How 'Sympathy for No Devils' Combines the Crime and Monster Genres
For most homicide detectives, mention of being surrounded by monsters is just a metaphor. When it comes to the protagonist of AfterShock Comics’ latest title, Sympathy for No Devils, things are meant just a little bit more literally, as it turns out.
The series, launching in May, centers around a cop named Winston Wallis — a cop who just so happens to be the last human alive in a world filled with supernatural monsters and threats. But this is far from a straightforward mashup between police procedural and horror, according to writer Brandon Thomas.
Heat Vision breakdown
“This book is five different genres beautifully smashed together to create a world that never plays it safe, and always keeps the characters — and hopefully readers — off-guard, with no idea what'll happen next, or which trope is next to be subverted,” Thomas explained in a statement. “The things on my mood board for this were Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Devil in a Blue Dress, Cool World and Bad Boys. I'm always interested in injecting new black and brown characters into genres where they typically haven't appeared, and I'd never seen a book with this particular mix of characters, environments, and storytelling styles.”
He continued, “It's an exciting world to tell stories in, and a big part of that is because of the people making it, with a mix of old friends (Lee Ferguson, Mike Marts, Simon Bowland) and new ones (José Villarrubia, Christina Harrington). When the first pages came back, it was like being hit with little bolts of lightning — everything just looked and felt right, and you always have that feeling, but until it transforms from words on a page into an actual, living thing, you never know. That first sequence felt welcoming and off-putting in the perfect way, and we're having a blast building out and exploring this new world around a character like Winston.”
The book reteams Thomas with artist Lee Ferguson more than a decade after their last collaboration, the indie title The Many Adventures of Miranda Mercury, and the writer is ready to revisit the pairing. “[That title] changed our lives and careers, so it was only a matter of time before we got back together to make some more cool comics, and Sympathy is definitely in the same vein,” he teased. “Impossible odds, amazing character and creature design, and a responsibility to push boundaries.”
In case Ferguson’s pages below — colored by series colorist Villarrubia — aren’t convincing enough, Thomas has one more tease for the series to win over potential readers…and it’s a big one. (Literally.)
“It’s a murder mystery where Godzilla is killed by a laser gun, and the only person that can solve it is the last man alive in a world of monsters, and the victim of a magical curse that guarantees impossible escapes.”
Sympathy for No Devils debuts May 20 in comic book stores and digitally.
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