Apologies for this late edition of the “Campaign of the Week.” In case you missed last week’s feature on Heroes of the North’s Indiegogo campaign to complete a second season of their award-winning web series, you can look at it here and please visit their campaign page and check out what they have to offer as well.
This week I’m focusing on another Canadian project, this time coming in the form of Toronto comic scribe Anthony Ruttgaizer’s The F1rst Hero comic book series.
The F1rst Hero
Can you imagine a world where anyone who ever had superpowers lost their mind? Ruttgaizer presents such a world in his comic series featuring Jacob Roth, the lone man able to maintain his sanity in a world where anyone who gains superpowers becomes criminally insane. Despite his newfound abilities, Roth finds himself at a crossroads; as a military officer he must choose between retreating from a fearful world that vilifies and hunts superpowered individuals, or he can choose to help people with his powers and not stand idle as the world falls apart.
The entire project is helmed by the aforementioned Anthony Ruttgaizer on writing duties, with Phillip Sevey on pencils and inks, K.T. Smith on colours and lettering and Lee Moder composing the series’ covers.
The campaign features two avenues through which you can discover the journey of Jacob Roth. At $5 you can get all four issues of The F1rst Hero in digital format, while you can get print editions of the story in either TPB or in serialized form for $25(Canadian) or $35(Canadian) respectively, the latter being a print subscription that includes additional content.
The team behind The F1rst Hero has set a goal of $7,500 for their campaign to cover the print, promotional and production costs of their completed four-issue digital comic. Anthony and company still have 23 days to meet their goal, having raised $2,287 so far for the project.
As mentioned, the $5 4-issue digital subscription perk is a great deal for comic fans as you’ll get all four issues for a very low price, while showing your support in a cheap and very tangible way as the team works towards publishing their story in trade format. You can also effectively order the trade paperback for $25 (in Canada) or $30 (in the U.S.). Both perks include shipping costs for the TPB, a full colour desktop wallpaper and a special thank you inside the comic. Print subscriptions are also available at the $35 and $45 levels for Canada and the U.S. respectively, while international supporters can order the trade for $50.
A host of other fun combos are included, such as a t-shirt/TPB combo for $65, original artwork from series artist Phillip Sevy, as well single sketchbook offerings from artists Marcus To, Lee Moder and Francis Manapul. These range from $150 to $200. The campaign perks are rounded out by three separate opportunities to be represented in the series as a character. These come in the form of either a cameo appearance ($125), becoming a character in the series complete with dialogue ($250), or for $1,000 you can become a major recurring character throughout the run.
Why Should You Support Them?
Quite simply, this is a cool concept for a comic. The F1rst Hero twists the standard notions of superhero comics and creates an intriguing world that’s interesting and new. The series introduces us to a world where superpowered villains run amok with no balance to their number. The exception is Jacob Roth, who for whatever reason is able to maintain his sanity after developing his abilities, but must instead rise above his own fears and insecurities to become the hero his world sorely needs. That arc seems very human and relatable, as it forces the hero–who is at first very rough and fallible–to better than they are and become who they can be.
Above all, Anthony seems like a genuinely nice chap, and $5 is hardly a steep contribution for what looks to be a really fun forthcoming series in 2014.