San Antonio, TX 02/22/20, Retro manga action is the name of the game in the pages of Ultrabot Go Go Go!, a new comic book one-shot from Guardian Knights Studios featuring hyper-kinetic, highly stylized action that harks back to the 1960’s golden age of Japanese comics.
Created by Tom Sacchi (Offbeats, Shadowlost) and John Ward (Offbeats, Scratcher) Ultrabot Go Go Go!, is the tale of Kip Fenwick, a secret operative killed while tracking down the leader of a rogue terror grouping called Scimitar. When Kip’s essence is transferred into the body of a giant robot – it’s a now up to Ultrabot Go Go Go!, to take on the fantastic foes of the world!
Co-creator and producer of Ultrabot Go Go Go!, Tom Sacchi says he has long admired the work of Astroboy creator Osuma Tezuka and that led him to discover the seminal artists of the mid-century manga scene. “Manga like Osamu Tezuka’s Astroboy and Tatsuo Yoshida’s Speed Racer are pretty much what North American readers know of this era, but there were other fantastic Japanese comic artists, especially during the 1960’s, that were pouring out page after page of what I think are the most action- packed comics pages I have ever seen. We’re attempting to recreate some of that magic with Ultrabot Go Go Go!, for a new generation that I feel is now looking for a great action comic to call their own.”
Two of the biggest influences in terms of style and pacing of the one-shot are Japanese artists Mitsuteru Yokoyama, creator of Gigantor and Giant Robo, and Shotaro Ishinomori the creator of Cyborg 009. Both artists crafted pages of immense energy and action, and the amazing artist Jason Williams (Escape from Dino Isle) looked to both for inspiration when drawing Ultrabot Go Go Go! “Tom Sacchi contacted me about drawing Ultrabot a few years ago,” said artist Jason Williams. “He told me about the Ultrabot story and the style he wanted to have it done in. I had never drawn a Manga book before, but I really thought the story and premise were great. So after saying yes, Tom gifted me a bookshelf worth of reference material, from Shotaro Ishinomori’s Cyborg 009 to Mitsuteru Yokoyama’s Giant Robo, and Tatsuo Yoshida’s Speed Racer. I started working on some initial sketches to try to nail down the 60’s manga feel and get some feedback about what I was getting right and what I was missing. John Ward’s script came in and we got rolling pretty quick. The kinetic pace of John’s script and the art direction from Tom made this project so much fun. Drawing in a completely different style was such a challenge, but Tom’s enthusiasm and guidance made it a blast. I can’t wait to see the fan reaction to this homage we put together.“
Cyborg 009 was a big influence on the style and tone of this one-shot” added co-creator and writer John Ward. “It’s often hard to give your characters depth when the story moves at breakneck speed. I tried to learn the lessons from Cyborg 009 and put in just enough texture to complement the kinetic action.”
“Readers are in for a real treat,” added co-creator Tom Sacchi. “This is the most action-packed 22 pages of comics story that you will ever read!”
Are there plans to continue this homage to Japanese action comics? The answer is definitely yes! The team is ready to craft a four-issue miniseries, funded through Kickstarter, and published through Guardian Knight Studios in association with Antarctic Press. The first issue will hopefully be released in Autumn 2019 or Winter 2020, so keep your eyes peeled and hop on-board for the continuing adventures of Ultrabot Go Go Go!
Pre-order Ultrabot Go Go Go! (one-shot) using Diamond Code MAR191453 and print copies will be on sale May 29th, 2019 exclusively at local comic book shops (use comicshoplocator.com to find the nearest one) or the Antarctic Press web store Antarctic-Press.MyShopify.com