaction to something terribly new and unnatural, and with matter-of-fact line work and vibrant colors I hope to capture that same uncertainty.”
Creep into our expanded 14-page preview of AfterShock's Mary Shelley: Monster Hunter #1 in the full gallery below, then tell us if you'll be tempted to enter this dark domain when the premiere issue arrives Wednesday, April 17.