Ronald Wimberly, Emma Ríos & Sanford Greene's Planet Ardbeg Comic
It has been noted that there is a link between the wheels of the comic book industry and the alcohol that oils those wheels. To an extent that comic bar culture has been heavily criticised for excluding entrance for non-participants, and also lowering inhibitions to the extent that has enabled a plethora of sexual harassment cases in recent years. Still, if you can't beat them, join them.
Islay Single Malt Whisky Ardbeg has hired Ronald Wimberly, Emma Ríos and Sanford Greene to create a new 40-page sci-fi comic book anthology Planet Ardbeg, inspired by the likes of Métal Hurlant and Heavy Metal Magazine. Planet Ardbeg comprises three original sci-fi tales based on Ardbeg's signature whiskies and state the "the limited-edition graphic novel aims to redefine how whisky is perceived and appeal to niche sub-cultures that might understand and appreciate Ardbeg's alternative take."
Sanford Greene of Bitter Root has told the Green Lantern-sounding story Guardians of Oa, is an "action-packed epic about a copper city coming under attack from a monstrous creature". Graphic novelist Ronald Wimberley, known for, has created The Best Laid Schemes" is a "fast-paced neo-western featuring giant botanicals and even bigger beasts." While Emma Rios of Pretty Deadly, ID and Mirror has created Take it with a Grain of Sand which "recounts a mystical quest through a land lost to time."
Colin Gordon, Ardbeg's Distillery Manager, said "It's amazing to see the different smoky characteristics of these whiskies brought to life in graphic novel form. Each story in Planet Ardbeg is brimming with imagination and creativity. It's a must-read for Ardbeg fans everywhere."
Ronald Wimberly, who also served as creative director on Planet Ardbeg, said: "Planet Ardbeg is a response to the magazines that were doing that sort of radical science fiction back in the '70s. Ardbeg has its own funky, weird vibe – and these magazines were funky and weird."
Adam Woodward, TCO's Creative Lead on the project, said: "It was a fun challenge to collaborate on the making of this graphic novel, from the initial concepting right through to printing. The end result is a comic that will credibly connect Ardbeg to a subculture full of passionate, creative people."
Planet Ardbeg will be available to buy at the Ardbeg Distillery Visitor Centre, in selected comic book shops, as well as via Ardbeg.com in certain markets. A digital version will also be available exclusively for members of the Ardbeg Committee to read for free.