A Vampire in Hollywood, And Other Tales of Supernatural Law by Batton Lash
Introduction by Jeff Smith
192 pages, b/w interior
Beware the creatures of the night—They have lawyers! Alanna Wolff and Jeff Byrd have an unusual law practice: defending monsters and the supernaturally afflicted! A Vampire in Hollywood is volume 7 in this ongoing graphic novel series that mixes humor, horror, and the law to produce a unique and fun reading experience. The previous volumes collect issues 1-40 and the spinoff series Mavis 1-4. This volume collects Supernatural Law issues 41-45 and Mavis 5.
Issue 41: “The Works Speak for Themselves” First Amendment issues come to the fore in an unusual way as Alanna Wolff and Jeff Byrd are called in when works of art begin to talk, make chit-chat, and sound off! This special free speech issue was also used as a fund-raiser for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. This issue also marks the first appearance of Desmond, the new receptionist.
Issue 42: “Werewolves . . . and the Women Who Love Them” and “Stakeout” In the first story, “Dr. Fill” interviews a woman who has a thing for werewolves, especially “Lawrence T,” one of Wolff & Byrd’s clients. The second story introduces fifth-generation vampire Christopher Leach who is trying to come to terms with his heritage while W&B protect him from the press. [Note: This story is also included in Zombie Wife in color.]
Issue 43: “A Vampire in Hollywood” Vampire Christopher Leach has become a celebrity and heads to Hollywood to star in his own biopic but ends up being accused of murder, engaging in a high-speed freeway chase, and encountering a vampire lord. [Note: This story is also included in Zombie Wife in color.]
Issue 44: “Wolff & Byrd: The Movie” While they’re in Hollywood on behalf of their vampire client, Wolff and Byrd find out that a movie is being made based on their law firm. Who’s behind it? What’s got them frightened? In the course of the issue, we get to see four different movie pitches—each scarier than the next, and each based on true pitches Batton received from Hollywood producers.
Issue 45: “The People v. Toxic Avenger” Wolff and Byrd have a change of venue when they travel to Tromaville to defend none other than the Toxic Avenger! But can they prevail in a courtroom presided over by Judge Lloyd Kaufman?
Mavis 5: “Weird Eye for the Normal Guy” Mavis gets to leave work early for once and plans to spend the evening with her main squeeze, Taylor Christopher. But she has forgotten a prior promise to an old high school friend to attend a birthday party that has some surprise guests: “The Creeps,” a spooky trio of W&B clients.
Funding for this book will be used to complete the production work (preparing files for the printer); pay for the printing, shipping, and storage of the books; and cover production costs of backer premiums.
What You Get
You can support this project by signing up to become the Hollywood player your choice, from gaffer to publicist to producer. At the “Supporting Player” level, you’ll get a set of six postcards depicting the covers of the six comics included in this collection. To get the book (signed by Batton) with the set of postcards, choose the “Key Grip” level. If you want a personalized drawing in your book, select the “Special FX” level.
Other premiums available include your choice from among the other Supernatural Law trade paperbacks (Tales of Supernatural Law, The Soddyssey, Sonovawitch, The Vampire Brat, Mister Negativity, The Monsters Meet on Court Street, A Werewolf in New York, Zombie Wife) and these special items (which you can also get as Add-Ons):
The Red Book: Wolff & Byrd Counselors of the Macabre first strip collection (64 pages 8 ½ x 11, b/w) Published in 1987 by Andrion Books, this book contains strips that appeared in The National Law Journal and The Brooklyn Paper in the mid-1980s. Wolff & Byrd defend a vampire dentist, go to L.A. for an est-like experience, encounter a young man possessed by Clarence Darrow, and deal with ghosts, witches, time travelers, werewolves, the undead—and Ronald Coleman? Plus: The introduction of Mavis!
Tales from the Vault (60 pages, 6½ x 9½, b/w) Contents include: three stories that originally appeared as Wolff & Byrd strips in 1993 in The National Law Journal: “The Twinkle Zone,” “Jeff in Heaven,” and “Here Come the Loppitts” (Batton is surprised to this day that the Law Journal let him run the Loppitt story—you’ll see why when you read it!); three strips published in Polyhedron magazine in 1990 and 1991; a previously unpublished Mavis story; the Ditko-esque “Griswell’s Demon” inked by Steve Ditko (!!), which appeared in Satan’s Six #1 published in 1993 by Topps; and “My Husband Killed Me and Now He Must Pay—Damages!” (originally published on supernaturallaw.com and reprinted in color in Zombie Wife). The color back cover is a Little Nemo parody.
Supernatural Law 2017 calendar: This 9” x 12” calendar will consist 12 images featuring Alanna Wolff, Jeff Byrd, Mavis, and your favorite monster clients.
French or Spanish edition: The French edition collects the first four issue of the Wolff & Byrd comic book series in color; the Spanish edition collects the first eight issues in black and white (same contents as Tales of Supernatural Law).
Supernatural Law T-shirts Choose from five different shirts produced over the years by Graphitti Designs (so you know they’re high quality!): The popular movie poster-style shirt; “You’re Going to Hear From My Lawyers!”; “My Lawyers Are Scarier Than Your Lawyers” (image is on back with W&B logo on front); Zombie Wife; and the white cap-sleeve Mavis T (available in women’s sizes S, M, and L). Supplies are limited on some of these shirts; XXL is $4 more.
At any level, you can add on one of these items for the additional pledge amount listed. Just increase your total pledge to include the add-on(s).
pdf of The Werewolf of New York or Zombie Wife (both are full color): $8
The Red Book: $10
Tales from the Vault: $12
2017 Calendar: $15
French or Spanish edition: $18
T-shirt (your choice of design: $20 for S, M, X, L, or XL ($24 for XXL)
Personalized drawing in any book: $30
A 32-page pinup booklet, with color covers and black-and-white interior: $25.
The booklet features drawings that comics pros have done of Wolff, Byrd, Mavis, and their clients over the years. Artists included are Paul Pope, Frank Cho, Rick Geary, Roger Langridge, Shannon Wheeler, Donna Barr, Terry Moore, Michael T. Gilbert, Stan Sakai, Lea Hernandez, Brian Michael Bendis, and many more.
ALL GONE!: The 100-page Supernatural Law Companion (6” x 9”): $17.00. This book, updated in 2015, provides synopses and background on every issue of the Wolff & Byrd/Supernatural Law and Mavis comic books and books, plus information on other appearances of the characters, cover sketches, and other goodies. NONE LEFT!
Original painting: At any level, add $150 to your pledge, and Batton will do a 9" x 12" acrylic painting for you, with your choice of subject! You can request Wolff & Byrd, monsters, even superheroes. (Be aware that paintings take time, so fulfillment of this item may take longer than the promised date listed for your chosen level.)
Here are some samples of past commissions:
What they’ve said about Supernatural Law
“Battonʼs keen sense of humor is what makes his work so good and so enduring.” —Will Eisner
“Supernatural Law gets me laughing out loud every time!” —Frank Miller
“Wolff & Byrd is funny and smart. . . . the finest funny supernatural fiction ever created.” —Neil Gaiman
"Few things in life turn out be a reliable source of intelligent delight. Supernatural Law has a secure place on that short roster." —Michael Chabon
“Supernatural Law is so good, so much fun, such an accessible, dynamite concept that I can’t figure out why it hasn’t been snapped up and turned into a TV series or a smash-hit movie and maybe even a theme park ride or two.” —Jonathan Ross
“I like Wolff and Byrd because they tend to do the right thing. They take on the system on behalf of the outcasts, the “different” ones, the rejects . . . They defend the sanctity of the individual and (as long as he, she, or it doesn’t initiate force) the right to be different.” —F. Paul Wilson
“At first blush, a book about lawyers representing classic monsters might be suspected of being as broad and slapstick as my cherished “Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein.” But instead, Batton has derived humor out of characters and those characters continue to grow and evolve, refusing to remain one-joke sitcom stars or pre-Stan Lee cardboard comic book heroes. There is not only humor in his work, but satire, sarcasm, and parody. It’s all just so damn clever, and has been so for more than thirty-five years.” —Michael Uslan
Risks and challenges
Our goal is to get the book printed in time for Comic-Con in San Diego in July. That means production will be on a tight schedule, but it also means that backers who are at the show will be able to pick up their book (and some of the backer rewards in person at the Exhibit A Press booth. The other challenge is fulfilling international orders, but having done a few Kickstarter projects, we think we have that figured out.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)