Micah Harris and Loston Wallace stop by the Outhouse to discuss their Image one-shot LORNA: RELIC WRANGLER.
Lorna: Relic Hunter, a new Image one-shot by Micah Harris (Heaven's War) and Loston Wallace (Elvira Mistress of the Dark, Batman Animated Series), will be hitting stores March 23rd. To prep the world for the new heroine, Micah and Loston stopped by the Outhouse to tell readers what exactly Lorna: Relic Hunter is all about...
The Outhouse: What was the inspiration for Lorna: Relic Wrangler? It sounds a little similar to a popular video game franchise....
Micah Harris: Lorna is a character who has been kicking around my imagination since the mid-90s. Originally, she was just a quirky girlfriend for a conspiracy guy. But as she developed, she began breaking into temples and holy places and pilfering their icons.
When a friend suggested I develop her as a comics character, that persona seemed the best to exploit in a medium that emphasizes action, thrills, and adventure.
There's a Laura Croft bit of parody there, obviously, especially in the logo. But their characterization are completely different. For one thing, Lorna is awfully perky about doing this stuff.
Lorna is in the same tradition of Nyoka the Jungle girl and Indiana Jones just as Laura Croft is. But she's her own gal!
Loston Wallace: There is a parody aspect to the character for sure, but Lorna is her own character. She is female and hunt relics, but that's pretty much where any similarities end. Lorna is a character with her own background, mythos and backstory. She is a Southern belle adventurer who executes secret missions for her mysterious boss, Verne. LORNA:RELIC WRANGLER is a book that mixes humor, horror, and adventure together in a very fun way. Fans expecting Lara Croft will be surprised when they receive something different, but equally yummy.
OH: How did the two of you come to team up for this one-shot?
LW: Micah and I have been working on a pulp project for a while, and he asked me to contribute a story for his LORNA book. Another artist, Andy Price, was working with Micah on the book, but Andy got a gig from DC Comics that was too good to pass up, and Micah asked me to take over the lion's share of the book. I wound up redesigning Lorna's look along the way, and Micah and I sent a pitch to IMAGE COMICS and we were green lighted to do the book.
Even though LORNA: RELIC WRANGLER is a "one-shot", we hope to do more issues of LORNA. Hopefully the sales will be strong enough to do just that.
MH: Originally, Andy Price had "One Nation Under Chaos" to draw, and Loston was doing a back up story. Then Andy had to bow out because he got a gig drawing trading cards for D.C. Loston was then promoted to "One Nation."
OH: What's the basic plotline of Lorna: Relic Wrangler?
MH: In the one shot in March, Verne sends her to D.C. to abort a cosmic rift opening above our capitol. The capstone of the Washington monument turns out to have major significance in this affair, so she's got to pinch that to complete her mission.
LW: Ha! Wouldn't everyone like to know? Seriously, we can't give away too much of the plot before the book comes out, but for those curious about elements of the plot, Image has released an official press release, and I believe you may have posted that on your site, along with a four-page sneak peek preview of the artwork. I don't really feel comfortable revealing too much more at this point.
OH: Tell us a little bit about Lorna. What sort of character is she and how does she fit in her world? Does Lorna have any supporting cast to speak of or is she flying solo for this one-shot?
LW: Lorna is a waitress at a dinner/restaurant in the small North Carolina town of Tar Forks. She lives in a trailer park, and does covert missions for her boss, Verne. Imagine Charlie's Angels with only one Angel. Heh. Lorna finds herself pitted against the forces of the supernatural at every turn, and she generally winds up in humorous situations along her journeys. Lorna has an arch nemesis who has plagued her since high school--the villainess, Posh Meow, who is a constant thorn in her side. There's also Verne's cronies--the Mystic Fez Lodge. Verne and his white-trash, numbskull cohorts pull the strings, but one begins to wonder what their strange motivations are in this first installment of LORNA. I would also mention that there are two, shorter stories in the book that are tales of Young Lorna. These stories are drawn by Olli Hihnala and Michael Youngblood. These stories feature several additional supporting characters.
MH: Lorna is the errand girl for L. Vernon Demurge. Lorna was a teenage gal with low self esteem but he saw potential in her and began grooming her to be his, you know, "right hand." Then they had a falling-out. Still, she continues to do his bidding, but probably only because she's having such a good time. It's a rush for her to have these challenges that simultaneously test her athleticism, cunning and stealth. And then there's that "oh the places you'll go, the things you'll see." part of the job. The other major recurring character in this story is her high school arch enemy, now known as Posh Meow, top model in the U.K. Also a cat-suited villainess who represents the forces of chaos and whatnot
OH: The antagonist appears to be a certain squidly evil who has no name. Why Cthulhu and what does the darkest of the Elder Gods bring to the book?
MH: Well, he's not Cthulhu. We wanted him but he couldn't be reached. Taking a long nap or something. So instead we have another cosmic entity who sort of rode in on the coat tails of the Great Old Ones when they descended. An also-ran known as Jack Lord of Disorder.
LW: LORNA: RELIC WRANGLER does have Lovecraftian horror elements in the book, but CTHULHU does NOT appear in our comic. When Micah and I read that Great Cthulhu was supposed to be in or book, we both got a chuckle. We most have missed the memo from R'lyeh!
OH: Are there any plans for additional Lorna: Relic Wrangler books?
LW: We certainly hope so. If the initial sales response is strong, you can bet that Micah and I will be bringing readers more tales of LORNA: RELIC WRANGLER!
MH: Oh, yeah. That would be great. Depending on how readers respond. We already have at least 4 more adventures in mind. That would complete a mini-series that would end on a cliff hanger that'll have you revisiting the edge of your seat. Then we'd like to take a break and do a non-related horror/humor special. Then it would be back to Lorna.
OH: Tell us how you got Darwyn Cooke and Dean Yeagle to provide gorgeous covers for the book.
LW: Micah contacted Dean Yeagle, and we both sent emails to Darwyn Cooke, along with some Lorna artwork. Dean got back to us and produced a beaut of a cover for us. A few weeks later, Darwyn Cooke agreed to also do a cover, and had a great image back to us in no time flat! We are honored to have these guys providing covers for LORNA. We feel like we've produced a quality book from cover to cover, and we think that fans will really enjoy it.
MH: Yep -- those covers are pretty darn awesome, huh? Both Darwyn and Dean are incredibly gracious guys who contributed the most important page in the book -- the cover! Dean's is the "zombie action variant."
OH: Any other upcoming projects that the two of you can tell us about?
MH: I mentioned the horror project above. And there's a major pulp adventure series that got us together as a team seven years ago and into which a massive amount of work has already gone. That one's probably going to be the major comics work of our lives. I can't die happy without that being completed.
LW: We have a few irons in the fire, but it's probably a little too early to talk about those just yet.
OH: If you had to convince a reader to pick up in thirty words or less, what would you tell them?
MH: Thrill to the spectacle of two beautiful adventuresses dispensing one to the other a sound thrashing as old high school rivalries erupt on the cusp of two worlds!
LW: LORNA : Good and Evil collide! The fate of the world will be decided by a catfight between two sexy babes on the rooftop of a temple!
Lorna: Relic Wrangler will hit comic stores everywhere March 23rd. Pre-order yours today!
Written or Contributed by: Christian Hoffer