For over 20 years, The Guy has had a continuous presence in stage backdrops, album covers and merchandise for the band Disturbed. With Dark Messiah, the Disturbed mascot will add another medium to grin about this July: comics.
In a partnership between Disturbed, production house Incendium, and Heavy Metal, writer and Heavy Metal Magazine editor-in-chief Tim Seeley and artist Ángel Hernández will take on the task of bringing the fan-favourite character to the fore in Dark Messiah, a five-issue limited series, as part of Heavy Metal’s OPUS imprint of music tie-in comics. The series will feature covers by Ryan Christensen.
Each issue of Dark Messiah will have a prestige format, 3,000-copy first printing with all the trimmings of collectability – ‘cardstock covers, specialty foil treatments, glossy pages, and individual numbering’ (according to the press release). And that special limited edition comic book will only set you back $16.66.
There will also be tie-in merchandise for the comic event, including an action figure of The Guy that will be released in October 2021. That will be $29.95, and is available for pre-order now.
The Guy first appeared as a mere distorted grinning image on Disturbed’s debut album The Sickness in 2000. It was developed further and fully realised by Greg Capullo (yes, that Greg Capullo!) on the cover of the band’s third album, Ten Thousand Fists, in 2005, and the famous hooded, grinning geezer is now synonymous with Disturbed. With the character’s inaugural comic series, Seeley and Hernández will have The Guy become ‘The Vengeful One’ in a dystopian future. Sounds pretty Heavy Metal (I smell synergy).
Here’s how Heavy Metal describes the series:
“Dark Messiah takes place in the not so distant future, as firefighter Griffin DeSanto finds himself a man out of time, stumbling into a harsh world of poverty, automation, and subjugation. Technology rules and a tech empire built on suffering keeps the population in check through surveillance and mechanized policing. Though lost, Griffin is never alone. He was brought here for a reason, and The Vengeful One is his guide.”
Said Disturbed in a statement:
“Ever since The Guy made his debut 20 years ago his evolution and transformation has only grown. We are excited to take The Guy to the next level and bring his story to the forefront via both the comic book series and action figures. We can’t wait to share this next chapter with all of you.”
Tim Seeley added:
“[T]he guys in Disturbed have a lot of the same influences I do…horror movies, 90s superhero comics, punk music, and an interest in humanity and the fight against oppression. So, we’ve teamed up to give a story to The Guy, and it’s going to be a savage horror epic about heroism, hope and a whole lot of teeth and chains.”
Llexi Leon, Incendium CEO is also eager about this partnership:
“Disturbed’s powerhouse of a mascot was destined for comics and we’re thrilled to be developing the dystopian world of their immortal anti-hero, exploring the roots of his power, and digging into the rich history that’s been teased to date through the bands iconic album artwork and music videos.”
Check out some preview pages of Dark Messiah below. The first issue of the five-issue series is due out in stores in July.