Artist Ryan Bodenheim passed away at the age of 44 late last month. Prior to his death Bodenheim had been working on a new series for Bad Idea with writer Robert Venditti, colorist Ulises Arreola, and letterer Dave Sharpe called Spark for Bad Idea. Today the publisher digitally released the first, unfinished issue of the series as a way to pay tribute to the artist.
On the website where the full 30-page Spark #1 is posted, the publisher included a note about the book, and about the work of Ryan Bodenheim:
Today a new BAD IDEA comic book arrives in stores and we’d like to take that opportunity to honor someone very dear to all of us by making a second comic book available to all of you.
Ryan Bodenheim, an exceptional storyteller, an exquisite illustrator, a colleague, a part of our family, and a friend, passed away far too young this past December. Ryan had been working with us on a book that we are so excited and proud to share. We are breaking a cardinal Bad Idea rule today and releasing the comic digitally. It’s a work in progress, but we wanted to share it in celebration of Ryan and his incredible talent. We’ll also be sharing some memories of Ryan on social media today and we hope you will join us in celebrating his life and work by posting some of your favorite Ryan Bodenheim books, art, panels, commissions, covers, etc.
We miss our friend dearly.
Also included is a quote from Bodenheim about the enduring power of comics:
“The comic book industry will never die because we love what we do. We won’t stop drawing, we won’t stop telling stories, we won’t stop reading them. We’ve been doing it since the caves.”
– Ryan Bodenheim
With a career in comics that spanned nearly two decades, Ryan Bodenheim is best known for his multiple collaborations with writer Jonathan Hickman, which include Red Mass for Mars and The Dying & The Dead. Bodenheim also did work for Marvel, which is where he broke into mainstream comics as the winner of the Wizard Magazine New Talent Search with a story in 2002’s Wolverine #183.
Spark #1 displays the full range of Bodenheim’s talent for characterization, dynamic action, and world-building. Check out a few pages of the issue below, and head over to Bad Idea’s website to read the full story.