-colored version of the back-cover illustration from Empowered
vol. 7, the latest installment of my ongoing "sexy superhero comedy" series published by Dark Horse Comics. The book's slated to hit the shelves of your Local Comics Store on May 30th
, and arrive in conventional bookstores some time after that. More info here: [link]
Here's the color guide I gave to Joe as reference:
...and here's my B&W line art for the piece, depicting our heroine Emp wearing Ninjette's slighty-too-small costume:
Interestingly, I belatedly realized that this may be one of the more provocative back-cover illustrations I've done in quite some time, at least since Empowered
vol. 2 (which, coincidentally enough, depicted Ninjette wearing Emp's costume):
Believe it or not, I generally try to keep Empowered
's cover illos—both front and
back—relatively tame, both to avoid alienating new readers and to assuage the tender sensitivities of existing readers gripped by trepidation and fear over reading the book in public.* Oh, I assure you, things could be so much more appalling; if you think my covers constitute outrageous "fan service", you surely haven't seen very much manga.**
vol. 7's solicitation copy:While costumed crimefighter Empowered makes a startling discovery regarding her unfortunate status as an all-too-frequent "damsel in distress," her hard-drinking best friend Ninjette confronts her own sordid past, violent present and frighteningly uncertain future as she fights a desperate, single-handed battle against a entire clan of supernaturally durable ninja warriors. Can our two hard-luck heroines also withstand the further perils posed by supervillainous minivans, dueling sets of "daddy issues," doomed-but-still-hot boyfriends, undead karaoke party-crashers, and even "spoiler alerts from hell itself" voiced by diabolically omniscient demonspawn?
In closing, I must of course paste in the requisite general-purpose Emp
-related floggery: Print copies of Empowered
's first six volumes (and a pair of one-shots in comics format) can be found on the shelves of your Local Comics Retailer or bookstore, or online at Dark Horse's retail website [link]
or on Amazon.com [link]
. All the existing Empowered
books can be purchased rather more cheaply in digital form as well, via the Dark Horse Digital store: [link]*I've never quite understood the oddly exhibitionistic impulse of insisting on reading your comics or manga in public. Easy for me to say, I suppose, since I live out in the sticks and am rarely "in public" as such; still, I'm usually reading something when I'm traveling or dining out, and I don't make a big production of displaying whatever my reading material might happen to be. "Ladies, notice how I'm reading Fifty Shades of Freed over here...?" (THE PRECEDING SENTENCE WAS STRICTLY A WHIMSICAL JOKE, I HASTEN TO ADD.)
Anyhoo, I am somewhat amused by complaints about my cover imagery. Yeah, dude, I'm sure that everyone in the coffee shop would be gazing at you with the utmost awe and respect IF ONLY THE CARTOON CHARACTER ON THE BACK OF THE COMIC YOU'RE READING WERE MORE MODESTLY CLOTHED. Actually, I like to imagine that the fellas—and I do mean fellas—complaining about Empowered covers are obliviously traipsing around carrying manga with far more appalling cover imagery, such as Dance in the Vampire Bund or the like...
**Someday, I'm gonna do an Ocelotina story that will quite forcefully demonstrate to some of my more ostentatiously sensitive and caring male readers what it would look like if I REALLY did so-called "fan service".***
***The term "fan service" is, in fact, a bit of a misnomer, but I've no time to get into that today.