There's A South African Comics Easter Egg In Resident Evil: The Final Chapter


By: Mandy J Watson
Posted: 3 February 2017
Category: features
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South African comics are represented in the final instalment of the Resident Evil film franchise both in front of and behind the camera. The standout appearance is in a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment so here's what to look out for when you watch the movie.

A South African comic makes a brief appearance in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, the sixth (and supposedly final) movie in the Resident Evil film franchise.

There's A South African Comics Easter Egg In Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

In the film, which was largely shot and produced in Cape Town from September 2015 to December 2015, a key early scene takes place in a cable car heading up to the top of Table Mountain, the city's iconic landmark. During this scene, which features a group of school children on a field trip, we briefly see a young girl (I think played by Lee Raviv) and boy reading a comic instead of, strangely, enjoying the view. The comic in question is Velocity Macabre, a South African-Australian anthology that features short comic stories by creators from both countries.

There's A South African Comics Easter Egg In Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

Velocity Macabre was published in 2015 and was launched in Cape Town at Readers Den Comic Shop's Free Comic Book Day celebrations (which went on to become FanCon Cape Town Comic Con in 2016). The comic was a departure from the previous Velocity publications, which focused on fantasy and science fiction stories, by being strictly a horror anthology. It was published by Moray Rhoda (South Africa) and Neville Howard (Australia) and features work by South Africans such as Daniël Hugo, Frankie Murrey (the co-ordinator of Cape Town's annual Open Book Festival and Open Book Comics Fest), and Jason Bronkhorst.

The comic's wraparound cover, which is what's visible, briefly, in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, was designed and illustrated by Nicolas Rix and features nods to all sorts of horror themes and things that go bump in the night including vampires, bats, spiders, mummies, skulls, and potions.

There's A South African Comics Easter Egg In Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
Above: Velocity Macabre's wraparound cover by Nicolas Rix.
Sadly Velocity Macabre doesn't feature any zombies but you can find some in earlier anthologies in the series. However, before you go running out to buy the last remaining copies stashed away at Readers Den Comic Shop and The Book Lounge in Cape Town just be aware that Velocity, including Velocity Macabre, is not really suitable for young children.

There's A South African Comics Easter Egg In Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
Above: An early cover-design sketch by Nicolas Rix.
If you're keen to see part of the scene in which the comic appears you can find it below in the trailer at about the 49-second mark. If you haven't seen the movie and would rather not spoil it then I'd recommend not watching the trailer yet.


YouTube link

Velocity Macabre isn't the only connection South African comics has to Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, however.

The wardrobe department, which was headed by costume designer Reza Levy, needed some extra assistance at the last minute so Deon de Lange, the creator of Gofu and co-creator of Tomica, was brought in to help with the costume designs for Abigail (Ruby Rose) and Cobalt (Rola).

Kit Beukes, the creator of Wrath and a contributor to the first Velocity anthology, was also brought in to help and worked there a little longer than De Lange, whose help was only needed for a week. When I checked the credits during the media screening I sadly didn't see De Lange's name in the list but I did see Beukes's listed in the wardrobe department section (as Christopher Beukes).

I think the costume department did a great job in this film and gave the female characters respectful, functional clothing, which was great to see after the fetish getup in Resident Evil: Retribution and the clone pleather in Resident Evil: Afterlife.

With the number of high-profile films and TV series now being shot in Cape Town there is a lot of opportunity to sneak local comics (and local comics creators) into the productions. Let's hope that Velocity Macabre's appearance is the first of many for South African comics.

Velocity Graphic Anthology: Official Site, DeviantArt, Facebook

Tags: #books, #cape_town, #comics, #horror, #horror, #screen, #speculative_fiction, #zombies






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