THE PHANTOM PLEASURE
404EVER GRAPHIC NOVEL SERIES ANNOUNCEMENT
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This promotional image for the graphic novel serial was heavily inspired by the original adverts for AKIRA by Katsuhiro Ootomo back in the 80’s. I spent quite a bit of effort to illustrate the fake “YOUNG SLUMBAG” magazine logo. Took a while to track down the right font, I hope you all think it was worth it, haha! I tried to be as faithful to the 80’s style manga promotions and announcements, even down to the story description and dirty paper. I think I want to pay homage to more influential artists and creators later on, as this image was really fun to draw and create.
I guess all this Ootomo influence is bubbling up because I recently bought the AKIRA CLUB box set of his work, and it has a ton of amazing behind-the-scenes art and notes from Ootomo. It’s really fascinating, I recommend it to anyone who’s a fan of his work. Being able to get a close-up view of his methods and mindset is worth the cost of admission, in my opinion.
His work has always been a massive inspiration for me (Please check out DOMU and FIREBALL if you like AKIRA). He’s a legend, and I think some of the DNA he created spirals throughout the world of 404EVER.
Also, please check out Ed Piskor’s Cartoonist Kayfabe’s multi-part Youtube series on AKIRA and Ootomo at large. The series begins here. As professional working artists and longtime comic fans, they do a fantastic job at breaking down the pages and giving insight into the process. I had to travel out of town this weekend, and listened to their videos nonstop while working on my comic in my small hotel room. Highly recommend.
Please look forward to NOVEMBER 4th, and spread the word if you feel like it! I’m spending at least 10-12 hours a day writing and drawing this comic, I’m putting my all into it. I sincerely hope you all enjoy it once it comes out.
The central setting of of the story, Geo-City One, is a physical place based on early, pre-social media internet culture. It’s not a typical cyberpunk location that we’ve all seen a million times. Imagine a concrete and metal city of angular frames and paywall labyrinths, lit by animated pop-up advertisements and under construction gifs. Overpopulated by anonymous users all fighting for relevance in a place where the only thing more worthless than your name is your reputation. Imagine a cybernetic city owned and operated by BBS Sys-ops and webpage designers circa 1988-1994. There’s a whole lot more to it than that, but I’ll leave the surprises for the comic.
Try not to get deleted out there!