Axe-Drunk Love: An Interview with Michael Moreci of BARBARIC
Vault Comics recently announced their new series, BARBARIC, by Michael Moreci, Nathan C. Gooden, Addison Duke, Jim Campbell, Adrian F. Wassell & Tim Daniel. Our contributor, Jimmy Gaspero, is such a huge fan of Vault and Moreci's work, he jumped at the chance to interview him about Barbaric, The Plot, Wasted Space, and the horror films he's been watching recently.
Check it out!
*Content Warning: Images of blood and also some mature language.
Jimmy Gaspero: Michael, I wanted to thank you for taking the time for this interview. How have you and your family been doing this past year? Michael Moreci: You know, hanging in there. There's no doubt it's been a grind; I've got two young kids, and it's been tough on them in a lot of ways. But we've been trying to make the most of things. All these considered, looking around at how the past twelve months have been, we've been lucky, and I'm grateful for that.
JG: BARBARIC was just announced as the story of "a barbarian cursed to do good and his bloodthirsty axe with a drinking problem." Where did the idea for Owen the Barbarian and Axe come from?
MM: I think it started with the concept first. I imagined this barbarian on the cusp of death who gets brought back to life under the condition that he becomes a good person. If you read some of my other work, especially Wasted Space, you know I love that kind of friction between people who may not be model citizens (to say the least) who are forced to do the right thing. Something feels authentic about that. We live in a world where people like to scream about how good and righteous they are and, truth be told, I don't think most of us are really that great. It's fun, with that in mind, to throw some in a position where they have to do more than talk about being good, they actually have to BE good.
"We live in a world where people like to scream about how good and righteous they are and, truth be told, I don't think most of us are really that great. It's fun, with that in mind, to throw some in a position where they have to do more than talk about being good, they actually have to BE good."
JG: I've seen stories where the weapon is the corrupting force in the story, but what led you to have Axe be Owen's "moral guide"?
MM: I'd like to give a really thoughtful answer, but I just thought it'd be hilarious to have a talking axe who on one hand is the Jiminy Cricket of the story yet, on the other hand, is still subject to the same weaknesses as anyone else (in this case, the axe happens to crave blood; he gets drunk on it and then, as it were, craves even more). I like pitting opposing forces against each other, whether externally between characters or internally with individuals themselves. Like I said above, that feels authentic to me.
JG: You co-wrote The Plot with Tim Daniel, who you've written with previously. What is it that makes your collaboration so successful? MM: I think we're just complementary writers. We share a solid foundation, but we also bring unique ideas and skills to the table. We've had a really fortunate string of successful comics, and that's not an easy thing to achieve. JG: Is there anything you're able to share about the final arc of Wasted Space? MM: Other than how emotionally wrecked I am to see this series end?
Kidding aside (though I'm kinda not kidding), it's going to be the best arc of Wasted Space yet. It really is. It's so huge and, if you've been reading the series, so satisfying. I've literally been planning this conclusion for years, and I'm feeling good about sticking the landing. Everyone is going to be there, and the arcs, in the plot and the character journeys, really come to nice conclusions. And of course, Hayden, Jason, and Jim are firing on all cylinders. I love this series, and I'm so grateful to have gotten the chance to tell this story. JG: What have you been reading/watching/listening to lately? MM: I watch so many movies. Too many, perhaps. I've been obsessed with Val Lewton's horror films, which are so great. I've also recently re-watched all of Guillermo Del Toro's movies, because why not. JG: What other work do you have coming out that our readers can look for? MM: At the moment, there's not much. The second, and final volume of The Plot is coming soon, and, as we mentioned, the final arc of Wasted Space starts soon. JG: Where can we find you on social media? MM: I'm @michaelmoreci on Twitter and Instagram.
BARBARIC hits stores June 30th. Preorder today!