ComiXology Originals Debuts Biopunk Graphic Novel Featuring Queer Representation “The Dark”
ComiXology, Amazon’s premier digital comics service, has announced the debut of The Dark. The story is set in the year 2045 after a worldwide cyberwar ends technology as we know it.
The Dark is written by Mark Sable, with art by Kristian Donaldson, colors by Lee Loughridge, letters by Thomas Mauer, and has been edited by Will Dennis, with consultant Mey Rude. It’s available to read right now at no additional cost for Amazon Prime, Kindle Unlimited, and comiXology Unlimited members, and is available for purchase on Kindle and comiXology.
Here’s the official description:
The Dark features two unforgettable protagonists: a U.S. marine whose eyes were destroyed in combat and healed using advanced biotech, allowing him to return to the field on a dangerous retrieval mission, and an intelligence operative turned spy, who is a trans woman seeking to further her transition using cutting edge – and stolen – biotech. They’ll travel across a world which has been rocked by a terrorist tech plague and mass blackouts to uncover a conspiracy that could change all of humanity.
“The Art of the Future puts writers, filmmakers, game designers, and other creatives together with military and intelligence officials and scientists to help envision the future for policymakers,” said writer Mark Sable. “While participating in brainstorming sessions with this think tank, two of the greatest concerns for the near-future were cyberwarfare and unchecked biotechnology. I first wrote The Dark as a short story and when I saw Kristian Donaldson’s new computer rendered artwork, I knew we needed to tell this story together as a graphic novel.”
The art in this graphic novel is quite interesting. All the characters are “painstakingly posed” 3-D assets, and every object, vehicle, weapon, building, and city is fully modeled using 3-D software.
“It’s the equivalent of shooting a film and having all your sets built out, and all your actors in costume. Every building, every room, every chair, gun, car, and helicopter has been sourced and built and put together to make ‘shots’ with a free camera in virtual space,” shared artist Kristian Donaldson. “There have been other books using 3-D but none quite like this by a single artist. I assembled a stable of 3-D assets for over 5 years now before drawing a single page.”
“Mark is a great futurist/theorist who writes comic books, and I’m a conceptual environment and architectural artist who draws comic books,” said Donaldson. “The space where we align is organic and we’ve made something fresh and thought-provoking, bringing form to a specific time and place through the lens of technology and social struggle. The Dark explores themes of what it means to be human in an age of advanced biotech and body-hacking. It’s a book about what it means to be a soldier when you can be wounded and healed over and over again to continue the fight for your country. And it’s a look at what it means to be American when the population has been decimated and the power grid is gone.”
“The term ‘Biopunk’ has come to refer to so-called ‘bio-hackers’ who can edit genes from their basement labs,” said Sable. “In fiction, to me this is a twist on the cyberpunk genre, only using biologically based technology instead of silicon-based hardware. We believe The Dark is the first “biopunk” graphic novel.”
“The Dark is a military and espionage thriller that is very possible,” shared Chip Mosher, comiXology’s Head of Content. “Readers will be stunned both visually and by the future the book envisions.”
For those who don’t know, Mark Sable is a comic book writer and creator. He has written for Marvel and DC.
Kristian Donaldson is an illustrator, comic book artist, and Eisner award-nominated colorist.
I’m here for a futuristic story featuring queer representation.
Feel free to share your thoughts about The Dark with us.
Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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