Published on April 14th, 2017 | by Richard Boom0
‘Swords of the Swashbucklers’ Gets Special Treatment
Dynamite Entertainment, Butch Guice, and the family of Bill Mantlo will be launching a Kickstarter campaign supporting the restoration of the Swords of the Swashbucklers comic series, a creator-owned pirate adventure published by Marvel from 1984 to 1987, as a high-quality collected edition. The support of backers will not only give the long-lost, groundbreaking series the complete and fully-remastered treatment that it deserves, but will preserve the prized work of Bill Mantlo, an industry great whose career was tragically derailed by a vehicular accident.
Swords of the Swashbucklers, blending elements of Guardians of the Galaxy with Pirates of the Caribbean follows spirited teenager Domino Drake, a normal girl who stumbles upon an alien artifact, acquires uncanny power, and becomes a beacon for intergalactic trouble. With her tabby cat in tow, Domino joins the motley crew of the Starshadow,a spacefaring pirate ship captained by the charismatic and fearless Raader. Upon successful completion of the Swords of the Swashbucklers Kickstarter, Dynamite will publish the series as a full-color, fully remastered volume over 400 pages in length, containing the complete story from the original graphic novel, plus the 12-issue maxi-series.
Backers who support the Swords of the Swashbucklers Kickstarter have the opportunity to receive rewards, including t-shirts, digital editions, collectible prints, hardcover upgrades, and hand-drawn illustrations by Butch Guice.
Artist Butch Guice, who launched his comics career in the 1990s with Rom and Micronauts and became a perrenial favorite at Marvel and DC Comics, reflects on his time working with Mantlo on the series: “I had the enormous pleasure of working with Bill Mantlo at the beginning of my own career, and I know from personal experience the vibrant infectious enthusiasm and joy Bill had for Swords of the Swashbucklers, and the stories we told together. This project is a wonderful way to honor Bill Mantlo’s creative legacy. I hope fans, both old and new, support this effort, and I for one very much look forward to seeing the swashbuckling crew of the Starshadow fly once more.”
Bill Mantlo rose through the Marvel ranks in the 70s and 80s to become one of their Bullpen’s most dependable writers. He scripted over 500 Marvel comic books including Spectacular Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk, Micronauts, and Rom: SpaceKnight. Known for his far-flung cosmic adventures and colorful personalities, Mantlo would be partly responsible for bringing to life Rocket Raccoon, the star of the 2014 blockbuster film, Guardians of the Galaxy and this coming May’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. At the height of his career, Bill Mantlo was the victim of a hit-and-run accident in New York City. He suffered a closed-head brain injury that severely impaired his memory, mobility, and fine motor skills. For twenty years, he has resided in a rehabilitation center, where staff assist with nearly all of his physical activities.
Nick Barrucci, CEO and Publisher of Dynamite, says, “I could not be prouder of our upcoming Kickstarter project, dedicated to help bring Bill Mantlo and Butch Guice’s long out-of-print classic, Swords of the Swashbucklers, back into print. The series struck a chord as a young fan and is a personal favorite of mine from childhood. Having the chance to reintroduce it for everyone to enjoy is a dream come true. It’s hard to believe that it’s been 30 years and this incredible body of work has not been in print before now, and I couldn’t be prouder to be publishing this seminal series.”
Ultimately, backers who support this Kickstarter will not only grant one of comics’ earliest creator-owned projects new life with the premium treatment it deserves, but they’ll help get Swords of the Swashbucklers back in print so revenue from its continued sales can improve the quality of life for Bill Mantlo, a beloved writer and heavy influence on the next generation of comic creators.