Get Ready To Slam Dunk The Funk With The Avant-Guards

by James Ferguson

Excuse me for a moment as I continue to smile at the phrase “Slam dunk the funk.” That comes from The Avant-Guards, a new twelve-issue mini-series beginning in January 2019 from Boom! Studios. Written by Carly Usdin and illustrated by Noah Hayes, the series follows a group of kids at the Georgia O’Keeffe College of Arts and Subtle Dramatics.

Liv, an aspiring actor and basketball enthusiast doesn’t understand why she can’t be both. She seems to be alone in that belief…until Charlie shows up. Charlie is a recent transfer to the school and a former star basketball player. Liv sees Charlie as the answer to all of her problems and will stop at nothing to get the new kid to join the ragtag group of misfits on her fledgling team.
Writer Carly Usdin says:

I started playing basketball in middle school, and I still play now as an adult. It’s a lovely constant in my life that I wanted to honor with The Avant-Guards. The idea of a funny, pure series about friendship, teamwork, and perseverance really appeals to me right now, and I’m so excited to share this with the world in 2019.

I love the vibe of The Avant-Guards (and the punny title). It has such a great energy to it from what little we’ve seen so far. I’m far from a big sports fan in general. My only real exposure to basketball is Space Jam, but good story and character drama can transcend that idea. See also: Friday Night Lights.
Artist Noah Hayes added:

Gearing up for The Avant-Guards has been such a blast. Carly’s created such a wonderful cast of characters that were a ton of fun to design. I hope readers will enjoy the journey we’re taking them on and find them as charming and memorable as I do.

The Avant-Guards is part of the Boom! Box imprint where it will be right at home along other titles like Lumberjanes and Giant Days. The first issue will feature a main cover by Hayes and a variant cover by Veronica Fish.

Shannon Watter, Senior Editor, Boom! Studios says:

Carly wowed audiences with the humor, heart and honesty she brought to Heavy Vinyl and Noah is dropping jaws with his stunning work on Wet Hot American Summer – and they’re unstoppable together on a book like The Avant-Guards. We’re thrilled to have twelve issues to bring you on the journey of Liv and Charlie to not only form an unbeatable team between the buzzers, but also to challenge the ideas about who they are – and more importantly, who they can be off the court too.

Look for The Avant-Guards #1 at your local comic shop in January 2019.

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