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First Look: R.L. Stine ushers in spooky new graphic novel, Just Beyond: The Scare School

By Jeff Spry
Just Beyond: The Scare School

New York Times best-selling author R.L. Stine has crafted an immortal empire out of scaring the stuffing from young readers and adults via his vast library of Goosebumps and Fear Street stories and novellas. Now he's turning his twisted sense of humor toward a new line of original graphic novels from Boom! Studios' KaBoom imprint.

Titled Just Beyond: The Scare School, the first of these spine-tingling offerings from Stine premieres this September, and SYFY WIRE has an extended peek inside the spooky pages alongside comments courtesy of editor Bryce Carlson.

Just Beyond Cover

Artists Kelly and Nichole Matthews (Pandora’s Legacy) are joining Stine in this fear-fueled journey, and this initial outing showcases a scream-inducing cover by Julian Totino Tedesco (Life of Captain Marvel). Aimed at middle-grade readers but certainly crossing over to older teens and geeks of a certain age, this fun, paranormal horror series takes young readers Just Beyond reality and deposits them into a fantasy realm of mystery and fright.

This marks the first time Stine has originated fresh new concepts in the comic book realm as part of his multi-book agreement with the Los Angeles-based publisher.

Beyond Fear Slice 1

In Just Beyond: The Scare School, something’s obviously amiss as we're introduced to a trio of 12-year-olds wearing oddly old-fashioned clothes creeping through the halls of Scare Middle School, attempting to blend in with the regular students while evading a sinister cyborg beast known as the Drogg. Plunked down into the middle of this monstrous mystery are three 21st-century students — Josh, Jess, and Marco — who battle for their lives while trying to flee the mechanical nightmare the three weird children were escaping from.

"R.L. Stine and Kelly and Nichole Matthews are doing truly defining work with Just Beyond," Bryce Carlson, Boom! Vice President, Editorial & Creative Strategy, tells SYFY WIRE. "There is not currently an articulated market for middle-grade horror graphic novels — we're watching them create it. Graphic novels are absolutely the ideal medium for this kind of content, so I'm excited to get The Scare School in kids' hands and build excitement for the upcoming Just Beyond graphic novels in 2020 and 2021. It's only a matter of time before other publishers join in and young readers have a wide selection of scary awesome stories at their fingertips."

Beyond Fear Slice 2

Peer into the petrifying pages of R.L. Stine's Just Beyond: The Scare School in the full gallery below, then let us know if you'll be brave enough to grab one for yourself when this original graphic novel materializes on Sept. 4.