|Jenny Frisson cover art for Issue 1|
Buffyfest: This is Dan aka Bitsy from Buffyfest here at San Diego Comic Con and it's just been announced that there's going to be an Illyria mini series comic and that it will be written by Mariah Huehner.
Mariah: And Scott Tipton.
Buffyfest: Unbelievable. And, unexpectedly, I'm here with her again (and certainly not just been standing here the entire time). So Mariah, let's talk about it. First of all, who is doing the art on the book?
Mariah: Elena Casagrande is doing it, the one whose been doing the main Angel series, but we're deviating a little bit from that art style so there will be a mix of different things we're playing with.
Buffyfest: And how many issues is it going to be?
Mariah: It's four issues.
Buffyfest: I really want to talk about Illyria. Who is she?
Mariah: Well, you know, that's kind of the question, I think. Up until now I don't know that we've explored that fully. I think she's a really difficult character to grasp. We're talking about a demon that, and I know this has been brought up a lot on the (IDW) boards, for instance, like is she really a gender because she burned out all of Fred's organs and questions like that. I think we don't really know. We have absolutely no idea, with a massive, old demon, if that really applies. I think it's a character who has fascinated me since she was created not the least because she killed Fred and that was a horrible, heart-breaking moment but also because she's so alien. I mean she's just so completely different from everyone else and it's unclear what her motivations are. She doesn't really know what her place is and she has all these different memories from different people floating around in her head. I think, it's been a long time coming that there be some big changes for her, there needs to be a significant arc between who she is and where she'll be and that's what this story will be tackling.
Buffyfest: Now usually arc follows a certain flow. Is this going to be like so many Angel character stories? Will it be a redemptive arc?
Mariah: I wouldn't say redemptive, but I think ultimately it does let her have some closure on some things that she hasn't had before, that's never been allowed for her character before because it's always been about how other characters relate to her and less about how she's handling things because it is so hard to get into her head. That's what we're going for in the story.
Buffyfest: Do you know where in the continuity the story will be taking place?
Mariah: It will be taking place around Issue #38 of Angel and then it will be in the same time frame so she won't be in the Angel book for a while but then she'll come back.
Buffyfest: Will any of the other characters from the Angel series be turning up?
Mariah: Spike will be there for a bit, he'll help her a little, Angel will be there a little and then, though, it's really Illyria, it's all about her and what's she's doing.
Buffyfest: Do you 'ship the Spifrillyria, the Spike and Illyria relationship?
Mariah: You know, not really. I think they are a really interesting friendship. Illyria is very strange sexually.
Buffyfest: Do we have a date for when the first issue is going to drop?
Mariah: November. It should be out around the same time as Angel issue #38.