Why, some may ask, is TwoMorrows doing a book on the history of Image Comics? Besides the fact that we’re committed to documenting ALL of comics history, I admit I wasn’t a big fan of the early Image Comics output. Heck, I was completely out of comics altogether when Image first launched. It took Jack Kirby’s death in 1994 to get me back into a comics shop to even discover the company existed, after a 5-year hiatus.
But that first trip back to a comics store really made an impact. After wading through all the foil-stamped cover variants from Marvel and DC, I saw the big “i” logo on a comic, and had to ask the shop owner what “Image” was. At that point, I had no idea how influential those seven founders had been in the marketplace during my absence.
I’ve since learned a lot about the company and its founders (or so I thought, until I read this exhaustive book). My first Image comic purchase was when Jeff Smith moved his comic Bone to the company briefly. Since then, Image has published some of the best comics in the business, and while they’re not selling in the millions of copies any longer (who is, these days?), they’re all about quality output.
Author George Khoury’s book IMAGE COMICS: THE ROAD TO INDEPENDENCE is on press now, and ships June 16. It’s an incredibly dense, fascinating read, covering the entire 15-year history of the company. It features interviews with the Image founders, plus several of the newer creators working there, like Jeff Scott Campbell and Robert Kirkman. George Khoury was just interviewed about it on Comic Geek Speak; check out George’s interview, and the book when it ships next week. If a grizzled old-time fan like me can be riveted by the behind-the-scenes story of these young upstarts, you can be sure you will be too.