Creator owned, Ghost Machine is basically new company, set to debut via Image and with four distinct comics universes.
Ghost in the Image
Maybe the biggest piece of news to pour out of NYCC this year is the first real detailing of Ghost Machine, and the new initiative is looking massive. It’s a little bit complicated as to what Ghost Machine actually is, but it’s basically a totally new imprint at its core.
It’s one that’ll have multiple shared-universes at launch too, serving up tons of new heroes and villains, and backed by a gaggle of well-known comics talent. And when we say “backed”, we actually mean they own the company.
The creators of the titles that’ll be featured are as much a part of Ghost Machine as Image’s original players were of it… maybe more. According to the press release, the likes of Geoff Johns, Bryan Hitch, Jason Fabok, Francis Manapul, and more will “share in “jointly own, run and operate the company and together share in publishing, media, merchandising and beyond, disrupting the status quo”.
So is this Image 2.0? Kinda/sorta sounds like it might be, as the recent Hollywood strikes led to its creation in the same way that the dominance of the ‘big two’ led to Image’s formation in 1992. That’s not to say that the structure will be the same though, as you can see in the above statement that it’s a little more in-depth.
And of course, it’s actually published by Image, which will be bringing the titles to retail shelves.
“Our ambition for Ghost Machine is to push beyond superheroes, introducing new genres, characters and shared universes, completely co-owned by all the creators involved. We see this as the future of how creatives will work and retain creative control and meaningfully participate in success like never before,” said the Ghost Machine founding creators joint statement. “Our passion is for the magic of graphic storytelling and the emotional resonance of compelling characters. But we are not just a comic book company—we are the first wholly creator-owned and operated media company of its kind, born out of a desire to create and succeed together.”Image Comics press release
A new beginning
Kicking things off for Ghost Machine will be a two-issue prequel, called Geiger: Ground Zero. Comics fans can look for issues numbered one and two of that to arrive in November and December, respectively. The Geoff Johns and Gary Frank title will lead the way into an official beginning, in January of 2024. That’ll be a 64 page book, and seems to be a hub of sorts for the four different universes of Ghost Machine. So if you’re interested in what’s coming up, you might want to grab Ghost Machine #1.
In all, it will intro:
- THE UNNAMED; revealing a mysterious group of genre heroes from across history, featuring characters and titles like GEIGER, JUNKYARD JOE, REDCOAT and FIRST GHOST. A GEIGER series, based on Geoff Johns and Gary Frank’s hit comic of the same name, is already in development at Paramount TV with director Justin Simien.
- ROOK: EXODUS; a sprawling sci-fi epic which takes place in the far future, on a world where every aspect of nature is controlled by humanity.
- The universe of FAMILY ODYSSEYS centering around the time displaced family, THE ROCKETFELLERS, and their friends.
- An epic HORROR UNIVERSE co-created and illustrated by one of our secret superstar artists to be announced, currently under contract. Following Ghost Machine #1, Ghost Machine’s titles will begin shipping in April 2024 with an all-new ongoing GEIGER series, REDCOAT and ROOK: EXODUS.
Also if you’re at NYCC this weekend, make sure to stop by booth #3045, where you’ll find Ghost Machine’s home base. Appearing and signing all weekend, from 2-3pm eastern time, will be a cadre of the company’s founders. On top of that, all attendees will get a Ghost Machine #1 Ashcan, which comes complete with a cover by the aforementioned legend, Gary Frank.
Aside from the freebie, there are also a bunch of books for sale at the booth, featuring exclusive covers. Fans can pick up “GEIGER #1 GLOW-IN-THE-DARK LIMITED EDITION, JUNKYARD JOE #1 BULLETPROOF LIMITED EDITION (silver foil cover) and REDCOAT SPECIAL #1 RED REVOLUTION LIMITED EDITION (red foil cover) for $20 a piece or all three for $60 with an exclusive GEIGER BORON ROD GLOWSTICK and a copy of the limited GHOST MACHINE #1 ASHCAN from the panel.”