Sunday 5 February 2012

Coming Up In 2012 #14: Atomic! by Guy Bass

My original intention had been to run the Coming Up In 2012 throughout January only, but the response from publishers and authors has been so fantastic that I still have a few more for you. Today's is from Guy Bass, the hugely talented author of Stitch Head, Dinkin Dings and Secret Santa. February 2nd saw the release of the first book in his new series - it's about superheroes so I'm sold on it already. Here's Guy to tell us some more about the books:

My name is Guy and I’m addicted to superheroes. I’m a superheroholic.

I’ve been wanting to write about superheroes for years – professionally, that is. I spent most of my childhood (and a fair chunk of my adulthood) reading superhero comics. In my younger days I made up scores of my own heroes and villains and sent them on adventures or pitched them against each other. My brother and I came up with hundreds of characters – men, women, children, robots, monsters, robot-monster-children... We mapped out worlds and histories spanning hundreds of years, ending up with an entire universe (and the odd parallel universe) to play with. We’d write stories, draw comics, or, more often than not, act out epic, noisy, house-and-garden-spanning battles that would almost always result in Mum shouting at us. We’re in our mid-thirties now, so the battles are slightly less epic. But we still fight... and we still get shouted at.

All of which sort of led me to write Atomic! It’s a comic adventure (and an adventure comic – I’ll explain later) about Jonny and Tommy Atomic, the twin sons of the world’s greatest superhero. They’re also the world’s best kept secret – no one even knows they exist. Their father, Captain Atomic, is always busy saving the world, so he keeps Jonny and Tommy hidden away on a giant, invisible island in the sky, under the watchful eye of their uncle, Dogday (who happens to be super-intelligent talking dog) and Aunt Sandwich (who’s a hamster. Just ‘cause.)

Jonny and Tommy’s adventures kick off with Issue #1: The Vengeance of Vinister Vile. Jonny and Tommy are sent to school and have to pretend that they’re ordinary nine year-old boys. Jonny takes his secret identity very seriously but Tommy just wants to show the world what he can do, which (among other things) involves putting a crocodile in a swimming pool. Then in Issue #2: The Madness of Madame Malice, the boy’s mother – who is also the world’s most famous super-villain, Madame Malice – escapes from prison and tries to convince the boys that villainy is a lot more fun than heroism.

So, what can you expect from Atomic! – apart from heroes and villains, prison breaks, epic battles, rampaging monsters and a hamster with a ray gun? Here’s what: comics. The best thing about Atomic, without a doubt is that it’s part comic. Whenever anything really exciting happens, especially when things explode or fights break out, the book turns into a comic. I’m beside myself about this. It’s panel upon panel, page upon page of ridiculously awesome artwork by Jamie Littler. It’s some of the best, most dynamic, book illustrating I’ve ever seen. I could (and probably will) wax lyrical about the look of these books for weeks on end.

As they say in comics - see you in the funny papers!

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