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Interview: Return to Antonio Bay with Sumerian's 'The Fog'

Interview by Troy-Jeffrey Allen

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If you were a fan of John Carpenter's The Fog original story, then get ready for something far more malevolent roiling up from the depths of the sea. 

Forty years after the events of the 1980 film, Sumerian's The Fog returns to Antonio Bay for a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters.

In the following interview, writer Steve Ekstrom tells us more about this follow-up to a cinematic cult classic. 

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So what is The Fog? It’s a sort of sequel to the John Carpenter movie…? 

It’s a true sequel to the original Carpenter film from 1980. It’s set in modern day Antonio Bay which is still just a sleepy little coastal town that’s still harboring dangerous forces from its dark history. Realistically, it’s slowly grown into a tourist destination for paranormal investigators and conspiracy nuts.

There’s another malevolent entity that has returned to town connected to one of the prominent families who decided to betray Captain Blake and set fire to the Elizabeth Dane and he’s ready to pick up where he left off…

But it’s not Captain Blake or any of the ghosts connected to his ship, the Elizabeth Dane.

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Tell us about the characters. How do they connect to the original?

Andy Wayne and his mother, Stevie, still live in Antonio Bay forty years later. Andy owns a small seafood business. He’s married to a woman from another prominent Antonio Bay family whose lineage also goes back to the 1880 tragic fire that besieged the Elizabeth Dane and killed all of those innocent people on board.

There’s a legacy character, Annie, who is the child of two of the characters from the original film who has a paranormal podcast. Captain Blake is still around…and he’s changed but he’s still dangerous. There are several surprise characters introduced or revealed who are deeply grounded in the lore of the movie.

Most people seem to forget that John Carpenter had a small part in the original film, so we’ve squeezed his character, Bennett, into the story in a fun way to pay proper respect to the man who is easily my favorite filmmaker and one of the chief reasons I grew up to be a storyteller. But the real horror of Antonio Bay? Let’s just say he was right there from the beginning…

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What made you want to return to Antonio Bay?

I absolutely love scary movies. I grew up watching “late late” movies with my Grandmother so the first two horror movies I remember scaring the holy hell out of me were Halloween and The Fog. When I was offered the opportunity to pitch for The Fog, I nearly exploded with frenetic glee; I had literally watched the movie a week before and I had no idea Sumerian was looking to nab the license.

I firmly believe that we all, deep down, love a good ghost story. The Fog is a really wonderful traditional ghost story that plays on some very primal fears all of us harbor our entire lives when it comes to being alone in the opaqueness of a fog bank at night.

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Looking forward, what can readers expect from THE FOG?

A deeper exploration of the lore connected to Antonio Bay itself. I’ve actually drawn some of my story elements from some creepy local lore from the rural southeastern region that I’m from and I’ve incorporated them into the tapestry Carpenter wove for us.

I asked myself, “What if something more than greed drove those people in Antonio Bay to burn Captain Blake and the people aboard the Elizabeth Dane?”

I also wanted to explore how significant trauma can change a person. Andrew Wayne has buried the memories of the night in April 1980 when the fog rolled back into Antonio Bay. You think he’s moved on from it…but maybe not.

The legacy character I mentioned earlier, Annie, she’s in Antonio Bay so she can kind of understand why her parents (who have both passed away) carried their dark experiences together to the grave without telling her. Living in their trauma sort of pushed her to become obsessed with the paranormal world.

And then there’s this dark figure who sort of appears out of the fog and he has unfinished business in town…and Captain Blake isn’t happy about it but he’s also kind of powerless to stop it now he’s slaked his own thirst for vengeance.

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In terms of audience, who is the book for?

I’m hoping that this will appeal to fans of the original film as well as teen and adult horror readers who will want to seek out Carpenter’s original film on streaming platforms to experience it for the first time. Most of the violence in this story is implied or sort of shown to a reader in a way that isn’t “torture porn” (I’m not a fan) so there’s a modest amount of gore but I really wanted this project to evoke the minimal elegance of Carpenter’s early forays into horror as his work evolved. 

I hope to draw in everyone who likes to feel a little chill up their spine when there’s an unexpected knock at their door late at night. The real gift of reading horror comics resides in the mind of the reader and where their own imaginations take them as they engage in the story. You can’t beat that.

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The Fog is available now at your local comic shop from Sumerian and Massive! You can also reserve your copy with PREVIEWSworld Pullbox.

Keep an eye on PREVIEWSworld.com's TwitterFacebookYouTube, or Instagram for more artist spotlights!

MASSIVE
THE FOG #1 (OF 4) CVR A ROSADO (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Christian Rosado
Cover by Christian Rosado, best known for his work on Dark Horse's Skull and Bones, as well as appearances on Heavy Metal's Taarna and Dynamite's Vampirella.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG(1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and/or their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

Now, in 2022, something far more malevolent from Antonio Bay's dark past is roiling up from the depths of the sea.
In Shops: Mar 06, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #207

MASSIVE
THE FOG #1 (OF 4) CVR B ROSADO (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Christian Rosado
Cover by Christian Rosado, best known for his work on Dark Horse's Skull and Bones, as well as appearances on Heavy Metal's Taarna and Dynamite's Vampirella.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG(1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and/or their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

Now, in 2022, something far more malevolent from Antonio Bay's dark past is roiling up from the depths of the sea.
In Shops: Mar 06, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #207

MASSIVE
THE FOG #1 (OF 4) CVR C MARTIN (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Patricia Martin
Cover by multiple Harvey Award nominated illustrator and artist, Patricia Martin.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG(1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and/or their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

Now, in 2022, something far more malevolent from Antonio Bay's dark past is roiling up from the depths of the sea.
In Shops: Mar 06, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #207

MASSIVE
THE FOG #1 (OF 4) CVR D MASSAGGIA (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Alberto Massaggia
Cover by Alberto Massaggia who has art credits from Dark Horse, Sumerian Comics, Ubisoft, Scout Comics, LeviathanLabs, and more.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG(1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and/or their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

Now, in 2022, something far more malevolent from Antonio Bay's dark past is roiling up from the depths of the sea.
In Shops: Mar 06, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #207

MASSIVE
THE FOG #2 (OF 4) CVR A ROSADO (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Christian Rosado
Cover by Christian Rosado, best known for his work on Dark Horse's Skull and Bones, as well as appearances on Heavy Metal's Taarna and Dynamite's Vampirella.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG (1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

The town continues its descent into madness as a diabolical entity from its controversial founding emerges from the Fog to claim the life of one of the survivors...and this new threat is not Captain Blake!
In Shops: Apr 03, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #203

MASSIVE
THE FOG #2 (OF 4) CVR B GAUDIO (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Matt Gaudio
Matt Gaudio has contributed cover art to Dynamite Entertainment titles like John Wick, Bettie Page, Black Terror and more!

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG (1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.
The town continues its descent into madness as a diabolical entity from its controversial founding emerges from the Fog to claim the life of one of the survivors...and this new threat is not Captain Blake.
In Shops: Apr 03, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #203

MASSIVE
THE FOG #2 (OF 4) CVR C SILAS (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Thony Silas
Art by Thony Silas who has published covers on Marvel and DC titles such as Captain Marvel, X-Men Gold, Batman Beyond, Blue Beetle and many more.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG (1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

The town continues its descent into madness as a diabolical entity from its controversial founding emerges from the Fog to claim the life of one of the survivors...and this new threat is not Captain Blake!
In Shops: Apr 03, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #203

MASSIVE
THE FOG #3 (OF 4) CVR A ROSADO (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Christian Rosado
Cover by Christian Rosado, best known for his work on Dark Horse's Skull and Bones, as well as appearances on Heavy Metal's Taarna and Dynamite's Vampirella.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG (1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

The mystery surrounding the malevolent curse on Antonio Bay deepens as a former member of the community returns from the dead to reconnect with his descendants as the town plummets into darkness.
In Shops: May 01, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #199

MASSIVE
THE FOG #3 (OF 4) CVR B WINKLE (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Eamon Winkle
Cover by Eamon Winkle, who has previously worked as a concept artist and contributed covers to Advent Comics, Black Caravan Press, Printed in Blood and more.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

Forty years after the events of THE FOG (1980), this comic series tells a supernatural horror story that reconnects several surviving characters and their descendents from John Carpenter's original story to a new series of paranormal events that plague Antonio Bay, a small fishing community turned ghost-hunting tourist destination.

The mystery surrounding the malevolent curse on Antonio Bay deepens as a former member of the community returns from the dead to reconnect with his descendants as the town plummets into darkness.
In Shops: May 01, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #199

MASSIVE
THE FOG #4 (OF 4) CVR A ROSADO (MR)
(W) Steve Ekstrom (A) Marco Fodera (CA) Christian Rosado
Cover by Christian Rosado, best known for his work on Dark Horse's Skull and Bones, as well as appearances on Heavy Metal's Taarna and Dynamite's Vampirella.

THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN TERROR.

The final issue of The Fog Returns has arrived. After Machen causes havoc amongst the residents, Andrew hatches a plan with Annie and Casey to get to him and do whatever it takes to end things once and for all.
In Shops: May 22, 2024
SRP: $4.99
PREVIEWS Page #185

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Troy-Jeffrey Allen is the producer and co-host of PREVIEWSworld Weekly. His comics work includes MF DOOM: All Caps, Public Enemy's Apocalypse '91, Fight of the Century, the Harvey Award-nominated District Comics, and the Ringo Award-nominated Magic Bullet. 

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