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Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips Go Hollywood Noir With ‘The Fade Out’ [Preview]

Writer Ed Brubaker and artist Sean Phillips have collaborated on a number of different spins of the noir variety over the years: hard-luck stories (Criminal), supervillain parables (Incognito), even mixing in Lovecraftian on occasion  (Fatale). Now, the creative team is taking on another aspect of noir: old Hollywood’s seedy underbelly.

The first project announced since the two inked their five-year carte blanche deal with Image Comics, The Fade Out will kick off August 20 with a 40-page first issue which will include exclusive back-matter articles not to be collected in later editions. Readers can also buy an oversized “movie magazine replica” edition of The Fade Out #1, with eight extra pages of art.

Image’s press release about the new series describes it thusly:

An intricate and groundbreaking crime story on a level Brubaker and Phillips have never tackled before, THE FADE OUT weaves a tangled web through the underbelly of a 1948 Hollywood… A noir film stuck in endless reshoots. A writer plagued with nightmares from the war and a dangerous secret. An up-and-coming starlet’s suspicious death. And a maniacal studio mogul and his security chief who will do anything to keep the cameras rolling before the Post-War boom days come crashing down. THE FADE OUT is the most ambitious series yet from the award-winning Noir Masters.


Brubaker & Phillips’ are fixtures on Best-Of lists year after year so it’s no surprise that Image has solicited pull quotes from an auspicious line up of writers including Brian K. Vaughan, Warren Ellis, Robert Kirkman, Matt Fraction, Rick Remender, Joe Hill, Kieron Gillen, Brian Michael Bendis and Jonathan Hickman. You can click over here to read what those gentlemen had to say about The Fade Out, because here we’ve only got room for the reliably amusing Kelly Sue DeConnick:

“Two of the best in the business, no contest.” —Kelly Sue DeConnick
“I never know what to say in these things” —Kelly Sue DeConnick
“Seriously, just buy the [expletive deleted] book. I promise you’ll like it. Unless you’re [expletive deleted].” —Kelly Sue DeConnick
“I don’t think we’re supposed to say [expletive deleted] anymore.” —Kelly Sue DeConnick
“Forget I said that.” —Kelly Sue DeConnick (PRETTY DEADLY, Captain Marvel)

Featuring the color art of Elizabeth Breitwiser, The Fade Out book follows in the footsteps of some great Hollywood noirs, the most famous of which is likely Sunset Boulevard, though readers may better remember more recent films such as L.A. Confidential. Either way, it’s a well-established genre that Phillips and Brubaker will almost assuredly have a lot of fun with.


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