Comic-Con@Home: Boom! Studios Goes Behind Keanu Reeves’ ‘BRZRKR’ And More

by Gary Catig

The “Discover Yours” panels from Boom! Studios provides the comic publisher a good opportunity to introduce the variety of titles they have to offer. Their Comic-Con@Home panel, which was held on Sunday morning, was no exception. Participating were writers Sabaa Tahir, John Allison, Nicole Andelfinger, Gabby Rivera and Matt Kindt.
Rivera spoke about her two graphic novels with Boom beginning with the adaptation of her award-winning novel, Juliet Takes a Breath. It was very representative of herself at the age of the protagonist and she wanted to create a story that her friends could read and represented their queerness and identities. Her other title, b.b. Free, takes place in a post-apocalyptic America. The author hoped to show kids of color the fun, energy and playfulness in a story that they don’t normally receive. It centers on a world based on sharing, community and nature.

Because of time differences between California and the U.K., Allison’s portion was recorded separately. Through his series, Wicked Things, he wanted to show kids in a grown-up world and the main character, Lottie, is like a square peg in a round hole as she works with her local police. She has a hard time integrating into a system that can’t handle her. It is more plot driven compared to another of his Boom series, Giant Days. Speaking of, the character he misses the most from that comic is Susan because she was such an abrasive character with multitudes, that he found she could cut through a story in ways the others couldn’t.
Tahir is creating prequels to her An Ember in the Ashes fantasy novel series for Boom. It follows three young military recruits for the Martial Empire. Andelfinger is helping on writing duties and Tahir learned so much about comics from her including the difficulty of scripting and dialog. Through the prequels, she is digging into these characters’ past even more to show the moment when the seed was planted that what they’re doing was not okay. The three main leads have to choose between what’s right or what they’ve been told is correct. After A Thief Among Trees: An Ember in the Ashes Graphic Novel, Tahir is currently working on another one which might include some favorite characters from the books.

Boom has a high-profile series coming out in October, BRZRKR, co-written Keanu Reeves. The other writer on the comic is Kindt who described working with the famous actor. At first, he was apprehensive going in because collaborations in general can be a crap shoot. Also, he was afraid that Reeves would be a writer in name and he’d have to do all the work. After some meetings he came aboard the project about an immortal warrior that spans the beginning of time to modern day. He was impressed how Reeves backed up the potential story with science and quantum physics and how involved and hands on he is. Kindt had already been kicking around a story about someone who could live forever and exploring the psychological aspects so he thought it would be a good fit. BRZRKR will be released in October.

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