Yesterday, we told you about superstar artist Sir Robert Liefeld's plans to revive the Extreme Studios universe at Image, with an Extreme Anthology announced in an EXXXCLUSIVE interview on ComicBook.com. The headline, however, seemed to imply that there would be more than that, and that is indeed the case, it turns out. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter talking mainly about his deal with Graham King and Akiva Goldsman to bring the Extreme universe to Hollywood, Liefeld revealed that, in addition to the Extreme Anthology, we'll be getting at least a Brigade and Bloodstrike series, as well as some reprints:
I have a new Brigade series ready to go that I've been waiting to launch with Bloodstrike, and then we have an Extreme anthology coming out. I'm not going to flood the market. We'll do selective stories, selective arcs, and then at the end of the year, we'll be collecting the material. I love collections. We're going to collect the original stories for the first time, as well. Very little of the '90s stories have been collected. Bloodstrike No. 1 was a book that I laid out, we had young talent at the time — it gave me a chance to control the storytelling — and we're going to recolor and reissue that so that people can have an affordable version of that. Re-Gex No. 1, I did with [Marvel TV head] Jeph Loeb, we're doing a new edition of that. But, yes. There'll also be new adventures. We'll do a couple of story arcs. We've got a lot of the Extreme talent working on new material, some of them are already back at work on it. Marat Mychaels, who was the original artist on Brigade, is working on it again.
And again, the fans love this stuff. On my desk right now, I have a bunch of books from '92 and '93, and I looked at the layouts of this stuff, I looked at the visuals, and I'm telling you, we at Image Comics and Extreme Studios, we pushed the boundaries of storytelling. We had big, bold, colorful characters, and we had interesting conflicts. I just think, especially aesthetically, there's a visual direction we gave great care to. That's fun. That's fun. I do feel like everything old and new again. I loved Twin Peaks, and I keep thinking about that little guy. "That gum you like is back in style."
That sounds exciting, but that Brigade series also sounds familiar. As it turns out, it's the series Liefeld Kickstarted back in 2013, raising more than $35,000. Liefeld's plans for the series were as follows:
BRIGADE FOR FREE! Stretch Goals!
We have reached the Stretch Goals Phase of FREE BRIGADE!
Where does the money go?
100% of the funding is going to PRINTING the comic and the hardcover. My personal goal is to produce at least 100,000 copies of BRIGADE #1 or 50,000 each of issues #1 and #2. That is the purpose of this Kickstarter. I draw every day wether I'm paid or not, it's what I do, but printing comics and giving them away for FREE must be budgeted and accounted for.
Thank you to everyone who has supported and pledged to get us funded. What does this mean? It means I can provide 50,000 FREE BRIGADE copies to fans and retailers! I would like to increase that number and expand the amount of FREE BRIGADE comic books! With that in mind I've created fun, creative Stretch Goals incentives to reach the next stage!
The project was originally meant to be delivered in 2013 but as you may have noticed due to the fact that you have not received a free copy of Brigade Returns #1, that hasn't happened yet. This has been met with mixed reactions from backers, which you can read about in the Kickstarter comments.
However, in an update in late December, Liefeld alluded to this week's announcement, confirming that the Kickstarted book will be released as part of the Extreme revival at Image this year:
After receiving a call a few days before Thanksgiving being told an announcement would go out within 24 hours I hopped on here to give you guys the first and only heads up as you should be notified before all others. Then it was kicked a few weeks until finally being notified that it will be the first week of January 2017. How does this affect Brigade? It directly affects the project and the content and the deal took 11 months far beyond what I had anticipated.
That said, yes, I screwed up royally. Handled this poorly, and refunds are available as always. The book will ship following the announcements and will now carry a 25th anniversary banner which I feel is appropriate as there are so many exciting Extrehe/Image 25th anniversary projects coming your way in 2017.
And I'll be DOUBLING YOUR COMIC ORDER in your reward selection as a thank you for your patience and continued support. You deserve it! The kickstarters will have exclusive content and covers that will only be available for backers. I have over 200 requests for folks to join this kickstarter and I've denied them as this is for original backers only.
In the past 2 years I've done 29 convention appearances and I've met many of you who have been so generous in your enthusiasm and support always telling me you are a backer! Thank you. THANK YOU.
Another final update in 17 days!
2017 is looking Liefeldelicious! But we do have to wonder: will those Brigade Returns first issues be given out for free, as the Kickstarter promised?