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Fanbase Press Interviews Michael Schwartz on His Return to Kickstarter with the Supernatural Comic Book Series, ‘Armored,’ in Collaboration with Clover Press

The following is an interview with Michael Schwartz regarding his recent return to Kickstarter for the final issues of his supernatural comic book series, Armored, in conjunction with Clover Press. In this interview, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief Barbra Dillon chats with Schwartz about his experience in bringing the critically acclaimed series to a close, the star-studded lineup of artists involved with the project, the incredible backer rewards available, and more!

Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on your return to Kickstarter! What can you share with us about where readers will find themselves in the final three issues of the series?

Michael Schwartz: Thank you so much! I’m very excited that backers and readers of the first two will be able to get their hands on the final 3 issues of the first story arc. Issue 3 opens with Andy learning how to master the use of his haunted armor and bonding with his ghostly companion, Sir William. Andy believes he has defeated the creature that killed Myles, the son of his adoptive parents. However, deeper forces are at play and things only get more complicated for Andy and Sir William by the end of issue 3!

BD: As this was your debut comic book series, what can you tell us about your experience in seeing how the series resonated with critics and readers alike after its first two issues?

MS: I have had such incredible feedback for the first two issues. I’m very passionate about the story I’m telling in Armored, and I’m so happy it’s resonating with not only comic fans, but also other creatives within the comic industry. I have such high regard for these creative people and their glowing reviews are a dream come true. The most impactful feedback, though, has been from parents who have shared the first two issues with their children, who like it as much as they do. I’ve even had a few parents tell me that their kids won’t stop asking for issue 3.

BD: In continuing your shared creative process with artist Ismael Hernandez, do you feel that you’ve developed a creative shorthand or shared creative language that has only benefited production issues #3-5?

MS: I would say by issue 3 we hit our stride. Ismael is an incredible sequential storyteller, and I tried to structure the later scripts to his various skills. The biggest development in the creative process has really been how certain suggestions Ismael has made to, let’s say, a design of a character has actually influenced the way the story has progressed. Ismael is currently painting the first issue of the next arc, and the backstory of one of the characters was 100% inspired by how he designed them.

Armored 03 A CVR Cloonan
cover art by Becky Cloonan

BD: As with the prior two issues, you have amassed superstar artists to provide cover art for each issue, including David Mack, Becky Cloonan, Trevor Henderson, and Jeff Dickson. Each issue will also feature an additional pin-up by Matthew Therrien. What are you most excited for readers to experience with their artistic contributions to the project?

MS: These artists are some of the best currently working in comics and film, and I loved seeing how they interpreted the story in their cover art. The artists really reflected the darker tone of the story in issues 3, 4 and 5. Becky Cloonan’s moody, intense cover of Sir William in his younger years fighting off a creature reflects what Andy must face in issue 3. David Mack’s beautifully painted cover foreshadows the possible fate of Andy, by taking on the burden of wearing the armor. And Trevor Henderson’s horrifying and scary cover visually conveys the big twist the story takes in the finale of the first arc. Everyone really loved the painted cover Jeff Dickson provided on issue 2, so I asked him to come back for three more painted covers. He really does capture the tone of each issue, bringing the story to life on the cover.

BD: What makes Clover Press the perfect home for this series?

MS: Clover Press has proven that they are the go-to place for lovers of comic book art. Their upcoming “Art of” books are gorgeous. The number one comment I get from someone first looking at an issue of Armored is how beautiful Ismael’s art is, and it absolutely belongs beside the other talented artists that Clover works with. Because Clover is a smaller company than some of the other publishers, I think it gives us and the book the opportunity and time to find its audience in different and more unique ways.

BD: If given the opportunity, are you interested in exploring new stories or characters within the world of Armored?

MS: Absolutely! As I mentioned, Ismael is currently painting the first issue of the second arc for Armored. I’ve mapped out an elaborate story that I would love to explore over at least 4 arcs. If the series becomes popular enough, I would love the series to continue even longer!

BD: Lastly, are there any specific backer rewards that you would like to highlight as part of the Armored Kickstarter campaign?

MS: This time around we are really focusing on the comics. This is an opportunity for comic fans to get the whole story all at once. Additionally, our Jeff Dickson cover is a flip-book with Matthew Therrien’s striking character portraits on the back. Backers who purchase this variant can display either cover OR buy two copies to display both covers. This flip-book variant will only be available via Kickstarter, so if you’re wanting a complete set of those portraits, it’s the only way to get it. Also, I’m very excited that Becky Cloonan’s, David Mack’s, and Trevor Henderson’s covers will also be foils to go along with the Jae Lee and Jeff Dickson covers from the previous campaign.

Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief




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