The masked swordsman returns? In a way he is, as comic icon Sean Gordon Murphy’s Zorro is creating a completely new legacy.
Not your father’s Zorro
You know the name “Sean Gordon Murphy” if you’re a comic book fan in the modern age. It’d be almost impossible not to, since Murphy has created one of the best-loved alternate takes on Batman in decades with The White Knight universe at DC Comics. And if you dug that, and what he did with the Dark Knight’s mythos, then you just might be very much down for what’s coming up with Zorro.
Another name that comic and superhero fans will probably find instantly recognizable, Zorro is a classic in every sense. The revolutionary hero was not only one of the first Latin comic stars, but he continues to be a household name even with no media backing him up. Not that that’s going to be an issue much longer, and again that’s thanks to Murphy.
But if you thought that the writer and artist would be simply retelling the classic tale, or modifying it ever-so slightly, you’re wrong. This is a completely new version of the hero entitled Zorro: Man of the Dead, and set in the modern age. As you might imagine, it’s not Don Diego in the title role, though the man who wears the mask does share his name.
“The idea for this book is Don Quixote meets Narcos, told in a contemporary setting,” says Sean Gordon Murphy. “Diego is a young man who’s convinced that he’s Zorro—as a child, he had a psychotic break after witnessing the murder of his parents by the drug cartel in his village. To cope with the trauma, he embraces the 200-year-old legend of Zorro by putting on the mask, training with the sword, and waging a war against the Narcos to free his people.”Sean Gordon Murphy
Starting a new legacy
Spinning out of Massive Publishing, Zorro: Man of the Dead is first hitting Kickstarter, and “hit” the crowd-funding platform it did. Debuting just the other day, the comic has already been funded, and sits at over $144k USD, which is just a tad more than the original goal of $40k.
The book is available for backers in a “variety of premium formats from prestigious artists”. And these are names you very much should know, with a list that includes the likes of “Joe Quesada, Humberto Ramos, Adam Hughes, Amanda Conner/Jimmy Palmiotti, Walt Simonson, Dan Panosia and more”. And along with all of that talent, the campaign also includes options for a special interconnected cover illustration from Murphy, special formats (like the “11×17 Artist Edition”), “original art”, and a hardcover version that’ll have a cover variant you won’t find outside of Kickstarter.
None of that though, is saying that the book won’t be making its way to retail. In fact, from the sounds of it, the campaign ties directly into that brick and mortar launch, providing even more variant covers for the latter. The book will be pre-orderable at shops starting on October 22nd, with a January drop on the schedule. Look for that to deliver covers from “Sean Murphy, Dustin Nguyen, Matteo Scalera, Tony S. Daniel, and more”, according to Massive.
If you’d like to contribute though, and get in on Zorro’s big return with Man of the Dead, click here to check out the campaign.