Frank Barbiere is quickly becoming one of the most prolific and visible writers in comics, having built his reputation working on both original and company-owned properties for a number of independent publishers, including Blackout and The White Suits at Dark Horse, Black Market at Boom Studios, Solar: Man Of The Atom at Dynamite, and the fan-favorite Five Ghosts at Image.
Now he's expanding even further, writing an Avengers title for Marvel, inking a deal to develop Five Ghosts in other media, and preparing to re-team with Boom for the launch of his new original series Broken World. In the midst of all this, he's somehow found the time to sit down for an in-depth conversation about his career to date, and his plans for the future, and bring us an exclusive first look at Broken World's characters, and some samples from this week's Five Ghosts #16.
Universal Cable Productions, the cable and digital arm of NBCUniversal, announced three new projects rooted in the comic book realm, including what will be Planetary and Transmetropolitan writer Warren Ellis' first original series developed especially for television. Additionally, UCP optioned Night Mary, a 2005 IDW drama by Rick Remender and Kieron Dwyer about a young woman trained to enter the dreams of serial killers; and Five Ghosts, the recent critical hit from Image Comics/Black Mask Studios and creators Frank Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham, who tell the story of Fabian Gray, a 1930s adventurer possessed by the spirits of five literary ghosts — Merlin, Robin Hood, Sherlock Holmes, Miyamoto Musashi, and Dracula. Five Ghosts began as a miniseries but its success resulted in an upgrade to ongoing, and now, it seems, an "upgrade" (because comics are the best, obviously) to television.
When it was announced in August that Five Ghosts-- from creators Frank Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham -- was becoming an ongoing, it came as welcome news to readers, but probably shouldn't have been much of a surprise. The story of Fabian Gray, an adventurer possessed by the spirits of five literary ghosts -- Merlin, Robin Hood, Sherlock Holmes, Miyamoto Musashi, and Dracula -- Five Ghosts is a throwback pulp story, if you will, and one that we've been on board with from the beginning.
Originally intended to be a five issue miniseries, issue six of the title, featuring guest artist Garry Brown, arrives in stores next. A stand-alone tale, the issue sees Fabian travel to Japan to aid an ally in the search for the mythical sword Masamune. Image Comics has provided us with a six page preview of the story, which you can view below.
A common set of questions at every Valiant Comics panel since Dark Horse wrapped their stint on the properties has been about what's up with a group of characters originally published by Gold Key but later licensed by Valiant in the 1990s: Turok: Dinosaur Hunter, Solar: Man of the Atom and Magnus: Robot Fighter.
Those questions can be put to bed now, as Dynamite Entertainment, not Valiant, has announced a new line of comics via a license with Dreamworks Classics. Also part of the deal is Doctor Spektor, an "occult detective" character who hasn't been seen since a Gold Key run in the mid '70s aside from a series of reprints from Dark Horse.
Some of the best comics come from the simplest ideas. Those ideas that seem to straddle the line between inventive and obvious so delicately, you want to hit yourself for not thinking of it first. Image's Five Ghosts: The Haunting of Fabian Gray by Frank Barbiere and Chris Mooneyham is built around such an idea. The concept is lip-smack
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