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Mad Cave Studios' Mugshots gives the comic book crime genre an English twist

The new crime series from Jordan Thomas and Chris Matthews sees a kidnapping in Brighton lead a city's underworld into chaos

Image credit: Chris Matthews/Mad Cave Studios

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One horrific act of violence is enough to tear an entire city's underworld apart in Mad Cave Studios’ upcoming crime series, Mugshots — a series that takes the comic book crime genre out of the United States for awhile, with Jordan Thomas (Oni Press’s Xino) and Berlin-based illustrator Chris Matthews making the south of England the scene of this particular crime.

Set 15 years ago, the series follows John Bannan, described by the publisher as “self-proclaimed bastard and loving uncle,” who finds himself drawn into a series of events that pit criminals, authorities, and everyone in between against each other after a young woman is kidnapped in the English seaside town of Brighton.

“Mugshots is an incredibly personal story for me,” writer Thomas explained in a statement provided by the publisher. “It's set around where I grew up, contains experiences I've had and features characters based on people I've known, and it's a collaboration with one of my best friends whom I've known since we were 11-years-old. Mainstream US comics are full of crime stories set in the States but not many set in England by English creators, so I'm excited to see the reaction to this series we've poured our hearts and souls into and so happy that Mad Cave are the publisher putting the book out as they never put any restraints on what we wanted to do. It's a tough, violent, complex, and sometimes funny 36-page per issue 4-parter - not many publishers out there would let you do that. It's gonna be wild.”

“Not only has Mugshots been a great opportunity to work with one of my oldest and best friends but also a chance to jump head first into a whole new medium,” added Matthews. “The creative freedom comics allow has been incredibly refreshing and working with Mad Cave has been a pleasure as they really put the quality of the work first. The result is a series I believe crime and comics fans will enjoy. The series itself is gritty, compelling, shocking and different to most other books I’ve seen out there. I’m excited to see what people think.”

Thomas and Matthews will be joined on the series by letterer Lucas Gattoni; Matthews provides one of two covers for the first issue, with Fran Galán providing the other. Both can be seen in the gallery below.

Mugshots will launch May 8, and will be available for pre-order in comic stores later this month.

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Graeme McMillan

Staff Writer

Popverse staff writer Graeme McMillan (he/him) has been writing about comics, culture, and comics culture on the internet for close to two decades at this point, which is terrifying to admit. He completely understands if you have problems understanding his accent.