The Foreigner, Vol. 1 by Kensuke Okabayashi
Check out the Kickstarter for The Foreigner by writer/artist Kensuke Okabayashi (Manga for Dummies)!!! The first volume in a planned two volume set, The Foreigner Vol. 1 introduces us to Kaz, “a socially awkward Brooklynite [who] is cast into an alternate world and must confront battling kings to save his wife and return home.” Okabayashi has worked for over five years to blend hard sci-fi concepts, world-building fantasy, and personal storytelling into this promising graphic novel, and now he is turning to Kickstarter for some assistance with the publishing, printing, and distribution.
I had the wonderful opportunity to read through a “pilot” issue for The Foreigner, and I was immediately taken aback by the dynamic visual experience of the book. Okabayashi’s distinct manga flair balances the naturalism of the Brooklyn prologue with the surrealism of the fantasy battle world of Ravenika. The detail and energy in some of the double-page spreads is absolutely riveting. The strange robotic monstrosities that Kaz confronts when he awakens in Ravenika for the first time are bizarre and intriguing and engaging. As far as teasers go, this pilot certainly did it’s job: I want to read more!
In addition to some awesome Backer Rewards, the Kickstarter page also features some samples of the aforementioned distinctive artwork and further description of the world of The Foreigner and its characters. The Foreigner “is narrated in a criss-cross style setting between JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and Hayao Miyazaki’s Wind and Valley of Nausicaa. The story is swarming with zombie robots, crystal eating fairies, mutated spice plant soldiers.”
It seems as though Okabayashi has spent ample time building the various corners of Ravenika in his mind and in his dreams, and The Foreigner is all of that story finally manifesting itself on the page.
Support The Foreigner, support comics, support storytelling!