For David Bowie’s Birthday: A Preview Of Archaia’s Next Labyrinth Comic, And Talk Of Another

Today is David Bowie’s 65th birthday, so many happy returns of the day, Mr. Jones. For me, he’s just the best there is. I love The Beatles and The Beach Boys and my favourite album would be Carole King’s Tapestry, but I’m really in quite deep with Bowie’s music.

His acting..? Well, he made for a great alien, was a superbly odd FBI agent with strange, time loop problems, and ruled over Atlantis Squarepantis with style.

And he was an absolutely fantastic goblin king, codpiece and all.

Over the next year, Archaia have got a series of Labyrinth tie-in comics coming, and it starts on Free Comic Book Day. I think I’m right in saying their giveaway of a 48-page hardback is going to make history.

Called Mouse Guard, Labyrinth and Other Stories it’s going to feature short, original strips that belong to several of the Archaia families. The Labyrinth story included is going to be Hoggle and the Worm, written by Ted Naifeh and Adrianne Ambrose, and illustrated by Cory Godbey.

Here’s a two page preview of Godbey’s art from the story in unlettered form.

After Hoggle and the Worm, Archaia have a rather bigger-scale Labyrinth tie-in coming. They’ve not yet announced a title or any of the creators, but with perfect timing for Bowie’s birthday, they’ve been spilling some of their plans.

Stephen Christy, Archaia’s editor in chief, spoke to EW. Here are some of the key points, as he has been quoted:

  • It’s a prequel
  • It’s the story of how Jareth is brought into the Labyrinth for the first time
  • It doesn’t deal with Sarah, it doesn’t deal with Toby
  • We’re switching up the dynamic of it, but what we’re doing is completely true to the spirit of the original.
  • [Original Labyrinth designer Brian Froud is] doing all the character designs and all the covers and conceptualizing.
  • [Bowie] has likeness approval… [we’re featuring] Jareth like a young David Bowie.

Less locked-down as yet is a plan to make the comic book a musical. As well as including lyrics in the word bubbles, the pages would also include musical notation that could be played.

EW asked if these would be Bowie songs. Check out Christy’s response:

We’re talking. The budget to get Bowie to do one song would be the budget of all the books, but we’re talking to him to at least get his blessing or maybe an introduction or something.

Bowie’s always been one for thinking outside the box – could he perhaps be persuaded to think inside the panel?

Though it’s being described as a graphic novel, Christy’s comments seem to make it clear that this Labyrinth prequel is going to be initally issued in installments. We can expect at least the first towards the end of the year, with Hoggle and the Worm as a nice apéritif come May 5th and Free Comic Book Day.