It may be hard for many to believe, but even after writing hundreds of books over the course of several decades, R.L. Stine has never written a comic book. Until now, that is. For the last month or so, the 73-year-old Goosebumps author has been teasing fans that his first ever comic book is coming and that it will be for Marvel. Now it has been confirmed that he will be writing a brand new, five-issue Man-Thing series.
New York Times got the confirmation about the new Man-Thing series, which will be available in March of next year. R.L. Stine talked with them a bit about his first comic book, saying that he originally wanted to get into comics as an artist before becoming a writer, and that this is something of a realized dream for him. Here is what he had to say about it.
"My first ambition was to be a comic book artist. I started doing these little comic books in the fourth grade: 'Super Stooge,' the dumbest hero on earth. I was terrible. I had no choice but to be a writer. I'm going to do a lot of action and a lot of great violence and make it creepy, but I'm going to make it funny at the same time. It's what I try to do in my books."
Marvel apparently offered several different titles to R.L. Stine, but he settled on doing Man-Thing pretty easily, which seems to line up well with his sensibilities. This new series will reportedly draw inspiration from horror comics like Tales From the Crypt and Weird Terror. As far as the art for this new Man-Thing series goes, it will feature covers by Tyler Crook and interior artwork by German Peralta and Daniel Johnson.
R.L. Stine has been writing prominently for decades and has written literally hundreds of books. So it is kind of amazing that at the age of 73 he is just now writing his very first comic book series, but better late than never, especially in this case. Given that R.L. Stine has a knack for horror themed stuff, this new Man-Thing series seems like an absolutely perfect fit for him. The character was created in 1971 by created by Stan Lee, Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, and artist Gray Morrow, with a defining run done later by the late Steve Gerber .In case you aren't super familiar with the character of Man-Thing, aka Ted Sallis, here is how Comic Vine describes him.
"Ted Sallis, was attempting to recreate the Super-Soldier Serum that created Captain America. However, he was betrayed by his lover, Ellen Brandt, and Sallis had to flee from A.I.M. agents, who saw their potential of such a formula for their own evil ends. He injects himself with the serum, but after crashing in a swamp and apparently drowning is transformed into a swamp creature through a combination of his formula and, as later explained, magical forces extant in the area. Sallis' mind was apparently lost, although on rare occasions he could briefly return to consciousness within his monstrous form, and even to his human form such as when he fought Ben Grimm, who took the appropriation of his own nickname a little too personally."
This news should definitely be welcomed by both fans of R.L. Stine and of Marvel Comics. Even though he has never written a comic book before, his books have sold more than 400 million copies worldwide, so he clearly knows what he is doing and it sounds like he has a good take on Man-Thing. Be on the lookout for the book in March and be sure to check out some of the preview art Marvel has released for the book below.