Interview: Troy Nixey Continues Trout's Travels In New Mini-Series

Dark Horse is bringing Trout back in a new mini-series with the original creative team of Troy Nixey and Dave Stewart.

Trout: The Hollowest Knock picks up when Giuseppe and Trout are run out of Upton. Sick and distraught the two have no other option but to travel across the ocean to Giuseppe’s childhood village. Trout is lost along the way and Giuseppe is forced to deal with his brother’s meddling in order to find the mysterious little boy he’s sworn to protect. 

Troy Nixey talked to PREVIEWSworld about the next chapter for Trout and what makes the series so special to him. Trout: The Hollowest Knock #1 (APR190308) is available June 19th at your local comic shop. 

PREVIEWSworld: Obviously, this is the next chapter of Trout. What’s the background info needed to get into this story? What is Trout all about?

Troy Nixey: Trout is an odd, quiet little boy who despite his desire for a life away from the rest of the world is dragged into supernatural fueled adventures. Giuseppe Lint, who has sworn to protect him, also takes his lumps from the motley crew of dubious weirdos who haunt Trout. 

Trout and Giuseppe first appeared in Dark Horse Presents back in 1999 and again in 2001 from Oni. The new four issue mini-series features story elements from these series but isn't completely dependent on them to drive the narrative. Readers can pick up the new series without reading the previous Trout tales. There might be enough mystery hinted at from the previous stories for readers to want to pick up the recently published Trout: Bits & Bobs from Dark Horse, which contains every bit of Trout business I've created over the years, but it's not necessary.  

PREVIEWSworld: The character designs in Trout are truly unique. Kind of like if your favorite ‘90s Nickelodeon cartoon character are stuck in a nightmare. How would you describe the feel of the characters and the book overall? 

Troy Nixey: Perhaps a little more Miyazaki meets Dr. Seuss than Nickelodeon. Hahaha. Trout represents all of my childhood influences more than any of my other books. From the aforementioned Dr. Seuss to Looney Tunes, Mad Magazine and Tintin. and movies like Star Wars and ET—they're all rolled into one big pot of what fuels me to create. 

You can imagine that's a pretty odd mix of elements. Hahaha. They mix well though and I think helped build my unique storytelling voice. 

PREVIEWSworld: You seem to perfectly blend both elements of horror and comedy in this series. What’s the process in doing that? How are these genres similar and/or different? 

Troy Nixey: I love comedy! I'm a huge fan of standup, sketch comedy, low-brow humor and the silent comedy greats like Chaplin, Lloyd and Keaton. I also love creepy monsters and ghost stories. For me it was always natural to blend my loves together...perhaps because I wasn't a strong enough writer at the beginning of my career to do either justice on their own. The blending works though, I think it's important to keep readers on their toes so grossing them out on one page then adding a wink or a guffaw the next keeps them guessing. 

PREVIEWSworld: What makes Trout a character you wanted to write and draw again? Why should audiences root for him? 

Troy Nixey: As scary and odd as the world of Trout is at times it's also very personal. Trout represents a traumatic experience from my childhood and while I didn't connect it at the time, his first two tales in 1999 and 2001 were obviously me trying to work through it. It wasn't until I hit my 40s before I realized the impact of the trauma on my life and how Trout's tales reflected it. This new tale is me fulfilling a promise to myself to give Trout and Giuseppe a happy ending. The journeys they take are perilous but they get there in the end and I'm glad they do. As strange as Trout is, I hope readers find there's a lot of heart and love that the characters have for one another, and that they connect to Trout through his innocence. 

PREVIEWSworld: What’s next for Trout in the rest of this series? 

Troy Nixey: Trout represents the emotional aspect of my childhood trauma and Giuseppe represents the physical. Both take very different but equally difficult journeys to achieve what they both deserve. the four issues are full of oddities and struggles, ups and downs, heartfelt moments and shocking adventure! Everything I believe a good story should have. I hope readers find the journey entertaining and worthwhile. It was definitely worthwhile for me to put it to paper. 

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