Official Press Release
Publisher Eco Comics has today announced the launch of a comic book series featuring one of the most iconic and prolific characters from myth and legend, the Green Man.
For over a millennium carvings of the Green Man have spread throughout churches, abbeys and cathedrals across the UK and Europe, and can also be found in the USA and Canada.
The publisher says: "Green Man has come to represent the environmental movement and our endangered eco-system, and so has more relevance now than ever. It is therefore fitting that his comic book debut will be entirely paperless and published by Eco Comics".
Eco Comics has released the first issue exclusively on a variety of digital formats in order to have minimal negative impact on the environment and wildlife.
Green Man #1 is by the British team of writer Chris Bunting and artist John-Paul Howard.
Bunting says: "I've written a number of cultural heavyweights but the Green Man is extra special. The mystery surrounding him makes him very intriguing, while an artist’s sketches dating from the 1230s could make him the first comic book-style character in history.
"Yet in almost 800 years since, I don't believe that he has ever been given his own story, let alone comic book – until now.
"It is even more remarkable considering that the Green Man influenced Treebeard in J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, Puck in Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night's Dream, and so many comic book characters."
Shrouded in mystery, this ancient leafy-headed mythical being is often considered to be of pre-Christian or ‘pagan’ origin. However the publisher states that the in-depth historical investigation that accompanies the story reveals startling conclusions.
Bunting adds: "I won’t give much away about the story itself with its amazing art, but the Green Man’s return is prompted by a threat to the last woodland in England. And when another legendary character turns up, all hell breaks loose."
Green Man #1 is an exclusive 'green' paperless, digital 69-page issue. This includes historical article, Green Man: Unearthing the Facts. It is available to order now in various digital formats via the Eco Comics store:www.mohawkmedia.co.uk/ecocomics for $1.95 (approximately £1.20).
About the Green Man:
Often carved from wood or stone the Green Man is a face seen to be spewing, sprouting, surrounded by, or composed from, shrubbery. He can be found throughout Great Britain and Europe, especially in old churches, abbeys and cathedrals. He dates back for a millennium, but more likely two or more. He has evolved many diverse incarnations, including human, beast, feline, and perhaps his most iconic variety, the "leaf head". Today he is regarded as an ecological emblem. This constant reinvention has seen Green Man carvings continually produced, making him perhaps the longest reigning character of myth and pop culture. Yet much of what is thought to be known about him is often assumption and guesswork. We invite you to read Green Man: Unearthing the Facts (included in Green Man #1) for one of the most comprehensive and exhaustive historical investigations ever written.
Green Man: the first comic book character?
During the 1230s, French artist Villard de Honnecourt drew a number of parchment sketches of the Green Man. Despite their age, these look remarkably like a modern comic book artist’s ‘concept sketches’ (used by comic book creators to define the visual appearance of a character). Indeed, even stylistically these drawings look incredibly fresh and modern. Influenced by earlier carvings (by the 1230s the character was already firmly established), the sketches give the Green Man legitimate claim to being the first comic book-style character in history.
About Eco Comics:
Mohawk Media’s publishing arm, Eco Comics, produces paperless comic books and graphic novels specifically designed to have minimal carbon footprint. Aware of the negative environmental impact of paper production, even sustainable forestry, it is probably the first publisher to take this stance. It also argues that digital comic books offer a bright future for the genre by providing a more ‘immersive’ reading experience. Titles from the ‘home of green graphic fiction’ range from "Dick Turpin" to the recent "Tough Guy" graphic novel (featuring art by Wolverine co-creator Herb Trimpe), as well as upcoming graphic novel "Dracula vs. Robin Hood vs. Jekyll & Hyde". Further information: www.mohawkmedia.co.uk & the about section.
About the writer & artist:
Writer Chris Bunting is becoming widely known for making literary and cultural legends accessible to a new generation, while simultaneously pleasing established fans. He is also responsible for many original titles and is currently writing his first novel. Artist John-Paul Howard is a relative newcomer on the comic book scene, but has quickly progressed to high-profile graphic novels and commercial illustration. However, it is Green Man that sees him illustrate his first legendary characters.