Veteran or “seasoned” fans might remember Cat & Mouse from the late 80s and early 90s. Created by Roland Mann and Mitch Byrd, the series first saw print in 1989 courtesy of EFGraphics. EFGraphics also published Jazz Age Chronicles by Ted Slampyak before closing the doors. Cat & Mouse was picked up by Malibu Comics’ Aircel imprint and ran for 18 issues, many of those issues making Comic Shop News’ list of “Top 10 B&W Titles.”
Writer Roland Mann revisits Cat & Mouse with a current Kickstarter for the first issue of a new mini-series.
Roland Mann writes,
One of the most common questions I get asked at comic cons, dating back to the late 90s, is ‘when are you going to bring back C&M.’ For lots of reasons, it was just never the right time. I can finally look those people in the eyes and say ‘now!’
We launched the kickstarter on May 1, and were completely funded in 48 hours. The speed of it kind of took us all by surprise, but it confirmed to me that there are still a lot of folks out there who remember the book fondly.
This time around, the art will be provided by some other former Malibu Comics alum. Dean Zachary, who penciled The Ferret and Night Man will be penciling the four issue C&M mini-series. Barb Kaalberg (Planet of the Apes, Mantra, Ultraforce) is inking, with former Malibu staff colorist Kevin Gallegly coloring.
With the ever shifting sands that is the comic industry, we decided to go with Kickstarter to help us get funding to complete the books, to try to gauge interest in the series, and honestly, to get some feedback directly from fans. It doesn’t mean we won’t go the traditional route, but the kickstarter path helps us get the work produced before doing so. Nothing irritates fans and retailers more than late shipped books…and we don’t want that!
I’ve heard retailers talk that kickstarters bypass them, and I can see that on some levels. So we’ve got a “retailer only” pledge reward with a retailer only cover because we want retailers to be as involved as they would like to be. And we’re hoping to get a handful on board with us! Retailers have a special place in my heart as so many were incredibly supportive of the first volume of Cat & Mouse. I know there have been a lot of stores come and go since then, but I’m hoping we get similar support now as we did in the 90s, and I hope we deliver on content for them…I think we will.
The other cool thing about this kickstarter, is this first issue is done. Dean has already started working on issue #2. Obviously, the current kickstarter will help determine when the second one happens, but we hope to not take too much time between them; we’ve all got day jobs we must attend to while working on the comics.
This is also not the same Cat and/or Mouse as the first volume. Those characters are gone. These are new characters, but the spirit, tone, mood…those will be the same. And, of course, there will be some familiar secondary characters popping up. Knowledge of the first volume is not a requirement for the new series; this is a great opportunity to check out a new comic. There will be some winks and nods to readers of the first volume, but it will not affect a new reader’s experience.
There are a lot of levels from a pdf only to several original art levels. We’re hoping fans (and retailers) will click over to the Kickstarter and give us a look…maybe see if there is a pledge level for them.