RICH INTERVIEWS: William Mull Writer/Colorer/Letterer for Forbidden Gallery
First Comics News: In “Forbidden Gallery # 3” what is the story you wrote “China Bull” about?
William Mull: “China Bull” is meant to be a fun, lighthearted intro story featuring our host, Archimedes. It helps set the tone for our stories in this episode of Forbidden Gallery. Badger Brawn, as you can imagine, is the proverbial “Bull in a China Shop”. His would-be girlfriend, Gloria is an invited guest in the exclusive evening’s affairs at Archimedes’ mysterious abode. The select attendants (and we the viewers) are privy to a Gallery (represented by the pinups and stories), which changes the lives of the guests in unique ways, depending on their own personalities.
I’m very happy to say, Aileen Oracion did an amazing job bringing this story to life, elevating the story above and beyond, with her beautiful sequential art.
1st: You also wrote “Scattercrow: Night of the Long Talons” can you tell us who Scattercrow is and why he exists?
William: Scattercrow is “an enigmatic form, at one with supernatural forces… the natural realm shakes in his wake!” He is a force of vengeance. But it’s not always what he does that brings about horrendous outcomes, as you’ll notice. We originally introduced Scattercrow in FG#2, although the timeline and setting was much different. The mystic, otherworldly force that gives Scattercrow timeless and eternal form helps make Scattercrow so versatile and unique as a character. Plus, crows are very cool.
I don’t want to give too much away, since a lot of appeal resides in a sense of mystery, including his creation and “raison d’etre”. It’s all in there, but it’s important not to hit the reader over the head with it.
1st: Why do you like working on a comic book that is a collection of short stories over one story that is the complete comic?
William: It’s much more challenging to tell a coherent story within a limited number of pages. It’s less interesting for me to read a long, drawn-out vehicle for talking heads standing around looking pretty, so to speak.
The kind of compact, action-oriented storytelling we strive for is an art form that seems mostly lost in the modern age of comics in which we currently reside.
1st: Will you be working on a “Forbidden Galley # 4”?
William: We’re already well underway with issue #4, in fact…!
Also, we’re having a lot of fun working hard on our first-ever funny animal anthology, CAVALCADE #1!
1st: You also color and letter; do you find these as rewarding as writing in their own way? Is lettering more than just adding words to a page?
William: Lettering can be an art in itself if done well. As you can imagine, there are many placement considerations, etc. to achieve a “professional” quality, that enhances the story without detracting from the art. As any Letterer will tell you, it’s not as easy as it looks.
1st: When coloring do you use certain colors to set the mood of a comic?
William: As with lettering, coloring is a valuable aspect in service of telling the story to the best of our abilities. Toward that end, it’s helpful to remember the Hippocratic Oath: “Primum non nocere” (“Do no harm”).
1st: How would you best describe the type of comic “Forbidden Gallery” is?
William: Forbidden Gallery is an adventure/horror anthology that harkens to 70’s era comics, such as DC’s “The Witching Hour”, Marvel’s “Tower of Terror”, as well as EC’s “Tales from the Crypt”, etc. You may also find ghosts of “The Twilight Zone” and “Night Gallery” lurking among myriad other influences.
1st: What do you want to tell all the fans of your work?
William: I’m blessed to be able to do this (writing, editing, art, arranging, working with amazing fellow writers and artists, proofing, publishing, marketing/getting the word out as best I can…). The entire process, though very challenging in many ways and not without its difficulties, gives me so much joy. I hope you all receive that same cherished feeling, as a result of all our efforts, that this comic is something very special, and you’ll want to experience it again and again.
Thank you for helping us get the word out about Forbidden Gallery #3!