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Story by Justin Jordan
Art by Rebekah Isaacs & Alex Guimaraes
SERIES PREMIERE! The continent of Madaras once promised a new start for settlers, but 200 years after its discovery, the war rages on. Deep within this savage and untamed land, a darkness builds at that must be stopped at all costs. To do so, the Imperials assemble six of its most despicable prisoners-a turncoat, a skin eater, a sorcerer and his bodyguard, a serial killer, and the Devil’s Son-the only ones who can stop the end of the new world. They are Hell’s Half-Dozen. Join JUSTIN JORDAN (LUTHER STRODE) and REBEKAH ISAACS (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) for REAVER-a dark, grim fantasy for a post-Game of Thrones world.
Diamond Code: MAY190027
FOC due JUNE 17th, 2019
In stores on JULY 10th, 2019
Why It’s Cool:
“The premise seems so obvious: it’s Game of Thrones meets the Suicide Squad; let’s take a bunch of criminals and losers and send them out on a mission where they’re all likely to be brutally killed. Isaacs and Jordan do a ton of world building and character introductions in the first issue that will surely set up a ton of stuff down the line. I’m eager to see what’s in store for the future, as well as who survives and who doesn’t, because it’s pretty much guaranteed that not everyone’s walking away from this one!” -Edward
Q&A with Justin Jordan & Rebekah Isaacs:
Tell us a little bit about REAVER. How did everything come together?
Rebekah Isaacs: I had just finished 5 years of Buffy comics, which I loved, but I was ready to change it up and do something with more blood and gore. I’m also a big fantasy fan so this was a perfect fit!
Justin Jordan: Well, I’m a big fan of grimdark fantasy. Which, yeah, is an actual subgenre. Probably the example that everyone would recognize is Game of Thrones, but it gets waaaaay grimmer and way darker than that.
That I like that kind of thing is probably not a surprise, if you’ve read my work (Strode and Spread aren’t exactly full of optimism and cheer) but I also wanted to do more with it than what you see in a lot of fantasy stuff.
What I mean is that the first arc could be described, fairly accurately, what if the Dirty Dozen was set in Game of Thrones. So it’s mixing military adventure with dark fantasy, and that kind of genre blending is going to continue to be the case: the second story is fundamentally a noir story set in a fantasy city.
What are you reading/watching/listening to as inspiration for this work?
RI: Coincidentally, I watched a bunch of classic Westerns for the first time while I was working on Reaver. Our main characters have a lot in common with the archetypes in those movies—Magnificent Seven and Wild Bunch especially comes to mind.
JJ: Joe Abercrombie, mostly. He’s an author who’s best known for the First Law trilogy, which is kind of platonic ideal for the grimdark fantasy genre. He also does some of that same genre blending—one of his books, set in the First Law world, is essentially and intentionally a Western.
When you started this project who did you have in mind as an audience for this, and did it change by the time you finished?
RI: It’s stayed the same, I think. Anyone who digs bloody, fun, and creepy Fantasy will dig this.
JJ: For me, that’s stayed pretty much the same—if you like stuff like Game of Thrones or books like Seven to Eternity, or even my Image stuff, I think you’re going to dig this. And especially if you’re digging Conan and Savage Sword of Conan.
Can you give us an idea of what readers can look forward to in this series, maybe a little down the line?
RI: Literal blood baths.
The next arc is basically my love of noir and 100 Bullets in a fantasy setting. After that I’ve got one I’d like to do that’s more or less the Princess Bride gone really, really wrong.
What’s great in comics right now that you’re currently reading?
RI: I recently picked up Little Bird and Excellence—two of the most astonishingly beautiful comics I’ve ever read!
JJ: I am terrible at this question because I am always way behind on comics. But I recently read and really enjoyed Black Monday Murders, Farmhand, Outer Darkness, and Savage Sword of Conan.
In REAVER you juggle six main characters—but which was your favorite to create?
RI: Rekala is somehow simultaneously the coolest, funniest, scariest and cutest character. I want to give her a big hug even though she would gladly dine on my eyeballs.
JJ: Oh, Rekala. I think she’s every one’s favorite. She’s one of those characters that it’s really easy to let them take over a story because she’s just that fun to write. I think everyone is going to love her. I am desperately hoping someone cosplays her.