With the feature film adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s award-winning novel “Coraline” ready to hit theatres on February 6, CBR News sat down with the venerable author to discuss the movie. However, we discovered quickly a previously unannounced project for DC Comics: alongside fellow comics legend Mike Allred (“Madman,” "X-Statix"), Gaiman will pen a new story starring none other then The Element Man himself, Metamorpho.
Also known as Rex Mason, Metamorpho is familiar subject matter for Gaiman, and for many of his fans as well. The author had a brush with the character when he wrote the death of Element Girl, Metamorpho’s sidekick, in the memorable “The Sandman” chapter called “Façade.” “The Sandman” was also the home of the first pairing between Gaiman and Allred, who drew “The Golden Boy” chapter, telling the story of Prez Rickard, the youngest President of an alternate reality United States.
Neil Gaiman got involved with the Metamorpho story, which is yet untitled, when artist Allred contacted him to find out if Gaiman would be interested in writing something for him. “Allred said, ‘Have you ever wanted to write a Metamorpho comic, and have you ever wanted to write one for me?” Gaiman recalled. “I thought, ‘You know, I have such fondness for those original Bob Haney/Ramona Fradon comics, and I love Mike Allred’s art.”
Of course, Gaiman agreed to Allred’s proposal before his career kicked into an even higher gear and his latest novel, “The Graveyard Book,” won the prestigious Newbery Medal. As such, time is scarce. “I didn’t know I was going to be winning the Newbery Medal [and] I thought, ‘Yeah, I would be able to fit [Metamorpho] in between things,” Gaiman laughed. “Now, of course, I am fitting it in between sleeping and eating. I grab five minutes here and try and write a little bit of Metamorpho.”
At just twelve pages, Gaiman’s Metamorpho story appears to be but one piece of a larger Mike Allred project for DC . “He’s doing this strange wonderful project, the entire nature of which I do not quite understand, save that this thing is going to be published in giant oversized pages,” Gaiman explained. “It’s a twelve page comic; so that’s the thing I’m doing for Mike and you’ll probably here more of that from DC.”