First-time comic book writer Zack Kaplan had been making comic book pitches for a number of years before Top Cow Productions’ President and Chief Operating Officer Matt Hawkins gave him his big break. The pitch–and I am paraphrasing here–probably went something like this.
Eclipse is a science fiction, murder mystery set 10 years from now where the world as we know it has changed. Sunspots have made the rays of the sun lethal to organic life[i] and civilization is now forced to live underground. Several murders have also been discovered with the main suspect (a vigilante?) somehow unaffected by the killer sun.
Hope I did that some justice.
Now Zack was tasked to find an artist for the then projected 4-part mini series. He looked through several portfolios and decided on Italian artist Giovanni P. Timpano who had done work with a number of franchise properties such as G.I. Joe: Infestation, The Shadow, and The Lone Ranger/Green Hornet. However, there was a catch–Giovanni was committed to another project for the next five months. Top Cow informed Zack that he would either have to wait for Giovanni or go with another artist. But in his mind, Zack felt that waiting another five months for Giovanni was the right thing to do for the book.
It was; the Eclipse creative team was formed and they haven’t looked back since.
What I like most about this book is the world building as well as the transparency of the creative process detailed at the end of each issue. In the first arc[ii], the writer (Kaplan), artist (Timpano), colorist (Chris Northrop), and letterer (Troy Peteri) all take turns in sharing their experiences in putting Eclipse together.
[i] But according to Zack, the scorching heat has not affected water.
[ii] If you guys haven’t had a chance to read Eclipse, Image Comics released the the trade paperback last February and Issue #6 is scheduled to be released on May 20, 2017.