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058 Massive-Verse Reveals!
NYCC, Bad Blood and your last chance to back Inferno Girl Red!
Hey everyone! Kyle here. Aside from my Bears imploding over the course of the last two weeks, things on this front are going well— overwhelmingly busy, but well.
We’re in the midst of NYCC prep, shoring up some really exciting announcements and today— with our Inferno Girl Red Kickstarter campaign in its final hours— we thought it might be a great moment to tell you about a few of them!
That said, we’re going to reveal these in a little bit of a different way— Mat Groom, writer and Inferno Girl Red co-creator, sat down with me to do a little Q&A, which we’re going to run in its entirety right here. This is part of a larger Inferno Girl Red Kickstarter update— where we announce that we’ve dropped the price on some of our big ticket items— but more on that after the break.
First, here’s my chat with Mat!
I know from being there for most of it that you’ve put a PHENOMENAL amount of work into the Massive-Verse– writing your own books RADIANT BLACK and NO/ONE, editing INFERNO GIRL RED, supporting on other titles, and helping to create opportunities for every book in the line. Why do you invest so much of yourself into it? What does the Massive-Verse mean to you?
KYLE: It comes from a few places. First, I love superheroes. I love the idea of what superheroes can be, how they can reflect the world outside our window, how they can be allegorical tales that– when done well– can touch on both issues of our times while also providing for fantastic wish fulfillment. And when it comes to telling these sorts of stories, I think there’s unrivaled potential when they’re creator-owned.
I’ve been very fortunate in my career to go through a variety of different work-for-hire experiences, on some big characters, and that’s been a privilege and I’ve had some great experiences. But the freedom that creator-owned allows– well, you’ve experienced it yourself, Mat, and I think the work that you and Ryan Parrott and Melissa Flores, as well as our amazing artist collaborators, have done… that’s all the proof you need. The Massive-Verse is a place where creators can really cut loose and tell the superhero stories they’ve always wanted to tell, without restriction, and I’m really proud to have played a part in helping to create that.
What made you want to edit INFERNO GIRL RED when I first pitched it to you?
KYLE: Honestly? Because I believed in you. I’ve always prided myself on trying to be a connector– maybe it comes from my filmmaking background, where you need to bring together really diverse talents and perspectives to create the best possible piece of art… it trains you to spot talent, and it motivates you to enable those talented people and connect them to other talented people so they can empower each other.
But I also think IGR played a role in inspiring the Massive-Verse in general. In many ways, I’m not sure if I would have started RADIANT BLACK if you had not pitched INFERNO GIRL RED. You helped me see the potential of meshing some of those tokusatsu influences with western superhero storytelling, which helped me coalesce my own ideas… and though we took them in quite different directions, we both had similar aspirations about what we could achieve and how far we could push things.
How would you describe INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK TWO (without spoiling it too much)?
KYLE: I think– as you said, without spoiling things too much– the thing that excites me the most about BOOK TWO is the way you’ve found a way to continue to explore the ideas of hope and what those mean– to have it, to not have it, and the dangers it can also contain– and you found some incredibly exciting and different angles to explore these ideas through.
Plus, you’ve also expanded the story in really interesting ways, giving even more weight and increasing the sense of emotional consequence in the world. At the end of Book One, Cássia lost her one-person support network. In BOOK TWO, she has to rebuild and try to form a team as everything falls apart around her and the consequences of her actions in BOOK ONE catch up. BOOK ONE was the set-up, now life is coming at Cássia from a million different directions and she’ll have to define the sort of hero she wants to be amongst it all.
What’s your take on how INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK TWO fits into the Massive-Verse?
KYLE: INFERNO GIRL RED, ROGUE SUN and RADIANT BLACK were the first three series in the Massive-Verse and as such, create the three sides of the triangle that all of the Massive-Verse stands on. So what happens to Cássia is always going to have major consequences to the entire Massive-Verse.
More specifically– those who have been reading our SUPERMASSIVE crossovers will know that Cássia came to the world of RADIANT BLACK, ROGUE SUN, THE DEAD LUCKY and the rest in our 2022 edition of SUPERMASSIVE. But, up until this point, it wasn’t clear when that fell on Cássia’s timeline, or the circumstances that led her there. But INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK TWO makes it all explicitly clear– you’ll see the story of how Cássia ended up there, and in that get a much clearer idea of how this core pillar of the Massive-Verse connects to everything else (while also continuing our approach of ensuring that everything stands alone, so you can still enjoy INFERNO GIRL RED without reading anything else, if that’s your preference).
I can also exclusively reveal here that IGR’s ties to the Massive-Verse will only continue to strengthen. While I can’t say too much, I will say that SUPERMASSIVE 2024 is happening, that Cássia plays a key role in it… and that it ties directly into THE CATALYST WAR event that’s happening in RADIANT BLACK.
Comics are the core and the heart of the Massive-Verse, but you established early on with RADIANT BLACK that our stories will expand one medium and storytelling approach. So maybe it’s time we start to tease a little bit about our plans for IGR…?
KYLE: We’ve always been interested in building superhero stories that are outside the box, and go above-and-beyond. Form and presentation and the reading experience is paramount. For example, doing IGR as deluxe premium hardcovers – that’s the way we feel best showcases the story, and Erica and Igor’s gorgeous art, so we committed to that. But that’s not the only medium we’re excited about.
We’re also building something that you’ll see soon. In fact, here’s another exclusive reveal for you: we’re working on an 8-page web comic story, written by Mat, illustrated by the incredible Eleonora Carlini, with colors by IGR’s own Igor Monti. Here’s a quick look:
I can’t reveal where you’ll be able to read it just yet, but it shouldn’t be very long until you find out. It delves deeper into Cássia’s new relationship with her new mentor, Dr. Caro, the previous Inferno Girl Red… and as Cássia looks to Dr. Caro for guidance, we get our first look at what Dr. Caro’s life as IGR was like, from her own perspective.
This is just another demonstration of how we’re committed to IGR, and why I think you should get in on it as early as possible– because there’s even more yet to come, like IGR and The Griffin’s appearance as playable fighters in the Massive-Verse Fighting Card Game, coming next year!
So I heard on the grapevine that you will have some cool Massive-Verse stuff at NYCC – maybe something to accompany the IGR pin? Could we get a sneak peek at that?
KYLE: That’s true! For the first time ever, we’re going to have a Black Market Narrative booth on the main show floor (booth 3810)! Here’s a look at some of the things we’ll have available at NYCC– pins by Kelly McMahon, and prints by Tom Whalen:
Those prints are 12x18" limited-edition screen prints, printed by Nakatomi, numbered and signed by Tom Whalen.
A reminder that while the IGR pin by Kelly will be available at NYCC, the cheapest way to get it is as an add-on for this Kickstarter!
We’ve run out of hardcovers for INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK ONE– but we’ve got a plan for that, right? So that nobody misses out on the journey the IGR journey in the final days of our campaign?
KYLE: Yes! As you mentioned, we’re not out of stock of the Kickstarter-edition hardcovers of INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK ONE– but we have a contingency plan.
Image printed their own edition of the BOOK ONE hardcover, which they’re planning on selling at certain conventions and will likely be offering in other places soon– but we’ve managed to secure some of those so we could make them available as add-ons. Its front cover is an undressed version of the trade paperback, here’s an image:
Its front cover is not exclusive to Kickstarter (unlike the other one), and so it won’t be exclusive to the campaign – but other than the front cover, everything else (all of the internal content, the spine, the back cover, the size) is the same, so it’s a great option for anyone who missed out on the KS hardcover.
Of course, if you’ve already added the other BOOK ONE hardcover as an add-on, you’re welcome to swap versions – though I wouldn’t recommend it, because it doesn’t match as nicely with the BOOK TWO hardcover, which is why we’re only making it available now as a back-up option.
Huge thanks to Mat and to everyone on team Inferno Girl Red for all their hard work as we try to get this one across the plate.
As I said up top, we have just under 72 hours left to fund this Kickstarter. And as mentioned up top, we’re dropping the prices on two tiers:
1) The DESIGN AN IGR WITH ERICA D’URSO reward tier is now just $1,200!
Here’s a reminder of what you get, there:
Cássia Costa is just the latest in a long line of Inferno Girl Reds– and this is your chance to help design one of her predecessors! Work with IGR artist/co-creator Erica D’Urso to design your very own Inferno Girl Red– by telling her your ideas, sending some references, having a video call working session with Erica, and going through a round or two of notes and redesigns!
Your finished collaboration will appear in a sequence of INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK TWO, becoming an official part of the IGR legacy… and you’ll get a pencil sketch of your collaborative creation from Erica D’Urso herself!
2) The ULTIMATE MASSIVE-VERSE PACKAGE reward tier is now $4,000!
Here’s a reminder of what you get with this top-of-the-line reward:
Are you the ultimate Massive-Verse fan? Then this is your chance to become a part of our worlds, and stand alongside our greatest heroes! The Ultimate Massive-Verse Package includes:
– Be drawn into EVERY Massive-Verse title: RADIANT BLACK, ROGUE SUN, INFERNO GIRL RED: BOOK TWO, NO/ONE and THE DEAD LUCKY! Just send us photo reference of yourself, and you’ll appear in one issue of each title– making you the only character to have done so! (Note: When and how your likeness appears will be at the discretion of the artist of each title.)
– Plus! IGR artist/co-creator Erica D’Urso will draw an illustration of you standing alongside the main heroes of the Massive-Verse– Inferno Girl Red, Radiant Black, Rogue Sun, No/One and Bibi from The Dead Lucky! And you’ll get to keep the original art!
– Before sending you the original art, Erica will scan the illustration, and it will be digitally colored by IGR colorist Igor Monti– giving you a fully-colored digital version!
And speaking of Kelly McMahon— who designed these stunning Massive-Verse pins as well as the Inferno Girl Red holographic print for the Kickstarter (putting that right here)—
—Kelly is also on the verge of launching her Bad Blood Kickstarter, a 1920’s-inspired, stylish, playing cards and a devilish murder mystery game that she’s built along with Mat Groom.
It’s a stunning piece of work, and one that I am quite proud to be a part of.
Oh, sorry, what’s that? A part of? Well what could that mean? The campaign is going live very soon— you can sign up right here to be the first to know!
Final Order Cutoff
Radiant Black 26A and 26B- 09/18/23
Last week, I mentioned that Radiant Black 26 A and B were on FOC— I was mistaken! It’s actually today!
This is your last chance to pre-order part(s) two of our event-across-timelines, The Catalyst War. And let me tell you, these issues go big. How big, you ask? Well—
Brian Buccellato, NO/ONE co-creator and co-writer, has a brand new Massive-Verse-adjacent super-contemporary superhero book on FOC today, called MIDLIFE. It’s co-created and illustrated by the incredible Stefano Simeone.
Brian’s been doing a ton of press for this one and while it’s not technically in the Massive-Verse, I refer to it as Massive-Verse adjacent because of how well the sensibility fits.
If you like what we’ve been doing on contemporary superhero comics but wish there was a Gen X option out there, this is absolutely the book for you!
Here’s more about the book, from Popverse—
And here’s the Image listing for the book is right here. Brian and Stefano have big plans— don’t sleep on this one!
Just to mention it one more time— if you’re heading to NYCC, in addition to coming to see us on the main show floor (booth 3810), you can also find us here!
Okay, that’s going to do it for me today! More soon! Go check out Inferno Girl Red
And until next time—