Launching next month from Oni Press is The Mysterious Strangers, a new ongoing series set firmly in the superspy adventure genre but with distinct super-powered twists like time manipulation, telekinesis and a dreaded "death touch," all straight from the minds of writer Chris Roberson and artist Scott Kowalchuk. The Mysterious Strangers is a fun and earnest work, featuring a diverse cast artwork by Kowalchuck and Jackson that's very evocative of '60s spy fiction, expressing kitsch and drama with equal measure. It also comes with a unique two-issue structure, alternating between cliffhanger and resolution, which Kowalchuk and colorist Dan Jackson avail themselves of to create linking covers every two months, resulting in some lovely diptychs.

The cover art for issues #1-2 has already been released, but what we're publishing for the first time below are those and the covers Mysterious Strangers issues #3-6, all without logos or other trade dress. These images will give you a strong idea of what this comic is all about, but thanks to Oni we've also got a four-page prologue to introduce you to the world of The Mysterious Strangers.

Previewed earlier this year as part of Oni's Free Comic Book Day offering, The Mysterious Strangers has reportedly been embraced by comics retailers in advance of its release, and for a couple good reasons. Firstly, as I said, this is a quality book with characters who've got some cool potential: Verity, the beautiful, white-haired time-slower-downer/speeder-upper; Kono, who can mess with electrical gizmos just by touching them; and Sandoval, whose touch equals death (people wear a lot of gloves in this comic -- good thing it's the '60s). Secondly, Roberson's two-issue structure makes it especially easy for retailers and readers to follow with far less financial commitment demanded by most monthlies. Making it easier still is the fact that Mysterious Strangers #1, previously available for free only through comics stores on Free Comic Book Day, is now available for free to all via ComiXology.

The Mysterious Strangers #1-2 covers

The Mysterious Strangers #3-4 covers

The Mysterious Strangers #5-6 covers (published versions will be in color)

The Mysterious Strangers #1 and #2 go on sale in print in finer comics shops on July 17. As previously mentioned, issue #1 is available now as a free download from ComiXology.

A four-page primer/prologue has been running in various Oni releases recently, but here it is in case you missed it, here you go:

(click images to enlarge)

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