It took a while, but we can finally pull back the curtain on a project that, in many ways, sparked the creation of Evileye Books.
Downcast is an original graphic novel series created, written and art directed by the multi-talented, Bernie Gonzalez. If Bernie's name rings a bell, it's because he's already hard at work on a crime noir series for Evileye Books, The Hard Easy. The sequential art is by Andrew Huerta, which some of you may know from his work on the Underworld comic last year.
Downcast: Crown of Ashes is book one of a four-part series, and will debut in late 2011.
Here's the official synopsis:
Taking place in a post-apocalyptic netherworld, Downcast’s sweeping narrative focuses on Sinner—a battle-weary immortal bent on living out his unending existence on the outskirts of civilization.
That is until he is offered a deal by a devil known only as Vermillion—a deal promising Sinner the closest thing to heaven he can possibly attain: the soldier’s paradise of Elysian.
In return, Sinner must find and kill Persephone, Vermillion’s former lover and queen.
If he can survive a horde of hellish creatures and withstand Persephone’s unearthly powers, Sinner can end his eternal torment and secure his only chance at salvation.
Featuring fast-paced action, gothic horror, and apocalyptic folklore, Sinner’s epic journey begins in Downcast: Crown of Ashes, an original graphic novel in the vein of Gladiator and Lord of the Rings.
Patience Has Its Benefits
We've been sitting on this announcement since late 2004.
That's not a typo.
Bernie is one of those rare talents whose vision is so complete, there are backstories to backstories and every panel and dialogue is carefully choreographed and replete with meaning. And like every artist's artist, Andrew has breathed life into every line he has set down in this 140-plus page epic. In our hurried society, with nearly non-existant attention spans, it's a miracle creators like Bernie and Andrew can exist at all, let alone comics. As you'll see by the teaser pages below, the wait has been worth it.
You can check out more preview artwork at the Evileye blog.
The 14-page story was written by Jason Mullikin and is slated to be in the upcoming Digital Webbing: Future Fables Anthology.
Considering this was the first time I have ever even looked at a video camera, I have to say that I'm happy with the results. It's amazing what an HD Flipcam, Windows Movie Maker, and lots of editing can produce.
I was going for a French Connection vibe so I hope that comes across. But more importantly, I hope this gets folks interested in my upcoming prose and graphic novel, The Hard Easy; the first installment in the Deacon series for Evileye Books.
Thanks for watching and let me know what you think.
THE HARD EASY
Crime noir at its grittiest, blood spittin', backstabbin' best
There are criminals, and then there are professionals. Deacon is a pro, making his living by following a few simple rules...
Stay off the radar. Work alone. Live to cash another paycheck.
But Deacon slipped. A million dollar mistake. And now he’s gotta pay it all back. Ten jobs, $100k each, and then he’s free and clear.
If he can make it through each one, Deacon might just get his life back…one job at a time.
That's the setup for The Hard Easy, a graphic novel and prose fiction series coming from writer Bernie Gonzalez and Evileye Books.
The Hard Easy will debut this fall with the first graphic novel, a Richard Stark meets John Woo take on crime noir that promises to deliver brawls and betrayals at blockbuster breakneck speed.
"Bernie Gonzalez is one of those rare talents that goes under the radar of most tastemakers in an industry, and suddenly one day—BAM!—he explodes on the scene, and people go gooseneck crazy wondering where the hell he came from," said A.N. Ommus, Editorial Director of Evileye Books. "So get ready is all I'm saying."
Under the agreement with Evileye Books, Mr. Gonzalez will develop both graphic novels and book-length fiction. Evileye Books will begin giving readers behind-the-scenes looks at The Hard Easy beginning in June, as we lead up to the first graphic novel release.
Mr. Gonzalez will also develop a second series, which will be announced later this summer.
I didn't have time to do a full blown comic but here's my contribution...
Make sure to check out the Jabberwacky website where you can download the comic...for FREE!