Todd McFarlane's Spawn – 9 Monthly Comics & 5 TV Shows For 2022

We know Todd McFarlane has a new Spawn movie in the works and has had for months. We also know he is working on a Sam & Twitch TV series as well. But his ambition extends further. I talked to him last week about the launch of Gunslinger Spawn #1, but he has so much more to talk about, such as confirming his other multi-media projects which include four more television series that he hasn't announced yet.

Todd McFarlane's Spawn - 9 Monthly Comics & 5 TV Shows For 2022
Todd McFarlane from betto rodrigues /

The answer is yes, we're just we're not announcing it publicly right now. I thought there was one we were gonna announce, and we actually just had a call earlier in the week, why don't we wait until we're gonna go in and pitch it to the studios and get closer to it so that the studios will read the headline and go oh my god that sounds interesting and then a week later we're in their office. So some of it is someone who is is sort of intentionally being held back for hopefully some value when you get into the sort of the final pitch meeting. There's there's at least four other projects that are that are going full steam ahead.

Well, what about the comics? He has announced four monthly ongoing comic books, Spawn, King Spawn, Gunslinger Spawn and The Scorched. I first asked Todd McFarlane about Scorched, given it doesn't have Spawn in the name, if he thought it might affect sales. I asked "are you going to change the name to Spawn: Scorched or The Scorched Of Spawn". Todd replied,

You know there's a book called Action Comics and Detective Comics... The plan wasn't that Spawn would be in it forever, so if it's going to be a true team book then you rotate your characters, so I didn't want to have a book that implied that there has to be Spawn, or there have to be any Spawns in it, in the future. The original name for it was the Chain Gang, that might still be a little bit too heavy-handed.

The next day when Image Comics solicitations landed, the book was called Spawn: The Scorched. You play with live ammunition when you talk to Todd McFarlane.  I also pointed out that we hadn't seen a team book from him since Boof & The Bruise Crew and that generally he didn't work on team books.

I did my run early in my career on Infinity Inc when I was young and when I left the book, I made a personal vow to myself that I would never draw a team book. It's a lot of work and the other thing was you got so many people and they each get like three lines. I felt and probably wrongly that we weren't giving any weight to anyone in particular, we were just spreading everything out in an even pattern. So I was like no, I'll just go to the solo stuff and when you do a solo character, you get to draw them over and over and over and over, so you get to find your handle on that character. I have had so many characters in that previous book, that I never felt like I got a handle on any one of them because I was bouncing constantly between all the new characters that Roy [Thomas] was bringing into the book.

I also asked if Todd McFarlane had more books he was looking to launch in 2022. He currently has four. Turns out he'd like to have nine.

I've got a couple that I'm talking with a couple artists about right now, I don't have to go crazy here I'm just looking to be a little methodical about all of it, so the fans don't feel like all of a sudden you gotta buy like nine books in a heartbeat or the retailers feel like they've got to. Ultimately, what should happen is just like what happens with my toys. I put out forty toys and I don't expect anybody to buy all forty, if I've got eight or nine titles, my answer is going to be, pick the three coolest ones you like. I mean who reads all the Marvels? Who reads all the DC? It's near impossible, so what we all do is we pick our favorites depending on the character and or the writer or the artist. We'll see how it all ends up playing out, my guess maybe, Rich, is retailers just fall into a Spawn number for all of them eventually, you know, Scorched and Gunslinger, it's a Spawn book. I've got X amount of people who like the Spawn world and they buy all four books so you know here's a number, and we may find that they're all within a pretty close range. If that's true, then then the votes are going to rise and fall with the tide, they're all going to pull each other either up or down. We're all inexplicably a family tied to each other so we're going to all have to hold our weight.

Nine monthly comics, five TV series, and a movie? Plenty to keep Todd McFarlane busy…

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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