- The Amory Wars
The Amory Wars, originally entitled The Bag.On.Line Adventures, is an ongoing series of comic books written by Coheed and Cambria frontman Claudio Sanchez and published by Evil Ink Comics. The story of The Amory Wars is also the focus of the band's music. Each studio album released by the band tells a chapter in the science fiction tetralogy originally narrated by Sanchez's lyrics.
The Amory Wars is set in Heaven's Fence, a collection of 78 planets held in place by interconnecting beams of energy, known as the Keywork. The first half of the story narrates Coheed Kilgannon and Cambria Kilgannon's struggle against Wilhelm Ryan, the Supreme Tri-Mage (later referred to as the Archmage). The second half of the story focuses on the heroic journey of their son, messianic Claudio Kilgannon. Over the course of the story, Claudio assumes the mantle of The Crowing, foretold savior of Heaven's Fence. In the end, he will face the Archmage, absolute ruler of Heaven's Fence and the one ultimately responsible for the death of Claudio's family.
The original installments published were The Second Stage Turbine Blade (originally planned to be released in serial parts), which has two issues illustrated by artist Wes Abbot and tells approximately the first third of Chapter 2 (no further issue will be released by this team, this project has been abandoned), and the graphic novel Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through The Eyes Of Madness illustrated by Christopher Shy, which tells the story of the first volume of Chapter 4. The first issue of The Second Stage Turbine Blade is now out of print, and the second is in limited supply. The Good Apollo graphic novel is no longer in print and are limited as well. Recently, The Amory Wars Sketchbook, an intro piece, has been sold in limited release.
During an interview, Claudio explained that the whole series will be re-done chronologically and re-named The Amory Wars. Gus Vasquez, the illustrator of the Amory Wars Sketchbook, would illustrate the series. By the third issue of new Second Stage comic Chris Miller took over the illustration job from Gus Vasquez. Miller's style is very close to Vasquez's artistic style and let the transition move smoothly. Claudio said that the band did not have the money or "pull" to either get the Second Stage Turbine Blade completed, release Good Apollo in completion (Claudio said that they had to remove parts of the story because of financial constraints), or release anything for In Keeping Secrets. Now that the band has the ability to release the comics properly, they have started from scratch. The first of ten comics that will make up the Second Stage Turbine Blade piece was released on June 13, 2007.
Beyond the two comic books released for The Second Stage Turbine Blade, the graphic novel for Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness and a brief synopsis on the website for Evil Ink Comics, Sanchez has not confirmed many details about the story.
With the release of Year of the Black Rainbow, a novel was put out coinciding with the album (and serving as a prequel to Second Stage Turbine Blade). A comic series based on the story of In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3 has also begun.
The Bag.On.Line Adventures
The original name of the story was The Bag.On.Line Adventures of Coheed and Cambria. This would also be the name of the first chapter of their story and the respective album (chronologically, from the story's standpoint, Bag.On.Line Adventures would come before Second Stage Turbine Blade, although they are "released" out of order).
The Bag.On.Line Adventures would essentially work as a prequel and would follow the story of Coheed, Cambria, and Jesse as part of an anti-terrorist agency called the K.B.I., which stood for the Knowledge (referring to Cambria and her ability to see the future and other events), the Beast (referring to Coheed and his ability to fight his way out of basically any tight situation), and the Inferno (referring to Jesse, the burning heart and soul of the KBI).
The name "Bag.On.Line" came from a shop across from Claudio Sanchez's apartment during the trip to Paris in which he first conceptualized the Coheed and Cambria saga.
Since then, Coheed & Cambria have released their newest work which is the prequel to "Second Stage Turbine Blade", entitled "Year of the Black Rainbow".
The Amory Wars Sketchbook
After Sanchez changed the name to The Amory Wars, he also released a sketchbook, illustrated by Gus Vasquez, which plots out the next comic. Originally dubbed Comic Zero, The Amory Wars Sketchbook was released at ComicCon. Later, the Evil Ink website began selling the sketchbook in limited release. This comic explains the very beginning of the Keywork and Heaven's Fence. Years pass and the comic ends introducing Coheed Kilgannon on his home planet of Hetricus.
The Second Stage Turbine Blade
First released in the summer of 2004, the original two comic books narrate the events of approximately the first third of Coheed and Cambria's concept album The Second Stage Turbine Blade of 2002. They introduce central characters, including the villains Wilhelm Ryan and Mayo Deftinwolf who orchestrate a sinister plot to murder the children of Coheed and Cambria Kilgannon in order to use the dormant Monstar virus hidden within Coheed to destroy the Keywork. Claudio Kilgannon escapes murder at the hands of his parents, who have been tricked into believing that their children may cause the destruction of humanity if left alive, and becomes the protagonist of later chapters. These early issues, which were inked by Wes Abbott, are now out of print.
Gus Vasquez began illustrating the re-release of The Amory Wars, which begins with the first issue of The Second Stage Turbine Blade. Vasquez's participation in the production of this series was short-lived as Mike Miller took over after the second issue and illustrated 3-5. The first five issues in the miniseries represent "The Second Stage Turbine Blade: Volume 1" and cover the first half of the chapter. The first issue was released June 13, and subsequent issues were released monthly. It was published by Claudio's company Evil Ink Comics along with the help of Image Comics and 12 Gauge Comics, and cover art was illustrated by Tony Moore of The Walking Dead infamy. The first five issues were released as a paperback graphic novel with a brand new cover by usual cover artist Tony Moore. A special variant cover was released as well and only sold in Hot Topic retail stores. The 5 issues (6-10) in Part II were illustrated by Gabriel Guzman and were released as a paperback graphic novel with cover art by Tony Moore on December 9, 2009.
In August 2010, these two volumes of five comics were released together in a single hardcover edition titled "The Amory Wars: Ultimate Edition". The two original issues by Wes Abbott, as well as the cover artwork for all twelve comics are also included in the back of this 350-page release.
In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3
The third part of the Amory Wars, In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3 is a twelve-part comic series currently in production written by Claudio Sanchez and Peter David, who both co-wrote the Year of the Black Rainbow novel, with artwork by Chris Burnham. The first issue was released on May 26, 2010, and the second issue was released on June 23, 2010. The series was later collected into three trade paperback volumes each containing four issues. The corresponding album of the same name from Coheed and Cambria was released in late 2003. A small summary of the chapter's plot has been published on the Evil Ink Comics website:
Ten years after the "…Turbine Blade", son Claudio emerges from the depths of Shylos Ten, the Fence's "quiet" planet where the Red Army performs its brutal interrogations and imprisonments. In finding out that his entire family has been murdered, Claudio begins his quest for vendetta. His foes, Supreme Tri Mage Wilhelm Ryan and General Mayo Deftinwolf sense that he is still alive and holds special powers. They know they must stop him before he defeats them. Meanwhile, Inferno (Jesse Kilgannon) takes up arms against the Red Army (“Man your Battlestations”) in an effort to seek the same kind of vengeance on him. In Claudio’s re-emergence he teams up with Ambellina, the Prise who is cast out by her peers and forced to be his guide. The pair along with Sizer, a disassembled IRO-bot, seek out Inferno to find answers as to why his family were killed, but their plans take an unexpected turn in a ship called The Camper Velourium, piloted by a believed to be racist psychopath named Al.
According to the fansite Cobalt and Calcium This album opens with the IRO-Bot Sizer allowing himself to be captured in order to gain the affections of Jesse, Claudio's uncle. Sizer is tortured on Shylos Ten, where his disassembled body is happened upon by Claudio. This leads Claudio to be found by Ambellina, and together they find Jesse.
Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness
A graphic novel entitled Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness, illustrated by Christopher Shy, was released in September 2005 along with the album of the same name. The story of Good Apollo takes a step outside the science fiction narrative of the first three chapters and examines the life of The Writer, a character who is crafting the lives of the protagonist Claudio and his companions in the form of a fictional story. Through a series of delusional conversations with his ten speed bicycle about an unfaithful former lover, The Writer decides he must kill the Prise Ambellina to properly end his story. The events in the narrative itself build up to a final confrontation between Jesse's rebel forces and the Red Army of Supreme Tri-Mage Wilhelm Ryan under the command of General Mayo Deftinwolf, as well as a literal meeting of the Writer and Claudio culminating in the death of Ambellina and Claudio's emergence as the Crowing.
The new Amory Wars series, illustrated by Gus Vasquez, will retell the story of Good Apollo. Claudio stated that a lot was lost from the graphic novel because of financial constraints. He further explained that although Christopher Shy's art is beautiful, it was not the best medium for Good Apollo's story-telling. Claudio looks forward to releasing a new version in chronological order so that the story will make more sense.
Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume Two: No World for Tomorrow
Apart from the album, no story mediums for Good Apollo, I'm Burning Star IV, Volume Two: No World for Tomorrow have been released, although the new series may introduce its story.
Year of the Black Rainbow
Year of the Black Rainbow is the first part of the Amory Wars. The album of the same name was released April 13, 2010, and with it came a 352-page novel detailing the events of the story. It tells of how Wilhelm Ryan came to power by killing or abducting all the other Mages. A mysterious black rainbow also appears in the sky the day Ryan takes supremacy. A civilian, named Doctor Leonard Hohenberger, is dissatisfied with the Supreme Tri-Mage's rule and is inspired by the Prise to create three IRO-bots, known as the KBI: Cambria ("Knowledge"), Coheed ("Beast"), and Jesse ("Inferno"). While the KBI are out on the other planets of Heaven's Fence, destroying everything Ryan had made, Hohenberger's wife, Pearl, is kidnapped by Mayo Deftinwolf. Deftinwolf offers the Doctor an ultimatum; if the Doctor will help Ryan create a virus which has the potential to destroy Heaven's Fence (the Monstar virus), Pearl will be returned to him. If Hohenberger refuses, Pearl dies. Leonard creates the virus, but locks it inside the bodies of Coheed and Cambria so Ryan cannot immediately use it, giving the Doctor time to create a cure. Ryan takes Coheed and Cambria to his stronghold to figure out how to extract the virus. In return for his treachery, the Tri-Mage sends Pearl back with a gun, after telling her that Leonard had helped Ryan cause the downfall of the universe. However, back home, Pearl finds she cannot kill her husband, and instead kills herself. Leonard leaves a set of instructions for Inferno, and sets out to get revenge by attempting to kill Mayo Deftinwolf. The assassination fails, and the Doctor himself is killed instead. Meanwhile, Inferno follows the Doctor's instructions and discovers he has made a cure for the Monstar in the form of another IRO-bot, named Josephine. With new hope, Inferno flies to Ryan's stonghold, the House Atlantic. He breaks in and saves Coheed and Cambria, mutilating Deftinwolf in the process. While Inferno is gone, his troops rain down firepower on the House Atlantic from their ship, the Grail Arbor. After the KBI have left, the Grail Arbor fully destroys House Atlantic. Ryan himself almost dies, but is rescued at the last moment by Vielar Crom, a soldier taken from one of the opposing Mages' armies. Ryan vows for revenge as he flies off. The black rainbow also disappears once he is gone. Meanwhile, in the epilogue of the story, Inferno, still following Hohenberger's orders, wipes the minds of Coheed and Cambria to make them think they are an ordinary couple and Josephine is their newborn daughter. He wishes them the best as they begin their new lives with no memory of the KBI or the events of this story.
- Coheed Kilgannon - Husband of Cambria and harbors the Monstar virus, which, when triggered, causes the cooling of the star transformers that hold planets in the Keywork. Previously a member of K.B.I., Coheed being the B: Beast. He possesses blades in his left arm and can transform his right into a gun. He is killed by Cambria during a conflict when he becomes the Monstar.
- Cambria Kilgannon - Wife of Coheed, and possesses some type of psychic or clairvoyant ability. Previously a member of K.B.I., Cambria being the K: Knowledge. She commits suicide after killing her husband to save Earth III.
- Claudio Kilgannon - Son of Coheed & Cambria and the only known survivor of his family. After meeting his 'uncle' Jesse, the two plan to destroy Heaven's Fence and kill Wilhelm Ryan. Ambellina explains to Claudio that he is also The Crowing, a messiah who will save the souls of the Keywork by destroying it; however, he is not willing to accept this fate until the climax of Good Apollo I'm Burning Star IV Vol.1: From Fear Through The Eyes Of Madness.
- Jesse - Although commonly referred to as Coheed's brother, Jesse (like Coheed) is an IRO-bot. Jesse leads the rebels in war against Wilhelm Ryan. The third member of K.B.I.,I, Inferno, Jesse is said to have created five new IRO-bots. Jesse is also a boxer and goes by the name of The Prize Fighter Inferno.
- Mariah Antillarea - Originally believed to be the Messiah, Mariah is the leader of a rebellion against Wilhelm Ryan. She is also married to Jesse.
- Ambellina - A Prise. Ambellina burns off her wings to be more human at the order of the other Prise. She is sent to guide Claudio to his destiny as The Crowing. Like the rest of the Prise, her mission is to watch over the Keywork and see that God's will is carried out. She represents the future the Writer could have had with his former girlfriend Erica Court.
- Wilhelm Ryan - The Supreme Tri-Mage of the Keywork. He gained control of the Keywork during the Mage Wars when he claimed dominion over the other Mages. Ryan tried to use Coheed and Cambria to destroy Mariah because of her threat to his rule. When his plan failed she was killed by Mayo Deftinwolf. He now fights the rebel army, which is led by Jesse.
- The Writer - Also referred to as The Writing Writer, the issues in his own life make him see delusions that cause him to take out his own suffering on the characters in his story. The story gets darker as his own problems grow. He doesn't want The Character (Claudio) to feel the same pain that he feels, so he interferes with the story. He sees the visions of Ten Speed who manipulates his thinking.
- Ten Speed - The manifestation of The Writer's ill will and malice which takes the form of his 10 speed bicycle. Ten Speed convinces the Writer that he needs to kill off Ambellina in order to end the story.
- Erica Court - The Writer's former lover, memories of whom cause him to descend into madness and interfere with the story of Heaven's Fence. It is hinted that The Writer once asked Erica Court to marry him (The Suffering), and that at some point in the relationship he turned hostile (Welcome Home).
- Josephine Kilgannon - Oldest child of Coheed and Cambria and fiance of Patrick McCormick. An IRO-Bot created by Dr. Hohenberger to serve as the antidote to Coheed's Monstar virus, Josie possesses a telepathic link with Cambria. Josie is assaulted and raped by a gang called the Jersey City Devils and is later murdered by Coheed after he was deceived by Mayo.
- Leonard Hohenberger - Scientist that created the K.B.I. and Josephine, he also created the Monstar virus to save his wife Pearl from the hands of Ryan by giving Ryan himself the weapon that would start the end of the worlds.
- ^ a b c Cobalt and Calcium Interview w/ Claudio Sanchez, August 12, 2006 (cached)
- ^ "Evil Ink Comics". Evil Ink Comics. http://evilinkcomics.net/thestory1.html. Retrieved 2011-07-22.
- ^ 12 Gauge Comics :: The Amory Wars :: from Coheed & Cambria's Claudio Sanchez
- ^ "THE ENTIRE SECOND STAGE TURBINE BLADE SAGA COLLECTED IN ONE ULTIMATE EDITION!". August 4, 2010. http://www.firstcomicsnews.com/?p=12510.
- ^ Evil Ink Comics
- Coheed and Cambria official website
- The Amory Wars official website
- Review of Amory Wars #2
- A BRIEF AMORY WARS CHAT WITH TONY MOORE, August 2, 2007, Newsarama
- Claudio Sanchez graphic novel signing, August 8, 2008
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