AfterShock Comics has announced The Naughty List, a new dark reimagining of the secret origin of Santa Claus. The series comes from the creative team of writer Nick Santora, artist Lee Ferguson, colorist Pippa Bowland, and letterer Simon Bowland, with covers by Francesco Francavilla.
Here’s how AfterShock describes The Naughty List:
I had a family once. A wife who loved me…a child we loved together. That’s all gone now, been gone for hundreds of years. All because of that damn star. My name? It depends on where you live. Some call me Kris Kringle, others Papa Noël, but my real name is Nicholas Sinterklass, and this is the story of what happens when you steal my Naughty List.
Up on the housetop CLICK, CLICK, CLICK! Down through the chimney with old Saint Nick!
Writer Nick Santora is a former lawyer and screenwriter whose credits include the 2008 Punisher: War Zone film and TV series including The Sopranos, Prison Break, and Reacher. The Naughty List will be his first published comics work, though multiple sources indicate he also sold a series called Sandstorm to DC Comics back in the early 2010s. The Naughty List is the latest AfterShock Comics work for artist Lee Ferguson, who previously illustrated the five-issue Sympathy for No Devils series with writer Brandon Thomas and colorist Jose Villarrubia.
In a statement announcing the new series, Santora described finding inspiration in people griping about the holidays:
“I love Christmas and the Christmas season, but I’m always perplexed when I hear people complain about Christmas and feel that the Christmas season has been getting a bad wrap lately. People complain about having to visit relatives or having relatives visit them. They complain about the gifts they get and how it wasn’t what they wanted, and I just think it’s a great time of year and the inspiration was for Christmas to get tough and punch back. That’s what Christmas does in this book — it punches back at all the complaining and criticism.”
Check out an unlettered, black-and-white preview of a few pages from the first issue of The Naughty List, as well as an incentive variant cover by Ferguson, below. The series debuts in stores and digitally on Wednesday, April 27th, 2022.