Exclusive Preview: I HEART SKULL-CRUSHER #1 – it’s just what the title says


Trini has just one goal

This one looks wild…and it is.  I Heart Skull-Crusher! is an aspirational tale of a girl who just wants to be a star player in Screaming Pain Ball, just like her hero, Skull-Crusher. From there all hell breaks loose.

I Heart Skull-Crusher is from writer Josie Campbell (Amazons Attack, My Adventures With Superman), artist Alessio Zonno (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), colorist Angel De Santiago, and letterer Jim Campbell.

The style – and storyline – are heavily manga influenced, as you can see, but in a “world comics” style. TBH, I’ve been wondering when more American comics were going to go towards manga/anime, and this title should appeal to the audience that wants to cross over to periodical comics. It also fits squarely in the time-honored tradition of visually dramatic aspirational sports comics in the vein of Do a Powerbomb, A Map to the Sun, and the list goes on and on.

Set in a water-deprived, dystopian future, the story find our 18-year-old heroine Trini living in a futuristic bunker with the skulls of her parents, as you do. But when try-outs for the Screaming Pain Ball league open up, she’s got just one goal, and we’re off, with obstacle after obstacle thrown in her way. Can she and her team of misfits overcome them?

Interestingly, the promo materials don’t mention whether this is a mini-series or an ongoing – as you know, in manga, a simple quest to become king of the pirates can go on for decades. However, the listing for the trade paperback says its five issues long.

“I am BEYOND thrilled to bring I Heart Skull-Crusher to life with the talented Alessio; it’s everything I love–queer characters, anime influences, action, comedy, broken hearts, broken bones, Post-Apocalypse death matches–wrapped up in one gorgeous package. This is the story I’ve been wanting to tell for years!” Campbell said when the series was announced.

I Heart Skull-Crusher has smashed my head and heart since Josie told me about it! I’m loving working with her and bringing these crazy characters to life and their incredible story fills me with energy,” said Zonno. “I’m completely immersed and I can’t stop drawing it!”

Here’s a preview of the book and some variant covers – it goes on sale March 13. Main cover: Alessio Zonno. Variants: R1c0 (Grim) and Gus Allen (Lumberjanes).



Heidi MacDonald
Heidi MacDonaldhttps://www.comicsbeat.com/
Heidi MacDonald is the editor-in-chief of The Beat and an award winning author and editor. She is the co-author of The Secret Teachings of a Comic Book Master.

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