Just imagine, a race of belligerent bugs taking over the human body and mind, it goes to back to that the first Men in Black film where Vincent D'Onofrio’s character is a farmer who's skin is “borrowed” by a bug. It’s such an unpleasant idea that it made my skin crawl. For Eli Mamane, it’s the opposite. He’s a v-logger and the brains behind Talk Comix, he’s decided to explore the stomach churning idea with artist Paul McCaffrey. I decided not to eat before speaking to Eli about his love for bugs.
Mr. Eli himself!
You’ve been reporting about comics for several years now, what makes you think you can be a comic creator?
You can't keep commenting on comics forever. If you keep saying this is or isn't a good comic, you're always implying that you could do it better. The only issue is finding the right idea and having the guts to put it out there.
How far is the project now?
The first story arc has been completely story boarded and scripted. I have left the last comic incomplete so that I even surprise myself as to how it finishes. I honestly have had some moments when reading back the comic where i am thinking I never saw that coming and then I remember I wrote it.
Lots of concept drawings have been done and the first five pages of the first comic are completed in full colour. These can all be seen at our Kickstarter, Facebook, Twitter, etc. pages.
Squatters could be seen as the plot of an early Cronenberg film, how did you get the idea to come about, a nasty stomach illness?
No I didn't have a nasty illness, but let me tell you I wouldn't want any of this to happen to me ever.
I love Cronenberg and I wish I could say it was him that influenced me, that would sound a lot cooler than the real story. Sadly, I was just doing some research online into parasites and I came across the mind controlling set. All I could think about was what an amazing comic this would make. In fact the day I decided to write the comic I got a chill thinking how horrific this story is. These critters are most certainly not for the faint hearted. Reader beware!
Quickly! Fly in the other direction!
How have other creators reacted to Squatters?
As far as I can tell, they have been very positive. We have had such a warm response from people like Jeff Lemire, Gary Frank, Ted Adams, Matt Hawkins, etc... Nothing re-inforces your confidence more than top creators financially supporting you. As good as that is, these aren't the people that matter. The comic reading nation is who we need and it's their support I'm after.
How did you persuade Paul McCaffrey to draw the book?
What can I say, this guy is the best unknown artist in the world right now and he is drawing my book. I suppose you could say I was lucky. I sent Paul the script, he liked it and we have moved forward from there. You are all in for a big treat. Even Erik Larsen commented on how good the art was.
A lot of people are using Kickstarter for funding for creative projects why do you think that’s happening?
It gives creators the best chance of getting their comic built. For those that don't know, creating a top quality comic isn't cheap. It is very hard to fund and this reverse sales process that takes place at Kickstarter is the only way they can make a dream comic a reality.
Alas poor Snail.. We barely knew ya!
Did you look at any other options before choosing Kickstarter?
We submitted this idea to Image but we never got any response from them. According to my system they never even opened the email. The chance of a blind submission being successful are slim to none and I think slim just left town. I also looked at Indiegogo. To be honest, Kickstarter seemed to be the best chance for Squatters so I went for it.
Have you backed any Kickstarter schemes yourself?
Yes, a few things like card games and a piece of awesome tech. Kickstarter is still kind of new to me, but I definitely have the Kickstarter bug. I'm sure my future involves more empty pockets and a lot of Kickstarter investments.
What do you think people will get out of Squatters?
Well I hope they get two things really, a sense of wonder and amazement at what this world is capable of and the awesome beauty of science.
I also hope they experience one of the best god damn stories they have ever read. This is a story like no other and people will be shocked, amazed, and frankly mind blown. I plan for this to be an ongoing story beyond the first six comics (which encompasses the first story arc). The story has the capability to open up into a huge world event of epic proportions, but it really depends on the level of support we get.
Well those suckers sure don't look pleasant!
Editor's Note:Currently the Kickstarter has 18 hours left to go to fully fund its 8,500 goal. And with your help, it can surely go beyond its current 1,939 funding level and achieve success.