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FCBD24 Interview: CursedVerse-A Whole New Universe!


It is the dawn of the CursedVerse! Bombshell & TommTomm and Witch Hammer debuted in 2023 to excited fans looking for something new! Now with the magic of FCBD we deliver an awesome collectible issue that introduces everyone to the wider world of the CursedVerse with an exclusive story, select reprints of the debut issues, and a look ahead at the next wave of comics!

We caught up with one of the series writers S.A. Check to learn more about what inspired the extraordinary characters, what we can expect from their upcoming titles, AND to rifle through some really fun rapid fire questions! 

Check out the full interview below and be sure to head to your local comic shop on Saturday, May 6 to celebrate FCBD in all it’s glory! To find a participating comic shop near you, use our FCBD Store Locator. 


Free Comic Book Day (FCBD): Set up your title for those that might be new to your comic book: What will new readers need to know before diving into your Free Comic Book Day issue? 

S.A. Check: Well, see, we didn’t want to just come up with a new story for FCBD – we created a whole NEW UNIVERSE! Welcome to the CursedVerse – where heroes meet horror! Before the days of capes and cowls, there were those who stood the line and protected the innocent from the night. Some called them monsters and freaks -others called them champions! And to help show off our shiny new universe, we decided to give readers a glimpse into the characters making it up – like Bombshell & TommTomm, WitchHammer, Night Terror, and my own contribution to the series – The Cemetorian!


FCBD: What are some of the core themes present in your book? What do you hope readers take away from your title?

S.A.: Our whole goal with the CursedVerse is to make comics fun again! We want to take readers on a 22- page journey into a world of magic, mystery, and most importantly FUN! Mark (Sparacio), James (Kuhoric), and I wanted to tell the stories we grew up reading. We want fans to leave their work, worries, and woes at the first page and just come along for a good time as we follow these characters on their adventures. 


FCBD: What part of the book was most fun to write?

S.A.: Well, like I said, my contribution to this new comic world is The Cemetorian! He’s a police detective who meets an untimely demise, and unwittingly becomes a conduit for the living and the dead seeking justice on both sides of the coin! We took a lot of inspiration from pulp comics, so writing the character with that hard-edged, no-nonsense Dick Tracy-esque vibe was a ton of fun. The character also has a great supporting cast, which I’m hoping fans will get to meet along the way.

Detective Atticus Graves served his department faithfully over the years. A devoted husband and father, he kept his city’s alleys and gutters clean from the filth that gathered in the town’s darkest corners. No shadow stretched farther than that of Trigger Mortis, notorious hit-man, and murderous tool of the Black Hand, the city’s most violent and secretive criminal element. But when Fate, Fists, and Firepower come together one dark and stormy night in the local cemetery, Detective Graves’ tour of service comes to an abrupt end, at least the one for the living.


FCBD: Can you share some of the inspiration behind certain characters, settings, etc.?

S.A.: We drew heavily upon old pulp comics and heroes with the characters and vibe for the series. With Cemetorian, I was always fascinated behind the lore surrounding graveyards, and one certain story always stuck with me. Legend says the last person buried in a cemetery is anointed as it’s guardian, an overseer for all eternity. So, for our story, we just took it up a level - in special instances, once every century to be exact, one such person is chosen to become their generation’s Cemetorian. A force for justice for the living AND the dead.  The Cemetorian lives between both worlds, duty bound to exact vengeance for those who cannot. When the dead need justice, the Cemetorian answers the call!


FCBD: If you could meet your characters, what would you say to them?

S.A.: Don’t follow Trigger Mortis into that cemetery! It’s a trap!


FCBD:Looking to the future, is there anything you can tease about what’s coming up for the title and its characters?

S.A.: Mark (Sparacio) has been feverishly working and both Bombshell & TommTomm and WitchHammer, cranking out some outstanding stories to whet fans whistle for more CursedVerse action, and the Cemetorian is waiting in the wings to give it to them. There are so many great characters I am hoping to introduce into this series, both heroes and villains alike. If you like the quick intro story for the character here – be sure to let American Mythology know you want to see The Cemetorian back in action!

FCBD: Many newcomers will pick up comics for the first time on FCBD – what was the first comic you remember reading?

S.A.: My favorite comics as a kid, straight off the spinner rack, to be precise, were Marvel Team-Ups! They were two great heroes for the price of one, and the stories were, usually, self-contained to one issue. You picked it up, read it, enjoyed it, and you were done. I loved the simplicity and entertainment of them. It was the first series I started collecting and I still have many of the original books I bought back then. Of course, they are pretty beat up, crinkled, torn, stickers on the covers (don’t ask me why), but they’ll always hold a special place for me.


FCBD: What is your favorite part about working in the comic book industry?

S.A.: Simple. The people. And I mean ALL the people. The ones who make the books! The ones who sell the books! The ones who read the books! I get to work with so many talented people with every book we create. I’ve probably written over a hundred comics at this point, but each time we finish one, I get a real sense of accomplishment, like we made a little magic, and that just never gets old. I also always try to stop into as many local comic shops as possible when I travel and talk to the folks running them. These are special places, people. Places where imaginations rule. Whatever part of the country I find myself in (to recently include Canada), I always feel like I’m where I belong when I walk into a shop, even if I’ve never been there before. The people who run these heroic havens all have their own stories to tell, and it fascinates me how they got there. And lastly, but certainly not least, the fans who read the books! Every convention I go to, or email I get, or post on social media, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it as a writer for someone to enjoy a story I’ve written, whether it’s an 8-pager or a 4-issue mini. I am constantly reminded that comic book fans may very well be some of the greatest folks in the whole world, and it's a privilege to get to contribute to the industry.


FCBD: Tell us why everyone should read comic books!

S.A.: You mean everyone ISN’T reading comic books?!

Comics are the entire package. They are escapism at their finest, and we could all use a little of that. They are just this great mash-up of words and images blended together to create visual storytelling in a medium all its own. It’s heroes! It’s heartache! It’s horror! It’s funnies! It’s anything you want it to be! I’ve got lucky enough to work on books for kids like Casper, Pink Panther, and Underdog. I’ve worked on all-aged books like The Three Stooges (which has really been a high-light), sci-fi giants like Stargate Atlantis, and even horror with Night of the Living Dead and Willy’s Wonderland. The only limit to comics are our imaginations, and from what I see from the folks I work with and around – that ain’t drying up any time soon! Go see your local comic shop and find out for yourself!


FCBD: Now, we have a series of rapid-fire questions for you! They’re, ya know, mostly related to comics... Answer as quickly as you can and try not to over think it!


Do you listen to music while you’re creating?

S.A.: No. The fewer distraction the better. Sometimes I wear a night mask when I type! Don’t believe me – just ask my editor!



What’s your favorite comic book genre?

S.A.: I grew up on Marvel Comics. That’s what I still collect. It will always hold a fond place in my heart. But as far as writing? Horror is a lot of fun!



Are you more productive in the morning or at night?

S.A.: It’s whenever I find the time. Though sometimes what I think is brilliant when I write it down at night, it doesn’t look too good when I re-read it the next day. I think someone was messing around with my keyboard keys. 



What do you and 10-year old you still have in common? 

S.A.: Day dreaming, like, all the time.



If you were a comic book character, would you rather be the hero or the villain?  

S.A.: Hero! Hero! Hero! Not a dark, moody, anti-hero either! A here-I-am-to-save-the-day Hero!



Everyone in the world gets to choose a power, but the more people that choose the same power, the weaker that power will be. What do you choose? 

S.A.: Windmill Power! Oh, wait, not that kind of power, right? Solar! No? Gas! Oh, boy – that could get messy. I give up.


If there was one fictional item you could have in real life, what would it be?  

S.A.: Millenium Falcon. Nuff said.



If you were sucked into a game like “Jumanji,” which game would you at least want to be put into?  

S.A.: Frogger. The rules are pretty simple and I can appreciate that.  




Find a participating comic shop near you to celebrate Free Comic Book Day 2024!



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