Small press publisher Castle Comics has launched File 13, a high-tech action-adventure comic book with a healthy dose of absurdist humor. Featuring shorter story arcs, crisp coloring and dynamic action scenes, File 13 hearkens back to the Bronze Age comic books of the 1980s. Made possible by a Kickstarter campaign, File 13 also reflects the latest trends in comic self-publishing, with a compelling DIY backstory that appeals to fans who also had childhood dreams of making their own comic books.
File 13 #1 introduces readers to Scott and Randall Solson, twin brothers who inherit their father’s
research company, SolTech. Led by Randall’s ruthless business savvy and Scott’s scientific genius, SolTech thrives – but when Randall buys out Scott and fires him, family bonds are broken. Feeling a need to serve the greater good, Scott steals the prototype combat assault neuro-armor (C.A.N.) he had just developed for SolTech, puts it on, and embarks on his hero’s journey. Along the way, Scott encounters an amazing assortment of super-powered beings that populate the File 13 universe – some dangerous, some friendly, but almost all ridiculous weirdos.
Harvey Award Nominee Dan Hosek first dreamed up the File 13 universe when he was a child. “I created the ‘Can Man’ character, who was based around a garbage can, when I was 12,” he explains, “That’s right when I met Keith Koppenhoefer, who has been my friend and story collaborator ever since.” In 2012, Hosek and Koppenhoefer rediscovered the original “crudely drawn” Can Man comics and vowed to finish what they had started 30 years earlier. Hosek and Koppenhoefer founded Castle Comics, surrounding their writing with the artwork of Ryan Gutierrez and lettering of Paul Tutrone to create File 13.
Castle Comics successfully crowdfunded to self-publish File 13’s critical first print run. “Kickstarter is revolutionizing publishing and art in general,” says Hosek. “Instead of one person deciding if an artistic vision can become reality, the audience decides what they want to see.” In this case, the audience enthusiastically approved: Eclipsing the original Kickstarter goal and setting File 13’s mythology in motion for many issues to come.
Although Castle Comics’ submission of File 13 to Diamond Comic Distributors was turned down, the Kickstarter campaign and a successful pre-sale event through local comic shops has the team of File 13 confident that their self-distribution model will work, and get the series the momentum it needs. Full-color print and digital copies of File 13 #1 may be ordered from www.whatisfile13.com, where retailers can also place risk-free, 100% returnable wholesale orders.