Cover of The Ballad of Black Tom (detail)
By Victor LaValle

Victor LaValle to Publish Frankenstein-inspired Comic Series

February 28, 2017

Boom! Studios, a publisher of comics and graphic novels, announced that Victor LaValle ‘98, an alumnus and faculty member of the Writing Program, will write a new monthly comic series, Destroyer. He will collaborate on the project with artist Dietrich Smith.

According to the website Tor, the series centers on two characters, Dr. Jo Baker and her son Akai. “When Akai is shot by police on his way home from baseball practice, Dr. Baker is devastated,” the site reports. “But when no one is charged with his murder, she is enraged, and she turns to history and science to find a way to save her son.” Tor adds that Dr. Baker is a “descendant of Victor Frankenstein’s last living relative, Edward” and that in the past she’s worked on a “top-secret government re-vivification with Akai’s father,” an experience that allows her to bring back Akai “as a postmodern cyborg Prometheus.”  The series will also include an appearance by Frankenstein’s monster, who “still stalks the earth, and … might be ready to come back from Antarctica and make humanity pay for the pain they’ve caused him.”

Tor reports that Destroyer will run six issues, and that Boom! Studios will launch the series this May.

LaValle has previously authored a collection of short stories, Slapboxing with Jesus; the novels The EcstaticBig Machine, and The Devil in Silver (a New York Times Notable Book of the Year); and two novellas, Lucretia and the Kroons and The Ballad of Black Tom. He has received a range of honors including a Whiting Foundation Writers’ Award, a Ford Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a Shirley Jackson Award.

The Destroyer will mark LaValle’s foray into comics-and-graphic-novel territory.