Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Wild about Wildguard!

The cameras are rolling for the auditions of a new made-for-TV superteam: WildGuard. Hundreds of superheroes will try out, but only five will have what it takes to make the team... if they survive! Join a host of heroes through the agony of competition and unforeseen dangers, as they hope to be selected by a panel of judges, including the mysterious Producer X.

I don't get many independent comics these days, but one that I never miss is Todd Nauck's Wildguard. Published by Image Comics, this book first appeared as a six part mini-series back in 2004. What sets it apart from any other debuting super-team book? How about the concept of a team being picked based on a reality show open-call process? Yup, that's what Wildguard did - take one part Survivor/American Idol and throw in capes and spandex, and you've got a fun concept.

I actually picked up the entire first arc as part of the Wildguard: Casting Call trade paperback. I knew Todd's artwork from his working on DC's Young Justice. Here, Todd was doing both the writing and art, delivering a one-two creative punch. This book is all his vision and it is outstanding. Around this same time, a one-shot called Wildguard: Fire Power came out. He also started a "where are they now?" back-up feature with a couple pages of popular heroes that didn't make the final team cut.

In 2005, he followed the first mini up with the two part Wildguard: Fool's Gold. Not only did he explore the new team first working together but also other elements of their world. This was also the time Todd started putting up a weekly web-comic on his site Wildguard.com.

Those web-comics made print this summer in the three-part Wildguard Insider. Not only were all the web-comics printed, but Todd and his other friends added some all new lead material and a number of "where are they now?" segments as well.

Todd had been doing Teen Titans Go! regularly for DC the past four years. Since that title got cancelled recently, I am hoping this will allow Todd and Image to put out Wildguard as a regular monthly title (or at least a steady stream of minis). This is one book that is too good to be kept on a sporadic schedule.

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