Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the Screen

by Sarah Lee

052721B-2-300x157 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the ScreenWith each passing month, more and more attention is being paid to indie comics. Several interesting projects are currently in the works, offering collectors and investors a chance to get in early on their key issues. Let’s take a peek at just a few indie comics headed to the screen!

Slam!

Are you ready to “surrender your life, and your knees, to roller derby?”

That’s the question asked by Pamela Ribon, co-creator of the Slam! 4-part graphic novel series set in the world of all-female roller derby. Slam! is currently being adapted as an animated series from WarnerMedia’s Rooster Teeth Studios, BOOM! Studios, and Minnow Mountain for HBO Max. It will be made using a combination of rotoscoped and 3D animation, a technique that animators use to trace over motion picture footage, frame by frame, to produce realistic action.435810._SX1600_QL80_TTD_-195x300 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the Screen

The half-hour series, co-created by Pamela Ribon and Veronica Fish, is written by Ribon, with Fish and Marina Julia as the novels’ artists. The plot follows two girls who are new to both roller derby and their mutual friendship. After they get placed on competing teams, they have to work through what is more valuable: a cutthroat, winning mentality, or friendship? It’s a relatable story, told from a woman’s point of view by a team of all-female creators. As a result, the book’s language is familiar and real, as if transcribed right from a pair of girlfriends’ conversations.

Recent Sales Data

At the time of this writing, Slam!’s inaugural book has an FMV of $200 in grade 9.8. Its first recorded sale in 2019 was on eBay for a scant $17.99. Each sale after has only increased, and in a short period of time. Its latest sale was in March of 2021 for $199.99 on eBay. With only 30 Slam! #1s listed in the CGC census, they could be a hot commodity if the show delivers on everyone’s expectations. 

As of March of this year, there is no announced debut date from its home channel, HBO Max, but the wheels are already spinning!

51QI1G7mWvL-195x300 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the ScreenBitter Root

Bitter Root has been described as “a sort of ‘Get Out’ meets ‘Blade, the Vampire Hunter,’” per The Hollywood Reporter.

The Harlem Renaissance was the social explosion of the Harlem neighborhood in New York City as a Black cultural epicenter in the early 20th Century and the social and artistic expansion that America saw as a result. It is during this period that we meet the characters of the ongoing comic series, Bitter Root.

When we begin reading, we learn that the Sangerye Family is made up of the only people who can save New York from mythical forces threatening to end mankind. That problem, alone, isn’t enough, though. The family of once-amazing monster hunters has been torn apart by outside tragedies and internal differences. The Sangerye Family must decide between working through their issues and finding the strength to work as one or giving up and watching the death of all humans. 

This project has been in development for around two years now. Regina King, fresh off her success as fan-favorite Angela Abar / Sister Night in HBO’s Watchmen and shortly after directing her first feature film, “One Night in Miami”, has been tapped to both direct and produce the film.

The creative team behind this book is more than strong; it’s stacked. David F. Walker (Shaft, Luke Cage,) writes and Sanford Green (Black Panther and Iron Fist) illustrates. Those two powerhouses, along with indie veteran Chuck Brown, give us 24 pages of riveting story. The acclaimed series received nominations for a 2019 Eisner Award for Best New Series. It also achieved a 2019 Ringo award for Best Series.https://comics.gocollect.com/guide/view/1002788?utm_source=blog&utm_medium=text-link&utm_campaign=bitter-root-slam-and-other-indies-headed-to-the-screen&utm_term=sarah-lee&utm_content=1002788

What does this mean to investors? 

The sales data on Bitter Root #1 has an interesting story to tell us. The book has sold for prices that widely vary up and down the board. The 9.8’s FMV is currently listed at $140. However, with news of Regina King taking on a leadership role with the production, it seems investors’ eyes are narrowing as they take an interest in the title. As of 4/3/2020, the book was being sold on eBay for $51.

The next three listed sales (also all from eBay,) sold for $115, $106.79, and $139.50, respectively. A CGC Signature Series 9.8eyJidWNrZXQiOiJnb2NvbGxlY3QuaW1hZ2VzLnB1YiIsImtleSI6ImEwOTU0MDcyLWUzZGQtNDYwYS1hYzc2LWRiNGI1YTk1NjljNi5qcGciLCJlZGl0cyI6W119-190x300 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the Screen was just sold on 5/11/2021 for a whopping $299. Not coincidentally, this sale took place on eBay the same day King’s involvement was announced. Could this book really soar? Only time will tell. With only 78 9.8s registered through the CGC census, this is definitely a book worth keeping an eye out for at your LCS.

Collectors’ focus is leveled on the Bitter Root #1 (Variant Cover F) edition. With a current 9.8 FMV of $450, it’s worth taking notice. Currently, there are 110 copies registered in the CGC census and even one elusive 9.9. While sales have generally lived between $100 and $200 over the last year, we’re now seeing a few jumps in price. The most recent three sales (all on eBay) were for $135, $275, and $449, the first two in March and the last in May of this year. 

Bitter Root is currently in pre-production, with no premiere date announced.

Black Hammer

The Hammerverse is coming! According to The Hollywood Reporter, writer Jeff Lemire and artist Dean Ormston’s Black Horse-produced comics will be part of a shared universe of TV series and feature films created by Legendary Entertainment. Lemire and Ormston will serve as executive producers. 

Legendary Entertainment describes the ambitious project as “a multiplatform, interconnected universe of characters and storytelling that audiences today really yearn for.”

Black_Hammer_1_cover-195x300 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the Screen

The setup? Our setting is the fictional Spiral City, and the story is a sprawling, ambitious one. Ten years ago, Black Hammer and six other superheroes saved Spiral City from the Anti-God. In the process, however, they became trapped in Rockwood, a timeless Twilight Zone-ish town. Shortly after the heroes arrived, Black Hammer died. In the present, the six remaining heroes remain on the Rockwood farm, stuck with little chance or hope of ever escaping.

The main Black Hammer series has given birth to numerous spinoffs known collectively as The Hammerverse. This deal includes not just Black Hammer, but all the spinoff titles, opening the door to the opportunity to seamlessly stitch together both films and tv shows. Notable miniseries spin offs include Sherlock Frankenstein and the Legion of Evil and Doctor Andromeda and the Kingdom of Lost Tomorrows, among SEVERAL others.

It’s no secret that shared universes are super hot these days. Has there ever been a series more perfect for that format than the epic world that is Black Hammer? It touches on several different eras and book genres as it examines and picks apart the roles of superheroes and supervillains in the world. Introduced in 2016, it won the Eisner Award for best new series in 2017. Lemire also scored nominations in both 2017 and 2018 for his writing on the series. 

Black Hammer #1

Black Hammer #1 was originally scheduled for release March 2015. However, Ormston suffered a cerebral hemorrhage, which left the right side of his body partially paralyzed. Later, after months of rehabilitation, Ormston recovered. The first issue of Black Hammer came out in July of the following year. eyJidWNrZXQiOiJnb2NvbGxlY3QuaW1hZ2VzLnB1YiIsImtleSI6ImIwZWMyODY4LWIwNjctNGI5NS04MmY4LWRiZTJjOTdhMGZlOS5qcGciLCJlZGl0cyI6W119-195x300 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the Screen

Although he’s been through hell and high water to bring this project to life, Lemire is looking forward to helming the work. He says “I decided with Black Hammer, because it’s so personal and near and dear to my heart, if I was ever going to option and develop it, I had to be intimately involved. As far as that adaptation, I do have to be the one that is creatively steering that ship, like the comic.”

The original Black Hammer #1 cover currently has an FMV of $130 with a total of 74 9.8s listed in the census. There are four other variants in addition to these worth taking a look at, including one increasingly valuable big-ticket cover.

Black Hammer #1 Convention Edition with cover art by Dustin Nguyen has set itself up to take off. With a current 9.8 FMV of $525 and only 93 copies in the CGC census, grab this one if you come across it! The last four sales have all been $499 and higher.

The premier date of this project has not yet been announced.

eyJidWNrZXQiOiJnb2NvbGxlY3QuaW1hZ2VzLnB1YiIsImtleSI6IjU1NDYzMGRkLThiZDMtNDQyYS04YTcxLTQ1NTAwYjMwYzdlMS5qcGciLCJlZGl0cyI6W119-198x300 Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the ScreenSpare Parts 

“A group of girls gets lost on a random dirt road. The tow truck driver tows them to his junkyard. Everything seems normal until they wake up with weapons for limbs, and thrown into the fight of their lives.”

This is the premise for Spare Parts, a Raven Banner and RLJE movie that has already been filmed. As a bonus for fans, this movie is receiving a comic book tie-in. 

This first issue is a stand-alone issue and is currently available for pre-order. It is written by Svet Rouskov, who also serves as executive producer on the film, and David Murdoch. It releases worldwide on July 14th, 2021, giving fans a sweet treat to look forward to this summer.

Offering 90s horror/grunge aesthetic brings out both dedicated fans and cringes from others.  As a result, comic book shop Wicked Monkey Comics predicts that this indie comic could end up being a new cult classic. Wicked Monkey will also be collaborating with Black Cape Comics to offer three different exclusive Spare Parts variants designed by Zo Orzu, Ingrid Gala, and BranFlakes. These covers will be available for pre-order soon!

Wrap-up

Indie comics are moving in, guys! With so many fun and new artists and writers to explore, the possibilities are endless. Seeing more and more production companies pick up these stories makes me want to take a harder look at several of these books before the projects hit their respective viewing platforms. Be sure to check out GoCollect’s Price Guide with a premium membership to get all the latest sales data. Plus, if you’re looking to invest in some BEAUTIFULLY slabbed 9.8s, check out Wicked Monkey’s awesome selection! There’s a little something for everyone and a lot of hot pieces worth checking out. Take a look!

So, what do you think about this look at a few of the awesome indie comics headed to the screen? Tell us in the comments!

052721D Bitter Root, Slam!, & Other Indie Comics Headed to the Screen*This blog is sponsored by Wicked Monkey

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