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Space opera goes noir in Jeff Lemire, Matt Kindt & David Rubin's Kickstarter comic 'Cosmic Detective'

By Jeff Spry
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Primed with an all-star crew of comics talent, a new Kickstarter campaign for Cosmic Detective just launched with a creative pedigree that should propel its funding goals into the stratosphere — and SYFY WIRE has an exclusive peek into all the magic.

This original sci-fi mystery graphic novel, steeped in the foundations of film noir and pulpy space operas, heralds from the dream team of Eisner-winning writer Jeff Lemire (Black Hammer, Descender) and Eisner-nominated author Matt Kindt (Grass Kings, BANG!), along with mindwarping artwork courtesy of David Rubin (Ether, Beowulf).

Lemire, Kindt, and Rubin have been secretly holed up these past two years immersed in this wild project that asks the question: When a god is murdered, exactly who investigates and solves the crime?

Cosmic Hero Cover

Cosmic Detective begins with the death of a deity and the introduction of the story's gruff gumshoe. He’s got a wife, a kid, and a seemingly normal day job as a private eye. But for years, he’s been employed by a clandestine underground cabal of mysterious figures, an organization dedicated to a fragile alliance with cosmic forces beyond our reckoning. 

The murder of the god threatens to unhinge the entities and rip apart the very fabric of our reality. Only our detective stands in the way of utter destruction. But will the mystery he uncovers be worse than the disaster he’s trying to avert? And will his mind snap under the revelations he’s about to uncover before he can do anything about it?

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"Jeff and I have worked together on a couple other books - Frankenstein, Agent of SHADE for DC, and The Valiant for Valiant, so we kind of had our creative process figured out for this book, but those were really warm-ups for this book," Kindt tells SYFY WIRE. "We put absolutely no limits on this book. No page count. And nowhere we couldn't go with the story. We pushed each other hard on this book, tossing the story and scenes back and forth and trying to top each other.

"We went in with a general plot, but really ended up just writing scenes back and forth," he adds. "It was a balance. We were trying to both the other one up with something fun to write, while simultaneously trying to outdo them in the next scene. If writing could be turned into a friendly competitive sport where we are all on the same team but also competing, well, that's what this book became.”

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“The Cosmic Detective is very much grounded in classic noir and pulp traditions. We juxtaposed those noir inspirations and the detective’s day-to-day investigations with a massive cosmic mythology," Lemire explains to SYFY WIRE. "It’s sort of Jack Kirby meets Chinatown.”

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To design the gods in this story, Rubin admits he was trying to use a number of references to Jack Kirby’s artwork.

"Kirby’s my favorite artist of the medium, he’s the God of Comics!," Rubin tells SYFY WIRE. "So I was trying to find a way to pay tribute to his great style, but in my own way. I didn’t want to use or copy the most obvious or revisited characteristics of Kirby’s style. I wanted to try to swim deep in the DNA of his style and bring something new to the pages, but something that the reader knows well and feels comfortable with, like a Radiohead cover for a Johnny Cash song.”

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Cosmic Detective will also be offered in an oversized, deluze format hardcover (8 ¾ x 11/58”), delivering readers an extraordinary comic experience, adorned with full color art and multiple gatefold pages of art and story.

This Kickstarter exclusive release will present features unavailable anywhere else after the Kickstarter is over, including striking artwork created specifically for this limited-edition volume.