I think, maybe just maybe, Prophet is my favorite Rob Liefeld creation.
I had missed out on much of the Image Revolution as a kid for various reasons that aren’t really germane here, but I had fully discovered Prophet in 2012, thanks to the critical acclaim that had followed Brandon Graham & Simon Roy’s reinvention of the character. To this day, that run remains what I consider to be the best current-day Image series and one I heartily recommend.
Since then, and it’s really only been in recent months, surely spurred on by my being head over heels for the Michel Fiffe-helmed Bloodstrike launch that we’re in the home stretch of; I finally sat down and began to read all those Image books that I missed out on as a youngster. And, dear reader, I’m having a blast with them.
While I’m not really one for Spawn, and I find WildC.A.T.s a bit bewildering, I’m discovering that I’m quite fond of Savage Dragon (of the launch books, it’s been the one that feels the most fully formed right out of the gate) and Youngblood, which is chock-full of youthful energy and ideas, and pulls it all off at a breakneck pace that keeps me from having to sit down and consider logic. They’re like a comics form of amphetamine, with new characters appearing around every corner.
My favorite of which was Youngblood’s second issue, which introduces John Prophet…Rip Van Winkle meets Captain America, who happened to wake up too early, but as it eventually turns out when he gets his own series also has a strong predilection for Bible verses. In a way, he becomes the literal realization of Father McGruder’s quote from Dead Alive: “I kick ass for the Lord!”. Even in the first issue’s letter column, you’ve got Liefeld urging his readers to check out the Bible for superheroic action. It’s amazingly pure, and Dan Panosian’s art there is a nice mimic of Liefeld’s style, one I’ve grown to really like over the years.
Also, his sidekick is named Jackson Kirby, and it’s basically a muscled up version of The King with a gigantic gun. It’s incredible!
And now, Studio 8 is hard at work to bring him to life on the big screen. Liefeld will act as a producer, along with Adrian Askarieh and Brooklyn Weaver. John Graham and Guy Danella will oversee production for Studio 8, the young production house founded by Jeff Robinov.
With an adaptation of this property, it’s a question of where do you start? From the beginning? Or jump ahead to the Eisner nominated Graham/Roy take. According to Liefeld, the latter is a point to build to, but they’re going to kick off from the character’s point of inception, as he tells THR:
“It makes sense that it’s a destination that we can arrive at if we are successful”…”We’re taking the best of Prophet to create the best cinematic version of Prophet that we can,” says Liefeld. “He’s very pure in his motives to help out his family and ends up becoming something completely different.”
This new announcement follows on the earlier deal struck between Netflix and Liefeld to adapt a number of concepts within the Extreme catalog (including Bloodstrike and Brigade). Between that and the ongoing success of Deadpool as a film franchise, everything keeps coming up Liefeld.
Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.