LETTERS! MORE JOY! WORD BALLOON! MORE!
A JINXWORLD NEWSLETTER
This newsletter is a long overdue letter column Q and A situation. You wrote us letters like it’s 1987, the least I could do is answer them!
Some of this letter column will appear in some version in an upcoming issue of Pearl from Dark Horse Comics.
Speaking of Pearl, on sale now!, I have been working with the quite wonderful Michael Gaydos on and off for years and years and I cannot believe what he is doing on these pages.
Just last night I was going over issue six of this series. I had a couple of moments where I had to sit back in awe of the subtle excellent choices he made in service of the story.
But today we have all this nice correspondence from JOY OPERATIONS, on sale now!, and the other Jinxworld titles now available from Dark Horse Comics.
Inside each of my answers is some genuine news and updates.
Joy Operations with Stephen Byrne was 5 issues of sci-fi romping that stuck the landing. As an allegory, any highly skilled veteran entering into a glorious employment with an evil all-powerful entity who is then rudely advised of an imminent cruel betrayal in just enough time to reverse their fortunes and emerge scathed-yet-victorious -- Joy Operations can be read as an answer to several questions which you are much too polite ever to address. Still, it works on that evil conjecture level. As an entertainment, our hero Joy is agile enough to be disabused of her admiration for Kathryn in time to deliver the coup de grace. This makes for a third act owing more to Destry Rides Again than to Blade Runner. While I enjoy the ambiguities that Howard Chaykin brings to sci-fi comics, I prefer the moral certitudes of Star Wars Episode 4 to be honest. For me, The Matrix works best as a one-and-done; the sequels spoil the fun of it. Joy and Hampton make for a fun Martin & Lewis team, this time, but did they actually save the world? I'm just glad that Joy & Hampton stopped Kathryn. If ever a b**** deserved her fate, Kathryn was that b****. The world is improved by her death. Happy 30th anniversary in comic books, Brian Michael Bendis. As Jack Lemmon once said, "you've got a future".
Blessings, Brad Barnes
Oh Bradley, THANK you. We’ve had such an amazing time conjuring up Joy and her world. I am very happy to report we are GO FOR A SEQUEL.
What’s right, you are getting MORE JOY!
We figured out the schedule for Stephen. We have a GREAT idea for the story. It’s kind of writing itself right now! So, yay! Thank you everybody. We’re all getting more Joy in 2023.
@brianmbendis hi Mr. Bendis, I'm wondering if there are still any plans in place for The United States of Murder Inc title. It is my favorite
YES! MURDER INC!
The entire third volume is completed and coming to you via Dark Horse. We are going to release it later this year. Our Jinxworld publishing plan, put together by our amazing editor Daniel Chabon, is to spotlight one title at a time so we can really focus on celebrating and promoting the hard work of everyone involved.
The plan is to put out a new title and then a return title. So we did Joy Operations, new, now we’re doing Pearl, returning, next up will be a new original, soon to be announced, and then Murder Inc.
As long as I have you, and you the most dedicated of all of our readers, I will let you know that we are rebranding the entire series.
From now on, it’s just simply MURDER INC.
So when it returns as a Dark horse comic it will return as Murder Inc. The trades of the previous volumes will now only be called Murder Inc.
Why? Weeeell the title didn’t really seem to sell what it really is. After long consideration, we are rebranding the entire thing so people who like POWERS and our other crime comics may take a gander at this alternative universe crime comic that we are so so fond of.
Thank you for saying it’s your favorite. We’re not allowed to say that about our own books. So it’s nice that you said it.
Even though I’m really thinking it. hard.
Hello, dear Michael! I'm writing to you from Belarus (a little bit far away, yes), but still you and your masterpiece were able to reach me. I grew up on books that were written by you, and it's a big honor to read your creations now!
Thank you for that!
It is such a pleasure to both read that book and look at the fantastic art by the master Stephen Byrne. I am really enjoying not only the story, but the "behind the scenes" as well. It helps to understand both the idea and the art, so what I'm actually doing is going back to previous issues (that's a rare occasion for most books nowadays) and analyzing stuff that was potentially brewing in both of your minds and that's so awesome and cool!
Thank you, guys, again, keep doing what you're doing!
P.S. English is not really my native language, so if I fu**ed up something with my grammar please feel free to fix that (in case I receive that honor ofc :D).
Belarus! Are you kidding me?
It’s amazing to hear from you. And don’t worry about your English. In fact, you used all my favorite words in my preferred order. Belarus! You never know where the work will go. I was just telling our Portland State writing students how one puts work out into the world. Then it’s out there. By itself. Connecting with people. Or not. You have no idea WHO or when it will connect with. But when you do get that connection it can be the best thing.
Hi Brian and Stephen,
Loving the series. Each issue has been better than the last and you all started off strong. Reading the back matter to this issue got me thinking a lot about the world you’re building. One question that has stuck with me. You’ve talked about the 5 trusts and how people get to pick their lifestyle based off what trust they live in. Are there any people who are “off the grid” or is there no escaping the corporate influence of this world? Another question I had: will you be showing us how the world got this way? Thank you for the great comic! Looking forward to issue 4.
GREAT question Zac! YES! We have the whole world mapped out. We started sociologically. We started to reverse engineer what the trust themes were and what people get from it all. One trust is almost like an open frontier... Completely different from Jonando. One is like Vegas. But yes, of course, there are those who do not meet the ‘standards’ of the trusts or do not want to. Those who think they live off the grid. But, we will discover, someone owns all of it... Even the off the grid parts. We’ll be getting to all of it.
Hi Brian and Stephen,
This is it. This, the third issue of your new creator owned series, is the best. It’s gold. It was so incredibly packed with exciting action, but the character building/exploring was so good. Each issue Joy gets developed more. I liked her before, but this issue made me love her. She is such a unique character in the world of comics. Those page layouts done by Stephen, with the flashbacks combined with the action sequence, are so incredibly well done. You two gentlemen are making magic. So please tell me you are making a sequel or doing a new project together after this. Because forget Spider-Man and the Human Torch, Batman and Robin, Big Guy and Rusty and what have you, this is the team up I want: Bendis and Byrne!
From the Netherlands
Netherlands!! Thank you! Interesting side note to nobody but me and Stephen, the Jonando trust that opened the Joy series was designed from a drawing prompt: If Apple bought Amsterdam.
Well, as we said earlier, you are getting more Joy Operations so we will try VERY hard to live up to the high praise. Stephen worked his ass off. It was a big leap of faith for both of us and we’re so grateful for the response.
In case you missed it, we did a Bendis Tapes stream over on Word Balloon last week talking Pearl, Joy, and much more. Check it out!
Where I toss out a couple of recommendations of things that I’ve been digging lately...
CONAN NEEDS A FRIEND - THE RETURN OF JOHN MULANEY: This specific episode is one of the funniest things you’ll ever hear. Both of these men hit some of their highest moments bouncing off each other.
STARHENGE: Liam Sharp. So, in more full bragging news, I had the amazing opportunity to read an advance of Liam Sharp’s new Image book. It’s amazing.
ORGANISMS FROM AN ANCIENT COSMOS - S. Craig Zahler: Here’s a really original graphic novel written and illustrated by filmmaker S. Craig Zahler that really spoke to me. Also published by Dark Horse.
SEVERANCE - Apple Plus: So many shows have tried to be this. Some have come really close. Some have not. This is a really original TV show, I admired where they left it.
WINNING TIME - HBO: Adam McKay show about the Lakers in the ‘80s is really well-cast, really well-made, and for someone who does not know the facts of the story (I was too busy reading X-Men), I have no idea where it’s going and I’m absolutely fascinated.
Thank you for supporting independent comics. Thank you for supporting us. For more of this rambling nonsense, please subscribe to the Substack newsletter. We have some real genuine surprises coming your way very very soon. Like, VERY soon.
As always, we leave you with a moment of joy...
Here’s another series of amazing videos from the stunning new archive of classic Letterman. Which I grew up on hard, and I can tell you some of this is real deep-dive stuff. A hidden treasure.
Broadcasting live from my place of deep gratitude,