Last week saw -- finally! -- the debut of Snow Angels, a series from ComiXology Originals which teams best-selling and award-winning writer Jeff Lemire with best-selling and award-winning writer Jock on a creator-owned series that gives them a new world to build from the groudn up, featuring elements of thriller, horror, science-fiction, and family stories, wrapped around Jock's striking and murky visuals. The artist, who has worked on everything from the Dredd film tie-ins to Scott Snyder's Batman, is helping to tell a story almost completely with shadows and light, as the barren landscape of the book means relatively little in the way of elaborate cityscapes.
In Snow Angels, the lead characters live inside a deep trench that protects them from the harsh winds of a frozen world beyond. Billed as an action-packed story of survival, loss, and redemption, a journey beyond the protection of The Trench brings them into conflict with The Snowman, whose job it is to protect the Trench at all costs.
"I've known Jeff a long time, and we'd talked about working together," Jock told ComicBook during a recent virtual tour of his studio. "We appreciate each other's work a lot. He's a terrific writer and artist. We actually started talking about this a long time ago before I was working with Scott. It was about maybe 2013, 2014; it's been a long time gestating. Schedules didn't quite work out, and we finally found time this year to get to it. He actually sent me the first script for Season One to four three years ago, so, I've had that, sat on them for quite a while, and it's great to be able to get to them now."
Why wait so long? Well, in addition to the elaborate nature of Jock's art meaning that sometimes things have to take theitime...there's also a more practical concern: the creators wanted to make sure that the book came out on some kind of reasonable schedule. Essentally, while he sees the value in a "binge" or "wait for the trade" model, Jock says there's nothing like reading a serialized book in a regular, serialized fashion.
"Even with a streaming services, there's something cool about a new episodes coming out every week, when you have The Mandalorian or whatever it is," Jock explained. "I'm really pleased that we've got Snow Angels to that point where it's going to be we're where every month on the exact day, everyone can look forward to them, to the new issues."
This is the first digital-original series for Jock, and while the creators intend to eventually bring it to print in a collected form, Jock said that he did work with both formats in mind.
"I didn't change it too much, actually," Jock explained. "We're a little bit limited with double page spreads because actually I had started drawing it before it was going to be with ComiXology, and I had to tweak some of the doorway spreads because they react differently on the screen -- but that means in print, we can bring them back and there'll be a different experience when people buy in print. Me and Jeff really just took our regular route on things. And we both just decided to treat it as anything else, really. Actually, I'm excited to see it through Comixology because comics do that great on iPad, there's no doubt about it. We all love print and I love books and everything else, but I'm excited to see it come through that avenue in a different way people picking it up. I like it. It's cool."
Snow Angels #1 is on sale now through ComiXology.