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Coming this December from Image Comics, the first issue of Mara begins the title character’s journey through a technologically advanced world where the most important things are not morals and love but sports, war, and celebrity status – so, our world but with the technology a couple hundred years more advanced. Mara is the most popular person alive. She is both a model and an athlete and reaches unthinkably higher stardom when she gets superpowers on live television.
Mara will be written by Brian Wood, and considering the “uplifting” work he’s done with DMZ, I expect this series will be very gritty and realistic from a cynical viewpoint. Sounds like my kind of title. Woods describes how he sees a connection between athletes and superheroes that made the story’s idea appealing to him:
“For a while I’ve seen a connection between superstar athletes and superheroes, both superficially and also in how each can be portrayed and dissected, lauded, and demonized by the societies they serve,” he said and went on to talk about how pressured younger athletes are. “Mara deals with a superstar female athlete who commits this very ‘sin’ of not being perfect, and finds herself facing down the worst of what we can throw at a vulnerable young woman.”
Artist Ming Doyle (Girl Comics, Mystery in Space, Adventure Time: Marceline Scream Queens) who will be doing the artwork for this series also shares a few words about Mara:
“Mara exists in a society where personality is productized and even the minutest actions are instantaneously uploaded, circulated, and examined,” he said. “I feel that in both the broad strokes of ultra-sized stadiums and the small touches like social media enabled microphones and eye-in-the-sky blimps, we’re building a stage for Mara that’s both expansive and claustrophobic.”
Surprisingly, Image Comics mentions who will be doing the colors for this issue, a quality that’s a lot more important than people may give it credit for. The colorist will be Jordie Bellaire (The Manhattan Projects, Doctor Strange, The Rocketeer). She is considered one of the best at what she does, constantly being asked to do the colors on books.
The first issue of the six issue mini-series Mara will be available on Decemeber 26th and can be pre-ordered in the October issue of Previews. There is an advanced preview of Mara and an interview with the creator at USA Today. Because when sports are involved, of course it becomes national news. But this does look like a great title that I will be checking out.