Todd McFarlane Says There's a Small Chance Image United Gets Finished

Todd McFarlane admits defeat on the whole "jam issue" idea, but says two or three Image founders could get together and finish the series.

Todd McFarlane has still not completely given up on the idea of finishing Image United. The series, which was a jam book featuring the founding members of Image (including some variant cover work from Jim Lee, in spite of his role at DC), launched in 2009 but was never completed. It saw the artists trading off drawing their own characters within the context of a shared issue, so that pages had to be shuttled around from artist to artist. Perhaps inevitably, the book slowed to a crawl and then stopped, with its third issue (of a planned six) hitting the stands in August 2010, and nothing after that.

For years, Rob Liefeld said he was still committed to completing the project, but eventually declared it dead after he lost the rights to Youngblood -- characters who appeared in the series -- in a contract dispute. Nevertheless, McFarlane -- someone Liefeld previously said had abandoned the project long ago -- told us he's open to the possibility.

"I would say there's a chance. I think the chance is small, but there's a chance," McFarlane told "If I was going to bet on it, the way to get there is not necessarily that we have to get all the boys back together, because everybody might've moved on. And as time goes by, maybe even one of us isn't even standing on the earth. So you can't have your band reunion anymore, which was the first thought I had when I heard the news of John Lennon. It was like The Beatles will never be together again. And I'm not saying we're The Beatles. I'm using a big example, but I think what is more likely is that two or three of us may take up the torch and just finish it, because we want to finish it, and just do the rest of the work and not worry about whether everybody's doing their own life and things, which is what got it [bogged down with]. So I think that's the bet. If I was going to Vegas, that's the bet of how it gets done."

At different times, Erik Larsen, Rob Liefeld, and Robert Kirkman (who was not a founding Image member, but is currently a partner, and was brought on to write the book) have all said they hoped to get it done, and at one point in 2019, Liefeld was supposedly working quietly on the project, knocking out some pages in the hopes of reinvigorating the thing.

"It's very easy to say, 'Hey, if it was up to me...' and put it on those other guys, but I'm very busy too," The Walking Dead and Invincible creator Kirkman said this spring. "It's not like the scripts are done, They're not. I would never say never, but it ain't looking good....If I can frustrate you, can I frustrate you? There's a ton of pages from issues 4 and 5 that are done. I've seen them, they're great. It's amazing stuff...There's aspects of the pages, the pages that are 'done,' there's still like a couple of pieces that haven't been put in."