Home / Comics / Deathstalker crashes Kickstarter, crowd-funding open now for new graphic novel

Deathstalker crashes Kickstarter, crowd-funding open now for new graphic novel

He’s back. An 80s sword and sorcery icon, legendary B-movie barbarian Deathstalker has returned with new graphic novel.

Like a spartan-kick to the chest

We first told you about the Deathstalker revival a while back, but now the Kickstarter that’s set to herald it has officially opened. It’s a barn-burner too, including a full retelling of the movie series that’s headed up by not only comic pros, but also big time fans of the property.

For the uninitiated though, you might be wondering just who (or what) Deathstalker is. The long and the short of that, is that he’s a barbarian hero (uh… kinda) who starred in a set of movies back in the 1980s. More of an anthology than a proper series, the first and fourth movies are directly connected, with the middle two seeming to be completely separate reimaginings of the hero and his adventures.

That last part looks like it might be changing though, thanks to this new Kickstarter. As was announced this week, the Kickstarter campaign will include a book that retells the movies, presumably leading into the upcoming Vault Comics series. And for Deathstalker fans, it sounds like a ‘can’t miss’.

Interior art by Jim Terry, colored by Kurt Michael Russell

“We obviously adore sword and sorcery at Vault,” said CEO Damian Wassel. “So, when Slash approached us with the opportunity to relaunch a cult classic of the genre together with Steven Kostanski, and our friends at Shout! and Raven Banner, we couldn’t say no. The whole idea of this project is to balance nostalgia for the so-bad-it’s-good fantasy filmmaking of the 1980s with the storytelling sensibilities of our time. There’s no one we could trust more to turn that into a wickedly hilarious, fantastically epic comic than Tim Seeley and Jim Terry.”

Damian Wassel, CEO Vault Comics

From rock and roll to sword and sorcery

Now, you’ll notice the name “Slash” in Wassel’s quote above, and yes that is indeed referring to the musical legend. Apparently, the guitarist is a huge Stalker fan, and is spearheading the drive to bring the warrior back from his final ride into the sunset in DS4.

Not that Slash will be a part of the core creative team on the title, as we did mention above that there are some comics icons taking part. Those will be writer Tim Seeley and artist Jim Terry. Seeley of course has worked on books like Grayson, Hack/Slash, and Money Shot, while Terry is probably best known for Come Home and Indio. The pair will be adapting a story by writer/director/effects artist Steven Kostanski.

Interior art by Jim Terry, colored by Kurt Michael Russell

“I’m a child of the 80s,” added Seeley. “I remember when my dad bought our first VCR in 1982. And I remember the slew of weird and imaginative sword and sorcery VHS tapes that followed. Deathstalker has been near and dear to my heart since I was completely disturbed and aroused by it at a far-too-young-age. And as a fan of the films of Steve Kostanski, I was thrilled to contribute to this project  and the ongoing mythology of Deathstalker with my good friend and frequent collaborator, Jim Terry at Vault!”

“Some went to church, some had friends, I had the video store,” said Terry. “Being young at the birth of the VHS explosion was magic, and it felt like a time when folks were telling incredibly imaginative stories with limited resources – that charm and creativity would be hard to recreate today but it’s a thrill to bask in that energy with Deathstalker. I’m already enjoying myself, and very much looking forward to wandering in a world I’m very familiar with and making something that we hope will be an absolute blast to read. Thanks to all the folks involved and to my pal Tim Seeley for inviting me along to hang out in this universe for a while.”

Vault Comics press release

As you can see, both men know the property well, and will be bringing their excitement to the book to come. But again, before we get to that, we have that Kickstarter to complete. Then again, that’s just started this week, and has already crushed its goal of $25k USD.

There are an insane amount of tiers to this bad boy too, with almost all including a copy of the book. Outside of one of the lower ones, higher backing levels will nab fans a copy of the graphic novel, plus everything from extra covers and tees, to… yes… a real replica of Deathstalker’s sword from the original film. If you’re a big fan, it’s just all kinds of awesome.

Click here to check Deathstalker out in all his glory, but don’t dawdle if you’re into bringing the hard-edged barbarian to your own bookshelf. While the campaign is set to run for another month, it’ll close on November 9th, 2023.

About Jason Micciche

Jason's been knee deep in videogames since he was but a lad. Cutting his teeth on the pixely glory that was the Atari 2600, he's been hack'n'slashing and shoot'em'uping ever since. Mainly an FPS and action guy, Jason enjoys the occasional well crafted title from every genre.

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