Never let it be said that Dave Johnson isn't good to his Twitter followers. After last week's reveal of the five connected covers for Vertigo's 100 Bullets Omnibuses, today the artist, who promised something special when he reached 10,000 followers, posted his designs for a criminally unproduced animated version of Micronauts, inspired by the 1980s Marvel comic from Bill Mantlo and Michael Golden, considered by many to be a standout series from that era.

Johnson talked a bit about the abandoned project on his Facebook page:

 

Here's the Micronauts pitch that ALMOST made it to TV. But then Hasbro bought the rights and basically killed the show. It was gonna be sooooo sweet. The story was great, and it would have been a childhood dream come true. Oh well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Micronauts were a toyline created by Japanese company Takara in 1974. They made their way to the United States a few years later, courtesy of the Mego corporation. As for the comic, that came about when writer Mantlo saw his son playing with the toys one Christmas morning, and was almost instantly inspired to create a comic based on their adventures. He pitched the idea to then Marvel editor-in-chief Jim Shooter, and the publisher acquired the rights for the comics license for the figures. The illustrious Michael Golden was brought on as the artist, and the rest is history.

 

 

 

Looking at these images, I feel a bit torn. On the one hand, this is fantastic art, and I'm glad Johnson decided to share it. On the other hand, we all may have been happier not knowing how close we came to a show that would have been manifestly wonderful. It might come as some consolation to know that, back in 2009, Hasbro acquired the Micronauts rights, and announced plans for a movie that would involve J.J. Abrams. Still, that doesn't help when you read tweets like this:

 

 


 

That just hurts.

 

[Via Dave Johnson's Twitter]