Part of me is tempted to just move the Spangly New Thing name to the latest project, and have whatever is my next book always known as Spangly New Thing. Spangly New Thing! Once and future Spangly!
Spangly Announced Thing
Dancing In The Dark
In The Grim Future There Is Only Frog People Who Are Actually Kind Of Nice
So there you go. DIE (aka Spangly New Thing). It’s Stephanie Hans, Clayton Cowles and my own new ongoing, out December. What’s it about? Here’s a three page teaser trailer we’ve pulled together which gives you a taste…
We’re pleased with how that turned out. It’s only the core opening myth of the series (Or “First It” if we’re looking at my guide to first issues). To be honest, it’s not even that – we want to keep as much mythic and wonderful as we can for people to come in clean. It’s a fantasy comic, and we want to make opening the pages of the comic as magical as opening the wardrobe and finding Narnia back there.
More details? The first interview over at Hollywood Reporter gives you a lot, with Stephanie and I both throwing around ideas. Here’s a quote which is basically its origin story…
The specific idea came at San Diego 2016. Jamie [McKelvie, Gillen’s creative partner on Phonogram and The Wicked + The Divine], Ray Fawkes and I were wandering around buying ice cream and just riffing. I said “I wonder what ever happened to those kids in the 1980s D&D cartoon?” We joked around it a bit — historically, they escaped in the last episode which they never recorded — and just thought of these people who’d survived a D&D game gone wild, now well into their adulthood. So we made some jokes, and carried on eating our ice cream.
It stuck in my head all day, and I chewed it over, had some more ideas, and by 8 p.m. I spontaneously burst into tears during dinner when I realized what the story was about, and it instantly jumped up to the top of the list of stories I had to tell immediately. I threw the other story in the bin, pitched DIE at Stephanie, and started all the research I needed to do.
Stephanie and I have been wanting to work together forever – Journey Into Mystery 645 is one of my favourite things I’ve ever done, and this comes straight from there. The Earth needs a fantasy world created by Stephanie Hans, and I had to enable it.
My two word cut-to-the-chase explanation is “Goth Jumanji” which certainly does the job. Being me, I’ve got a half dozen other things to throw around. Really, it’s an intense character drama about six adults whose lives have gone awry in all too human ways, set in a something that tried to do for D&D Precursor’s what Planetary did for the Superhero. It’s a lot. It’s ambitious. It’s deeply personal. It’s scarily beautiful. I think you’ll like it.
Speak to your retailer about securing a copy, obv. I’ll be doing more about pre-ordering (both digitally or physically) later. Yes, after five years, I have to try and launch a big ongoing comic. I should be tired, but in fact, I’m just excited. I’ve been waiting for two years to tell you about this.
It says a lot about this week that the release of The Wicked + the Divine isn’t the top story. It’s the end of the arc, and a key point of WicDiv. As the last issue of the penultimate arc, it’s very much where we start to head to home.
It does feel right that it comes out the same week DIE is announced. There’s something of the two passing over at this point which seems key.
Hope you like it. This arc has been a nightmare to do. Some of which you’ll see in the Writer Notes for issue 38, which I lobbed up on Monday. As always, these appear before the next issue drops. There’s a couple of weeks until WicDiv 1373 drops, which does mean I’ll have to get a move on the set for 39.
They’re already written, obv, and are just being proofed. They should be online before the next week.
In them is the name of the final WicDiv arc.
We’re also in the final run up to Thought Bubble, and hearing what the folks running the WicDiv inspired theatrical experience are up to. Which is all very exciting. However, they also ask a question – for those on twitter, do consider answering.
I loved seeing Kevin Wada showing process stuff. This is him showing his work on Baal in WicDiv 23 before he works his photoshop magic.
Simon Parkin writes about Youtuber burn out, which I find fascinating. Young people, sold a dream, which a machine slowly slices away parts of your soul. The algorithm never sleeps.
Esquire’s piece looking into The Falling Man photo from 9-11 is both excellent and entirely bleak. Clearly, read with caution.
Talking RPG stuff, I started another (probably short) campaign last night. Legacy: Life Among The Ruins is a post-apocalyptic narrative RPG. You all create a family (as in, grouping) in the wasteland, and also their main hero, and move between high level politics and your individual hero until you solve the main problem at the age, at which point you jump forward in time (6 months? Five years? 100 years? Whatever makes sense) and see what’s changed. Clearly, it’s hugely ambitious, so I’m interested to see how it actually works in play.
So far in the first session all we did was make characters. And also the world, as seen above, which is basically some Ex-military lovecraftian frog people and machines suffering from a disease (“The Ghost in the machine”) which renders them all different kinds of murderous. Plus some lovely traders, who just want to have the finer things in life, such as bodies without holes in it.
And as this is the RPG section, I’ll highlight something else about DIE I bury in the interview. I’ve totally written an RPG system for it which we plan to release as a PDF when the trade drops. I’ll say more as we go forward as well. It has been a time.
This week has been: full on. I’ve mainly been writing: Star Wars. I need to: Stop as I have an interview shortly about the history of the Warren Ellis Forum and I need to try and remember what the Internet was like circa 2000.
Slow. It was mainly slow.