Few fictional characters have permeated the pop culture landscape quite as much as Bram Stoker’s iconic immortal Dracula Prince of Darkness. Since the classic novel was first published 125 years ago it has not only been adapted into numerous plays, audio dramas, movies, comics, TV shows and games, but the instantly recognisable king of the vampires has been the subject of academic study and appeared on merchandise as wide ranging as clothing, lunchboxes and every imaginable manner of paraphernalia.
Notable movie versions include memorable performances by such notable actors as Christopher Lee (certainly the most revered by fans and scholars alike) Gary Oldman and very recently in 2020 Claes Bang on the BBC and Netflix series.
Dracula has also, of course, frequented the comic book world, with the incredibly popular Marvel title Tomb Of Dracula shaping a whole generation of perceptions of the character and in January 1973 Marvel introduced their incredibly popular vampire hunter Blade within the pages of that comic who’s third movie featured yet another version of Dracula played by Dominic Purcell in 2004.
The infamous Count even appeared in an episode of the classic animated series Spiderman And His Amazing Friends back in the early 80’s and who could every forget the infamous “Count” from Sesame Street?
Now in 2022 for the first time in history a member of the Stoker family has taken pen to paper to write an official comic book continuation of his famous relative’s classic novel, but in the form of a brand new comic book series from fledgling UK Publisher, Scratch Comics.
Bram Stoker’s Great Grand Nephew Dacre Stoker has teamed up with comics and games writer Dr Chris McAuley and artists Chris Geary and Matthew John Soffe to tell the story of what happened directly after the end of the original story.
This 48 pages square bound first book, in what is planned as 4 issue series, will also include back up strips by Buffy The Vampire Salyer writer Denise Ciencin and Eagle Award winning artist David Hitckcock.
We are shown how Dracula survived his apparent demise and the world that the famous vampire inhabits is expanded using original notes from Bram Stoker combined with the imagination of his descendent Dacre Stoker and his creative partners in the new comic.
“My Great grand Uncle was a keen artist as well as a writer, and I feel that if he were alive today he would love comics and Graphic novels and the visual elements they bring to storytelling” said Dacre Stoker. He continued:
“it has been an absolute pleasure to team up with Chris and Shane and the rest of the Scratch Comics team to tell this tale and I am incredibly excited to be revealing so many lost elements of the original novel through our new story as we continue the legacy of Dracula, the way in which I feel Bram would have intended”
The new book is being crowdfunded and the campaign to launch it not only includes copies of the book in both digital and physical formats, but also a wide range of additional bonus rewards and add on items that fans can pledge for over the next two weeks.
These include online lectures about Bram Stoker by his great grand-nephew and about “real life” vampires by Professor Laurence Alison MBE of Liverpool University.
There are also three variant cover options available by noted comics artists, Shane Oakley (Albion), Mike Collins (X-Men, Doctor Who) and Ben Stenbeck (Hellboy, BPRD).
You can pre-order your copy now or find out more via the Kickstarter Campaign at: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/scratchcomics/dracula-the-return-cult-of-the-white-worm