Yes, yes, ya’ll! Kickstart My Heart is finally back and you know what that means, don’tcha, peeps? That’s right! It’s means it’s time to talk about crowdfunding!
You guys know me. From time to time, I like to help focus our collective attention onto comic book and graphic novel ventures that truly need and deserve our hard-earned ducats. That, my friends, is what Kickstart My Heart is all about. Well, that and making you think about Mötley Crüe way more than you normally would. That is, unless you’re Vince Neil or something… He, uh, doesn’t have much else going on other than his collection of miniature Victorian doll house furniture.
So, when I spot a project on Kickstarter or Indiegogo that stands out and blows up my skirt (two things I greatly enjoy when performed simultaneously) I’ll be supplying you fine folks with a breakdown of the project itself as well as interviews with the team running the thing in the hopes that you’ll make it rain for that particular campaign.
Let’s see what we’ve got this time around.
What is THE PITIFUL HUMAN LIZARD?
The Pitiful Human-Lizard is an irreverent and beautifully rendered new comic book series by Toronto-based artist Jason Loo. The Kickstarter project covers funding for the printing of the first 52 page issue in which we’ll be introduced to office drone worker Lucas Barrett aka the titular costumed reptile-dude. Like most 9-5ers, Lucas is bored at his job and begins to look outside of it for satisfaction. Soon, he’s strapping on spandex and and performing the duties of both kickee and kicker in many super heroic booty-hoofing situations.
Set in the great city of Toronto, Jason Loo hopes to present a fresh and comedic approach to super heroics with a uniquely Canadian flavour and if you look at that awesome cover above, it looks like he’s well on his way to doing just that.
I’ve personally been following the production of this book for some time and there are very few upcoming comics that I’m anticipating more than The Pitiful Human-Lizard. From what I’ve seen of Jason’s sneak peaks, the book looks to have phenomenal art, fantastic storytelling and heart to spare. If you’re a fan of comics that are fun and try to do things a little differently then this is a book you should seriously consider supporting… And yeah, that goes for folks outside of Toronto and beyond the borders of the Great White North! Lucas has to deal with job dissatisfaction, parents, chirpy naysayers, and the occasional public embarrassment. These are universal themes that everyone can identify with regardless of where you come from so throw that money down for the most pitiful hero you’ve ever seen!
Okay, so I’ve convinced you, right? What’s that? You want to know what Jason’s monetary goal is? Well…
That’s right. Only 4500 beans are needed to get the Pitiful Human-Lizard to the printers, ship the damn thing and to pay for backer incentives. 1000 books will be making it off the presses and this level, but there are stretch goals in place to produce more should the campaign reach the $6000, $8000, and $11000 marks.
Yeah, I know, that’s great and all, but you want to know what you’ll get for your contribution, am I right? Of course I’m right.
$5 or more – Will get you a digital PDF copy of The Pitiful Human-Lizard! Estimated delivery – April 2014.
$15 – The 52-page debut issue of The Pitiful Human-Lizard, plus the digital PDF copy!
$30 or more – The 52-page debut issue of The Pitiful Human-Lizard, the digital PDF copy, PLUS a selection of a Human-Lizard print drawn exclusively by these artists: Kalman Andrasofszky, Evan Munday, Vince Sunico, Eric Kim, Brian McLachlan, Shane Heron, Christopher Yao, Paris Alleyne, Te’Shawn Dwyer, Jahnoy Lindsay, Matt Simas.
$60 or more – CHINATOWN VARIANT COVER PACK- You get a limited edition, numbered variant cover of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue featuring Toronto’s Chinatown, the regular edition copy, and digital PDF copy.
$60 or more – COMIC BOOK and SKETCH – (Limit of 10) – You get the 52-page debut issue of The Pitiful Human-Lizard, the digital PDF copy, AND an original 8″x10″ black and white sketch of the Human-Lizard drawn by creator Jason Loo.
$60 or more – HONEST VARIANT COVER PACK- You get a limited edition, numbered variant cover of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue featuring the ‘HONEST’ Toronto landmark, the regular edition copy, and digital PDF copy.
$65 or more – LOCAL RETAILER REWARD – Comic book retailers within the GTA, Halton, Peel, and York Region will get 10 copies of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue dropped-off at their store.
$70 or more – CANADIAN RETAILER REWARD – Comic book retailers within Canada (outside of GTA, Halton, Peel, and York Region) get 10 copies of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue.
$75 or more – INTERNATIONAL RETAILER REWARD – Comic book retailers outside of Canada get 10 copies of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue.
$80 or more – HONEST RETAILER REWARD – Retailers get 2 copies of the limited edition,numbered “HONEST” Toronto landmark variant cover edition PLUS 8 copies of the regular edition of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue.
$80 or more – CHINATOWN VARIANT RETAILER REWARD – Retailers get 2 copies of the limited edition, numbered Chinatown variant cover edition PLUS 8 copies of the regular edition of The Pitiful Human-Lizard first issue.
$250 or more – PARIS ALLEYNE ORIGINAL – Original art piece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Paris Alleyne for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
$250 or more – EVAN MUNDAY ORIGINAL – Original artpiece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Evan Munday for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
$250 or more – VINCE SUNICO ORIGINAL – Original art piece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Vince Sunico for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
$250 or more – CHRISTOPHER YAO ORIGINAL – Original art piece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Christopher Yao for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
$250 or more – SHANE HERON ORIGINAL – Original art piece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Shane Heron for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
$250 or more – ERIC KIM ORIGINAL – Original art piece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Eric Kim for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
$275 or more – ORIGINAL COMIC PAGE (Page 6) – original comic page from the first issue of The Pitiful Human-Lizard.
$275 or more – ORIGINAL COMIC PAGE (Page ‘31.5’) – original comic page from the first issue of The Pitiful Human-Lizard.
$500 or more – KALMAN ANDRASOFSZKY ORIGINAL – Original art piece of the Human-Lizard drawn exclusively by Kalman Andrasofszky for this campaign. Includes full-colour print.
Want to hear more about the project? Well, lucky for you I was able to corner the magnanimous Mr. Loo for a few questions!
KRIS: Where did the idea for The Pitiful Human Lizard come from?
JASON: The Human-Lizard was a superhero I created back in high school and worked on through college. I went through an emo phase which made me want to tell a superhero story where the hero constantly experiences a series of bad days. Also, you don’t see many lizards in Canada, which makes the character look awkwardly out of place.
KRIS: What made you want to spotlight the city on Toronto?
JASON: After reading a lot of Marvel comics where the superheroes spend their time in New York City, I wanted to create the same experience for the city of Toronto. You don’t see many superhero comics set in Toronto, so why not create one myself in the city I love!
KRIS: Of all of the comic book Kickstarter and Indiegogo campaigns flooding the interwebs, what do you feel sets your project apart?
JASON: I think what makes my comic project stand out is the fact that it’s a new superhero in Toronto. Toronto has had a bad rep lately because of our current mayor, so as corny as it sounds, they need a hero. It’s a grounded underdog story set in actual locations like Parkdale, Little Italy, John and Richmond, and Yonge-Dundas Square. There’s a sense of pride when people can look at the comic and say, “that’s my neighbourhood!”
KRIS: Yeah, there’re a lot of Toronto locales that will be popping up in the book! From the art that’s already been released it seems extremely accurate. How much time and effort was put into making sure your city looked right, especially from some of the more acrobatic angles the Lizard finds himself in?
JASON: I did a lot of walking around the city, taking photos of every needed angle for each panel on my iPhone. I also used Google Maps street views when it was too cold and dark outside to get photo references. There are also some flashbacks that take a look at Toronto in the 70s, so I had to dig deeper in finding out how a place like Honest Ed’s looked in that period.
KRIS: Nice. What about Human-Lizard are you most excited about audiences discovering?
JASON: A lot happens in the 51 pages and I’ve been very careful in not sharing too much information over the social medias before the eventual comic release. But there are a lot of fun, crazy stuff that happens in some of the TO locales that when fans are done reading, they can go to that exact location in the city and point out that event.
KRIS: With the Human-Lizard Kickstarter campaign you’re looking to fund the 52 page first issue featuring the hero. If all goes well will The Pitiful Human-Lizard become an ongoing series? What’s the next step for Lucas Barrett?
JASON: If all goes well, there will definitely be at least 4 issues after the first one. If people still dig it, I’ll continue the series. Second issue will be written in the same vein as a Marvel Two-in-One comic where Lucas will team-up with a character introduced near the end of the first issue.
KRIS: What do you think people need to know about The Pitiful Human-Lizard that hasn’t been said already?
JASON: That the Human-Lizard is a punching bag throughout his debut issue.
KRIS: Beyond monetary contributions what can people do to help you guys reach your funding goal?
JASON: There are at least tens of thousands that show up to the Toronto comic conventions. I want every comic book fan in the GTA, the rest of Southern Ontario, and even comic fans nation-wide to recognize this new Canadian superhero! So follow The Pitiful Human-Lizard Facebook Page, share the links, and retweet updates on the comic.
Thanks for featuring me, Kris!
KRIS: Hey, no problem, man! It was my pleasure.
So, there you have it, folks! Thanks to Jason Loo for taking the time to answer my questions. You guys should reward him by visiting his Kickstarter page and liking The Pitiful Human-Lizard on Facebook!
Hey look! LINKS! Convenient.
Running a crowd funding project or know of one that could use a spotlight? Let Kris know about it via Twitter @KrisJJohnson
To See Kris’s comic work, visit www.bizarrecomicsonline.com
If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!