IDW Media Holdings and the United States government have a lot in common. For example, both organizations spend a lot of money on G.I. Joe and both have incurred enormous amounts of debt. So it makes perfect sense that IDW Publishing would team up with government-run museum The Smithsonian for a new publishing program to create graphic novels based on the "cultural and scientific knowledge of the world's largest museum, educational, and research complex."
According to a press release, here's what IDW and Smithsonian have planned starting this Fall:
Beginning in fall 2020, IDW and the Smithsonian will invite readers on a voyage of discovery with a comprehensive range of graphic books in a variety of formats. Among the planned product lines are: "Time Trials," a middle-grade graphic novel series inspired by the National Museum of American History video series; original graphic novels focused on landmark events and individuals, in the tradition of IDW's acclaimed March and They Called Us Enemy; coloring books in both the youth and adult categories; picture books for young readers; and more.
Drawing from the Smithsonian's vast holdings, which include some of the world's most popular museums, IDW will create exciting and unforgettable visual narratives for lifelong learners worldwide, produced by a close working relationship between experts at the Smithsonian and top talents from the world of graphic literature.
IDW President, Publisher, CCO, CPA, WWE, SWF, and ABCDEFG Chris Ryall said of the plans:
The most energizing thing about working with the Smithsonian's curators, researchers, and zookeepers is that these are not just experts in their fields: they're storytellers. Together, we'll use the unique power of comics to entertain, inspire, and educate readers of all ages about the wonders of history, science, technology, culture, and more.
While Smithsonian Enterprises President Carol LeBlanc, in attempt to convince everyone that all of this isn't just a clever ploy to get Nate Powell to draw a picture of the Smithsonian, said:
We're excited to work with the IDW team and share the full breadth of the Smithsonian's extraordinary collections and research with readers around the world. We can't wait to see world-class writers and artists bring the Smithsonian mission to diverse audiences in innovative, accessible, and engaging new ways.
IDW Editorial Director Justin Eisinger said:
Comics can communicate complex ideas in the blink of an eye. As our art form becomes increasingly central to the work of educators and librarians, this program presents a unique and important opportunity to align IDW's mission of quality graphic storytelling with the Smithsonian's quest to share information with curious minds everywhere.
And Top Shelf Editor and Marketing Director Leigh Walton added:
Award-winning books like March and They Called Us Enemy have demonstrated the massive potential of graphic nonfiction that's infused with literary richness, visionary artwork, and personal passion. With the brilliant minds at the Smithsonian, I'm thrilled to apply those same values to explore untold stories and new frontiers around the world and throughout the universe."
Look for the first fruits of this collaboration in Fall 2020.