How 'The Resistance: Reborns' Rethinks the Superhero Genre

The Resistance Reborns Announcement
The short story anthology from Artists, Writers and Artisans' Upshot imprint will be available in January.

In 2021, the Resistance grows.

Next January sees the launch of The Resistance: Reborns, the beginning of the next chapterfor Artists, Writers, and Artisans' Upshot imprint shared universe launched in The Resistance earlier this year. Once again, J. Michael Straczynski (Babylon 5, Changeling, Amazing Spider-Man) is the writer responsible for the new title, while artist C.P. Smith provides visuals.

Reborns is a collection of short stories set in the aftermath of the global pandemic known as the Great Death that killed millions worldwide, but left many survivors with super powers — the “reborns” of the title. As governments across the globe try to track down on the reborns, the so-called Resistance of the newly empowered has to evolve in order to survive.

"In The Resistance, Volume 1 J. Michael Straczynski — along with his co-creator, artist Mike Deodato, Jr. — told the origin story of a shared universe for the 21st Century, a world where newly-born super-powered humans must survive a post-pandemic world embracing fascism born of fear,” AWA Upshot editor-in-chief and CCO Axel Alonso told The Hollywood Reporter. “That story, written a year before COVID-19  ravaged the globe, was supernaturally prescient in predicting the shape of the world today. The Resistance, Volume 2 is equally prescient.”

“When I create universes, I go to extreme lengths,” Straczynski added. “When I did Babylon 5, I outlined that universe for 100 years in either direction in excruciating detail, 1,000 years in both directions in pretty elaborate detail, and one million years in both directions because I'm a nutbar. There are some people who, if you ask them what time it is, will give you a history of the watch. Sadly, I'm several of them. So no matter how distantly removed a character may be from the initial main story of The Resistance, I know who they are, where they're going, and how they're going to get there. History of the watch.”

“The stakes are upped [in this next chapter] as governments, at home and abroad, adopt Draconian measures to surveil and police ‘reborns,’ protestors take to the streets in mass demonstrations against creeping fascism and the Resistance finds itself hated, feared, and hunted by an army of collaborators – fellow 'Reborns' that have been recruited by the government,” Alonso explained. “While Volume 1 focused on world-building and putting big pieces down on the board, Volume 2 digs deep into the characters and their plight. This is X-Men for the 21st Century. Superheroes born under a cloud of tragedy, doing their best to make a difference in as world gone mad."

The Resistance: Reborns will be available digitally and in comic book stores Jan. 6, 2021. Look below for a preview from the issue.