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The future is looking positively wild in 2019, as IDW Publishing's big 20th anniversary celebration gives five of their major licensed titles the time-shifted treatment in a series of oversized one-shot releases.
Starting this month, the weekly event spotlights some of pop culture’s most beloved properties as Ghostbusters, Jem and the Holograms, My Little Pony, Star Trek, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reveal characters' secrets and revelations pushed 20 years into the future or reflecting back to the past. Creative teams are focusing on what first helped forge these characters into the heroes we love, and what fates the future might hold for them.
SYFY WIRE has scored an exclusive peek at this week's offering with the fresh spirit-hunting crew of Ghostbusters: IDW 20/20 written by Erik Burnham (Ghostbusters, Vampirella/Dejah Thoris) and paired with artist Dan Schoening (Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters International).
This spectral mission is set 20 years in the future where a new generation of Ghostbusters is dispatched to all the crazy calls that Ray, Winston, Peter, and Egon don’t feel like tackling themselves. The Sanctum of Slime Ghostbusters, made up of Bridget, Samuel, Gabriel, and Alan, are perfectly up to the task after battling against the demon Dumazu, and later with Ghostbusters of multiple dimensions in IDW's Crossing Over event. Now they're heading out for a simple gig at a haunted house and the demon awaiting could spell extreme trouble for the youthful crew.
"There are a lot of ways we could look at the future for the Ghostbusters, but editor Tom Waltz had specific marching orders — we were to make use of the SANCTUM of SLIME characters," Burnham tells SYFY WIRE. "Tom created these characters when he wrote the script for that video game back in the day, and had a fondness for them… and, since they had also just appeared in our all-Ghostbusters crossover event, Crossing Over (the full collection available now, oops, sorry, tripped over that plug) we figured they’d be a solid bet.
"The team is made up of a group of college-aged part timers, including Alan Crendall, the nephew of Ghostbusters II’s Janosz Poha; Bridget Gibbons, a smart-aleck who may also be slightly psychic; Gabriel Sitter, a physics student interested in how ghosts connect to hard science; and Sam Hazer, a paranormal lore nerd who gets giddy over the idea of spectral encounters."
"Some of the things series artist Dan Schoening and I have enjoyed is to borrow classic ghosts from the Real Ghostbusters animated series and give them a new twist," he added. "Dan (and colorist Luis Antonio Delgado) run with the baton, using what came before to inspire their own new visual ideas. In this book, we went with WAT, a dinosaur-like demon whose overall design meshed well with the Sanctum of Slime art style that Dan and Luis maintained for the book. Also, it’s fun to watch people run from dinosaurs. It just is."
Check out our supernatural sneak peek at Ghostbusters: IDW 20/20 and tell us if you'll hit the haunts with the next generation of phantom fighters when this anniversary one-off appears Jan. 16.