Robert Kirkman is becoming something of the showman these days. What with the surprise, unannounced release of the adrenaline fulled Die! Die! Die! out of nowhere in 2018 and the sudden death of Rick Grimes swiftly followed by the even more sudden ending of The Walking Dead comic book with issue #192 and #193 respectively, Kirkman is certainly doing his damned best to put the excitement and wonder back into comic book collecting. And, he’s at it again.
Owen Johnson’s journey to China to learn about his birth parents eventually leads him to a mysterious Shaolin Temple. The students there study to rediscover the Fire Power, the lost art of throwing fireballs. A power they claim will be needed soon to save the world. Will Owen Johnson be the first person in a thousand years to wield the Fire Power?
Having already announced (this time) a new series with artists Chris Samnee, Fire Power, together these creators have now revealed that ahead of the May release of Fire Power #1 will come a prequel graphic novel called, simply enough, Fire Power Vol. 1 Prelude from Image Comics. And, to accompany the news they’ve given us a huge 11 page preview.
Now, does this mean that the preview we’ve already had was from the opening pages of the first issue, or the pages that follow on from these? If the former, then we’ve just been given the ending to this graphic novel, haven’t we? But, if we go with the latter and conclude that, in this case, we’ve not even seen a single page of the first issue, it’s looks like we could well be witnessing another example of Kirkman’s ability to play with his readers either way you look at it, the crafty so and so. Judging by the cover, though, both previews seem to be from the graphic novel meaning Kirkman is keeping issue #1 of the regular series very much under wraps. For now. See what I mean about being the showman?
But, why the need for a graphic novel? Luckily Kirkman had his answer well prepared in an official statement:
Owen Johnson’s story is just too epic! We need this prelude graphic novel to get you primed for the series launch with issue #1. I’m so thrilled that we’re going to be introducing the world to Fire Power in this format. Readers will be able to pick up this book, featuring nearly eight issues worth of story and art for $9.99 on a Wednesday and then come back to the store on Saturday ready for the free issue #1 on Free Comic Book Day! That’s almost too much Samnee and Wilson goodness to handle!”
I must admit, that’s a pretty darn fine argument he has there. Will you be tempted?
Fire Power Vol. 1 Prelude is out Wednesday, April 29 thfrom Image Comics