‘Army Of Darkness: Ash Saves Obama’ Artist Todd Nauck On Spider-Man, Barack & Celebrity Team-Ups

Mark my words: This is so crazy, it is absolutely, positively going to work. The latest comic to feature U.S. President Barack Obama will team him up with S-Mart Employee of the Month Ashley J. Williams — the character better known as “Ash” to fans of the “Evil Dead” and “Army of Darkness” franchise.

Published by Dynamite Entertainment, “Army of Darkness: Ash Saves Obama” will feature Bruce Campbell’s boomstick-toting alter ego teaming up with the new, comics-friendly Commander-in-Chief to thwart the Deadites’ latest invasion of the mortal plane. Featuring a story by Elliot Serrano (“Xena/Army of Darkness”), interior art by Ariel Padilla and covers by “Spider-Man/Obama” artist Todd Nauck, the four-issue series unfolds at one of the scariest places on Earth: a crowded comic convention.

I spoke to Nauck about his latest foray into the world of Obama comics, and received a peek at his preliminary, penciled cover to “Ash Saves Obama” — which I’m passing along to Splash Page readers here.

While Dynamite has been publishing “Army of Darkness” comics for several years now, “Ash Saves Obama” will be Nauck’s first work in the cult-favorite horror universe, which has seen its hero match up with such properties as H.P. Lovecraft’s “ReAnimator,” “Darkman,” “Xena” and a three-way brawl with both “Nightmare on Elm Street” villain Freddy Krueger and “Friday the 13th” brute Jason Voorhees. However, Nauck has had plenty of experience drawing the new President, thanks to the massive success of his “Amazing Spider-Man” story with writer Zeb Wells that featured the U.S. President.

“I’d seen ’Army of Darkness’ way back in the day, but I just went online to grab some screencaps of Ash and Deadites and stuff, and dropped them into more of a present-day world,” Nauck told MTV News. As for Obama, the artist said he simply “pulled up the photo reference I’d saved when I did the Spider-Man comic.”

In “Ash Saves Obama,” the “Evil Dead” hero finds himself at a comic convention with the new U.S. President, once again saving the world from the Necronomicon — the book that turns people into undead demons looking to “swallow the souls” of anyone in their immediate vicinity.

“They let me have fun coming up with each issue’s cover to reflect that chapter of the story,” explained Nauck of the four covers he’ll be providing for the series.

While he couldn’t say much about the plot of the series, I did get Nauck to reveal the celebrity/superhero team-up he’s dying to draw — but only if Wells writes it.

“Conan O’Brien pretty much meeting anyone from the Marvel Universe,” laughed Nauck. “Conan meeting Hulk might be fun — something so completely opposite ends of the spectrum that you wouldn’t expect it. Where could this story go if Conan O’Brien teamed up with the Hulk?”

You listening, Marvel? Get the newly minted “Tonight Show” host on the phone!

“Army of Darkness: Ash Saves Obama” #1 hits shelves in August. Check out the full cover below, as well as an exclusive Splash Page peek at Nauck’s final, pencil design for the cover. You can click on each thumbnail for a larger version of the image.

Where does “Ash Saves Obama” fit in the lineup of Obama comics thus far? Any other team-ups you’d like to see? What do you think of Nauck’s design for the first issue’s cover?

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