THE FINAL WEEK IS HERE and we have another ART ANNOUNCEMENT! Check out the Exclusive GRINDHOUSE EDITION Cover Print below!
Just in is our second SURPRISE REWARD, a postcard and print from art Artyom Trakhanov! You can only get this art here on the VIRGIL Kickstarter, either digital or in print, for all reward levels!
I'm excited to announce a SURPRISE REWARD coming to all backers, a gorgeous print from VIRGIL supporter and Portrait Artist Dave Ryan! This print is only available here at the VIRGIL Kickstarter, coming digitally or in print at all reward levels!
What is VIRGIL?
Believe it or not, VIRGIL began with the announcement of Archie's Kevin Keller. Here was a classic genre (what's more dogmatic a book than Archie, unchanged for decades!), infused with a queer storyline. Its nonchalance was powerful. This wasn't a fetishized lifestyle, it was daring in its normalcy, the ultimate lack of taboo.
Then I saw Django Unchained, and left impressed by its straightforward attack on racism, but hungry to tackle crimes against the LGBTQ community. As Django was a blaxploitation throwback, this would be exploitation for the LGBTQ community. With the anti-gay violence in Jamaica largely unknown, I knew where to set my book- a place commonly thought of as a vacation paradise, with an unexplored underbelly.
VIRGIL was born.
Why does it matter?
Welcome to Jamaica. A resort destination. 70% of citizens don't think gay men and women deserve basic human rights. The world's highest murder rate.The worst place on Earth to be gay.
And no one knows.
Because of that, VIRGIL is vital. VIRGIL uses a story every reader can get behind to open eyes to the LGBTQ community's battle. It doesn't ignore the darkness within. It's not utopian, and braver for it. It's time for LGBTQ literature to grow past black and white. This is a rich world of gray areas, hopes, and failures. The real people, real atrocities, and real reactions of a fight that most didn't know was being fought.
In the 70s, Shaft and Cleopatra Jones championed their own cause by fighting the ones keeping them down, inside and out. VIRGIL is their successor, an action mainline of what's wrong in today's world.
Who is VIRGIL?
Foxy Brown gave us a powerful, assertive female hero unashamed of who she was. VIRGIL creates this character in a gay man. He's not perfect. But he shatters conceptions of gay masculinity. He travels the road so many gay men do, from conflict, to anger, to acceptance, to passion. And he does it his way. He'll do anything to protect what he loves, and doesn't care who thinks different about it.
He's tough, righteous, and he's fighting for his man.
The Creative Team
Steve Orlando (that's me) has appeared under Poseur Ink, 215 Ink, and in his self-published newsprint OGN Octobriana. He wrote for volumes 1 and 3 of Outlaw Territory from Image Comics, Nobodies V.2 from DRAWMORE, INC, and Mystery in Space from DC Comics/Vertigo.
Artist JD Faith has drawn thirty issues of labor-of-love-superhero-webcomic Acrobat, as well as the neo-noir webcomic San Hannibal, covered by Bleeding Cool and CBR. He currently works on the 1960s' coming of age thriller Just Another Sheep.
Colorist Chris Beckett worked on Smallville: Season 11 and Cartoon Network Action Pack for DC Comics. He lives in Austin with his cactus.
Designer/Letterer Victor Ochoa is the founder of DRAWMORE, INC, where he publishes his graphic novels and the annual Nobodies anthology. He currently writes and draws Toxicity.
The Supporting Team
The VIRGIL Theme created by Zakai Robbins. Find out more at zakairobbins.bandcamp.com
Since 1983, Chaz Truog had worked on comics for DC and Marvel Comics, including Animal Man, Dr. Fate, Jurassic Park, and Vertigo's Chiaroscuro.
Chris Batista is a twenty-year comics veteran, having working on Spaceknights for Marvel, and numerous titles for DC Comics including Booster Gold, The Legion of Superheroes and 52.
How is funding used?
This campaign creates a Kickstarter-Exclusive print edition of VIRGIL, in its first ever appearance.
Successful funding will let us work with the best printers and stand toe to toe with publishing giants. Funding goes toward allowing top level production; sourcing extras like pin-ups and original sketches. increasing the production value of the finished book, and distributing it efficiently. Producing VIRGIL is only one of the battles, the other front is marketing and promotion.
VIRGIL has a powerful message, but it will take your help to let it be heard.
The funding breaks down like this:
$8,000- Art, Production and Design Expenses (Pencils, Inks, Letters, Colors, Design)
$1000- Print and Distribution of Cairns, Gregori, and Kirsch Print
$1000- CreationPrint and Distribution of Batista and Truog Prints
$1000- Creation and Distribution of Custom Rewards (Original Art, Original Sketches, Annotated Scripts)
$5000- Print and Distribution of Collected Edition
THE STRETCH GOALS!
at $17,000- The Complete Collected Edition becomes HARDCOVER
at $20,000- The Complete Hardcover Collected Edition includes Twenty Pages of EXTRA SCENES
at $22,500- All Backers Receive a Original VIRGIL EP on VINYL
And MORE stretch goals await if we receive enough support!
Thanks for checking out our Kickstarter project! You can find updates here, or follow me on Twitter (@thesteveorlando) where I'll be posting about our progress during production.
Risks and challenges
The risks and challenges are low with VIRGIL. While the book is still in production, the infrastructure is in place to ensure completion and minimize unexpected surprises. The creative team have all collaborated in the past, and as an editor I have multiple past experiences with publishing from start to finish, and am using a printer vetted by industry peers. The biggest challenge will be shipping orders, but there is enough time built in to production to allow for patient, detailed fulfillments.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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