Aftershock continues to expand its line with Fu Jitsu by writer Jai Nitz (El Diablo) and artist Wes St Clair (Teen Titans), coming in September, a rollicking adventure about an un-aging genius who roams the galaxy.
From Einstein and the Wright brothers, to Gandhi and Johnny Unitas, Fu has met everyone in history while protecting Earth from Robert Wadlow, the world’s tallest man, and his dangerous magi-science.
Fu exiles himself to Antarctica to try to forget the painful break up with his ex-girlfriend, Rachel. Meanwhile, Wadlow returns from the far-flung future and sends James Dean, his ultimate assassin, to kill Fu at the South Pole. And you thought your teenage years were tough?
For this title Nitz has floated an unusual idea; this is a comic book that is meant to be a comic book “Fu Jitsu should be on everyone’s pull list because it’s a comic book for comic book readers,” he told The Beat. “Fu Jitsu has more in common with early Hellboy than it does with End-Around-Movie-Pitch-as-a-Graphic-Novel. Wes St. Claire and I are here to make COMICS. We are sequential storytellers. We want to knock your socks off with a comic the way Walt Simonson or Howard Chaykin or Jim Starlin knocked you on your butt with the power of words and pictures. That’s our goal. We want to capture and keep comic book readers and take them on a journey every issue. If every issue is as satisfying to read as it is to write and draw, we’ll have done our jobs well. Everyone wishes they’d have taken a chance on Hellboy #1, or Calibur Presents #1 (1st app. The Crow), or God Country #1. But the talent inside was largely untested, and concept was alien, so people passed. Now, you’ll pay a pretty penny for each. If new readers try Fu Jitsu #1, I think they’ll be pleasantly surprised as readers, collectors, and fans.”
Aftershock is a happy home for the series, he added. “I’ve known (publisher) Joe Pruett for 15 years thanks to Phil Hester. Joe has an amazing eye for talent and he’s discovered a bunch of creators who are now industry giants. Joe sees angles for publishing, marketing, and distribution that elude other publishers. Joe knows a ton about the industry and how it works. Editor in Chief Mike Marts is another great reason. Mike also has a great eye for talent, that’s why I think Wes St. Claire is going to blow up after Fu Jitsu. I’ve known Mike for about 15 years too, starting with his first run at Marvel. He has only increased his reputation and footprint in the industry since that time. When AfterShock hired Marts I said, “oh, they’re SERIOUS,” because I knew what kind of business plan they would have to have in place to lure one of the biggest and brightest editors in comics into their fold. That’s a testament to AfterShock’s long-view plan, their backing, and Joe Pruett. Besides them, every person I’ve met on their team including Lisa Wu and Mike Zagari has been professional, adroit, and intelligent. Finally, AfterShock has such a good deal for creators. Look at their stable! Ellis, Ennis, Waid, Layman, Jenkins, Cates, Hester, Palmiotti, Conner, Harris… I could go on, but that’s just off the top of my head. I want to be in that club. AfterShock earned those creators, and they were fair to me and Wes, so Fu Jitsu is in amazing hands. Deadly hands. Of Kung Fu. Or something like that.”
The provided a larger than usual preview so here you go, Fu Jitsu; variant cover by Greg Smallwood.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.