Bryan Q Miller, author of Stephanie Brown’s wonderful two year Batgirl Vol. 3 stint and of Smallville (both TV and it’s new Digital First comic) fame has had it a bit rough the past year. His pitch alongside Gail Simone to get Stephanie Brown unbenched from the reboot’s as a member of an all new female group featuring other heroines like Bumblebee and Misfit were shot down repeatedly despite multiple revisions. Then after months of keeping it secret, followed by official announcement, public interviews and an extremely warm response from fans and press; Miller’s attempt to instate Stephanie as Smallville’s canon Nightwing for the digital comic series was suddenly behind the scenes dismissed by editorial and changed (generally in inking only) to that of Barbara Gordon. Bryan was meanwhile also removed from a Superman panel at a convention whilst the news broke. It was a move so petty and spiteful that even non-Stephanie Brown fans and Marvel fans alike, made comments on how the entire thing was truly a raw deal and incredibly unprofessional of DC and outright cruel to both Bryan and to Stephanie’s fans.
But it looks like Bryan has been revving up his engines in secret and has been venturing into the great unknown of “do it yourself”. He has teamed up with the extremely popular and upcoming artist Marcio Takara of Boom! Studios The Incredibles and DC Comic’s own Blue Beetle and a perpetual favorite on tumblr and have together launched a Kickstarter campaign for EARTHWARD, a in their own words; “A full color, 110-page graphic novel celebrating adventure, exploration and family. IN SPACE!”
Look at that cool ship. Sound too good to be true? Well, it is very much real; and it needs your support. Did I mention Takara’s art is gorgeous?
The plot is as advertised; a space family adventure for all ages. And I am floored by what they are attempting to do. From their Kickstarter:
The MERCURY SIX, consisting of Eldest BEN and his hot-tempered sister, ALYSSA; SMACK, the hustler; CODY and TRIN, the learned, proper set of twins; and little DANIELLA, orphaned by a SPACE PIRATE assault, then taken in as one of Mercury’s own.are sent on a standard supply run, but return to find Mercury adrift, and their respective parents missing. The only clue as to what happened – a warning recorded by their trusty TEACHBOT:
“DON’T COME LOOKING FOR US.”
The quest to piece their family back together will take them to the edge of known space and back, with the Armada, the Council and Space Pirates, all in hot pursuit. The one thing everyone wants, everyone needs, is the SECRET PROJECT the parents of the Mercury Six were working on:
THEIR PARENTS FOUND EARTH!
The need for an all ages, fun, heartfelt but smart comics for kids and teens (and adults alike) is very much needed. Graphic novels too. DC in particular hasn’t been doing any favors cancelling the relatively new Superman Family Adventures comic. EARTHWARD sounds like a breath of fresh air.
From Bryan Q Miller:
The goal is to create a piece of Graphic fiction that can be enjoyed by both children AND adults, while pandering to neither – a line that is rarely ridden in the current climate.
That said, while trying to make this as all-ages as possible, there is still some danger and space violence (explosions, blasters, etc.) present that may be uncomfortable for a reader younger than age 7. “Earthward” definitely wanders into the “PG”-range of the media spectrum.
The secondary goal, of course, is to have this be the first in a yearly series of adventures for the Mercury Six.
Bryan and Marcio wants to make these wonderful space adventures a yearly reality for young and old alike; will you be joining in to ensure lift-off?