FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
On October 23, Oni Press will release the third volume in their magical comedy series Spell Checkers. Written by Jamie S. Rich, with art by Nicolas Hitori de and Joëlle Jones, SPELL CHECKERS VOLUME 3: CARELESS WHISPER caps the first trilogy by ringing out the school year, sending its teen witch anti-heroines to prom.
“When Spell Checkers started back in the day, we always had an eye on doing three,” Rich commented. “The stories were designed with that in mind. While each volume reads as its own thing, as a package, you’re getting an entire school year. Given how much of what happens hinges on the vicious social landscape that makes high school what it is, it just seemed natural to send the girls to the big dance.”
Originally conceived by Rich and Jones, Spell Checkers has often been described as “Mean Girls with magic.” The comics follow three teenage witches–Cynthia, Kimmie, and Jesse–who rule their school with wicked spells and even wickeder one-liners. “I wanted to go with a pretty basic formula for rude comedies,” Rich said.
“Though the central characters may be on top of the heap, they are also pretty stupid and deserving of every comeuppance they get. At the same time, they’re the only ones who fail to see how badly they keep messing up. The plot of CARELESS WHISPER actually centers on them paying for past misdeeds, with a rival we’ve seen before teaming up with one we haven’t to cause all kinds of trouble on the dance floor.”
Rejoining Rich for this graphic novel are the series artists, Joëlle Jones and Nicolas Hitori de. As with the first two books, Jones provides the cover and flashback sequences, while Hitori de draws the main timeline. “It’s always fun to see how our work goes together,” Hitori de says. “Joëlle’s style is more realistic than mine, so it’s a bit backwards that she draws all the characters when they are younger, but it’s also sort of humorous. By the time the girls are in high school, they are, for lack of a better term, more ‘cartoony.’ They don’t live in the real world.”
“Writing Spell Checkers is a bit of a juggling act,” Rich added. “On one hand, you have these girls who are kind of cruel and never really learn anything, and on the other, I do want people to like them and care about what happens to them. Writers say this all the time and it sounds dopey, but the girls really did take on more dimension the more I hung around with them. The secret is that, deep down, they care the most about the things they claim to care about the least. Hence, in CARELESS WHISPER, Cynthia reveals that she wants to be Prom Queen. No tricks, no magic, she wants to win that crown. But, you know, famous last words….”
“People always ask how Jamie can write such bratty teenage girls,” Hitori de said. “I answer, ‘Are you kidding? Spend five minutes with him, he’s a jerk.’ But just like he does in real life, he makes me laugh when I read the scripts. The difference is, at least he’s not insulting me!”
“Well, except for that bonus comic I had Chynna Clugston Flores draw,” Rich replied. “That was written with the express intention of insulting you.”
SPELL CHECKERS VOLUME 3: CARELESS WHISPER goes on sale from Oni Press on October 24 and retails for $11.99. It has 152 black-and-white pages and is intended for teen audiences and older.
Current Soundtrack: Pet Shop Boys, Behaviour: Further Listening 1990-1991