Lady Death: Damnation Game #1 welcomes new co-writer to the wild work of Lady Death. We wanted to catch up with Mike and see what makes him tick. We sent out our resident undead mascot, SKULLY to do the deed. Check out what he exhumed —
SKULLY: Hello Mike. Gimmie a little about your professional background.
MIKE: I’m best known as the screenwriter of the Syfy flick Sharktopus, produced by the B-Movie king, Roger Corman. I wrote several other screenplays for Roger, such as Piranhaconda, Dinocroc vs. Supergator, Operation Rogue and Attack of the 50 Ft Cheerleader. It was a huge thrill working with such a legend, and I’m forever grateful for the experience.
In addition, I’ve had a number of crime and sci-fi stories appear in anthologies and magazines, including The Best American Mystery Stories, Thuglit, Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, and Kaiju Rising: Age of Monsters.
SKULLY: You’re co-writing Lady Death: Damnation Game #1. How did that come about? What is your prior comic book writing experience?
MIKE: After seeing Brian’s kickass horror film The Graves, I tracked him down at Phoenix comicon. This was a few years ago. I hoped to finagle some screenplay work, but I also had an ulterior motive—I wanted to break into comics. Brian and I collaborated on a few screenplays together, which went really well. Then I got my feet wet converting those into graphic novel scripts. Once I got the hang of the format, Brian asked if I’d like to take a crack at co-writing Lady Death. Writing an iconic, badass battle maiden from hell? Who could say no to that?
SKULLY: Are you working on any other Lady Death projects?
MIKE: Brian and I have already punched up the next three chapters in Lady Death’s epic tour of Hell.
SKULLY: Can you give us some teases on future stories? Something about the next chapter?
MIKE: Lady Death becomes Hell’s enemy number one, hunted by a rouges gallery of assassins, including a psychopathic angel/devil hybrid and Nazi technomancer. I can’t give away too many details, but rest assured there will be lust, mayhem, and bloodshed by the buckets.
SKULLY: What do you like about writing Lady Death?
MIKE: My crime fiction is gritty, street-level stuff. When working in that genre, I have to root my stories in the real world. Lady Death is a completely different animal. I can let my imagination off the leash—the more bombastic the idea the better. That’s how you end up with machineguns that fire flaming skulls and cyborg demon hybrids. Put simply, writing Lady Death is liberating. And fun as Hell.
SKULLY: What is the toughest thing about writing Lady Death? What’s the most rewarding thing about writing Lady Death?
MIKE: Lady Death has a publishing history that spans over 21 years and a fan base of hardcore lunatics (I mean that as a compliment). That can be intimidating. As a writer, you want your work to stand out—you want to leave a mark. But you need to be true to the character and her world. Most importantly, you need to give fans what they’ve opened their wallets for. That’s in the back of my mind with every page I write. It’s a big responsibility, but also very rewarding. When Damnation Game hits the mail, there will be eager readers waiting for it. And that’s what every writer craves, an audience.
SKULLY: What’s it like to co-write with Brian Pulido?
MIKE: I’ve read comics since I was eight years old, but I’m new to writing them. Brian is an amazing teacher and just a cool guy to work with. He’s very protective of Lady Death and always pushes to produce the best book possible. But he’s also willing to take creative chances and he’s generous with new talent. He reminds me of Roger Corman in that way. It’s a gift getting to work with a guy like that. Comics aside, I could shoot the crap with Brian for hours about movies, music, whatever.
SKULLY: What other projects do you have coming up with Coffin Comics?
MIKE: Brian and I have already collaborated on two other projects Zack the Zombie Exterminator and Muerta.
Throw a Romero flick in a blender with Wayne’s World and you have yourself Zack the Zombie Exterminator. Hillbillies, Heavy Metal, and undead decapitations—Zack has it all. We originally wrote the story as a screenplay, and I feel it’s the best script I’ve ever written.
Muerta flips the tone 180 degrees. Fewer laughs, but even more bloodshed. Muerta is a hyper violent revenge tale in the vein of the Death Wish, Columbiana, and Desperado. What makes it unique is a Southwestern setting full of noirish visuals steeped in Mexican American iconography. Gut-wrenching but beautiful.
And on the Horizon is another Mexican American tale of blood and vengeance—Loco. Details coming soon.
SKULLY: Any parting words for the “fiends?”
MIKE: Just four little words… LONG LIVE LADY DEATH!!!