Last year the comics world was hit with a really slick Cyberpunk story titled ‘Metal Made Flesh’, which many of described as a cross between ‘Blade Runner’ and ‘Game Of Thrones.’
The comic, which was crowdfunded via Kickstarter was the work of writer Jeremy Biggs and artist Simian Aston.
I was recently lucky enough to catch up with Jeremy who gave me some insight into his work in the industry and chatted about the comic and his plans for the future.
SFP: How did you get into writing comics. Was it always in your plans?
Jeremy Biggs: I’ve always written stories, even as a child it was just something I did, but as real life tends to take over it fell into the background. Back in 2011 ish I’d been working for a long time on a futuristic story called “Banquet” that I had never been able to get quite right. At the time of our first convention I was working with a production company producing audiodramas, we wanted to expand to comic conventions and I realized this was a chance to write a comic and get it out there to see how people would react. In 8 weeks Bakki and I wrote and created the very first issue of Bearlands (issue zero), and though it was meant to be a bit of fun it was generating more interest than the audiodramas!
SFP: As a fan of comics which writers and artists would you say have had the most impact on you as a writer?
Jeremy Biggs: Blimey. Well it’s clichéd to say it, but undoubtedly Alan Moore – the guy not only rewrote the rules, but knows Comics inside out, their potential, the power of images and symbolism – it’s all there in his work. To a lesser extent Grant Morrison. Warren Ellis’ Transmetropolitan is a big influence, too. From Japan I love the works of Katsuhiro Otomo, Masamune Shirow, Mamoru Oshii, Kentaro Miura, Junji Ito, Shuzo Oshimi and so on.
SFP: Your first comic book series was Bearlands what can you tell us about it and how do you think it appeals to readers?
Jeremy Biggs: Bearlands is a fast paced action adventure comic set in a mad max-esque wasteland with zombies, cyborgs, mutants, machiavellian villains and lots of honey, as told through the medium of anthropomorphic bears. It’s a light hearted, but well plotted look at those post apocalyptic franchises that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
Jeremy Biggs: At the time I started writing Bearlands we hadn’t yet reached “peak Zombie”, so the main influences were a film I’d worked on called “The Dead”, Mad Max, adventures beyond the forbidden zone and 80’s Saturday morning cartoons like “Thundercats”
SFP: In the last couple of years you have had some success with ‘Metal Made Flesh’ which you developed with Simeon Aston how did this comic come about?
Jeremy Biggs: I met Simeon at the very first convention and was instantly blown away by his artwork. Originally I had planned to publish and not write the stories. We tried working with another writer but it didn’t quite gel and I think the guy had his own priorities he wanted to work on. Feeling inspired one day I sat down and wrote a treatment for what would become “Flesh” based on Simeon’s original plot and it just took off from there.
SFP: What has it been like for you to work with Simeon on the book?
Jeremy Biggs: In a word, “Awesome”. Sim and I are very much on the same page in terms of influences, his work really compliments the narrative and frees me up to tell fast paced stories. Part of my job is to really get to the nub of what Simeon wants to convey, and it’s fun to try and delve into such a rich world and pull stories out…
SFP: ‘Metal Made Flesh’ is very Cyberpunk, but it has been described as a cross between ‘Blade Runner’ and ‘Game Of Thrones’. What other television and film properties have in part inspired the book?
Jeremy Biggs: Ghost in the shell, Star Wars, Ex-machina, Neuromancer, Snow Crash, Akira to name but a few…
SFP: You recent had a Kickstarter Campaign for the second volume of Metal Made Flesh, which sadly didn’t make the needed funds. Do you plan on trying again. If so when because I personally would like to pledge.
Jeremy Biggs: Yes. Most definitely. In fact we’ve began a fresh campaign, which you can check out at: www.kickstarter.com/projects/2071877215/metal-made-flesh-2-an-epic-science-fiction-graphic
SFP: Do you have any other comic books or film projects in the works that you can talk about?
Jeremy Biggs: Right now, there are a number of things I’m working on, from a dark fairy tale story with the Artist Ani Anisa, to more Metal Made Flesh and Bearlands. I’ve also got a 2 page Futureshocks style story being published in issue 419 of Starburst magazine, so readers can check that out too!
You can check out some more of the art work from ‘Metal Made Flesh 2’ here.
You can also check out our interview with Simeon Aston the artist behind ‘Metal Made Flesh’ here.