Comics writer Greg Pak (“Planet Hulk,” “Batman/Superman,” “Magneto Testament”), internet superstar musician Jonathan Coulton, and artist Takeshi Miyazawa (“Runaways”) have joined forces to create a graphic novel that stars the much-loved monsters and super-villains from classic Coulton songs like “Code Monkey,” “Skullcrusher Mountain,” “The Future Soon,” and “Re: Your Brains.” The Kickstarter for the project launched Monday morning and can be reached via www.codemonkeycomix.com.
“Code Monkey Save World” follows Code Monkey, the put-upon coding monkey from the eponymous Coulton song, as he teams up with the seething, lovelorn super-villain from Coulton’s song “Skullcrusher Mountain.” The unlikely duo fight robots, office worker zombies, and maybe even each other as they struggle to impress the amazing women for whom they fruitlessly long.
Other characters include office-worker-turned-action-heroine Matilde (the “you” to whom the song “Code Monkey” is sung), Laura the Robo Queen (from the song “The Future Soon”), Zombie Bob (from “Re: Your Brains”) and the heroic curler (from “Curl”).
“I’ve been living with these characters for a long time, so it’s exciting to see what kinds of connections and new ideas Greg can come up with,” says Coulton. “Moving them into this new medium gives them space to stretch out and become even more complex and interesting.”
The project was born last November after Pak joked on Twitter about writing a super-villain team-up comic based on Coulton’s characters. Coulton tweeted back “DO IT.” And so they did.
“What I love about this project is that it’s the crazy kind of thing that just had to happen, and because of Twitter and Kickstarter and the internets, it actually can,” says Pak. “Jonathan and I are both working here as independent creators who own our own work. So if he says yes and I say yes and then whoever wants to buy it says yes, this beautiful thing can actually happen.”
Takeshi Miyazawa (“Runaways”) will provide pencils and inks, Jessica Kholinne (“X-Treme X-Men”) will color, and Simon Bowland (“Incredible Hercules”) will letter.
“This thing has monkeys, robots and zombies. It hit the trifecta,” says Miyazawa. “How could I say no?”
The plan is to produce a 60 page graphic novel that will be released digitally in four parts through Monkeybrain Comics and comiXology and then in a collected trade paperback form.
“We’re very excited to be working with Monkeybrain and comiXology,” says Pak. “Monkeybrain has done an amazing job of getting fantastic, genuinely independent creator-owned comics out into the world and comiXology has developed a phenomenal app for viewing comics on digital devices.”
Kickstarter backers will get each of the digital comics and the hard copy of the graphic novel during an exclusive window before the books are sold to general public. And there are multiple added bonuses possible for Kickstarter backers, including first dibs on a brand new song written and performed by Coulton.
Another standout reward is the limited edition Code Monkey figure, sculpted by the acclaimed comic artist Sean Chen from the Takeshi Miyazawa character design.
The Kickstarter launches Monday, April 15 and will conclude in 30 days. Visit www.codemonkeycomix.com to be taken to the Kickstarter page.
ABOUT THE CREATORS
Greg Pak is a comics writer and filmmaker best known for his feature film “Robot Stories” and comics such as “Planet Hulk,” “Magneto Testament,” and “Doctor Strange Season One” for Marvel and the upcoming “Batman/Superman” for DC. His acclaimed graphic novel “Vision Machine” is now available as a free iPad app. For more about Pak and his work, visit www.gregpak.com.
Jonathan Coulton is a musician, singer-songwriter, and internet superstar best known for his nerd-friendly songs such as “Code Monkey,” “Re: Your Brains,” and “Still Alive” (the credit song from the video game “Portal”). Coulton shot to fame in 2005 after launching his “Thing a Week” project, during which he released a new song on the internet every week for a year. For more about Coulton, visit www.jonathancoulton.com.
Takeshi Miyazawa is a Japanese Canadian artist whose work includes pencilling “Runaways” for Brian K. Vaughan and co-creating the Marvel character Amadeus Cho with Greg Pak. Aside from comic work he has also been involved with storyboarding for games and design work for film. For more about Miyazawa, visit www.takmiyazawa.com
Jessica Kholinne is an Indonesian comic colorist who grew up loving comic books, movies and games. Her recent projects include “X-Treme X-Men,” “Voodoo,” “Weirding Willows,” and many more. Kholinne is also part of a bigger studio called STELLAR Labs. For more on Kholinne’s work and STELLAR Labs, visit http://jessicakholinne.deviantart.com and http://www.facebook.com/STELLARLabs
Born and bred near Manchester, England, Simon Bowland has been lettering comics since 2003 and has worked on titles such as Marvel’s “Incredible Hulk,” “Spider-Man,” “Incredible Hercules,” and “Alpha Flight.” His work can currently be found in the pages of the UK’s “2000AD” and Judge Dredd Megazine publications, as well as titles such as “The Boys,” “Red Sonja,” “Battlefields,” and “Kirby: Genesis” for Dynamite Entertainment, and “HAPPY!” for Image Comics, collaborating with the likes of Grant Morrison, Garth Ennis, Kurt Busiek, Kevin Smith, Darick Robertson, and Matt Wagner. What little spare time he has is usually spent obsessing over football and motor-racing. Visit him on Twitter at twitter.com/simonbowlad