Lady Mechanika time! I will never forget a certain Phoenix Comic Con ten years ago and the Bleeding Cool Fan Awards. We gave away blood bags to a variety of spuriously-titled award winners, with whoever we could find attending the show to give the awards away in front of a very small audience. Thank goodness this was before people recorded things on their phones and uploaded them.
Because it also included a rather tired and emotional Joe Benitez who presented far more awards than we thought he would and threatened to turn the whole affair into even more of a farrago of nonsense than it was intended to be. No one walked out, thankfully, as that would have been a significant proportion of the audience. But at least people got a still-very-rare edition of the Adventure Time comic book for attending.
Anyway, this call comes to mind with the news that Joe Benitez's Lady Mechanika self-published comic book is coming to Image Comics. And it is doing so for Free Comic Book Day, an event at which it has regularly been present in past years. Indeed, there may have been more Lady Mechanika comics from Free Comic Book Day than any other, I'd have to check. But it seems possible.
The Lady Mechanika Free Comic Book Day comic will launch on August 14th, and then run as a new series from September. August will also see the entire Lady Mechanika backstock made available through Image, with a reprint of the first trade paperback and hardcover, making seven trade paperbacks and five hardcover columes available.
The FCBD 2021 edition of Lady Mechanika will include the stand-alone short story "The Demon of Satan's Alley," which first introduced Lady Mechanika and her steampunk world (Lady Mechanika #0)—plus a preview of "The Monster of the Ministry of Hell-th," the newest story by Joe Benitez. In Lady Mechanika, readers follow a young woman during the Victorian Era who is desperately in search of the secrets to her past—a past that left her with extraordinary, but unnatural, mechanical limbs.
The series was originally published by Aspen Comics in 2010, which span away from Top Cow, and Image Comics, so Benitez is kinda coming home.
"I'm very excited that Lady Mechanika is moving to Image!" said Benitez. "We hope this move will provide an opportunity to share the series with a new, wider audience, and also give us more time to focus on our creative strengths while letting the experts at Image handle publishing and marketing. We have so many stories to tell, hopefully this will help us get more of them out faster. The next story arc we're calling 'The Monster of the Ministry of Hell-th' will deal with a piece of Lady Mechanika's haunted past. Check out a preview of the new book in our FCBD issue!"
Eric Stephenson, Publisher & Chief Creative Officer at Image Comics added: "We're pleased to welcome Joe back to Image. Joe got his start at Image, as part of Marc Silvestri's Top Cow Productions, and he has grown into a phenomenal talent over the years. What he has built for himself with Lady Mechanika is truly impressive, and it's exciting to be part of what comes next for this incredible series."
Bleeding Cool scooped the world on the full list of FCBD (Free Comic Book Day) titles this morning – feel free to check what else is coming.