Coming this April from Archie Comics, it’s the return of cult-classic character ‘That Wilkin Boy’ in Chilling Adventures Presents…The Cult of That Wilkin Boy. The one-shot special from Archie Horror will be written by Cullen Bunn with art by Dan Schoening.
For the uninitiated, Woodrow “Bingo” Wilkin III is a popular high schooler and lead vocalist and guitarist for ‘The Bingoes.’ The teenaged cousin of Forsythe “Jughead” Jones, Bingo Wilkin was the star of That Wilkin Boy, an Archie-esque series that ran from 1969 to 1982.
In a statement, Archie described the issue as:
A chilling tale of fame and fandom gone wrong when rock star Bingo is offered a demonic deal he can’t refuse. Of course, it doesn’t go exactly the way crossroads exchanges usually do in traditional folklore.
Archie Comics Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante raved about the creative team in the announcement for Chilling Adventures Presents…The Cult of That Wilkin Boy:
“Getting to work with Cullen is an honor, as he’s a master of scripting horror,” said Archie Comics Senior Director of Editorial Jamie L. Rotante, “and Dan’s vivid and detailed work helps accentuate the darkest and most disturbing aspects of Cullen’s writing. I was inspired by cult-based horror movies like Mandy and Midsommar, but Cullen took it to the next level, using musician character Bingo Wilkin to tell a story that’s about the darker sides of fame. This is an unforgettable story that I know will delight all horror fans.”
Bunn spoke excitedly about the story and described how it tied back to the original series:
“The story we’re seeing in this book is closely related to the original stories; it starts in pretty much the same place for Bingo and his friends,” Bunn said. “But I wanted to explore what might happen if the story took a dark, infernal turn, so I wove in some classic demonic folklore. What would happen if Bingo got everything he wanted, but he paid a terrible price to get there? The Bingo of this story is quite a departure–an evolution or de-evolution–of the wholesome character of yesteryear, corrupted by fame and power and guilt and jealousy. He’s achieved what he thought was impossible, but his karmic payments are coming due.”
Schoening also talked about the book and the work that went into his designs:
“Music plays a big part in the character makeup of Bingo Wilkin, but instead of the classic late ‘60s pop rock aesthetic, we’ve updated him with more of a grunge/alternative rock vibe,” Schoening said. “I pulled visual inspiration from bands like Weezer, Nirvana, Beck, and Green Day. With the touches of horror throughout the tale, I directed my attention towards Harry Clarke’s Faust illustrations and the phantasmic work of Hieronymus Bosch. CULT is a haunting character study, and will relate to so many on a personal level. Sometimes the dreams we desire most, especially ones such as fame and fortune, can turn into dreadful nightmares.”
Below are the main cover for the one-shot by Shoening, along with a variant cover by Robert Hack. Chilling Adventures Presents…The Cult of That Wilkin Boy #1 is due out in stores and digitally on Wednesday, April 19th, 2023.