Wednesday, August 15, 2001

Dead Boy Detectives

The Dead Boy Detectives are Charles Rowland and Edwin Paine, two British schoolboys from different eras who are now ghosts. The characters were created by Neil Gaiman and Matt Wagner during the "Season of Mists" storyline in the Sandman comics. Now the boys are being given their own adventure in Sandman Presents: Dead Boy Detectives by writer Ed Brubaker and illustrator Bryan Talbot:


An immortal madman is killing the runaway children of London, not even the city’s spirits are safe. Can the Dead Boy Detectives solve the case, or will a fate worse than death make them give up the ghost for good?

What caught our eye was Brubaker’s remarks about his inspiration for such a story:
The Dead Boy Detectives story was a chance to play in a field I've always loved: Young Adult fiction. Some of my favorite books are Young Adult stuff, including the work of the late John Bellairs, who practically invented (along with his usual illustrator, Edward Gorey) the genre that the Harry Potter books are part of. Read Bellairs' The House with the Clock in its Walls to see his obvious influence on this series. With Neil Gaiman's permission, I ran in just the direction I wanted to with Charles and Edwin, our dead heroes, which was a crazy young adult fantasy mystery, and from what I hear, Neil was pleased with the results. Bryan Talbot, of course, was a dream to work with, and I've been a fan of his work since the first time I saw Luther Arkwright, in the old Titan editions. The man is amazing, and I couldn't have done it without him.

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