Inspired by grindhouse classics and studio horror flicks that crowded the video store shelves in the '80s, Cullen Bunn's (Bone Parish, Dark Ark) latest project is a spooky salute to his devilish youth in a new Kickstarter campaign for Lunchbox Press' Graveyard Slaughter, a horror anthology magazine packed with all-star talent.
Written by Bunn with Kevin Watkins, this salute to the decade of deliriously demented movies has been a labor of love for the prolific writer whose abundant creative endeavors sometimes seem infinite, yet never dull.
It contains four tales of spine-chilling terror adorned with sensational art by Javier Saltares (Ghost Rider); Blacky Shepherd (Pumpkinhead); Gary Bedell; and Adam McLaughlin. Letters are provided by A Larger World Studios’ Troy Peteri, and an introduction comes courtesy of Bram Stoker Award-winning author Paul Tremblay.
Bunn admits that there's no way to overestimate how influential old-school video emporiums and direct-to-video horror movies of the '80s were for him.
"I can vividly remember some of my first visits to a video store, which was located in a grocery store, where I rented (without my parents' knowledge) The Deadly Spawn," Bunn tells SYFY WIRE. "And it just grew by apocalyptic proportions from there. This project is a love letter to those lurid and blood-soaked flicks found in gaudy clam-shell VHS cases. My hope is that these stories give readers a feel for the kind of stories that warped my mind and turned me into the writer I am today. This is a book full of scary stories, but they're a helluva lot of fun, too!"
Their 50-page comic book anthology perfectly embraces the bloody madness and nostalgia of classic '80s VHS gore and those passionately curated horror aisles of the deep-dive video rental stores. Bunn and Watkins invite fans to score a membership at their twisted video store … Video Hell. Graveyard Slaughter will be up and running on Kickstarter throughout June. Once this labor of love is fully funded, they plan on delivering the book by Halloween 2019.
For artist Kevin Watkins, rushing to the horror section of the VHS rental store was a huge part of his childhood.
"I can remember all those covers screaming at me ... Pick me ... Pick me," he reveals to SYFY WIRE. "Titles like House, The Lost Boys, The Thing, Fright Night, and American Werewolf in London were always paired up with another creature feature. Those movies still resonate with me today ... and I always use those classic '80s VHS titles as measurement of horror today. I hope that Graveyard Slaughter provides a little grin to those horror fans of the '80s and makes new fans of a period of horror that still sets the standard today."
Now step inside our exclusive look at Gary Bedell's concept work, thumbnails, and exclusive finished art for Cullen Bunn's story "Kill With One Eye Open," then tell us if you'll pitch in and help deliver some dollars to this worthy endeavor.