Highlander is the franchise that just won’t die – its rich mythology bringing it back time and time again. Now the stories head back to comics with new plans from IDW for 2017…
This year saw the thirtieth anniversary of the original Highlander film and next year will see the twenty-fifth anniversary of the popular spin-off television series. Since then the franchise’s fortunes have been mixed – subsequent feature films have often not lived up to the mark, though the fandom is alive and well. (There will be an ‘anniversary’ convention in Florida next month that was originally due to reunite Christopher Lambert and series star Adrian Paul. Lambert has since been removed from the guest-list along with series show-runner David Abramowitz and producer Ken Gord… however Adrian Paul, Elizabeth Gracen, F Braun McAsh and Anthony De Longis DO remain onboard and Impact‘s own John Mosby has been hired to emcee the event).
In the last few years there have been several attempts to bring the rich mythology to the comic page. Dynamite had a range of popular Highlander titles in the mid-Noughties and last year Emerald Star comics made a futuristic attempt (though a fairly appalling distribution plan and even worse artwork largely doomed that project from the outset).
Now, IDW Publishing – already a well-known franchise-friendly company and the home of several successful Hasbro franchise titles (Transformers, G I Joe etc) – has set its sights on reversing immortal fortunes and launching a Highlander series that largely takes place around the time Connor MacLeod (Lambert) settled in New York, running his antiques business under his Russell Nash identity. It will have, as most Highlander projects do, flashbacks to earlier centuries and battles. It is not known at this point if any of the series mythology will be incorporated or not.
The stories will be written by Scottish author Brian Ruckley with artwork by Andrea Mutti (George A Romero’s Empire of the Dead, Rebels, Control) – the title looking to debut around February 2017. The promotional artwork seen here is by Dan McDaid (Doctor Who Weekly, Judge Dredd, Catalyst)
“In the 30 years since its release, Highlander has inspired a massive cult following that craves new stories based on the original film,” IDW editor Denton Tipton said in a statement. “Brian has crafted an exciting narrative that will honor and bolster the underpinnings of the original story. Also, epic sword fights!”