Writer J. Michael Strazcynski and artist Mike Deodato, Jr. will reunite for The Resistance - a teen superhero title that will launch a shared universe for burgeoning publisher Artists, Writers, and Artisans (AWA), headed up by former Marvel publisher Bill Jemas
“The Resistance is the series that lays down the foundation for our shared universe — a universe that is rooted in the 21st Century,” AWA chief creative officer Axel Alonso, who was an editor for Strazcynski and Deodato's run on Amazing Spider-Man, told The Hollywood Reporter.
Alonso went on to call The Resistance “world-building at its finest by two elite creators working at the height of the talents.” The series focuses on the survivors of a global disaster that kills hundreds of millions of people - but leaves some with super powers.
“Born under a cloud, they must discover who they are, why they possess these powers and what, if any, responsibility they bear for what happened,” he said. “Are they harbingers of perils to come… or Earth’s last hope?”
Who exactly these characters are hasn't been explained yet - but Straczynski has no trouble conveying who they are as people.
“DC and Marvel are products of the times that produced them,” explained Straczynski. “DC, which came to prominence in the '40s and '50s, a very conservative time, was peopled largely by authority figures: Batman is a cop, Superman's a cop, Green Lantern is an interstellar cop, Hawkman is another interstellar cop, Flash is a cop-scientist, and so on. Marvel hit its stride during the anti-authoritarian '60s, and that's reflected by its heroes: the Hulk and Thor answer to no one, Spider-Man is a kid, the X-Men are on the run from the government... you get the idea. Those were the paradigms then."
“What Axel and I did in beginning this process was to ask, long before we dialed into individual stories [was] ‘What's the paradigm now? Where are we as a people, a country, a world, and what stories do we need to hear not just to entertain but to ennoble and uplift?’," Straczynski continued. "We wanted to give readers, especially millennials, something that would impart a measure of hope without undue cotton candy while confronting dead-on the real challenges we face as a people.”
“Governments can track down who survived and who didn't for their own purposes, corporations want them, some are frightened by them or upset that they survived while other family members did not," he concluded. "It's a story told against a huge, planetary backdrop that explores what would happen in the real world if 15-20 million people with powers suddenly emerged out of the population.”
“This series is the most important series AWA will publish ever, because that is where and when everything starts,” said series artist Deodato."This is a big leap for me, a new adventure. Having the opportunity to create an entire universe from scratch is the most satisfying thing.”
The Resistance will be one of AWA's launch titles, due out in Spring 2020.