DELMAR-Local metal band The Clay People received an honor that only a few other musicians belong to as they are immortalized in a comic book.
Other musicians who have joined the honor include Alice Cooper, KISS and Rob Zombie. The band’s song, “Colossus”, became the muse of the EP1T0ME and Top Cow Production collaboration titled “The Clay People: Colossus”. It wasn’t the first collaboration for the two companies, but the process surrounding Colossus was probably one of the easiest.
“Normally something like this would be a huge pain in the ass with approvals and licensing, but these guys were so easy to work with, I’ve already agreed to do two sequels,” said Matt Hawkins, President and Director. of the operation of Top Cow Productions. .
EP1T0ME founder and executive producer Richard Leibowitz originally wanted to use the song as a backing track for a video game trailer; however, this deal fell through. Leibowitz couldn’t shake the song and made Hawkins watch the music video. Leibowitz came up with the idea of turning songs into comics, games, and eventually movies or TV, which Hawkins was completely behind and already wanted to write the comic.
Four years ago, EP1T0ME and The Clay People struck a deal to use the song in multiple media, with comics being the first. The comic follows a biracial boy in the Midwest using a supernatural gift from his grandfather to fight back against bullies. The story also features themes of intolerance, drug addiction, and boredom that only rival the main character’s story of revenge.
“Their dark words spoke to me,” Hawkins said. “I had addiction issues and I felt something when I read the lyrics.”
Frontman Dan Neet told Top Cow Productions that the comedic rendition was not what he had in mind when writing the song, but fully supports it. Throughout the creation process, the group also collaborated with the two companies. Neet also surprised Top Cow Productions with his extensive knowledge of comics while the script or art direction was still being worked out.
“As a result, many businessmen are involved in the process of creating the game; that wasn’t the case with comics,” Liebowitz said. “I guess with the band when he struck gold with Colossus.”
The comic is available now at thetopcowstore.com for $4.99. Christian Dibari provided the art for the story. Simon Gough and Troy Peteri were the colorist and letter artist, respectively.