Sunday, February 23, 2014


Did you ever think plants could be sentient?  Could jack o’ lanterns just be biding their time plotting their revenge against humanity after generations of Halloween mutilation at our hands?  You will never look at pumpkins the same way after reading Mark Mckenna’s COMBAT JACKS comic books.

While you may not be familiar with the name Mark McKenna, if you read comic books you probably have seen his work at some point over the years.  McKenna has been a comic book artist for 29 years working for both Marvel , Darkhorse & DC comics on popular titles such as Batman, Justice League, Spiderman, Star Wars and The X-Men.  There are more than 500 comic books in circulation with 8,000 pages of artwork that he has contributed to during his career.  In 2012, he wanted to bring a concept he developed to print and through a Kickstarter campaign self-published a one shot comic book that combined the action of science fiction with the unnatural sensation of horror, titled COMBAT JACKS.

COMBAT JACKS is the story of space marines from a futuristic Earth visiting a planet that is being colonized after contact has been lost with pioneers stationed there.  The only known life on the planet other than the pioneers is pumpkin like vegetation….there could be no danger in that, could there?!

Based upon a great fan base that has developed since COMBAT JACKS was published, McKenna is now working on expanding COMBAT JACKS into a four issue series that will eventually be combined and published as a collection in a trade paperback.  McKenna has just launched a new kickstarter campaign to self-publish the second installment of the COMBAT JACKS franchise, Combat Jacks:  The Continuing Saga.  The Kickstarter campaign for the second issue of COMBAT JACKS runs through March 8 and is seeking $6,000 to cover the cost of the creative team, printing and fundraising donor rewards.  The campaign has already raised more than $4,500 towards its goal:

The newest COMBAT JACKS comic book features more than just tough Marines and killer gourds.  This time around, an action movie and martial arts star has joined the fray as well.  Cynthia Rothrock has agreed to take on the lead role in Combat Jacks: The Continuing Saga. Rothrock is a five time World Karate Champion who is one of the few Caucasians to achieve genuine stardom in the Hong Kong martial arts movie industry.  She will be portrayed in COMBAT JACKS 2 as the leader of the First Squad against a planet full of Jacks.  If you want to support entrepreneurship, originality and artistic creativity in the marketplace, while obtaining a reward for yourself, this may be the Kickstarter campaign for you.

In addition to being able to obtain digital and hard copy editions of COMBAT JACKS issues 1 & 2 for making donations to the Kickstarter campaign there are some rewards that are listed that have been contributed by friends of McKenna's from the comic industry like art prints and photos. Also for  a $40 donation an exclusive one of a kind 2 sided Combat Jacks t-shirt can be yours to wear.

Ever wanted to have your face on the cover of a comic book? For a $100 donation you can make that happen.  For a $250 donation, McKenna will actually draw you into the comic book as one of the 5 marines taking orders from Cynthia Rothrock.  How cool is that to have your actual likeness featured in a published comic book?!  Hurry if these opportunities catch your fancy because as of the time I posted this article there was only one slot of each of these opportunities to insert yourself into the book available in the Kickstarter campaign's rewards.

Yes, COMBAT JACKS may be a little cheesy, but hey I love Halloween, science fiction, and the artwork produced by this creative team.  Check out this Kickstarter campaign and these comics if you are interested in an adventurous romp through an interstellar man-eating vegetable garden.  Hey life is too short to be too serious...have some fun joining in on the fight against alien jack o' lanterns.

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