For two art forms that don’t seem all that similar at first glance, pop music and comic books are crossing over a lot lately. Music superstars including Common and Rae Sremmurd have inserted fictionalized versions of themselves into comics, while artists like Lights have created their own to better tell the story of their music. The latest and biggest example of this trend is The Weeknd Presents: Starboy, a unique collaboration between Marvel Comics and R&B star The Weeknd (real name: Abel Tesfaye). The first issue of Starboy is out in June, but EW has an exclusive first look at the graphic novel.
First announced at New York Comic Con last October, Starboy is a translation of The Weeknd’s “Starboy” musical persona into a superhero comic (it shares a title with the artist’s 2016 album). Written by Tesfaye himself alongside La Mar Taylor and Christos Gage (with art by Eric Nguyen and Guru-eFX), Starboy features the titular character battling a cannibalistic criminal mastermind known as Jack “The Chef” Smiley in order to save Alphatron.
The Weeknd has already had a major 2018. He released a new EP, My Dear Melancholy, (currently No. 1 on the Billboard 200) in March, and headlined Coachella this month (he’ll also headline Chicago’s Lollapalooza in August).
The first issue of Starboy hits stores on June 13, but a variant cover for the first issue (with a black background instead of red) goes on sale April 19. Check out an exclusive preview of the issue below.