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Illegal by Jeremy Whitley and Heather Nunnelly's video poster
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In the future, every move you make will be tracked by a microchip under your skin. And you'll do anything to get one. Read more

Durham, NC Comic Books
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on September 6.

In the future, every move you make will be tracked by a microchip under your skin. And you'll do anything to get one.

Durham, NC Comic Books
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About this project

"Illegal" is a 15-issue limited comic book series from Jeremy Whitley the writer of the Eisner-Nominated series "Princeless" and Heather Nunnelly the artist of webcomic sensation "Vacant".  This Kickstarter's goal is to raise enough money to fund the production of the first volume AND if we reach our stretch goals, the entire series.

"Illegal" follows the story of Gianna Delrey, an undocumented immigrant living in the shadows of an enormous city. All citizens received a microchip that tracks their movements and stores the history of their lives. Anybody without a chip is an illegal. They can’t be tracked, but if they’re caught, they wind up in the deportation camps - where the wait to be deported has become so long that most people die just trying to survive.

Click to see 5-page preview
Click to see 5-page preview

Gianna has done her best to stay invisible, but things are about to change and Gianna will have to choose whether to fight or to keep running. 

--

Cover for Illegal #1
Cover for Illegal #1

With the funding from this Kickstarter we will be able to publish the first issue of the series in print and fund the first five issue volume digitally.  Our hope is create a book which we can share with our awesome backers and get a start on producing the entire 15 issue series.

 

Illegal is a story with a definite beginning and end and is set to be a grand total of 15 issues. What we are asking for with our initial goal is enough to fund the digital production of the first five issue volume and the printing and shipping of our first 24+ page issue, as well as the rewards we're offering through the Kickstarter.

If we make our initial goal, our plan is to use our stretch goals to fund the making of the rest of the series as well as bringing you a number of awesome exclusives just for backers!  For more details, check out the graphic below!

      

 Jeremy Whitley is the writer of "Illegal".  Jeremy is best known for his Eisner Nominated and Glyph Award winning series, "Princeless" from Action Lab Comics.  He is a co-founder of Firetower Studios and the Director of Educational Initiatives at Action Lab Comics.  His published works include: "The Order of Dagonet", "Princeless", "Princeless: Short Stories", "GlobWorld", "NFL RushZone", "My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic", "My Little Pony: Friends Forever", and the story "Zombie Hamlet" for the Red Stylo Media's "Shakespeare Shaken" anthology.

He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina and lives in Durham, NC with his wife Alicia and their daughter Zuri.

Heather Nunnelly is the artist of Illegal. Jeremy and Heather first worked together on "NFL Rushzone" published by Action Lab. Two years ago she graduated from School of Visual Arts in New York and now works as a freelance artist. She is most well-known for her comic "VACANT".

 NEW REWARDS UPDATE - ADD ONS

Several people have been asking about adding on additional items to their current pledges and we are, of course, more than happy to oblige!  If you wish to add additional items on to you current pledge, add the following amount on and send us a message letting us know exactly what you want added to your order:

Additional Print Copy of Illegal #1 -- $8 each(must already be pledging at $20 or above.

Additional Copies of Princeless Vol 1, 2, or short stories trades - $20 each (must already be receiving any volume in current tier level)

Additional copies of Vacant Vol 1 - $20 each (Must already be receiving Vacant in current tier level)

Additional Posters - $10 each (must already be receiving poster in current tier).

Additional Dogtags - $25 each (must already be receiving dogtag in current package)

      

"Illegal" is a story that's been with me for a long time.  As a white kid growing up in the South, other white kids used to talk trash about "Mexicans" and "illegals" around me all the time. They didn't think anything of it.  I was just a white kid like they were and I obviously shared their narrow minded views.  I got to hear all about how the "Mexicans" were "stealing all the jobs" and how they were "ruining this country" and how they "need to go back to Mexico".  Never mind that half of the people they were talking about weren't even Mexican.

But, of course, those were people who didn't know me.  They didn't know that I was raised in part by an actual Mexican.  That my grandfather was one of the most amazing people that I'd ever met and will likely every have the chance to meet. How could anyone look at the man who helped raise me - who was closer to me than either of my two biological grandfathers, despite not sharing a drop of blood with me - and label him the same way they might a drug or a bomb - "illegal".  

Gabriel Francis "Monty" Montelongo was my grandfather and he grew up in a tough household with an abusive dad and almost no opportunities.  He never gave up on a fight when he could double down and he taught me everything I know about arguing and debating.  He also taught me how to troll people who got their stupid opinions and political views second hand.  Had he been a few decades younger, I think my Tata would have been great at the internet.

Monty was a Navy "lifer".  He served until his knees were so bad he couldn't serve any more.  That never stopped him from giving orders though.  He was a guy with a good heart, strong opinions, and tattoos of dancing ladies of his calves and this comic is for him.

In "Illegal" I wanted to take that same sort of story - a girl from Mexico who has an abusive father and no future worth speaking of makes a split second decision with her mother to leave it behind in favor of a chance to do or be something better.  But what I also wanted to do was bring in the current landscape of modern technology, government surveillance, and the increasingly ridiculous state of immigration reform in the US.

The thing that always bothers me about sci-fi stories is that we come in so late in the story.  We only really see and learn about the government corruption and abuse when it threatens the life of our well to do young white and male protagonist.  That's not the beginning.  First they isolate the outsiders: the poor, the sick, the powerless, the minorities.  If the government is turning against the young strong white men, then a lot has already gone down.  Where are the stories of the sick who were experimented on?  Where are the stories of the minorities whose cries of racism were ignored?  Where are the stories of the ones who aren't missed when the government turns on them, because the government convinced you that their very presence was illegal?

What resulted was "Illegal", a story about Gianna Delrey - a young woman who is living outside the system and in constant danger of being arrested and detained just for daring to exist in America.  But the America she knows is one where the rich live high above the ground in rooftop villas and build themselves neighborhoods they never have to leave hundreds of feet in the air.  One where the poor and undocumented are forced to live off the scraps and face constant harassment from the authorities.

But in a world where every move of every citizen is tracked - from their location to their purchases to who they meet - being invisible can present an interesting opportunity in the right hands.  And when one of her upper class employers decides to turn on her, Gianna finds herself on the run and falling in with a group that deals in black market identities.  

I wanted to see the insane chases through the skyscrapers the make up the city.  I wanted to add elements of parkour and sci-fi action.  In a world that's packed full of people stacked into massive buildings, it's possible to have a foot chase hundreds of feet in the air.  Gianna will be jumping out of apartment skyscrapers and onto rooftop gardens with no net and no chance of rescue.  Gianna and her new friends will be using the skyscrapers under which they've been buried as their paths weapons and escape routes.

FROM HEATHER

When Jeremy pitched to me Illegal I was immediately grabbed by the concept, and the fact that GIanna was the female lead. For a while I had wanted to draw a comic with a woman main character, and I was glad that I was able to collaborate with Jeremy on the project. The script was very in depth and explored a lot of politics that we deal with today –racism, sexism, abuse, and the immigrant system. It was a very powerful piece that I think comic books fans today would thoroughly enjoy. Illegal is smart, daring, and different. It stood out to me, and I I am confident others will feel the same.

Risks and challenges

Comics take time!

True! Having worked on a number of comics Heather and I are both well aware of this. The production of the first issue is already well underway. That's why we're only promising the first issue in print and the others digitally. We fully intend on making the others, but we want to get you your physical rewards as soon as possible.

What happens when the series gets picked up by a publisher?

The publisher will help us with producing all the physical issues, but the kickstarter will fund the digital issues. We are committed to meeting the our promises to our backers. If that means you're getting free digital issues while they're selling for $2.99 on Comixology, that's your reward for backing the campaign.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $1 or more

    20 backers

    THANK YOU! --
    We appreciate you supporting Illegal and giving what you can! For your contribution you'll get a "Thank You" from Jeremy and Heather in the back of issue 1.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    6 backers

    ILLEGAL WALLPAPER --
    Get the a "Thank You" in Issue #1 plus exclusive Illegal digital wallpaper from series artist Heather Nunnelly! Get a unique souvenir of the Kickstarter without having to wait for shipping!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    108 backers

    THE DIGITAL EDITION! --
    Get the "Thank You", the wallpaper, and get a digital copy of Illegal Issue #1 before it even hits stands! That's all of the comic book greatness with none of the wait for shipping!

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $15 or more

    8 backers

    THE ILLEGAL BOOKMARK! --
    Get all of the "Digital Bundle" goodies while still expressing your love of physical media with an awesome, aerodynamic, and time tested contraption known as a bookmark! It's designed by Illegal artist Heather Nunnelly and guaranteed to impress people who are easily impressed!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $20 or more

    112 backers

    OWN THE ILLEGAL FIRST ISSUE! --
    Get the signed first issue of Illegal in good old fashioned pulpy paper, mailed right to your doorstep before it even hits the stands! It'll be 24+ pages of action excitement and political intrigue! But that's not all! You'll still get everything from the Bookmark bundle including a big old "Thank You" right in the back of the comic you'll be holding

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    15 backers

    DECORATIVE REWARD! --
    It's a mini-poster! Get the Kickstarter exclusive mini-poster from Illegal artist Heather Nunnelly shipped right alongside your comic! You can stick it up on the wall above your bed and then read under it like your in one of those movies where people's likes are easily identified by the posters on their walls! And of course you still get everything in the "Illegal first issue" tier.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $35 or more

    7 backers All gone!

    THE BLEEDING COOL WEEKEND SPECIAL - Pledge at this tier between 8/9 and 8/10 and get a limited edition poster that will only be available to those ordering or upping their pledge during this time! Get everything included in the "Decorative Reward" plus the exclusive poster for helping us reach our Bleeding Cool weekend goal!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    21 backers Limited (4 left of 25)

    THE TEAM JEREMY TIER --
    Do you love Princeless? This is the package for you! Get everything listed in the previous packages (mini-poster, physical copy of Illegal #1, bookmark, digital #1, wallpaper, big thank you) plus feed your Princeless love! Get a copy of Princeless Volume 1 (or 2 if specified) signed by Princeless/Illegal writer Jeremy Whitley with a hand signed personalized message inside to show our thanks for your support.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    8 backers Limited (17 left of 25)

    THE TEAM HEATHER TIER --
    Do you love Vacant? Well, this is where it's at then! Get everything from the "Decorative Reward" (mini-poster, physical copy of Illegal #1, bookmark, digital #1, wallpaper, big thank you) plus get a copy of Vacant Volume 1, signed and sketched to you personally from the pen of Vacant/Illegal artist Heather Nunnelly as a special "Thank You" for your support!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    THE BLEEDING COOL RETAILER REWARD -- We appreciate the support both of our great retailer friends and Bleeding Cool and present this special reward for retailers. Get ten signed copies of Illegal #1 for your store.

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $60 or more

    1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)

    MY LITTLE PONY FAN PACKAGE - Are you a fan of My Little Pony? Specifically Jeremy's issues? How would you like to have a signed and numbered script for Friends Forever #2 or #7, notated by hand just for you by Jeremy. Find out what goes into the making of a ponies book!
    In addition, you'll get all the rewards from the "Decorative Tier"

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    2 backers Limited (48 left of 50)

    LIMITED EDITION ILLEGAL DOGTAGS! -- Our friends at Optimystical Studios are making a very limited run of dogtags just for the Illegal Kickstarter. The front will sport an image of our heroine Gianna DelRey and the back will be engraved with the name of the book. On top of that awesomeness you'll get everything from the "Decorative Reward" tier!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $75 or more

    11 backers Limited (14 left of 25)

    THE SUPER PRINCELESS BACKER PACKAGE --
    Get all the great rewards of the "Team Jeremy" package but get both of the first two volumes of Princeless signed and personalized by Princeless/Illegal writer Jeremy Whitley. Plus get a personalized letter from Jeremy thanking you for your contribution and giving you an exclusive look into the future of the world of Princeless ahead of everybody else!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    10 backers Limited (15 left of 25)

    THE BIBLIOPHILE! --
    Get all the rewards of the Super Princeless Backer Package plus a copy of Vacant Volume 1 with a personalized sketch and signature of Vacant/Illegal artist Heather Nunnelly.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    1 backer Limited (19 left of 20)

    BOOKS AND TAGS, CLAP YOUR HANDS -- Get a signed Vol 1 of Princeless, a signed Vol 1 of Vacant, and everything from the "Limited Edition Dogtags" tier.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    5 backers Limited (15 left of 20)

    THE EVERY PRINCELESS EVER (SO FAR) BACKER PACKAGE -- People asked for it and I finally got it back in stock, so here it is. Everything in the "Super Princeless Backer Package" plus a trade collection of the elusive "Princeless Short Stories Vol 1" trade. This includes all of the short stories which were in the four single issues all in one trade. You'll have all the Princeless that's on the market. Plus get an advance preview of Princeless Vol 3 - The Pirate Princess!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $125 or more

    0 backers Limited (10 left of 10)

    SOMETHING NOBODY ELSE HAS -- Experience all the wonder of the Books and Tags package PLUS get a one of a kind black and white commission of a single subject of your choice by Illegal artist Heather Nunnelly

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    3 backers Limited (7 left of 10)

    AN ART OF A DIFFERENT COLOR -- Get everything in the "Something Nobody Else Has" package BUT get your commission in full color!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $150 or more

    2 backers Limited (8 left of 10)

    HOW PRINCELESS IS MADE -- Get everything from the "Every Princeless Ever" package AND get a limited edition signed, numbered, and annotated (REALLY!) just for you copy of one of Jeremy's original Princeless scripts! Jeremy will hand sign and number and then annotate the script giving you all sorts of looks into his inspirations and the transitions between the scripts and the eventual printed comic!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    THE TRUE COMICS CONNOISSEUR -- Get everything from the "How the Princeless is Made" package including the annotated script from Jeremy PLUS a color commission of your choice from Heather and a copy of Vacant Volume 1. You will no doubt be the envy of all of your friends!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $200 or more

    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    THE BLEEDING COOL SUPER RETAILER REWARD -- Get 25 copies of the first issue of Illegal #1 plus get an in store signing with the writer of Illegal, Princeless, and My Little Pony - Jeremy Whitley. You provide the travel (if flight or 5+ hour car trip required) and the store and Jeremy will sign, do a talk, or even run a workshop at your store.

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer Limited (1 left of 2)

    BE THE COMIC -- Get everything in the "Connoisseur" package PLUS get a cameo role in Issue #1 of Illegal. Get everything you could possibly want from a comic plus actually get to see your mug right there on the page in front of god and everybody!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world

Funding period

- (30 days)