On Tuesday, January 11, 1972, Kolchak: The Night Stalker terrified and delighted audiences on ABC. The TV movie — written by horror legend Richard Matheson (I Am Legend) and based on an unpublished novel by Jeff Rice — was the highest-rated TV movie in U.S. history. It subsequently spawned both a second TV movie, The Night Strangler, and a cult TV series that ran for just one season, but inspired a generation of storytellers, notably including X-Files creator Chris Carter.
In 2022, Moonstone Books will celebrate this pop culture milestone with a Kickstarter campaign for Kolchak: The Night Stalker 50th Anniversary Graphic Novel, edited by James Aquilone (Classic Monsters Unleashed).
This all-new, 100+ page, full-color graphic novel will feature 10 startling stories chronicling the life of monster-hunting reporter Carl Kolchak. The stories are written by such master storytellers as David Avallone (Elvira: Mistress of the Dark), Rodney Barnes (Killadelphia), James Chambers (Kolchak the Night Stalker: The Forgotten Lore of Edgar Allan Poe), Nancy Collins (Swamp Thing), Peter David (The Incredible Hulk), Kim Newman (Anno Dracula), Jonathan Maberry (V-Wars), Richard Christian Matheson (Scars and Other Distinguishing Marks), Tim Waggoner (Temple of the Dragonslayer), and Aquilone, and illustrated by such amazing artists as Jonathan Marks Barravecchia (Scarlet Witch), Marco Finnegan (Lizard in a Zoot Suit), Warwick Johnson-Cadwell (Mr. Higgins Comes Home), Paul McCaffrey (Anno Dracula), Clara Meath (Midnight Vista), Julius Ohta (Iron Man), Tom Rogers (Herald: Lovecraft & Tesla), J.K. Woodward (Star Trek), and Colton Worley (The Shadow).
This release will also feature covers by Colton Worley, Jerry Ordway (The Power of Shazam!), and J.K. Woodward as well as lettering by Thomas Napolitano, coloring by Zac Atkinson, and text design by Shawn T. King.
Kolchak: The Night Stalker 50th Anniversary Graphic Novel also includes an introduction by Richard Christian Matheson, the bestselling horror author/screenwriter/producer and son Richard Matheson, an essay on the 50th anniversary by Mark Dawidziak, the author of The Nightstalker Companion, and a retrospective of Moonstone Book’s Kolchak publication history by publisher Joe Gentile.
This anthology will be available in limited-edition softcover and hardcover editions, both with variant covers. In addition Moonstone Books is creating a special 40-page standalone comic for the Kickstarter, featuring the story “Satanic Panic ’88,” written by James Aquilone and illustrated by Colton Worley, and featuring a cover by Dan Brereton.
“It’s been half a century since Carl Kolchak made his first appearance on TV and it seems the fandom for the character is stronger than ever,” said editor James Aquilone. “I wanted to create something very special for the anniversary: a look at the life of my favorite monster hunter, from his childhood to his last case…the ultimate Kolchak story, full of creatures, frights, and the reporter’s iconic wit.”
“Carl Kolchak is one of the great horror genre characters of the 1970s,” said Kim Newman.
“KOLCHAK changed my life,” said Killadelphia writer Rodney Barnes. “The story we’re telling brings the character into some wholly unexpected places and it’s a genuine thrill to be a part of this incredible anthology.”
For updates, follow James Aquilone on Twitter andInstagram and follow the Kolchak campaign on Twitter. To get a notification when the Kickstarter launches, plese visit the pre-launch page.