Rick Baker sets sail with ‘Tales From the Grave’

April 04, 2011 | 9:10 a.m.

rick baker cover Rick Baker sets sail with Tales From the Grave

Make a list of the living greats in horror moviemaking and you’ll need to put makeup master Rick Baker near the top. Make another list — this one for all-time icons in horror — and see how far you get before you write the name of the late, great Bela Lugosi. These two considerable brand names come together with the second issue of “Bela Lugosi’s Tales From the Grave,” which hits stores in July, and features an eye-popping (and, uh, Popeye-ing?) cover of maritime menace by Baker. The cover was unveiled at WonderCon over the weekend at the panel staged by the book’s publisher, Monsterverse, but hasn’t appeared online until now and what better way to start your Monday?

Baker — the seven-time Oscar winner whose  credits include “An American Werewolf in London,” “Men in Black” and Michael Jackson’s Thriller” music video) created the sinister and salty sailor in the foreground with ZBrush and then Kerry Gammill, the editor and publisher of Monsterverse, stepped in to create the ship and the churning sea in the background and also handled some color tweaking and the logo work.  The Texas-based Gammill (whose comics work included a run on “Power Man/Iron Fist” that I remember especially enjoying as an early 1980s Marvel reader) has his cousin, Sam Park, as the West Coast editor for Monsterverse  and the venture speaks to their undying interest in the undead.

horror heartwarming Rick Baker sets sail with Tales From the Grave

Kerry Gammill and Sam Park (Courtesy of Sam Park)

“We’ve been dreaming of doing our own horror comic since we were kids,” Park said. He forwarded me a photo, which you see above, that Gammill’s father took when he popped up in “geek sanctuary” — the attic — at the Gammill home back when the cousins were in high school.  Park’s description: “Kerry on the left, me on the right with a pile of Warren comics opened to various stories we were discussing when caught in the act. Note the Frankenstein wig and other Monster Kid items on the table. We were the ‘Super8‘ of our day.”

That’s some heartwarming horror, isn’t it? The third issue of the “Lugosi” series hits around Halloween, as does the company’s “Flesh and Blood,” a horror graphic novel by Robert Tinnell and Neil Vokes (the team behind “The Black Forest” and “Wicked West“) that has Gammill, Park and their team especially excited.

— Geoff Boucher


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9 Responses to Rick Baker sets sail with ‘Tales From the Grave’

  1. waynebeamer says:

    This Rick Baker cover is AWESOME. Why doesn't Rick do more covers?

  2. Mark Redfield says:

    The first issue was a winner, and this cover by Baker (with Kerry Gammill) is also a winner, and I can't wait to see the goodies waiting inside! I finer array of horror writers and artists making an anthology horror comic is hard to imagine. I only wish it was published with more frequency–July can't get here soon enough for me!

  3. Kevin G. Dardano says:

    Horror fans rejoice! The confluence of greatness has found a home at Monsterverse. A Rick Baker cover on the heels of John Cassady's Variant cover…AND I read that Joe Dante and John Landis are writing future issues…one can only guess and drool at what is to come….and collect! Thank you Monsterverse for breathing new life into the Horror Genre! Hopefully this will be headed to television soon!!

  4. Dave Flora says:

    Evil Popeye = AWESOME! :)

  5. Rob says:

    A stunning piece of work…. just brilliant!

  6. Alastair Mullane says:

    The first issue of this was fantastic. I can't wait to see what they've cooked up for this one. How'd they get such cool talent onboard!?

  7. Brody Bruce says:

    That Popeye image has been on the net for years, hope they asked for permission.

    • WCE Monsterverse says:

      Along with having exclusive permission for the Baker image as a cover, Monsterverse will have an exclusive interview in the Lugosi comic with Rick (a long time friend of publisher Kerry Gammill who has been designing special effects make-up along with creating comics for years).

  8. Carol says:

    Looking forward to the next one here in Aussie land.

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