In a spectacle that brings to mind their legendary solo albums in 1978, the members of KISS recently headed out on their own again. This time the Starchild, the Demon, the Celestial, and the Catman got their own individual comic books courtesy of IDW Publishing. KISS is never content with the status quo, and the God of Thunder himself (Gene Simmons) encouraged IDW Limited to release special edition Comicfolios of each issue.
The first of the four issues to get the royal treatment is KISS Solo: The Demon. IDW's Chief Creative Officer / Editor-in-Chief Chris Ryall wrote the issue and longtime KISS comic artist Angel Medina illustrated. The explosive tale pits the Demon against the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Ryall shared a little bit of his own excitement about the KISS Solo Comicfolios.
"Obviously, I'm a lifelong fan of KISS, and this is something I'm happy to have in my own personal KISS collection. This Comicfolio is a very cool collectible, and the perfect thing for long-time fans or for someone you're trying to get hooked on rock and roll-or comics-for the first time," he commented.
The storyline and title of the book, "Radioactive," is based on a song taken from Gene Simmons' 1978 solo album. The explosive tale pits the Demon against the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Writer Ryall reveals a little of what readers can expect when opening the pages of KISS Solo: The Demon.
"I figured since they've (the Four-Who-Are-One) never really been apart before, I should start out small and ease the character into being in a battle without anyone to watch his back... He's trying to figure out just what the deal is with humanity, why they're so important in the scheme of things. So it opens with him trying to be human and understand humanity, and then the Horsemen attack and he has to decide whether they're even worth fighting for," stated Ryall.
The second issue to be released will be KISS Solo: The Starchild. It's written by Tom Waltz (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and illustrated by Tone Rodriguez (Violent Messiahs). "Goodbye" sends cosmic bounty hunter the Starchild on one last mission to bring in a bad guy before returning to his home and cherished wife.
Next up is KISS Solo: The Celestial. The Spaceman embarks on an interstellar adventure entitled "Fractured Mirror" that sends him into battle against space pirates and himself. Chris Ryall pens the story with Alan Robinson ("Star Wars") taking on art duties.
Lastly, we'll get KISS Solo: The Catman. "Can't Stop the Rain" puts a twist on the age-old tale of "Beauty and the Beast." The Catman must stop an evil being from sacrificing a beautiful virgin female to the dark forces of the universe so he can increase his godlike powers. The tale is written by Tom Waltz and illustrated by Roberto Castro (JSA).
The limited edition Comicfolios will come in laser-cut hardcover portfolios adorned by the band's logo. Special editions of Angel Medina's cover art and exclusive lithographs will be included in each one. Only 500 copies of KISS Solo: The Demon will be made. I would imagine that will be the standard press run for all the titles.
Much like KISS's compilation "The Best of the Solo Albums," IDW Limited will release all four books in one collection entitled "The Beast." It will include a copy of each Comicfolio encased in a die-cut hardcover portfolio hand made for this special release. "The Beast" is the way to go for fans looking to keep their KISS comic book collection up to date. IDW Limited Director Jerry Bennington shared his vision of the Comicfolios.
"We wanted this to feel instantly cool and nostalgic. These remind me of the first time I saw a vinyl album; there's something so obviously COOL about them. This is the comic presentation you can get people into comics with; it's this unique thing that people see and instantly want to hold and own."
You can pre-order the individual KISS Solo Comics or "The Beast" right here.