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Jonathan Coulton is a musician with a cult following. He is responsible for such hits as “Re: Your Brains,” “Code Monkey” and “The Future Soon,” as well as penning both ending songs (“Still Alive” and “Want You Gone”) for the “Portal” series by Valve.
Mostly recently, he and writer Gregg Pak have launched a Kickstarter in order to fund the creation of a graphic novel based on the characters from his songs called “Code Monkey Save World.”
On the last day (October 13, 2013) of New York Comic Con, Coulton and Pak held a panel about the Kickstarter for the comic series. Even though the Kickstarter had achieved funding on May 15, 2013, there was still much to discuss concerning the graphic novel itself.
Before the panel got underway, Coulton spent a few minutes with the fans waiting in line. He took pictures and signed autographs and was very friendly.
The panel was mainly about the difficulties of running a Kickstarter. Pak explained that having a great video on the Kickstarter page to show the public is essential to giving potential backers a clear idea of what they are funding. Another tip Pak shared was to have a clear sense of how many rewards for pledges will be offered. Too many rewards might place the project in debt to backers, so it is important to plan out the rewards beforehand.
However, there were a lot of behind the scene images to give fans a look at the direction the graphic novel was heading. Covers for the graphic novel were shown as well as select pages from upcoming issues. Character designs and the origin stories of characters such as Code Monkey, Matilde, Skull Crusher, and Laura were explained. One of the physical rewards for pledging, a figurine of Code Monkey was passed around the room as well.
The official Kickstarter describes “Code Monkey Save World” as;
“Code Monkey Save World” follows Code Monkey, the put-upon coding monkey from the eponymous Coulton song, as he teams up with the seething, lovelorn super-villain from Coulton’s song “Skullcrusher Mountain.” The unlikely duo fight robots, office worker zombies, and maybe even each other as they struggle to impress the amazing women for whom they fruitlessly long. Other characters include office-worker-turned-action-heroine Matilde (the “you” to whom the song “Code Monkey” is sung), Laura the Robo Queen (from the song “The Future Soon”), Zombie Bob (from “Re: Your Brains”) and the heroic curler (from “Curl”).
What is great about “Code Monkey Save World” is how Gregg Pak strings together all of Coulton’s characters and plants them in a cohesive world for a sci-fi story. The artist, Takeshi Miyazawa illustrates the graphic novel with crisp, realistic artwork which grounds the unrealistic story of “Code Monkey Save World.”
“Code Monkey Save World” is a funny, witty, sci-fi adventure with tons of action and references and numerous characters from Jonathan Coulton’s catalog of songs. Coulton has even promised a new song about the graphic novel to be made. “Code Monkey Save World” can be purchased from Comixology.
Image credit: Jonathan Coulton via Facebook