If you’re currently reading any of the Marvel Now! X-Titles and have somehow managed to overlook Uncanny X-Force, you’re missing out on one of the best surprise titles of the current Marvel lineup. It’s being written by Sam Humphries, one of the best up and coming writers in comics today – just don’t tell him that, as one of the many things I learned during our chat at San Diego Comic-Con is how incredibly modest he is about his talents.
It starts with Sacrifice, and I don’t mean of the literal kind (even though I’m sure it took some of that, too). Sacrifice was a six-issue limited series written by Humphries along with artist Dalton Rose, and made its way into comic stores without the help of a major distribution deal.
“I didn’t just self-publish it, I self-distributed it,” he recalls. “I didn’t go through any of the normal comic book channels. We had Sacrifice in about 60 stores throughout the US and Canada, and the demand definitely outstripped my ability to keep up with it. We really had this untapped audience that were interested in Sacrifice and wanted to get their hands on it, but I just couldn’t print enough. I just couldn’t move the paper fast enough.”
Fortunately for everyone, myself included, Dark Horse is poised to release a hardback collection of Sacrifice on August 21st, which collects the entire run complete with variant covers and other bonuses. Sam’s enthusiasm for the project was evident as he spoke about the upcoming release.
“Having a partner like Dark Horse is really key,” he explains. “Not just because it’s a beautiful edition. Now, Sacrifice is going to be in front of a whole new audience who has never had an opportunity to read it before, and that’s very, very exciting for me.”
Sam’s passion also shines through in his current work on Uncanny X-Force, with an opening arc that was full of surprises and conflict and just seems to be scratching the surface of things to come, particularly where Bishop is concerned.
“Bishop has been through a lot of changer in his career as a character,” he notes. “But he’s always been a zealot, which really attracted me to the character. He’s been out of action for two years, in real-world time, which is quote a long time. He was dumped off in the future, and that leaves a lot of possibilities. Where has he been? What has he been doing? How does he get back to the present? And that’s what was really exciting about writing the character, just having the opportunity to take him in a new direction.”
Despite the critical acclaim that his work has produced thus far, Sam remains very humble about his career and the success he’s found in the comic book industry.
“My goal is to have a decent, enjoyable life writing comic books,” he says. “Being well-known comic book creator is great, but I like it because it gives me the opportunity to sell books and earn a living as a comic book writer. The fame part is not what I’m aiming for. I love connecting with readers and being able to talk to people about comics all day and being at San Diego Comic-Con, but really I just aim to have a good life doing what I’m really passionate about.”
Sacrifice will release on August 21 via Dark Horse, and can be ordered via the link below. Uncanny X-Force can be found at your local comic shop.