Christmas has come early this year. And by Christmas we mean Comic-Con as it’s a few weeks earlier than previous years. Even with new rules in place, there will still be lines around the block for Hall H, lines for Ballroom 20, lines for Room AB and lines for signings. Considering three of the major film studios have backed out this year, this might be the perfect year to kick back in hazy LA and avoid the three hour ride down. Whether you’re going to brave traffic and lines or not, SSN is here early to give you a list of eight comics ripe for film and television adaptation.
Written by Becky Cloonan, Art by Andy Belanger, Lee Loughridge
Publisher: Image Comics
Summary: Alex Braith is on board retracing her sister’s steps to the refinery moon, hoping to collect her remains and find some answers. The questions keep coming though-how did her sister die? Where did her cabin mate disappear to? Southern Cross is a crucible of creeping anxiety and fear as Braith struggles with the ghosts of her past on board a ship that holds secrets best kept buried.
SSN Insight: This book has been the buzz across the industry’s comic shops and comic book creative talent around LA. It’s an old fashioned mystery set in space with a slow build-up that would be well utilized in an ongoing TV series on SyFy, FX or the BBC. The cool, hip indie art is first rate scenery and is especially relished given how many have tackled the setting of space. Bonus that the author, Becky Cloonan is also writing Gotham Academy that’s getting great traction. But you better snap this book up quick, because we smell a bidding war.
Contact: BeckyCloonan.net/contact/, email@example.com
Written by Len Peralta and Mikey Newmann, Art by Len Peralta
Publisher: BOZ Publishing
Summary: The first story is about Kylie, a headstrong woman trying to make ends meet in Cleveland. When a recurring nightmare becomes too much to handle, she enlists the help of a strange man named Nat – only Nat, that’s it. He has no further name with which to speak of. And Nat is a person that can kill nightmares.
SSN Insight: The story is founded on the compelling question- What if there was a company that could go into your dreams and kill your nightmares? Yes please. This all-ages book was tailor-made to be a TV Sci-Fi/horror procedural where Nat, the nightmare exterminator helps a new person every week with their own peculiar nightmare. The book also gives wish fulfillment to the abundance of kids who have nightmares they wish they didn’t. The adaptation would be a fun addition to ABC Family’s line-up or given some added darkness could hit teen audiences, it could catch the eye of the Supernatural fanbase on The CW.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, LenPeralta.com
Written By Brandon Montclare, Art by Amy Reeder
Publisher: Image Comics
Summary: A teenage cop from a high-tech future is sent back in time to 1986 New York City. Dayoung Johansson is investigating the Quintum Mechanics megacorporation for crimes against time. As she pieces together the clues, she discovers the “future” she calls home – an alternate reality version of 2013 – shouldn’t exist at all!
SSN Insight: A story about a teenage cop with a jet pack is one way to get a reader’s attention. This comic leaves the deep questions about paradoxes in the dust in favor of light and humorous adventures. Forget the seriousness of the Hunger Games or Divergent, while the female teenage hero fights against an evil corporation, she does so with a spark of effervescence. Considering the story doesn’t take place in a galactic (read expensive) universe, this one would be easier on the wallet to adapt than other Sci-Fi stories. The story would be perfect and a breath of fresh air on the CW or ABC Family or be a great YA film franchise.
Written by Alex Paknadel, Art by Eric Scott Pfeiffer
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Summary: When 99% of humankind is wiped out by a pandemic, four billion people are “saved” by being digitized at the brink of death and uploaded into Arcadia, a utopian simulation in the cloud. But when Arcadia begins to rapidly deplete the energy resources upon which the handful of survivors in the real world (a.k.a. “The Meat”) depends, how long will The Meat be able – and willing – to help?
SSN Insight: Comparisons to The Matrix will be made given the virtual perfect world that 4 billion inhabit in this comic, but it stops there. This isn’t about man vs. machine, it’s about man vs. man. What happens when the rich and powerful get to live in an opulent world with all the cheat codes and no fear of death? A New York brimming with gardens and a Los Angeles that’s a serene metropolis, but with a ton of social ills stretched to the max, especially when faced with the survivors of the real world who are scrapping away for existence. This would make for a fantastic ongoing series on SyFy or the like as the extreme dichotomies up the drama.
Contact: Stephen Christy at Boom! Studios, 310-369-0930
Written/Art by Jason Brubaker
Publisher: Coffee Table Comics
Summary: All Sonja wanted was to find her missing cat, Victuals, but when he washes up on the shore of her sleepy coastal town several days later with a head full of stitches and the startling ability to speak and no memory of how he got that way her quiet life is forever changed. Together they set out to solve the mystery of his disappearance, embarking on a journey that leads to a strange kingdom under the waves and into the heart of a royal power struggle, where the answer to Victual s true identity could save or doom them all!
SSN Insight: Curiouser and curiouser down the rabbit hole we go, with this peculiar mystery entanglement starring Sonja and her cat. If you want something different, this is it. Lizard monsters? Brain transplants? A mystery about a missing, crazy and introspective cat? A beautifully illuminated sleepy harbor town? Yep, this book has it all. It’s also refreshing that the mechanic at its heart is never once referred to as female, as gender is less important than the character’s personality quirks. The creator Brubaker first envisioned the series as a cartoon complete with storyboards, which gives reason to why the book would make for such a good animated series.
Written/Art by Kate Sherron
Publisher: Comicker Digital
Summary: Rabbit Black – a freelancer who makes a living solving other people’s problems – unexpectedly finds himself murdered but not dead. This unusual state is likely thanks to two facts: magic, like heat, rises and the necromancer in the unit below is terrible at wards. Tied to said necromancer by the same magic that’s keeping him alive(ish,) Rabbit has no choice but to drag Ira Smith around with him as he solves his final problem: who killed Rabbit Black?
SSN Insight: If all great scripts have a central question they must answer, this one keeps the mystery alive with “Who killed Rabbit Black?” Not a standard murder mystery as the victim is solving the crime, the story is a fun read complete with knowing winks to the reader with headers like “A short cab ride and a long first act later”. Rabbit’s war history along with Dark Arts and detective know-how makes for a well-rounded character but even more interesting is the once Royal Financial Advisor now businesswoman Hettie and the city’s most successful confidence woman, Isadora. The story would make for a great series of films or a series on FX or TNT.
Contact: email@example.com, KateSherron.com
Written by James Cartwright, Art by Mike Ratliff
Publisher: Cartwright Comics
Summary: Two hamsters by the name of Checkers and Scrabble try to make a break for it from the evil clutches of a nine year old girl. What awaits them beyond the cage? Adventure…and one terrifying cat.
SSN Insight: This truly indie comic find is absolutely hilarious. The comic was originally scouted at the writer’s booth at Comikaze this year and since then its original voice is still memorable. At one point, a hamster gets lost in an epic battle at sea….in the child’s bathtub. Think Pinky and the Brain for the new generation as these hamsters are feisty and will stop at nothing to escape their trappings only to return again to the safety of their cage at the end of the day. This would make for one rambunctious animated series for kids on Nickelodeon or Cartoon Network.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org, 443-417-8097
Written By James Maddox, Art by Jen Hickman
Summary: When Sam opens his eyes after dying, he expects to see clouds or hellfire. What he’s faced with instead is “The House” — a surreal and often-dangerous afterlife of interconnected rooms. As Sam travels deeper into this new world, he finds the strange creators of these rooms aren’t the only residents of The House. Here there be monsters, and if he isn’t careful, Sam’s stay will take a horrible turn.
SSN Insight: Self-published via a Kickstarter campaign that earned over $9,000 on an ask of $4,000, The Dead has received glowing recommendations. Fanboy Comics commented that Maddox has the ability to “keep his story fresh and intriguing, creating a richly textured world with almost limitless storytelling possibilities.” The story has a House of Mysteries vibe to it and the fantasy aspect allows for an expanded audience past straight horror. The book was featured in comic book superstore ComiXology’s SXSW Top 100 Submit Starter Pack, would shine as a stand-alone film directed by Guillermo Del Toro or a series on SyFy, AMC or similar.