Multiple Eisner Award winner and vocal Avatar: The Last Airbender fan Gene Luen Yang (American Born Chinese, Level Up) has announced his new gig as writer of Dark Horse Comics' Avatar: The Last Airbender -- The Promise Part 1, the official comic book continuation of the animated series that bridges the events of season three with Nickelodeon's upcoming animated sequel, Legend of Korra. Yang is working alongside Japanese art team Gurihiru (Avatar: The Last Airbender -- The Lost Adventures) as well as original ATLA creators Mike DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko on the 80-page The Promise trade paperback, which is set to arrive in stores January 25, 2012.

In 2010 Yang produced a webcomic about his boycott of M. Night Shyamalan's The Last Airbender film for what he considered preferential casting of a Caucasian boy in the role of protagonist Ang, rather than a continuity-appropriate Asian star. Yang still hasn't seen the critically-panned film (it currently has a 6 percent on Rotten Tomatoes), though his feelings about the issue remain strong.

There's so much more to say...about the comic's plot, about how it relates thematically to my books at First Second, about why I think A:TLA expresses something quintessentially Asian American, about the folks in the A:TLA fanbase I've gotten to know, about the good people at Dark Horse who are guiding me on my first foray into mainstream-ish comics... but for now I need to go to sleep. I've got deadlines and our first full week of school to worry about.

Scope out the cover to Avatar: The Last Airbender -- The Promise Part 1, along with Yang's personal illustration of his Monkey King and ATLA's Ang below:

[Via Robot6]

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