KISS 4K Webcomic: Creator's Blog

March 2008: KISS 4K, Issue 7
Adam Black at 9:45PM, March 2, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
As revealed on Friday's update, this webcomic is now your one-stop shop for KISS 4K comics goodness. That's right! Starting with issue 7, it's all going to be online.

There seems to be a little confusion about this, so I'll explain to the best of my ability. Warning: I'm not always good at explaining things, so bear with me.

See, up until now, you've had two KISS 4K story lines running concurrently: the story in the print book, which debuted at Wizard World LA last year complete with a press conference featuring Gene and Paul. This was also when the Destoyer Edition was unveiled to the public, which is certified by the Guiness Book of World Records as the largest comic book ever made. But you know all that already.

The second story was available here, at my humble little webcomic site on Drunk Duck. The webcomic existed to tell backstories about the previous incarnations of the 4K spirits, and we took them a month at a time, starting with Casanova, then moving on to Yoshiie, Constantine and Shaka. I also snuck in a little Christmas special, which seemed to go over well with everyone.

Well, as of today, all that's changed. The two have merged into one. The storyline from the print comic will now be told here, exclusively. There'll be no more backstories or side-stories–those have all been told. So, when you're done reading issue 6 and are ready for issue 7, you don't drive to your friendly neighborhood comic shop. You come here.

The publishing schedule will still be the same: three days a week. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. The downside of this is that you don't get to read the whole thing at once. The upside is: you don't have to wait a month for the next issue. Once issue 7 is done, issue 8 will follow immediately on the next scheduled update.

So…why? Why is this happening?

Platinum Dan explained it best in a comment on Friday's page, which I will quote here, in case you missed it:

Platinum Dan
The print book has been selling really well for us here at Platinum and we're very excited about it. There are several reasons why we're doing this.

First and foremost is that Gene, Paul and Scott (Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, CEO of Platinum Studios) are trend-setters and usually at the forefront of what is hot. (KISS was in comics back in the 70's, thirty years before a lot of rock stars like Fall Out Boy, My Chemical Romance and all the other bands “discovering” the comics medium right now.) Scott and Gene both see the world moving towards the digital distribution, like DD and websites like Wowio (hint, hint), and they want to be on the trailblazers like they always have been. (Remember when everyone said iTunes wouldn't work?)

Secondly, Gene and Paul plain love Adam's work and want HIM to be the vision that guides 4K from here on out. You guys may not know this, but Gene and Paul both insist on their approval over every printed page of KISS 4K, but they let Adam, and only Adam, do what he wants on the title here online. Actually, I'm kind of jealous of the guy sometimes because they give him more free reign than me. :-)

Anyway, it's not the end of the 4K in print, not by any means, (hinting again) it's just a new example of KISS being the guys that everyone else follows behind. Hope this answers you questions and thanks to Adam for being such an awesome partner for us.

There's really not a lot to add to that (thanks, Dan!), other than this:

I'm ridiculously excited about this. And a little nervous. While this is the fourth Kiss comic to see print (starting with the Marvel comic in the 70s), it's the first Kiss comic to be created entirely by one person. Me. That's a lot of responsibility.

You guys be sure to let me know how I'm doing.

And Dan's not the only one saying good things about this. Matman over at Secret Identity Podcast is very happy with the news. You can read about it here. Thanks for the kind words, Matt!

On a miscellaneous note: Up until now, I've been telling stories a month at a time. That means I've been trying to squeeze 24 pages worth of story into 12 or 13. Well, that's changing, too.

Each issue published online here will span two months. That gives me 24 pages, plus one page for a cover. It also gives me a page at the end of every issue, and I'll be doing pinups and such for those “extra” pages. In other words, the webcomic schedule now looks like this:

Issue 7: March and April (2008)
Issue 8: May and June
Issue 9: July and August
Issue 10: September and October
Issue 11: November and December
Issue 12: January and February (2009)

As the original KISS 4K story was slated for 12 issues, that's the schedule I'm sticking with. So this story will come to an end a year from now. After that, who knows? It's all up to you guys, really. Feel free to let me know what you'd like to see.

That's about it for this month's blog entry. I'd like to say thanks to Dan Forcey, Dave Collins, Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, and Scott Mitchell Rosenberg for trusting me with this monster of a comic book.

I'd also like to say thanks to DJ Coffman for his help when I was getting started (and after) and Jason Embury for his invaluable coloring tips.

P.S.: I'll be at Wizard World LA from the 14th to the 16th of this month. The cover to issue 7 will be for sale as a lithograph. Stop by and check it out! I'll sign it for ya, we can have a couple of beers, talk about old times…that sort of thing. ;)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Fallen Angel at 1:26AM, March 3, 2008
(online)
posts: 50
joined: 7-19-2007
Congrats again with all that you've achieved so far!

Btw does this also mean you get a raise? :)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 10:10AM, March 3, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Thanks, man! I get paid based upon page hits, so tell all your friends about issue 7 here! Tell your enemies! Tell your dear old mum! Get them all over here to check out the webcomic!

Something else:

The publishing schedule for KISS 4K is a little strange now, because issue 7 is now available to read before issue 6. This is a little awkward, I know, and I've written issue 7 in such a way that you can jump right into it, even though you haven't read #6 yet.

It's hard to explain this sufficiently without giving away spoilers for what happens in #6, but let me see if I can explain it intelligently…I think what we need here is a recap of what's happened in the series so far.

Issue One:

KISS finds out that they're really KISS 4K, and that they've existed throughout history in one form or another. It is here that we're introduced to Casanova, Yoshiie, Constantine and Shaka the Zulu King. All the webcomic stories I've told in the past year start with these visions.

We also see their previous battle with Unholy, where Unholy was soundly defeated by the 4K.

Issue Two:

We're introduced to Alick, She, and the Destroyer Cult. We see how one of the Cultists stole Kiss' blood back in the 70s. This blood was supposed to go into the red ink for the Marvel comic, but ends up being used on Alick's tattoo. In this way, Alick can magically keep tabs on the 4K.

We also meet Lolita St Etrange, and see that she and Wicked Lester really don't get along at all.

At the end of this issue, we catch a strange glimpse of Earth, completely overrun by monsters and zombies and such. Is this the future? Is it just another dimension? Those questions will be answered later.

Issue Three:

This issue starts off with a strange and disturbing scene between Lester and Celestial. She's getting into his mind, and doing something in there. But what?

Lester sends them to Magusworld to defeat Magus (who was originally featured in the Image Kiss comics) and take the magic orb in his sword.

We also see how the previous incarnations of the 4K died. We see four panels showing the deaths of Casanova, Yoshiie, Constantine and Shaka. All the webcomic stories I've been telling the past year end at these panels.

In this issue, we learn that the Destroyer Cult needs to kill all 16 KISS spirits across four dimensions (including our own) in order to free themselves from their curse. They must kill three of the four of each set of spirits, but bring one back to Destroyerworld for the ceremony of the Golden Equinox. At this ceremony, they will sacrifice the remaining four spirits (one from each dimension) and free themselves from their curse.

We also see that Alick has managed to capture Unholy somehow, and is keeping him encased in a gigantic block of glass. But to what purpose?

Issue Four:

The 4K return from their fight on Magusworld and are introduced to their Headquarters, where Lester has been faithfully collecting artifacts and memorabilia from the previous incarnations of the 4K for the last thousand years. We also see that Lester is secretly working with Alick to destroy the 4K. She gives him Magus' sword so that he can use the magic orb in its pommel.

This orb holds the power of the Elder in it, and the Destroyer Cult use this power to transport She to the dimension where the old Marvel comic takes place. She heads back there and kills three of the four Kiss spirits, bringing the Demon back with her.

This is the issue where Exciter announces to the 4K that he's kidnapped their loved ones, and the 4K vow to confront him and rescue their families.

Note:

For issues 5 and 6, I'll be keeping the synopsis very brief, so as not to give too much away to those who haven't read them yet.

Issue Five:

KISS 4K track down Exciter at a messed-up gallery and attempt to rescue their families.

Meanwhile, we see that Exciter is working for Alick and She. Alick is using him to keep the 4K busy while he and She travel to the Psycho Circus dimension.

Issue Six:

The 4K defeat Exciter and rescue their loved ones. Alick and She complete their mission in the Psycho Circus dimension. I really can't say any more about this issue, except this: be sure to pick it up once it's out! Fred Van Lente did a fantastic job writing this one. He's giving me some very big shoes to fill, that's for sure.

Which brings us to Issue Seven…

In #7, we'll finally see that the 4K get a minute to sit down, have a breather, and think about what's happened to them so far. They start piecing together all the events, and see a disturbing pattern…a pattern with Wicked Lester at it's center!

Starchild also discovers a book in the library of KISS 4K Headquarters (as revealed on the last page of last month's Casanova story), which is called “The Book of the Four Who Are One”. Does this book hold the answers they're seeking? It's hard to tell, as the book is written entirely in Latin, and none of the 4K speak Latin!

Meanwhile, Alick and She prepare to travel to the dimension in which the Dark Horse Kiss comics took place. Once they defeat the Kiss spirits in the Dark Horse universe, only the 4K remain! Before they travel to this dimension, however, they'll need a power source to make the jump. But what could that power source be?

And there you go. Hopefully, this blog entry will answer any questions you may have for issue 7, and all the issues which have come before. Feel free to reply below with any questions you might have.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Fallen Angel at 11:57AM, March 3, 2008
(online)
posts: 50
joined: 7-19-2007
Who is drawing issue 6? And will it look like the Psycho Circus comics, the way Angel Medina or Clayton Crain drew it?

And will you draw the Dark Horse dimension like Mel Rubi did it?

Seems wicked cool so far what you're planning!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 12:39PM, March 3, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
I don't remember who's drawing #6, to tell you the truth. I don't know how it'll look.

As for the Dark Horse dimension…I can't say without giving away some surprises I have in store in the next couple of months. ;)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Aurora Moon at 10:08PM, March 3, 2008
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
That's really awesome… I wish you luck with this new move into digital print! ;)
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 2:01PM, March 4, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Thank you! I'm going to need luck and coffee, I think. ;)

Hey, does anyone here know anyone who speaks Greek? I'm trying to figure out what this page says about the webcomic, but Babelfish doesn't know what to do with it.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Fallen Angel at 2:48PM, March 4, 2008
(online)
posts: 50
joined: 7-19-2007
Adam Black
Thank you! I'm going to need luck and coffee, I think. ;)

Hey, does anyone here know anyone who speaks Greek? I'm trying to figure out what this page says about the webcomic, but Babelfish doesn't know what to do with it.
My Greek isn't very good, but I think they are discussing the webcomic. Some like it and read it all, some think it's ookay and some hate it. Just normal opinions on a forum.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 11:09PM, March 4, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Well, I hope those guys who hate it come back for another look. :D
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 9:31AM, March 5, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
And now, some random thoughts on KISS, Gene, the webcomic, the internet, and human nature in general.

The comic's transition to online status is getting a lot of press. Well, a lot more than I expected, at any rate. I've been reading these sites, and the comments that come with them. I always wonder about the people who only have negative things to say about the whole thing.

Seems like we're never happy unless we have at least one thing to complain about. Tell you the truth, I'm the same way–keep reading, and I'll make that painfully clear. We're all that way, every single one of us. And, for some people, they aren't happy unless they're complaining about Kiss.

These people almost always complain by armchair-quarterbacking Gene's business sense, which seems crazy to me. The man did what he loved, and made himself a multi-millionaire as a result. How is that not success? Hell, that's the Meaning Of Life right there: Do what you love, and make a comfortable amount of bank in the process.

“Oh, but he's failed in business with this or that or this other thing he tried once”, is inevitably the cry that follows. Yes, he did. More than once.

But when did 100% success become the only measure of success? Name for me one person or one thing that EVERYONE loves. Something that no one dislikes. I'll bet you a 30-second Google search will find someone who has something bad to say about it. Why? Because there is no such thing. Or person. Or idea.

Gene's business tactics remind me of Counter-Strike. If you've never played Counter-Strike, here's a basic rundown of the game: You join a server and pick one of two sides: Terrorist or Counter-Terrorist. Then you do your best to beat the other team. That's how it's supposed to play, at any rate.

Unfortunately, the other team (and pretty much most of yours) is comprised of smack-talking teenagers who use the AWP (a one-shot, one-kill sniper rifle) exclusively, so they can brag to their friends how good they are at the game. I like to call the AWP the “n00b tube” because let's face it: you really don't need to be that good of a player to use a gun that kills the other guy halfway across the map with one click of the mouse.

Snipers in real life are truly amazing individuals who deserve a great deal of respect and awe. Snipers in video games are usually just punk kids who are too lazy to develop their hand-eye coordination. Tell yourself otherwise if you like, but it's true.

When I play Counter-Strike, I use the M249 as much as I can. It's a big ol' hog-leg of a machine gun. I call it “Betsy”, and I love it. I'm told that my tactic (despite the fact that I do indeed aim!) consists of what they call the “spray and pray” method: If you put enough lead in the air, you'll hit someone. Usually a number of someones (I love it when they line up). Even if they're standing behind a wall! Every bullet doesn't need to hit. Every shot doesn't need to be an instant kill. Just put some goddamned lead in the air!

I love Betsy for one reason and one reason only: I love the sound effects of that gun. TAKA-TAKA-TAKA-TAKA-TAK!! It makes me smile every time. I have no idea why and I don't really care. It does, and that's what matters. But enough about Betsy…man, I got way off-track there. Ahem.

Seems to me like Gene's business sense revolves a little around the “spray and pray” method: Try a LOT of things. Some will hit their target, others won't. But all you really need is for a few of them to take off and take off big. It doesn't matter what happens to the rest of them.

Does that make Gene a failure? Michael Jordan has admitted that he's missed far more baskets than he's made in his career. Does that make Michael Jordan a failure? Please tell me you're smarter than that.

But Gene really doesn't need me to defend him. That's just silly. So let's talk about the comic.

As noted by Platinum Dan, the move to online wasn't because the print book was failing. It was doing very well, as a matter of fact. No, this online thing is an experiment. It may succeed, it may not. And yes, it will be printed at some point in the future, because Kiss fans like to collect Kiss stuff. Anyone who tells you otherwise doesn't know what they're talking about. They're the same people who will tell you that failing once makes you a failure for life.

Whether it succeeds or not is really a moot point for me, to tell you the truth. I'm enjoying the hell out of making it, for two reasons:

1. This is the most fun I've ever had paying my rent. We all need jobs. We all have bills to pay and food to buy, and I'm no exception. I'd rather be doing this than slaving away at a desk job or mopping floors as a janitor or whatever.

2. It makes people happy. Not everyone (obviously), but I'm not here to please everyone. You'd might as well wish you could walk on water. It ain't gonna happen.

And I think point #2 is my favorite part of this job. I get to make people happy. People I don't know. People I'll go the rest of my life and never meet in person. I do this one little thing, and it's a bright spot in their day, however brief.

You should try it sometime. Do something nice–however small it may be–for someone you don't know. Don't do it for the money or even a “thank you”. Do it just to do it. But be careful: it's addictive.

It's a lot more fun than bitching about something you don't like. Some people don't realize that, unfortunately, and I feel sorry for them.

For those of you who don't like the comic: Hey, thanks for stopping by and taking a look. The internet's chock full of webcomics. Look around long enough, and you'll find one that you'll absolutely love. If you can't find one, put your money where your mouth is and make one yourself! Send me the link; I want to see it. That's how Kiss started, after all. They decided to be the band they always wanted to see in concert.

For those of you who enjoy the comic: I'm sincerely happy that you like it. Thanks for stopping by three days a week and giving me the priviledge of making your day a little better. Because the internet's chock full of webcomics (as I just said), and yet you choose to come here for your enjoyment. That really means a lot to me. Thank you!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Fallen Angel at 11:55AM, March 5, 2008
(online)
posts: 50
joined: 7-19-2007
Nice post, Adam. And we return because we love what we see, and it's good because you are enjoying what you're doing.

Here's a Paul Stanley quote I think fits you well (and it fits me well too):

“Find something you love doing, and you'll never work a day in your live.”
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 10:08PM, March 5, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Ain't that the truth!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 2:53PM, March 7, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Random thought for the day:

I've been asked by a number of people (though, oddly, not on the webcomic forums/comment section) if the “4K” part of “KISS 4K” will ever be revealed/explained.

The answer: yes. ;)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Fallen Angel at 1:25PM, March 8, 2008
(online)
posts: 50
joined: 7-19-2007
Well, I figured, from reading the comics, that it stood for the 4 different KISS forms in the four dimensions. But not sure if that is the answer :)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 9:55PM, March 10, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
And now…AVATARS!

The Celestial!
Chikara!
The Demon!
The Starchild!
Death-Metal Dave!
Dead-Head Dave!
Flip!

Just right-click your favorite and save it to your machine. Then you can use it for your DD account, or anything else you'd like.

Also: Here's the links to the free downloads of KISS 4K, issues 1 through 5:

ISSUE 1
ISSUE 2
ISSUE 3
ISSUE 4
ISSUE 5
KISSMAS SPECIAL

Guess what you'll be able to download for free from Wowio once I get back from Wizard World LA? :D
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 9:30AM, March 12, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
And now…MORE AVATARS!

Casanova in Paul's old “bandit” makeup!
He's a smooooth operator.
Everybody's favorite bad-guy-turned-good-guy!
The Demon–“vision in the sky” version!
Haughty Shaka!
My favorite picture of Klaus.
My second-favorite picture of Klaus.
Young Shaka!
Tomas!
His creepy sister, Helena!
I made this one for my daughter. :D

If you have a custom request, let me know!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
flamer_92 at 11:43AM, March 12, 2008
(offline)
posts: 1
joined: 3-12-2008
can you make a celestial wallpaper?
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 11:20PM, March 12, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Yes, I can! Do you have a particular panel in mind? Or something custom?

I'm planning on making custom wallpapers for all four characters–but I won't be able to do that until well into next week. Still getting prepared for Wizard World LA on this end, and it's eating up all my time.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Red Ecks at 3:47AM, March 16, 2008
(offline)
posts: 3
joined: 2-25-2008
too freakin cool man, i am happy for ya. and i am certain that you can keep you fans and those of the comic really happy…..

so, when you make it big are you going to buy the drinks? i'll buy a round when i see ya. count on it.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Red Ecks at 3:49AM, March 16, 2008
(offline)
posts: 3
joined: 2-25-2008
oh, yea. do you have banner adds that we can post to our web pages? wouldn't want to have people miss out on this..
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
The Fallen Angel at 3:10AM, March 17, 2008
(online)
posts: 50
joined: 7-19-2007
Here's two I got:



last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 6:13PM, March 17, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Thanks, Angel! Either of those two will work just great for now. I have some new ones in mind, but they're on the back burner for now–I have a LOT of stuff I need to draw in the next month or three.

I'll post my WWLA report below, in a few days. Still recovering from the con and an injury right now, and all my time and energy is currently going into making sure this comic is published on-time. That's my #1 priority.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Aurora Moon at 6:37PM, March 19, 2008
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
Uhhh.. just a question.

It seems that when I viewed today's page, there was those hovering banner things that had images of all the kiss comic covers, which floated over the left side of the page. It prevented me from seeing what was going on in the left side, even though I could easily guess what was going on.

Is it just my browser, or what?
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 11:02PM, March 20, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
It looked fine for me, but I'm using Opera as my primary browser. I loaded it up in Firefox, and it looked a little skewed.

When I opened it up in Internet Explorer…damn. It was a freaking mess.

I decided to just remove them for the time being. I may put them up again at a later date.

For the record: If you're using Internet Explorer, stop using Internet Explorer. Use something else. Firefox seems to be extremely popular, and is pretty easy to use.

Me, I like Opera, but I've been using it since 1999 or so, and I'm very used to it by now.

It doesn't really matter what alternate browser you choose, as long as you choose an alternate browser. When I was working tech support, the mantra for browser use was: “ANYTHING but Internet Explorer”.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Aurora Moon at 11:40PM, March 20, 2008
(offline)
posts: 2,630
joined: 1-7-2006
LOL. Yeah, I mainly use firefox, but I was at somebody else's house where they only had internet explorer when I viewed your last page. :P
I'm on hitatus while I redo one of my webcomics. Be sure to check it out when I'n done! :)
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 3:15PM, March 28, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Random thought for the day:

I absolutely LOVE this band: ARNOCORPS!!!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 9:03AM, March 31, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Random Link of the Day: Thor: God of METAL!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
shaneronzio at 6:25AM, April 5, 2008
(online)
posts: 497
joined: 12-4-2006
Adam Black
Random Link of the Day: Thor: God of METAL!

RAWK ON!
Current Project:CROSS WORLDS NEXUS
Updates Monday, Wenzday & FRIDAY
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM
Adam Black at 10:49AM, April 10, 2008
(offline)
posts: 139
joined: 11-12-2006
Today's link: OnlineComics.net.

One of the new places I'm using to gain some new readership. If you have any other urls that you think may help me out with that, post 'em below!
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:27AM

Forgot Password
©2011 WOWIO, Inc. All Rights Reserved