The JOHN SOWDER Interview – Part 2
And here we have the conclusion of my recent interview with comic book artist John Sowder. Enjoy! (If you haven’t had a chance to read Part 1 of this interview – check that out now.)
LL SOARES: What projects are you working on for the future/what are your goals.
JOHN SOWDER: I’ll be doing work for Monarch Comics. Publisher Vincent Ferrante’s stated goal is to produce comics similar to the ones he grew up reading. His WITCH HUNTER title will feature the work of veteran DOCTOR STRANGE artist Frank Brunner, a guy who was a huge influence on me.
LS:. Yeah, Frank Brunner was amazing. He’s one of my favorites, too.
Have you submitted your work to any of the major comics companies?
JS: Yeah, I pitched an idea to bring Starfire back to the DC Universe. Starfire is a character from the 70s who is in no way related to Starfire from the Teen Titans. After 8 weeks I recieved a reply from one of the editors who thanked me for my submission and had some positive words but ultimately passed on the idea. They thought it would be too confusing to have two characters named Starfire.
LS: Who is your favorite superhero, and why? (if you’re a fan of non-superhero comics, then which of those is your favorite)
JS: Batman is great. I always liked Swamp Thing, he seems more human than most characters in comics. Constantine is a favorite. Doctor Strange too, mainly because of Steve Englehart’s work on the comic. Englehart’s writing allowed for some epic and abstract ideas to enter into the plotlines. The character hasn’t been the same since.
LS: I’ve always dug characters who straddled the fence between horror and superhero stuff, like Dr. Strange and Swamp Thing (and Man-Thing), too.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be, and why?
JS: I’d like to have Bruce Wayne’s inheritance, but that’s not a superpower. I guess I’ll go with Wolverine’s healing powers. With the cost of healthcare going through the roof, I wouldn’t have to worry about outrageous hospital bills if I get into an accident.
LS: Are you a fan of anime at all? If so, what are your favorites.
JS: Absolutely. I really like both VAMPIRE HUNTER D films, and I like the classics in the field like AKIRA and GHOST IN THE SHELL. Lately I’ve been watching ELFIN LIED and BLEACH.
LS: I’m a big fan of the GHOST IN THE SHELL movies, too. I wish I knew more about anime, but whenever I check out the DVDs at a store, there are just hundreds of them. I don’t even know where to begin.
Have you ever had a dream about Pikachu or Hello Kitty? I know they’ve haunted my dreams, and I always wake up in a cold sweat.
JS: Can’t say that I have. I used to have a recurring nightmare about Bigfoot breaking into my house when I was younger. I blame THE LEGEND OF BOGGY CREEK!
LS: Who would win in a fight, Optimus Prime or Voltron?
JS: Mazinger could kick both their metal asses!
LS: To show you how old I am, I still dig Ultra-Man and Gigantor. And don’t forget Johnny Socko and his Giant Robot. Now those were old-school giant robots!
Do you think Smurfette is sexy?
JS: No! She just looks like a regular guy Smurf with a wig and fake eyelashes. I’m not convinced she’s even a woman.
LS: That’s awful! I’ve always had a thing for her myself. What does that say about me?
(I always dug that green chick from the original STAR TREK series, too. Not to mention She-Hulk)
So, here’s my last question: How did you get the nickname Necromania?
JS: That was the name of the last movie directed by the anti-genius Ed Wood Jr. Even though I laughed at his movies just like everyone else, I have a real fondness for them. I enjoyed watching these films when I was a kid growing up around the burbs in Michigan. I still enjoy all the same stuff I did when I was younger, and I want to try to stay true to that.
LS: Well, I really want to thank you for talking to me about all this stuff. And best of luck with Penumbra and all your future projects.
(Check out future SCREAMING SPOTLIGHT interviews on this blog)