AfterShock Comics Announces A New Neo-Noir Thriller ‘Bylines In Blood’ For 2022
by Olly MacNamee
Coming from writers Erica Schultz and Van Jensen and artist Aneke with letters by Cardinal Rae, Bylines in Blood is a new neo-noir murder mystery from AfterShock Comics heading to stores in January 2022:
“The future. The very concept of truth has died. Politicians invent their own facts, and independent newspapers no longer exist. In this world, private detectives serve as ronin, searching out the hard truths that people are desperate to keep hidden.
The best of these is Satya, known as Lady Dick, a former journalist turned gumshoe who runs every lead to ground. But Satya has just received her hardest case yet: her old editor has been murdered. Someone wanted him silenced, and the trail points toward the highest bastions of power. To find justice for her friend, she’ll have to put everything – and everyone – she knows at risk.
A prophetic neo-noir thriller with unexpected twists at every turn, BYLINES IN BLOOD is co-created by Ringo Award nominated writer Erica Schultz (M3, Forgotten Home, Strange Tails) and comic writer and former newspaper crime reporter Van Jensen (Two Dead, Cryptocracy, Superman: Man of Tomorrow), aided and abetted by Spanish art sensation Aneke (DC Comics Bombshells, Legenderry: Red Sonja).”
Writer Erica Schultz explains more about this new sci-fi thriller and the influences that informed the world building and writing:
“Bylines in Blood is about the death of truth and how one former journalist regains her humanity. Is that right, Aneke and Van? I’m asking because I feel like I’m answering an English 101 essay question. It’s about crime, corruption, and how many people…but not everyone…can be bought. Satya Chatterjee is a journalist-turned-private dick who is hired to find her mentor’s killer. Usually Satya is digging into other people’s pasts for her job, but now she has to dig into her own and face all the skeletons and regrets.
The Seeds by Aja and Nocenti from Berger Books is a definite inspiration, as well as Blade Runner, and even a little Sam Spade from Hammett. It’s a pulpy-neo-noir-neon-soaked story that we think a lot of people are going to think is kick ass. We sure do.”
Co-writer, Van Jensen, gives you three reasons to pick it up:
“1. It’s a feminist riff on noir! 2. Aneke is one of the best artists out there, and she’s doing killer work. 3. This is a mystery with a big hook. Our hero’s old friend has been murdered, but video makes it seem like the killer was invisible. So who killed Denzin, and why?”
Artits, Aneke, added:
“As this is a book I am coloring myself, doing full art, I was able to imagine the final pages deeply set in my mind and I wanted a style where I could feel comfy and be myself. We were thinking in a gritty city but neon-wise, part “Transmetropolitan” part “Blade Runner” part “The Deuce”, that’s how I imagine Satya’s world. One thing I do is assign a color or set of colors to each character, so I get in the mood of it and it makes sense to me and gives a differentiation to the scenes and the places. I let myself be more bold, trying to do some panels or ideas I maybe hadn’t done before, and it feels amazing. I wanted to make the pages look like something I would love to read.”
Look out for Bylines in Blood #1 out Wednesday 12th January from AfterShock Comics