Joe Badon is on his fifth Kickstarter project. His previous three were all comics related, and all have been successful. The Man with Ten Thousand Eyes, his latest crowdfunded venture, is “a surrealist, sci-fi, horror drama with a touch of romantic comedy.” Think of it as Kafka’s The Metamorphosis told through the sensibilities of Crumb.
The narrative follows Wendell, a run-of-the-mill cubicle dweller who one day wakes up with a third eye. This extrasensory organ seems like a blessing at first, granting him the standard arsenal of psychic abilities, but Wendell soon finds out that his extra eye is just the beginning. More and more eyes start popping up all over his body as his gift soon runs amok.
The Man with Ten Thousand Eyes is a 32-page story, rendered in black, white and blue, with occasional splashes of full color. By embracing the absurdity of Wendell’s predicament, Badon intends to craft a work of fiction that speaks toward the existential dilemma inherent to being human.
Only eight days into his campaign, Badon is cruising past the halfway mark with plenty of time remaining. It doesn’t take a third eye to predict that we’ll see yet another Kickstarter success from an exceptionally unique voice in indie comics. The digital version starts at $5, and for $7 he’ll ship it to you anywhere in the world.
Enforcer is a crime drama with a dark fantasy setting, or “supernatural noir,” as creator Brian Funk dubs it. At the heart of the story is Irish mob enforcer Bobby Callahan. He and his crew stole a cursed artifact, and are subsequently faced with a decision: Hand it over to the infernal Underlord to preserve their own hide, or ensure that it doesn’t fall into malevolent hands to save their city.
Written by Funk, this project also features the talents of industry veterans. Illustrator Artyom Trakhanov, whose work is perhaps best showcased in Image’s Undertow miniseries, is tackling the primary art duties. He is joined by colorist Ryan Cody and letterer Thomas Mauer, both of whom have had their work published by the likes of Dark Horse, Dynamite and Image.
Their Kickstarter is budgeted to bring the first of Enforcer‘s five issues to print. They are staring down the 50% mark with plenty of time left. You have 24 days to back their book and land some additional content in the process. The print issue ships worldwide to anybody who pledges $5 or more (postage fee is not included); pledging for a copy is a steal that would impress even a career criminal like Bobby Callahan.
Rooted in dystopian science fiction, Akeron is an interactive graphic novel that presents a world where art has been forgotten. Writer and film-industry veteran William Maher describes the setting as a reality stripped of heroes. Culture is the first victim in this dismal future — mankind has lost its spark. This was no accident, rather there are authoritarian forces at work who benefit from a subdued populace. (As always.) It obviously wouldn’t be much of a story if things stayed this bleak, and Maher’s agents for change in Akeron are a group of adolescents. They begin to question the history of the world after accidentally discovering artwork buried amidst the rubble and ruins of their broken landscape.
Inspiration for this story stems from the years Maher has worked in Hollywood as a director and VFX supervisor. Over the course of his career he had a hand in bringing many comic-book adaptations to the silver screen, films like Mars Attacks!, X-Men, X-Men 2, and Batman & Robin. Akeron is a response to seeing mass media converge on the superhero craze. It is a hypothetical Earth where nothing of the sort is permitted.
Perhaps the most notable aspect of this book is that it experiments with the limitations of storytelling via sequential images. Maher envisioned his tale as a motion comic, where key scenes will include elements of animation, sound effects and background music. This necessitates a larger production team, and a budget to match it. Gustavo Garcia is the series’ illustrator, and he is joined by a supporting cast of colorists, animators, coders/ developers, animators, composers and sound designers.
There’s no way a writeup could ever properly indicate how innovative this new form of digitally distributed comics can be. Team Akeron has 20 days left to raise a hefty sum of $13k to fund the remaining episodes of their 12-issue epic. Last I checked, they’ve passed the $5,000-mark. Seventeen dollars is the price of admission for the completed motion comic, with larger pledges granting backers early access to the episodes as they are finished in addition to the usual mix of prints and exclusives.
Physician assistant Jorge Muniz has been publishing one-panel illustrations on his website that breakdown concepts for medical students and professionals. He originally used these drawings to reinforce his own knowledge while studying. Soon though the idea caught on, and his work is now being used in various academic institutions. He’s turning to Kickstarter to fund a printed collection of his efforts. I’m the furthest thing from a medical professional, so I figure it might be best to introduce the project through Muniz’s own account:
Studying medicine can be tedious and difficult. It’s hard to remember the vast amounts of information required to pass tests and recertification exams. One of the most frustrating feelings in the world is staring at a question during an exam, and not quite being able to recall the answer. “I just studied this!” you say to yourself, but the details of the memory just aren’t clear enough.
Medcomic solves this migraine problem by combining high quality art and humor to make memorizing medical concepts easy and fun. You’ll be so entertained it’ll feel like you’re procrastinating, but you’ll actually be gaining and retaining medical knowledge! Medcomic has been adopted by university professors all around the world in an effort to engage students and eliminate classroom cases of SIHB (Sleep Induced Head Bobbing).
The campaign for Medcomic is in good shape. It has passed the 75% mark with over a week remaining. The book itself costs $45, collecting of two years’ worth of work. Not bad when you consider most textbooks cost a million dollars. Head over to Medcomic.com to see more of Muniz and his unique study aid — ya might just learn a thing or two!