With Joe Biden the projected winner of the U.S.'s 2020 presidential election, Image Comics founder Erik Larsen will repurpose the art he used when Savage Dragon lead character Malcolm Dragon endorsed Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris for a second-printing variant in which Malcolm is instead congratulating the pair on their win. Originally a variant cover for the recently-released Savage Dragon #253, the image will now be the primary/only cover for the second printing, albeit with its green background swapped out for white. This is the second Savage Dragon issue in a row, and the third out of the last four published issues, to go back for at least one additional printing.
Savage Dragon #250 got a second print run, and Image just announced that Savage Dragon #252's second printing has sold out at Diamond Comics Distributors and it will have a third printing.
The image is evocative of a memorable cover featuring Malcolm's dad, the original titular Dragon of the series, endorsing then-candidate Barack Obama for the presidency in 2008. While it is uncommon, for both commercial and creative reasons, for a mainstream superhero comic to see its character explicitly endorsing a candidate for office, Savage Dragon is set in real time, in a fictionalized version of the real world, and as a result often reflects the world more directly than most.
There's also the fact that Dragon once ran for President himself (kind of) -- something that, in the real world, makes you a go-to commentator on future elections for the rest of your life. During the 2004 election, a wealthy supervillain decided that his best chance at gaining political power would be to use Dragon's fame and the public goodwill that comes from being a superhero.
Ronald Winston Urass unilaterally declared that Dragon was running for President, and he would be Dragon's vice president. The campaign ultimately failed, but not before a campaign trail run-in that generated some real-world headlines: after President George W. Bush was kidnapped and replaced by a shapeshifting villain, Dragon pursued that villain in order to find and restore the President. One result of that? A cover -- to Savage Dragon #119 -- that appeared to depict Dragon punching out President Bush.
You can check out Larsen's Biden/Harris cover below.
His cover endorsing Barack Obama sold out and went back to press four times. In-story, Obama's final act as President was to pardon Dragon, who at the time was in prison serving time for crimes committed by (this is a gross oversimplification) a villain who has taken over his body. In more recent stories, Trump signed an executive order barring extra-terrestrials or people with extra-terrestrial heritage from the United States, causing Malcolm Dragon and his family to flee to Canada to avoid being deported to Dimension-X. Savage Dragon #252 revealed that the Supreme Court had overturned Trump's alien ban, although that likely isn't the end of the story.
"This was obviously when Ruth Bader Ginsburg was alive and well so things could change in the future given what’s going on in the United States," Larsen told ComicBook.com in a commentary track for the issue.
You can get Savage Dragon #253 in your local comic shop (assuming it's still in stock) or on ComiXology now.