Vault Comics is an independent comic book company that has been making big waves on the comic scene over the last year. Vault sports breakout hits like ‘Vagrant Queen’, ‘Wasted Space’, and ‘Songs For The Dead’. But it’s Vault’s ‘Heathen’ and ‘Failsafe’ titles that are making the headlines this week. One heads towards the silver screen while the other heads to Netflix with multiple ties to Marvel Studios’ blockbuster hit ‘Black Panther’.
Heathen, art and story by Natasha Alterici, will see the big screen with a screenplay written by Kerry Williams (‘What Happened To Monday’, ‘Alex Cross’). The comic features a lesbian Viking striking out on her own quest after she’s exiled for her sexuality.
Netflix won the bid for Failsafe, the comic written by F.J. DeSanto and Todd Farmer with art by Federico Dallochio. Joe Robert Cole (‘Black Panther’ – co-writer) will write the screenplay while it’s rumored Michael B. Jordan is to be producing as well as eyeing the lead role. ‘Failsafe’ is about a former insurgent hunter, John Ravane. Ravane thinks his job of hunting nanotech-enhanced super soldiers is long done. Ten years have passed. Sleeper agents begin activating throughout New York, bent on a takeover. Seeing Jordan in as a lead protagonist is an exciting prospect. As much as everyone loved him as a villain, his charm suits a role as leading man.
Both ‘Heathen’ and ‘Failsafe’ prove that the momentum of the live-action comic book craze isn’t winding down anytime soon. The fact that an independent publisher like Vault can get this level of attention and draw in names like Jordan speaks volumes for the source material. ‘Heathen’ is of particular importance as the lead character is not only female but a lesbian. This has drawn ire from self-proclaimed “heathens” that feel comics, especially stories like the ‘Heathen’, is somehow hijacking Nordic culture. Stories like ‘Heathen’ are important representation. ‘Failsafe’ has the potential to fit alongside ‘Bladerunner’ and ‘Altered Carbon’, while again offering a different lead in Jordan than what a lot of sci-fi has given us in the past. The announcements are a big deal for Vault Comics and means we should all be watching their other properties as well.