Apr 29, 2013
April 29, 2013
Chris Hoffman creates world's first all LDS superhero team
SALT LAKE CITY
- Westminster alumnus and independent comic book artist Chris Hoffman announces the debut of his brand-new comic book series, Salt City Strangers
, featuring the world's first all Latter-Day Saint (LDS) superhero team. The inaugural issue of the series will be distributed on May 4 in celebration of the national "Free Comic Book Day" at Black Cat Comics in Sugar House, Utah.
The new series, written by Chris Hoffman and Josh Butterfield (Banana Panic!
) and features art by Hoffman and Sam Rodriguez (King of Pain
), follow the adventures of Utah-centric themed heroes Golden Spike, The Gull, Den Mother, Deputy Deseret, and Son of Bigfoot as they battle the unseen forces of darkness in Salt Lake City. Golden Spike, the reluctant leader of the courageous although clumsy volunteers, desperately tries to hold his team together while everything from vampires to budget-cuts threatens to tear them apart. Little does he know that his mere existence is all that stands between our world and an ancient evil bent on destroying mankind.
"The idea came together after reading a review the late Roger Ebert wrote for the 2005 Keanu Reeves movie Constantine
." says Hoffman, who is currently a technology manager for Westminster's Division of New Learning. In the film, an adaptation of the DC Vertigo comic book of the same name, Reeves plays a sort of supernatural peace officer who banishes misbehaving demons back to Hell. "Strange, that movies about Satan always require Catholics," wrote Ebert. "You never see your Presbyterians or Episcopalians hurling down demons." "I took the next logical step," said Hoffman. "I thought about what it might look like the see 'your Mormons hurling down demons.'"
Members of the LDS faith have a long history of being featured in comic books. The depictions range from visuals of scripture like Henry Anderson's 1947 The First Americans
and Mike Allred's 2004-2005 The Golden Plates
to several illustrated adaptations of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlett
to appearing as supporting roles in mainstream comics such as Jacob Raven in Spider Man: The Lost Years
and Mallory Brook in She-Hulk
"It's high-time that LDS characters took the driver's seat in their own book," says Hoffman.
Many of the threats the team will face in the series are going to be based on Utah urban legends. The first issue has a group of teenagers participating in the morose ritual at Emo's grave, a local twist on the more well-known supernatural summoning of 'Bloody Mary.'
"Future issues will explore other Utah paranormal and cryptozoological phenomenon such as the Bear Lake monster, Native American wendigo, and the so-called devil's Highway," says Hoffman. "It should be a lot of fun."
"It's great to see local talent doing what it does best: creating." says Greg Gage, owner of Black Cat Comics. "We have a rich depth of artistic creativity in Utah, and the fact that Salt City Strangers is being released on Free Comic Book day is just a bonus that will give it an even broader audience."
Salt City Strangers
#1 will be available exclusively at Black Cat Comics starting on Free Comic Book Day, May 4, 2013. Several add-ons to the series are being produced including a mobile version a board game based on the setting. It will also be available for purchase online.
Black Cat Comics, located at 2261 Highland Dr. Suite A, Salt Lake City, UT 84106, has been serving the comic book loving community sense 2002.
About Chris Hoffman:
Westminster alum Chris Hoffman is an independent comic book artist who gained celebrity in 2010 with Banana Panic!,
his self-published comic book and innovative iPad app. An avid comic book fan himself, Hoffman has an extensive collection of independent and mainstream comics, and was inspired to draw his own books utilizing the Japanese "Manga" style of art. Hoffman is ardent supporter of local comic book creators and stores and sells his books locally as well as on the web. He received his MBA from Westminster in 2012, and currently works as a technology manager for the college.