The world of Jeff Lemire & Dean Ormston's Dark Horse Comics Eisner Award-winning Black Hammer is set to expand this October with Sherlock Frankenstein & The Legion of Evil, a four-issue miniseries by Lemire and artist David Rubín. The spinoff series stars Lucy Weber, the daughter of the Black Hammer, searching to learn more about her father, which leads her to the villains confined in Spiral City’s asylum.
With the first issue about a month away, CBR has a special look at Rubín's expressive character designs for the heroes and villains of Sherlock Frankenstein, along with insight from the artist.
"The universe created by Jeff and Dean in Black Hammer is a very rich one and full of possibilities, I feel lucky to have been able to contribute and expand it with my work," Rubín, who illustrated issues #9 and #12 of Black Hammer, told CBR. "The most fun and enriching has been to design a lot of the supervillains, they are always the most fun to draw in any story, and they bring something new and faithful to the universe created by Dean and Jeff."
The designs seen below include colorful (and colorfully named) characters Captain Night and Dr. Day, The Horseless Rider, Wingman (young version, who has passing resemblance to a DC Comics hero), Wingman (old version, considerably less reminiscent of said DC hero), Tenter Hooks, Black Stallion, Sultrix and the pun-tastic Concretestador.
"The characters I most enjoyed were the new Cthu-Lou, which is a lot of fun to draw with all those crazy tentacles," Rubín said, "his monsterhy-daughter, and the Freedom Fighters team; drawing old school superheroes is also wonderful!"
First announced this past July at Comic-Con International in San Diego, Sherlock Frankenstein & The Legion of Evil is said to be the first of multiple Black Hammer spinoffs planned, written by Lemire and illustrated by various artists.
"While working on Black Hammer I found myself having more and more ideas for other types of superhero stories," Lemire said in the press release announcing the miniseries. "The main Black Hammer story continues to be the spine of these ideas, but I found them branching off into new directions and new characters as well. It occurred to me that there was a whole history here, a whole superhero universe all of our own, that I could explore and create within."
Black Hammer debuted in 2016, and this past July won the Eisner Award for Best New Series. Sherlock Frankenstein & The Legion of Evil #1 is scheduled for release on Oct. 18 from Dark Horse Comics, with a main cover by Rubín and a Local Comic Shop Day variant by Mike Allred, in honor of the Nov. 18 occasion, seen below.