Heavy Metal Presents: Gates

Flush the Fashion will be here to give you the low down on everything from Batman to the new Justice League movie. We found a brilliant new comic book from Heavy Metal magazine that has just launched online.

Heavy Metal Presents: Gates
The story begins when Gates (our hero) breaks free from an isolated negative utopian society. He is thrust onto a lush alien world filled with strange creatures, and ruled by Soloman —a nightmarish, god-like overlord. Gates must learn to use Soloman’s organic technology to defeat him and take back a planet which is rightfully his.

The story is an epic tale of discovery and adventure that addresses ideas of identity, society, politics, and philosophy, as well as modern concerns, including environmentalism, evolution, and the unintended consequences of scientific and technological experimentation.

Flush the fashion spoke to the writer and illustrator of Gates, Hal Hefner to find out more.

Hal: I grew up loving the Heavy Metal film, and reading Heavy Metal and was heavily inspired by many of the artists featured, with Moebius being the most notable. It is deeply satisfying and an honour to not only have my work published by Heavy Metal, but to be their very first digital comic”.

What is the secret to a good comic?
Three things: good story, good storytelling, good art. If either one of those suck, your comic sucks. Comics may have good story but if the design/layout is hard to follow your comic suffers. Good art carries the eye as well and keeps people interested.

Who are your comic book heroes?
My comic book heroes are all across the board. I love comics as an artform as well as a form of entertainment and I fell in love with the stories and the art as a kid. I grew up loving Larry Hama’s G.I.Joe and loving Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow. I also loved Batman (the darker version), John Byrne’s X-Men and my all time favorite character evolution comics was in 1984 when Spider Man got the black costume. I point to that as the point in which my evolution of an artist really began as I was obsessed with drawing him. I also liked off the cuff heroes like the Watchmen and Swamp Thing.

Do you have a favourite comic?
This is a tough one. It’s hard to say one in particular but I did like the G.I.Joe comic called Silent Interlude that mistakenly contained no text at all and dealt with Snake Eyes breaking into Cobra headquarters. Mostly my favorite things are story lines in a comic. It’s rare that one comic sticks out to me as a favorite.

What advice can you give people who want to become an artist / writer like yourself?
Never give up. The comic industry is a tough one to break into but if you have a story you believe in and you believe in your art, find a way to do it and make it happen. Often times as human beings we find every excuse we can for failing but don’t give up when life kicks you in the groin. That’s what separates the pack.

Any plans for Gates: The Movie? If so who would play Gates?
There are various degrees of possibilities for GATES to hit the big screen. With such a rich universe of history to work with the possibilities from video games, to animation and live action movies are all being explored. But the nice thing is that there is some interest from Hollywood. It’s very early in the game, but do have some actors in mind. BUT there are some secrets I just can’t give up now and that’s one of them.

Here are a couple of more pictures from the comic (Soloman, (the Overlord) and Adria), click on the thumbs to see more.
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Heavy Metal magazine has been around since 1977 and can boast William S Burroughs and Frank ‘Sin City’ Miller as past contributors. This is the first time they have published a comic digitally online (eventually the work will packaged up into a uniquely designed collectible book).
The first edition can be read now over at www.gatesthecomic.com