Expect an explosion of comic book screams this fall as Vault Comics resurrects the lost art of the classic horror yarn with its debut issue of a new encounter from beyond the grave titled The Plot #1 — and SYFY WIRE has dug up an exclusive preview alongside revealing comments by its talented team of creators.
This eerie annual horror book will carry the Nightfall imprint, with plans for an 8-issue run starting in autumn 2019. The Plot is the dread-inducing inaugural release, written by Michael Moreci (Roche Limit, Black Star Renegades) & Tim Daniel (Fissure, Enormous), with unsettling art by Josh Hixson (Shanghai Red) and colors by Jordan Boyd.
Vault's premiere issue also spotlights a vintage variant drawn by Nathan Gooden as a tribute to Bernie Wrightson‘s iconic House of Secrets #92 cover.
Embracing the age-old adage that “In order to receive … first you must give," the storyline centers around the murder of Chase Blaine’s estranged brother and sister-in-law. He reluctantly becomes guardian to McKenzie and Zach, the niece and nephew he barely knows. Trying to promote a sense of stability for the kids, Chase transplants his newly formed family unit to his spooky ancestral home in Cape Augusta, which happens to overlook a creepy, black bogland rife with family secrets.
Moreci believes The Plot is the most emotional and personal book he's ever written and feels it's the best genre to get truly personal.
"When you get down to it, horror is a very intimate genre — it’s all about visceral reactions to fear, and fear, in so many ways, reflects our innermost selves," he tells SYFY WIRE. "I’m a huge horror fan. From Carpenter to King, Craven to Flanagan, and so much else in between. The Plot takes the best of what I love about horror — the intimacy, the personal dread, the inventive scares — and filters through a unique lens.
"You might think you know where this story is going, but believe me — you won’t. The twists and turns we have planned for this story are going to take everyone by surprise, I promise that."
"The first little hint of what would become The Plot is rooted in a National Geographic article we discovered way back in 2014, that featured bog bodies," Daniel explains to SYFY WIRE. "The photo gallery contained striking images of these oddly preserved bodies. The bog water brine turns human skin the texture of tanned leather and the color of charcoal or pewter, leaving the hair a shock of orange with hints of fiery red.
"I love horror as a genre for its elastic tendencies," he adds. "The Plot is a great example — where we're attempting to mine the best qualities of the genre by exploring something very visceral and psychological. At the same time, we're going to give readers a terrifying manifestation of our character's emotional tumult in the form of a classic, but ultimately fresh monster."
Artist Josh Hixson says doing this fright-filled Vault project has been extremely rewarding for him.
"I didn’t need much more than the reference photos Michael and Tim gave me when we first started," Hixson tells SYFY WIRE. "It was like a reference dream come true for me — lots of human forms draped in tangled vegetation and preserved bodies from ancient civilizations. It took a bit of working and reworking, but I had so much fun coming up with the look of everything. We have a cool-looking monster on our hands that I’m excited for people to see!"
Now venture into our exclusive 5-page peek at Vault Comics' The Plot #1 in the gallery below, then tell us if it sets your nerves on edge for its arrival on Sept. 25.