Radiant Black has been one of the most interesting superhero comics of 2021 so far, giving us an exciting spin on the masked superhero tropes writer Kyle Higgins previously examined in his work on the official Power Rangers comic. But big heroes need big stakes—and we’ve got a look at some big mystery comic to the series.
io9's got the first details on Radiant Black #6, set to hit shelves from Image Comics in July. The series, from Higgins and artist Marcelo Costa, and has so far seen struggling writer Nathan Burnett return to his hometown in an attempt to escape both his financial woes and a writer’s block that’s tearing his mind apart—only to find his problems changed entirely when he inherits a powerful supersuit and psychokinetic superpowers that turn him into Radiant Black. But Nathan soon finds out that there are others like him... and not all of them are so inclined to fight for justice as he chooses to.
One of the most mysterious teases so far has been for Radiant Red, whose powers and antagonism towards Nathan has put our hero on the back foot—but in issue six, Higgins is teaming up with writer Cherish Chen and Ultimate Spider-Man artist David “Darko” Lafuente for a one-shot explosive unveiling of Radiant Red’s origin story. Check out a first look at Lafuente’s cover for Radiant Black #6 below.
“From the very beginning, one of the things that Michael [Busuttil, Radiant Black editor], Marcelo and I were quite excited about was finding opportunities to bring some different creative voices to Radiant Black. Now, with issue 6, we have our first chance to do that,” Higgins said in a statement provided to io9. “Darko Lafuente has been one of my favorite artists in the industry, since his stunning run on Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man. Cherish Chen is a newer comics writer who has absolutely blown me away with her voice and command of tone. We’re so excited to welcome them both to the Radiant Black family!”
If that wasn’t enough teasing, we’ve also got the first look at a team-up between Radiant Black and Higgins involvement in another superhero comic: Inferno Girl Red. Higgins is editing the series for Image—which was teased at the very end of Radiant’s debut issue earlier this year—which will be written by his Marvel Ultraman co-writer Mat Groom, and features art by Captain Marvel’s Erica D’Urso, Radiant Black’s Becca Carey on letters, and Megaman: Fully Charged’s Igor Monti on colors.
If Radiant Black takes a leaf out of the Power Rangers school of superheroics, Inferno Girl Red’s inspiration draws on a distant cousin, Kamen Rider, as it tells the story of a young girl named Cássia as she finds herself bonded to a strange gauntlet that will help save her home from an army of demons. Check out the print below, from Radiant Black’s Marcelo Costa and Eria D’Urso!
“From the first time Mat Groom pitched me Inferno Girl Red, I was hooked. The story that Mat, Erica, Igor and Becca are building is nothing short of phenomenal. I feel very honored to play a small part in helping to bring the book to life,” Higgins said of his work on Inferno Girl. “Also, for Radiant Black readers, there’s little coincidence that we debuted Inferno Girl Red in the back of Radiant Black #1. There’s even less coincidence that Erica D’Urso and Marcelo Costa teamed up for this exclusive Kickstarter print, either. The connections between Inferno Girl Red and Radiant Black may run deeper than you think...”
For the potential for more superheroic crossovers, you can head on over to Kickstarter to back a deluxe edition of the first issue of Inferno Girl Red before the campaign concludes on May 6. Pledges start at around $11 for a digital copy of the comic, while around $50 will net you the above print and an oversized physical hardcover of Inferno Girl Red #1. The series is set to begin shipping in June 2022; meanwhile, Radiant Black #6 hits comic book store shelves July 21.
For more, make sure you’re following us on our Instagram @io9dotcom.