Co-creators Kwanza Osajyefo and Tim Smith 3, Inkpot-Award winning artist Jamal Igle, and cover artist Khary Randolph announced today the launch of a crowdfunding campaign to produce the graphic novel White – the second part of the trilogy that began with the critically acclaimed graphic novel, Black.
In Black, the creative team, along with with editor Sarah Litt, toner Derwin Roberson, and letterer Dave Sharpe (who will all return for White), explored a world where only black people got super-powers. In White, the comic will deal with how America reacts to it.
...Spoiler alert, not particularly well.
“How does a nation struggling with a history of racial inequality cope in a world where only black people have superpowers?” said Kwanza Osajyefo. “Our story asks: In a time of supposed inclusion and diversity, how far will those in charge push back to retain the status quo?”
Fans who want to pre-order the series through the campaign can do so at the Kickstarter campaign page.
In White, Theodore Mann, whose family exploited empowered blacks for centuries, is now President of the United States. Mann’s administration has exacted controversial measures to deal with the empowered he’s deemed terrorists and is stoking national tensions to win public support for Mann First, a cybernetically-augmented soldier program. The main person standing in the President’s way is X – once known as Kareem Jenkins – who has become a symbol of resistance against the Mann Administration.
In 2016, the Black Kickstarter campaign was a crowdfunding sensation, and both the campaign and the comic book series’ subsequent publication generated national headlines and coverage from both the specialty and mainstream media. For White, the original Black creative team will return for the second part of a planned trilogy, and will be joined by inker Juan Castro. If funded by Kickstarter, White will be a 6-part, ad-free periodical comic book series. The first printing – with variant covers – will be exclusive to Kickstarter backers. Comic book retailers will be able to order standard editions directly from Black Mask after rewards are shipped.
“We’ve been lucky to build the world of Black through Kickstarter and at Black Mask Studios, but to continue telling stories the way we want, we need to keep challenging ourselves, and the publishing paradigm, by making these special first printings of White exclusively available through this crowdfunding campaign,” said Kwanza Osajyefo.
In addition to the crowdfunding print run, Black Mask Studios will solicit the eventual miniseries for release in comic book shops.
Backers of White will unlock Kickstarter exclusive variants by comic book industry giants including Ashley A. Woods, Jamal Igle, Jeremy Love, ChrisCross, Sanford Greene, and Denys Cowan.
“My goal with the Black covers was to evoke an emotion that would stop the reader in their tracks,” said cover artist Khary Randolph. “I’m thrilled that some of the biggest artists in comics will also be a part of the Kickstarter for White.”
Issue One of White is estimated to be delivered to backers October 2019. The limited edition variant of the graphic novel and comic book shop retailer bundles will ship to backers in early 2020.
During a recent interview in support of his Ahoy! Comics series The Wrong Earth, Igle had told ComicBook.com that the series would take a planned break after six issues so that he could work on a follow-up to Black, and then return once that series was over for another story arc. The Wrong Earth has turned out to be as big a surprise hit for Ahoy! as Black was for Black Mask Studios.
“The overwhelming support we received from the Kickstarter community took us all by surprise,” said Jamal Igle, the artist for White and the creator of Molly Danger. “We were initially a little taken aback by just how much Black resonated with readers. As a comic book creator, there’s no better feeling than getting this kind response. Meeting fans of Black at comic book conventions and hearing from backers is gratifying and inspiring. We’re thrilled to be back, telling the story in the way we envisioned it, on our terms.”1comments
The crowdfunding campaign aims to raise just under $40,000 by the end of March. Today, it has raised almost $9,000.
The Black series has been optioned as a potential film franchise from Seith Mann (who presumably has no relation to the White antagonist).