Tuesday, November 8, 2011
An Interview with me and Lindsay Moore for HellBound 2
A little while ago Lindsay Moore and myself were interviewed in promotion for the Hellbound 2 Anthology (which you can purchase their limited edition hand made copy here) for our story Dolly. Anyways here is the interview...
Today writer Lindsay Moore and artist Alex Cormack discuss their story Dolly and their thoughts about the fear and horror.
What are scarier, thunderstorms, roller coasters, or clowns?
Lindsay: Being on a roller coaster next to a clown during a thunderstorm.
Alex: I used to work at Disney World so roller coasters don’t scare me too much (I still won’t go on the Superman ride at Six Flags, but that’s more about how I don’t want my feet cut off like that kid a few years ago then a fear of roller coasters). Clowns, well since I’m one of the few of my generation that didn’t watch “It” as a kid, I have no problem with clowns. So I guess that leaves out thunderstorms. Lighting will sure make a mess of you.
What is your favorite type of horror?
Lindsay: It's a toss-up between psychological thrillers and supernatural horror (ghosts). Both can be really scary when done correctly.
Alex: I would probably go with zombies on this. They used to scare me the most as a kid and now I love them. I like zombie movies (Dead Alive as of right now is my favorite), zombie comics (almost everything EC did in the 50’s), zombie books (World War Z, which they are making a movie about which will either be great or garbage), and even zombie songs (“Shoot the Head Kill the Ghoul” by Jeffery Lewis and “Run Barbara Run” by the Venom Lords). But serial killers are great too (Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Halloween, Psycho, etc.) and well, all and all I like enjoy most types of horror.
Lindsay what inspired you to write this story?
Lindsay: I've done lots and lots of babysitting. The minute I turned thirteen, the entire neighborhood was knocking on my door, asking if I could babysit. Overall, it wasn't a bad experience, but there's something unsettling about being in alone in another person's house late at night. And one time I found a nanny cam. It was hidden in a teddy bear on top of the TV set; the little boy I was watching was reaching for it, so I picked it up to hand it to him, and realized that it was incredibly heavy. Upon closer examination, I noticed that one of the eyes was a lens. It really freaked me out. I continued to babysit for that family, but I never saw the teddy bear/nanny cam again.
Alex, what drew you to this story?
Alex: Before everything stared up for Hellbound I had done up some sketches for a short story Lindsay had written. I liked her writing style and enjoyed working with her story. As Hellbound came up she put the word out that she was looking for an artist so I volunteered and luckily got the job.
What storytelling median do you think serves horror best?
Lindsay: I think film works best, as it combines sight and sound. Depending on the film subject (and the viewer's imagination), it can trigger other senses, such as taste, smell, or even touch. When seeing and hearing a character react to finding a mutilated body, you can almost smell the blood and taste the vomit rising up in your throat. Although, that all depends on how the film portrays the scene and your own imagination.
Alex: Film is probably the best, it’s the only one where you can tell the story and have sound and visuals. Comics are great for horror because you can see what is happening, and books are great as well (along with prose), allowing you to imagine the monster or whatever the bad guy is, but if you’re reading these while listening to the beach boys you won’t have the full experience. You can say that TV is good, but you get breaks throughout taking you away from what is going on. Video games, well I can’t say about that, the last video game I played was Sonic and Knuckles back in ’96. But all and all I say film is the best. If you don’t believe me, go on youtube and look up the original trailer for The Shining ( here is the link ). Watch it once on mute and once with sound and you’ll know what I mean. That is a fantastic trailer.
What is your favorite horror story and why?
Lindsay: The Raft by Stephen King. It's a very basic premise: four college kids head out to a lake, which has a raft floating in the middle. Once they get to the raft, they discover that there is a monster in the lake that wants to eat them. They're trapped with no way off the raft and no way to get help. King doesn't explain what the monster is or why it's in the lake, which further adds to the horror. Not knowing why the monster is here or why it's singled out these kids makes the story scarier.
Alex: Hmmm. This is one of those that I will have a new answer for every ten minutes. So for this particular ten minutes I will go with this story my girlfriend Ashley Cook told me. It was part of a book that wasn’t a horror story at all; I guess Opera Winfrey even later turned it into a movie. But there is one part of the book that she told me about that I wish I thought up, maybe I’ll steal the idea later on down the road, but for now what happened was there was a married couple stuck on a mountain with no escape and the husband was bitten by a rabid animal and there was no chance to get him to a doctor. The line that Ashley told me that I thought was so cool was, well I can’t remember the exact line but it was along the lines of this… “Between an animal with rabies and a man with rabies, there is still the same paranoia, the same anger, and the same fear, but the difference between the two is that a man still knows how to use a gun.” Dun dun duuuuuun!
What was your first exposure to horror?
Lindsay: When I was in elementary school, those Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark books were popular. The stories themselves were basically just urban legends and old folk tales, but the illustrations were downright terrifying. Those illustrations gave me nightmares.
Alex: The first real memory I have of something specifically scaring me was an old episode of Punky Brewster. My sister and I would watch the show when we were little, and there was this one episode where Punky and the gang were stuck in a cave, and at the end of episode # 1 (it was a cliff hanger episode) the gang look over this ledge and the camera cuts to this neon spider monster thing scaring the crap out of us (thanks to the 21st century I was able to find the clip online, fast forward to the 9 minute mark to see what I’m talking about ). Along with that the Michael Jackson video Thriller was always on causing me to be scared of zombies (which is probably why I love them today) and the poster for the remake of the blob used to freak me out too. But all of that aside I didn’t really get into horror until either late middle school or early high school. Around Halloween my brother, his girlfriend at the time (now my sister in law), and my sister sat down one night and watched Carrie. Before this I think the scariest movie I had seen was Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. At the end of the movie (and especially the end of this one, not to give anything away to people who haven't seen it) I turned white. From then on I have been a fan whereas now my brother and I have our own “Horror-Fest” every October where we have a horror movie double feature every week at his place.
What do you like best and least about the horror genre?
Lindsay: The thing I dislike about the horror genre is how every new horror film becomes a franchise. Saw had a great premise, but turning it into a franchise made the whole thing feel cheap, as if the directors were just looking for ways to hock the audience instead of tell a story. That said, what I like about the horror genre is how original it can be. A good horror film (or novel or comic or TV show) puts a fresh spin on a tired concept and gives the audience something to think about instead of just throwing blood and guts up at them.
Alex: For me it’s fun to draw monsters and psychos and zombies. It’s just fun to think up different creatures and how they can mess someone up. What I hate about horror which is kind of odd is that in general I don’t like to see people get hurt emotionally. Apparently physical harm is fine, but all and all I have a harder time getting through romantic comedies then I ever have with the goriest thing out there. Also in horror movies when it’s quiet for far too long and you’re just waiting for a loud crash or something to jump out at you. That’s just annoying and cheap I think. When it is done legitimately like when the raptor pops out when Ellie Stalter is saying “Mr. Hammond I think we’re back in business!” That’s great! But when it’s silent and a character is walking slowly down a hall and you now just have to wait for it to get the story going again, then BAAAANG!!!! A loud noise that has nothing to do with anything, thanks for wasting my time jerks.
What’s your horror guilty pleasure?
Lindsay: Tales from the Crypt. The SyFy channel (back when it was the Sci-Fi channel) used to rerun it late at night when I was in high school, and if I couldn't sleep, I'd watch it. The stories were always so simple, yet effective, and they were funny in a really dark way. The show had a sort of modern noire vibe to it that I liked a lot; it had all the seedy elements of classic 40's film noire, but in an 80's setting. Also the Crypt Keeper had the best evil laugh ever. The only thing better than his laugh are his puns. I think Tales from the Crypt is being remade. Or rebooted. I'm not sure which. HBO probably doesn't either.
Alex: Gore probably, maybe being a zombie fan. They are going through a backlash right now I think. Not sure if these qualify though because I love talking about this stuff.
Who do you consider a master of horror?
Lindsay: It's a tie between Stephen King and whoever illustrated those Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark books.
Alex: Right now I think Garth Ennis is mighty good for the genre. I haven’t read his new horror comic Crossed yet, but Preacher has just about everything horrible that could happen to a person (cannibalism, being buried alive, torture, incest, murder, having your genitals bit off, and a whole boat load of blasphemy) and his story Just a Pilgrim has it’s hero a born again Christian cannibal.
Is there anything you want the readers to know about your story?
Lindsay: No matter what Tobe Hooper says, this was not based on a true story.
Alex: The character she sees behind her in the TV may not be Gene, or the doll. Also the shot of the kids sleeping, the boy is wearing Hamburglar pajamas.
Are clowns ever funny?
Lindsay: Hell no.