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Watch the History of Image Comics Unfold in New Documentary, SO MUCH DAMAGE

Watch the History of Image Comics Unfold in New Documentary, SO MUCH DAMAGE

In 1992, seven of Marvel’s most popular comic book artists jumped helicarrier and formed Image Comics. At the time, Todd McFarlane, Jim Lee, Whilce Portacio, Marc Silvestri, Erik Larsen, Jim Valentino, and Rob Liefeld were superstars within the medium, and their new venture changed the industry while challenging both Marvel and DC with their sales. Twenty five years later, Image is still one of the top comic companies, but it hasn’t always been a smooth journey.

Syfy Wire has released a new five-part documentary called So Much Damage, an oral history of Image Comics with input from all of the founders. Syfy’s Mike Avila hosted the documentary and conducted the interviews, with additional reporting from Henry Barajas. The documentary also details the rifts between the creators and how their partnership was nearly splintered just a few years after it began.

In part one, McFarlane recalls how he recruited Lee and Silvestri on the eve of their famous meeting with Marvel, where the artists quit the company and laid out their reasons why. As a parting shot, the artists scheduled a similar meeting with DC Comics, which now seems somewhat ironic, since Lee is currently the co-publisher there. In the second episode, the documentary explores the nearly unprecedented response to Image, which transformed the creators into celebrities.

In the third installment, the creators talk about the downturn of the comic book industry and the dispute that led Liefeld to quit Image shortly before a vote that would have also kicked him out.

Years later, Liefeld and his former partners reconciled, thanks in part to the efforts of Robert Kirkman. Kirkman co-created The Walking Dead, a comic book that became such a massive hit that he was invited to become a new partner at Image. The fourth part of this documentary focuses on Kirkman’s arrival, and the way that he changed the company from the ground up.

The fifth and final installment catches to Image’s current state as the home to several critically acclaimed and commercially successful creator-owned comics like Saga, Bitch Planet, and Happy. Along with The Walking Dead, those titles are among the books that once again made Image into a publisher that draws in the very best writers and artists in comics.

What did you think about So Much Damage? Let us know in the comment section below!

Image: Image Comics

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