There has always been a bit of a disconnect between different eras from superhero comics. Many of the Marvel characters now bounding across the big screen every summer, for instance, were created long ago by artists like Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, low-paid craftsmen who had little idea their stories would one become billion-dollar multimedia franchises. A new superhero comics line, however, is hoping to bridge the gap between eras. Fantagraphics’ new All Time Comics superhero line will feature a combination of new characters, veteran creators, and retro-modern art.
Headed by writer Josh Bayer, the All Time Comics line launches in March 2017 with All Time Comics: Crime Destroyer #1. The supersized issue will introduce the four main characters of this shared superhero universe: Atlas, Bullwhip, Crime Destroyer, and Blind Justice, each of whom will be getting their own individual series. As proof of the line’s blending of eras, this first issue will feature the final published comics work of the late Herb Trimpe, a Marvel veteran of the Lee/Kirby era who helped co-create Wolverine.
All Time Comics will also feature work from the likes of Al Milgrom (who co-created DC’s Firestorm), as well as younger artists like Noah Van Sciver and Ben Marra. Each issue, Bayer promises, will feature a new unique mash-up of different cartoonists.
“All Time Comics is celebration of independent comics and the best of pulpy superhero comics of the past,” Bayer tells EW. “We are making a circle complete. This is also a period when comics seem to be in danger of being eclipsed by movies and video games, and All Time Comics is here to remind people that comics, not movies, not action figures or toys, that started our cultural obsession with superheroes. All Time Comics is us, and we stand for comics. Comics are not fading. They will stand… for all time.”
All Time Comics: Crime Destroyer #1 is set to hit stores March 31, 2017. Check out variant covers from the issue above and below, from cartoonists Johnny Ryan and Jim Rugg. Information on future issues and series will be available on Fantagraphics’ website.