There's a fine line between horror and comedy, and the new Vault series The Nasty will be blurring that with a comic that's like Empire Records but for horror movies.
"The Nasty is my love letter to horror, and to embracing your passion in life, whatever it may be," says writer John Lees. "You might find it a little bit funny, a little bit scary, but I hope that, most of all, that love with which this story was crafted shines through."
Originally announced for a September 2022 here at Popverse, Lees has recently shared that he and the publisher, Vault, have decided to delay the book until March 2023 due to marketing and production issues.
Written by Lees (Crimson Cage, Hotell) and drawn/colored by George Kambadais (The Black Ghost, I Can Sell You A Body), The Nasty is set during the UK era of moral panal surrounding horror films - or 'video nasties' as they are referred to there. The series follows a group of friends ('The Murder Club') who all love horror movies - so much so that they set out to create their own slasher film. As they make the film though, the slasher they're dreaming up becomes more and more real.
"With The Nasty, I want us to open up a portal into that lost world. A time when you could walk into a shop on Main Street and be greeted with a shelf packed with films you’d never heard of, with no Letterboxd or Rotten Tomatoes to tell you if they were good, nothing to go by but what video cover caught your eye the most," Lee says about The Nasty. "And also, a time when horror could still be mysterious and forbidden, when, in the UK, there were banned films you couldn’t get at your local video shop, whose reputation would grow through hushed word of mouth in their absence. The video nasties."
At the center of The Nasty is an 18-year old man named Thumper Connell, whose childhood imaginary friend was the masked killer from his favorite slasher film.
Here's a preview of The Nasty #1:
"The Nasty is a horror story, not just in terms of it featuring a hulking masked slasher and a cursed video tape, but in that it’s a story about horror, about what it means to us and the impact it has on us," says Lee. "Horror, for me, isn’t necessarily something dark or scary. It’s my comfort food, my safe place, associated with feelings of warm nostalgia and happy memories of a childhood spent sitting in front of the TV in the dark, scaring myself silly."
Kambadais is drawing (and coloring) the main covers to The Nasty, and he's joined on issue #1 with a variant by Sally Cantirino. The letterer on the comic has yet to be announced.
The Nasty #1 now goes on sale in March 2023, from Vault Comics and its horror imprint, Nightfall. The series is anticipated to run at least eight issues, according to the publisher.
Editor's note: The Nasty was originally announced on June 23 for an September 2022 debut, but this article has been updated with news about its delays.
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