Interview with Arvin Loudermilk

Vigil by Arvin Loudermilk
Vigil by Arvin Loudermilk

In episode 18 of Working Title podcast, I chat with comic book writer and novelist, Arvin Loudermilk.

Years ago, I had collected and enjoyed every blood-sucker-filled issue of the comic book called, Vigil, that he co-created with artist Mike Iverson. Continue reading “Interview with Arvin Loudermilk”

One Degree of Wolverine

Apropos of nothing: The Marvel Comics character Wolverine is the super Kevin Bacon of comic books.

Apropos of nothing: The Marvel Comics character Wolverine is the super Kevin Bacon of comic books.  He’s one degree from just about every character in the Marvel Universe. If the Smurfs were a Marvel property, he’d be in a one-shot carving up Azrael into kitty bits and slicing Gargamel down to three apples high.

Wolverine is a great character and little wonder every writer wants to put him in their stories. He’s a fiercely loyal friend, a man of adamantine principles and, like a Terminator complete with metal endoskeleton, cannot be put down for long. His unmentioned mutant power appears to be ubiquity. He’s everywhere.

I remember when there was Blue and Gold X-men teams/titles and he was on/in both. As I recall one team would be downed in Antartica and the other landing in Genosha. Wolverine was in both places saving everyone. I exaggerate, I suppose, but not by much.

What’s the point? If there is one, it’s that despite his overexposure, he is still a much beloved comic book character. It’s remarkable and kudos to creator Len Wein and the many talented writers who keep the character fresh.

Vigil Comic Books

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to reread the multi-mini-series comic book, Vigil.

First issue of Vigil comic book mini series by Loudermilk and Ivereson.
First issue of Vigil comic book mini series by Loudermilk and Ivereson.

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to reread the multi-mini-series comic book, Vigil. Written by Arvin Loudermilk and illustrated by Mike Iverson, the vampire comic first appeared for two issues in 1992 under the imprint Innovation. Over the years it changed from Innovation to Millenium to Duality Press (the creators’ own imprint).

The series has held up since I had first read the title — wow! 17 years ago. (I feel old now.)

The story centers on a vampire named Grace Kimble who is one tough blonde with a serious crush on big guns. (Think Sarah Connor of T2.) In the first story, she aims to take down a late-night talk show host who is a vampire pretending to be a human pretending to be a vampire. With his fame and wealth he gets many unsuspecting women in bed and thereby their blood. In Grace’s efforts to stop him, she inadvertently involves the clueless movie star, Greg Tonell. Nonetheless, Grace ends the talk show host’s life. Unfortunately, Tonell  is wrongfully implicated in  the murder and the two have to escape to Mexico.

The subsequent one-shots and mini-series follow them searching for a cure for Grace’s “affliction,” falling in love with each other and eluding myriad enemies who want Kimble, Tonell or both captured/killed.

The art is black-and-white and realistically drawn. The style works with the writing, very cinematic. Like an action film there are lots of panels and pages with hand-to-hand fighting, gunfire and narrow escapes. Written for mature readers.

I like that it’s a simple, well-told story.

A vampire mythology isn’t touched on in the series. Grace considers herself infected with a virus, though she refers to herself as a vampire. She’s hard to put down, heals quickly and is quite cold. She struggles to be  human and relies on Tonell for the right push. Tonell goes through a nice arc through the series.

Have you read this?