Superstar artist Ethan Van Sciver has been eerily quiet of late. With just a few covers solicited by DC Comics and WildStorm in the coming months for “Justice League of America” #50 and “Victorian Undead Special" #1 respectively, he also has a co-writing credit on the upcoming one-shot, “Untold Tales of Blackest Night,” where he’ll tell the tale of Earth’s Sinestro Corps member, Voodoo Doll. But fear not, that's not all he has in store.
The artist responsible for the rebirths of both Hal Jordan and Barry Allen (whilst collaborating on two best-selling titles with industry über-writer Geoff Johns) has been secretly working with WildStorm on a new series of titles that he’ll oversee and are specifically tailored to his particular sensibilities, not to mention his love all things horror.
Returning to Fan Expo, a regular stop on his convention schedule, Van Sciver spoke with CBR News during a signing at the DC booth about his work at WildStorm and shared details about how involved he’ll be in the new creator-owned titles, one writer he’ll be collaborating with and the return of Cyberfrog, a character he created in the 1990s when he was just breaking into comics. The titular character was originally featured in two issues published by Hall of Heroes in 1996 and ten more released by Harris Comics in 1997.
CBR NEWS: It sounds like there are exciting times ahead for you over at WildStorm?
Ethan Van Sciver: I’m actually working on a few books for WildStorm. They’ve yet to be announced. I’ve had so many ideas that I’m not sure work as superhero comics and so what I’m doing is I’m working on creating them and putting them out there – and the first one is going to be announced at New York Comic Con. I’m drawing and plotting the first issue and then I’m handing it off to another artist and another creative team. And I’ll oversee it.
And this is an imprint showcasing horror books, correct?
They don’t have to be but they happen to be. That’s just where I am. That’s what I like. So the first one is definitely a horror/comedy book, I hate to say in the vein of “Shaun of the Dead,” because that’s so poser-y, but it is. It’s that kind of thing. And you’ll hear about it soon. And it’s written by Joe Harris, by the way.
As I understand we’re going to see some new “Cyberfrog” stories too.
That’s right. “Cyberfrog: Blood Honey.” And here’s the plot. Cyberfrog has been hibernating underground for ten years. He came to Earth, essentially, to stop an alien invasion from happening and to protect the human race. But he didn’t. He failed because he’s a lazy slob. So he’d been hibernating underground when this giant bee invasion from space happened. He comes out ten years later now and what these giant skeletal bees do is they feed off people. They chew up your skin and make paper out of it and spin it over buildings and things and turn Manhattan into a gigantic beehive. And then they also use your blood for pollen and turn into honey for the queen.
So basically, it’s ten years later. Cyberfrog is going to find his old friend, Heather. She survived the attack thanks to Cyberfrog but now he has to try to kind of turn it back. It’s a huge ordeal. It’s a huge task. Because these bees are moving west and pushing humanity all the way to the coast as they go.
Is this a miniseries or an ongoing?
It’s a miniseries.
Will you be writing and drawing it?
I’m definitely doing the covers. And it’s already written. There is another artist who has been a Cyberfrog fan since he was fourteen years old. He used to send me drawings and letters and now he’s a big professional, a big star.
Can you tell us?
I can’t say.
Is he here at Fan Expo?
I don’t know if he’s here. I saw him in Chicago and he was like, “When are we doing it?” He’s asked me three times to be involved. And the first time, I was like, “That would be cool.” The second time, I said, “Why are you asking me again?” And at Chicago, he was like, “Can we please do it? I’m down for it.” So I was like, “All right, I guess we’re doing it.” So, you’ll see.
Wildstorm will be releasing it?
Do you need to be up-to-speed on all of the past appearances and historic continuity of Cyberfrog?
Not at all. Not at all. No, because there is no Cyberfrog continuity. The series actually was a train of thought, kind of thing. And I really didn’t know what I was doing. But I’m sort of basing it on, this swarm came, and they did the last time we saw Cyberfrog, but they finished him off. So I’m lying essentially about the last series. As if the last series meant something. I’ll do a recap that doesn’t have anything to do with the actual events of the last series.
Will WildStorm be re-releasing the original “Cyberfrog” appearances?
I hope not. But maybe. It would be nice to have a big “Cyberfrog” compendium. We could call it “Warts and All.” That’s good.
One last question?
Any news about that long rumored “Plastic Man” series from DC Comics?