Juan Doe is writing and illustrating a new series starting in August with Bad Reception #1.
The book, coming from AfterShock Comics, starts with a celebrity wedding…which quickly devolves into horror. There is no wi-fi nor phone reception, and someone starts to brutally murder the guests. The killer brands each victim with a hashtag. As AfterShock puts it, “Bad Reception is a searing horror story that doubles as a topical, satirical critique on society’s obsession with technology, social media and the cult of celebrity.”
Sounds timely and scary and perfectly-suited for Doe’s brand of ominous and direct horror comics illustration. Doe has previously drawn Dark Arc and American Monster for the publisher, the latter of which was a collaboration with writer Brian Azzarello. Bad Reception #1 is due out Aug. 21.
Full PR from AfterShock can be found below, along with a retailer incentive variant by Paul Azaceta:
BAD RECEPTION #1 / $3.99 / 32 pages / Full Color / ON SALE 08.21.19
Writer: Juan Doe
Artist: Juan Doe
Cover: Juan Doe
Retailer Incentive Cover: Paul Azaceta
It’s the celebrity wedding of the century, set in an undisclosed, remote location, with no access to wifi, cell phone reception or the outside world. But the dream wedding becomes a nightmare when, one by one, the guests are brutally slaughtered by a mysterious killer who brands his victims with a hashtag.
BAD RECEPTION is a searing horror story that doubles as a topical, satirical critique on society’s obsession with technology, social media and the cult of celebrity. Written and drawn by AfterShock’s very own Juan Doe (DARK ARK, AMERICAN MONSTER, WORLD READER)!
JUAN DOE ON WHAT THE PROJECT IS ABOUT AND WHY HE’S EXCITED FOR IT TO COME OUT:
“I’m super excited for Bad Reception. It’s a story about the most followed celebrity on social media and the announcement that her upcoming wedding won’t be a public spectacle like hundreds of millions of people had hoped for. She and her fiance instead opt to go offline and have an off the grid wedding and reception, at a remote location with only a handful of guests. No digital communication devices will be allowed. This creates serious FOMO for her adoring fans and the social media paparazzi hounds.
It sets off a scenario where our main characters are all suffering separation anxiety and severe Nomophobia (fear of no-mobile-phone) from the start of the wedding. Throw in a mysterious killer who savagely hunts each guest and brands them with a hashtag and now you’ve got some serious primal fear going on, a return to zero. It’s in this chaos that the story takes shape and we learn if these characters have the darwinian grit to survive or just fall victim to the hunt.”
JUAN DOE ON WHY HE WANTED TO PULL DOUBLE DUTY WITH BOTH WRITING AND ILLUSTRATING THE SERIES:
“Creatively, it’s been really exciting to explore a story that I could write as well as draw. I had this nascent idea—visually, and was really curious to see how that process would play out with myself writing it. When I started conceiving the pitch, the story just began to flesh itself out, almost without my input. It was a rush to see the interplay between the words and the art when I completed the opening scene. All these possibilities opened up in terms of how I wanted to tell this story both as a writer and artist and I needed to publish this somehow. That’s how Aftershock got involved.”
JUAN DOE ON WHAT MAKES AFTERSHOCK HIS HOME OF CHOICE FOR HIS CREATOR-OWNED PROJECTS, HAVING ILLUSTRAEED NUMEROUS TITLES FOR THE PUBLISHER:
“Well, from the beginning I saw that AfterShock was really investing in the quality of the stories before anything else. Having had a great working relationship with them and being able to collaborate with some of the best writers in comics for the past 4 years, I felt that Bad Reception would be a great fit with them. So when they read the pitch and agreed to publish the story I was beyond ecstatic. The first thing they impressed upon me was they supported my vision 100%. That was important to know, it gave me the fortitude to be fearless with my ideas and get to play and experiment with this story as well as the medium of comic book storytelling.”
JUAN DOE ON (3) REASONS COMIC FANS SHOULD ADD THIS TITLE TO THEIR PULL LIST:
Issue 1 will have an extra 6 pages of story and art for the same price as a standard comic. That’s a good deal for those savvy pull listers.
If you’re a fan of campy, slasher flicks in remote locations, cooked with some heady, social commentary on smartphone addiction, dashed with a wink of dark humor and a vast amount of pretty pictures, you might really enjoy this book.
And finally, this project is about as real as I can get as an artist, and I’ve created it for every single person that has supported my work throughout my comic book career. I’m all in with this book and hopefully the fans will be to.
Zack Quaintance is a tech reporter by day and freelance writer by night/weekend. He Tweets compulsively about storytelling and comics as BatmansBookcase.