We're drawing a comic book about Alvin Greene, America's strangest political candidate.
In 2010, an obscure, 32-year-old, socially awkward, unemployed African-American Army veteran, who had been kicked out of the service and was living with his father in the South Carolina countryside while facing federal pornography charges, spent a significant portion of his life’s savings on the filing fee to run for U.S. Senate in the Democratic primary. His goal: to challenge incumbent Tea Party kingmaker Jim DeMint. Alvin Greene didn’t campaign. He didn’t even have a Website. No one knew who he was. Until — and exactly how is still being disputed — he won.
Alvin Greene lost the general election against DeMint, but not without becoming a household name. His story highlights everything that’s right and wrong with American politics today. On one hand, he’s proof that there’s a place for the "everyman" at the center of political power in the free world. On the other, his win is evidence of the mass apathy, confusion and ignorance coursing through the American electorate.It’s a story that has everything: A man against the odds, accusations of election rigging, federal investigations into bank accounts, sex, the social stigma of mental health and political intrigue all amid swirling racial undertones and a Deep South setting.
As we approach another election season, culminating in the spring 2012 presidential primaries and the general election the following November, voters need to understand the story of Alvin Greene. His is a cautionary tale, and a diagnosis of a sick political system. THE ACCIDENTAL CANDIDATE— a black-and-white graphic novel of approximately 100 pages — will reveal everything.
THE ACCIDENTAL CANDIDATE traces the Forest Gump-like rise (and fall) of Alvin Greene. It's co-written by veteran comics scribe David Axe and Corey Hutchins, the South Carolina reporter who chronicled Greene's bizarre story, from start to finish, for the local and national press. Art is by Ryan Alexander-Tanner.
Our goal is to serialize the comic online beginning in early 2012, following that with a print edition in the spring. We need at least $1,000 as seed money -- all of which will go to Ryan, to keep a roof over his head while he labors over a hundred pages of art. We're offering original art as rewards.
Check out the first three pages of the book, above and below:
We have tentative partnerships with the online comics publisher Cartoon Movement and boutique print publisher Nimble Books. Cartoon Movement will serialize most of the book; later, Nimble will publish a limited print edition with extra material.
Speed. We want this book to be available by spring 2012, when presidential politics approach their peak. Conventional publishing takes years. But with Cartoon Movement and Nimble, we can get the book out in just a year's time.
Yes, we might get some money from the publishers, but not enough -- or fast enough -- to pay Ryan to draw it. In any event, most of the cash this project ever generates will go straight to Ryan. After all, writing a comic is easy compared to drawing it. And besides, we're not doing this for profit. We really, really want to tell Alvin Greene's story.
Not yet -- but soon. We're hoping he'll write a foreword for us. He is a big comics fan. He produced his own comic that featured him as a superhero fighting evil bankers, etc.
No! Alvin is a strange and compelling figure -- and controversial. We want to explore all those facets of his public persona, and do our best to portray the private man behind the candidate. We do not intend to mock him, only understand him and his candidacy.
pledged of $1,000 goal
seconds to go
May 19, 2011 - Jul 18, 2011 (60 days)
Pledge $10 or more
Get a copy of an original Alvin Greene poster, with art by Ryan, signed by Ryan, David and Corey.
Pledge $20 or more
Get a copy of an original Alvin Greene poster, with art by Ryan, signed by Ryan, David and Corey -- plus a copy of the book.
Pledge $50 or more
3 backers Limited (87 of 90 left)
The donor gets a page of the original artwork, and a copy of a forthcoming Alvin Greene poster we're making, with art by Ryan, signed by Ryan, David and Corey -- plus a copy of the book.
Pledge $500 or more
0 backers Limited (3 of 3 left)
Win a dinner with Ryan, David or Corey -- your choice. We'll take you out to dinner, regale you with tales of war, politics and comics, and pay for it. Just one proviso: you have to be within driving distance of Columbia, S.C. or Portland.