It’s five years from now. The internet is no longer secure. Secrets can no longer be safely sent over the web. Armed couriers known as ‘Ledger Men’ are entrusted to deliver these secrets all across the world. Jack McGinnis is one such Ledger Man. Always armed, he lives in a dangerous world full of intrigue and espionage. Welcome to the world of ANALOG.

Written by Gerry Duggan with art by David O’Sullivan, ANALOG is a brand new Image Comics series launching in April. In anticipation of this, we talked to Gerry and David about the series and what we can expect.

NYCC 2017: Gerry Duggan Talks ANALOG, The Internet, and Cyberpunk!

ComicsVerse (CV): First of all, for those not in the know, what is ANALOG about?

David O’Sullivan (DOS): ANALOG is about a world where there’s been a huge digital information leak and nobody trusts the internet to share secrets anymore. So the Ledger Men are born, hired guns that deliver sensitive material, that others would do anything to get their hands on. Our main character, Jack McGinnis, is hired as a Ledger Man. He has the NSA and other interested parties on his heels. Jack manages to stay ahead of the pack with the help of his partner Oona, “An angel with a suppressor” as described by Gerry. Jack and Oona find each other in this messed up world, and I think it’s their relationship that keeps them sane and functioning. Gerry takes a subject that sounds serious and paranoid. He makes it action-packed, fun, and gives it a lot of heart.

Gerry Duggan (GD): And David has just done a remarkable job building this world. He inhabits these characters so well, the acting is so good on their faces. This does not seem like his first published work.

Courtesy of Image Comics

CV: A lot of speculative fiction is set a good bit in the future, but ANALOG is only five years away. Why did you choose to go with a timeline so close to ours?

GD: Well, the truth is — I wanted to set it where it needed to be. We wrote our story and drew our world and then landed on 2024 as the place that it felt right to be. I’ve already heard about some organizations pivoting to embrace analog communications.

CV:  David, I understand this is your first professionally published comic. Could you tell us how did this come about?

DOS: Yes it is, I had previously drawn some comics for a small Irish company, Atomic Diner. I had sent my latest pages to Declan Shalvey, who I’ve known a long time. Around the same time Gerry had asked Declan did he know anybody who would be interested in doing a creator-owned book, so Declan introduced us. Obviously, I jumped at the chance to work with Gerry, it has been one of the best decisions I’ve made. Gerry is a hell of a nice guy, his writing is so good and makes drawing a comic really fun. At no stage have I dreaded sitting down to draw a page and that’s down to Gerry’s writing.

CV: Gerry, you’re known for writing Deadpool and other Marvel properties. What are the pros and cons of writing a creator-owned comic instead of work for hire?

GD: I began my comics career at Image and am thrilled to be returning. For me, there is little difference between how I approach a comic. I work just as hard on all of them. I can’t make someone not be a fan of Deadpool or the Hulk, but I can make that reader not like my work, so I take nothing for granted. I try to write every script like it will be my last comic. I’m proud of all the work I’ve done, and I think my best scripts are ahead of me. I can’t wait to see what people think of ANALOG.


CV: Jack McGinnis, ANALOG’s protagonist, feels like he has embraced this world change. Unlike a typical hero, he’s not desperate to right the wrongs he did or change the world back to what it was before. Was he just born at the wrong time or is there something more to him?

GD: I think he’s damaged, he’s carrying some guilt about the world, and he’s also exploiting the new world as a Ledger Man. He’s got a good heart, though. And a tough jaw.

DOS: I think Jack was born at the right time, he knew life wasn’t perfect but he could see enough into the future to predict we were heading off a cliff. I think Gerry and I are of a certain age where we remember what it was like before we depended so heavily on the internet and social media on a daily basis. Obviously, there are benefits to the internet, emailing for work, advertising ANALOG, or Gerry talking to his fans. But it can also be a time drainer, tricking us into believing we are catching up with friends without actually spending time with them. I think most people feel this way and will be able to relate to Jack and his actions.

CV: Despite it being set so close in the future, there still seems to be a lot of world building involved. Where does the balance lie in constructing a world that is believable enough that it could happen while also making sure your story doesn’t suffer from being bogged down in it?

DOS: I think their world is pretty much the same as ours, maybe a little more run down. Things like driver-less cars and robot workers are normal in their world. These things exist today in ours but they just aren’t on the average street corner. We might have taken a little creative license with the robots we use compared to what actually exists in the Boston Dynamic laboratories, but you know…it’s comics! I think the story doesn’t suffer because the story is driven by the characters and not by their environment or gadgets. Technology is in the background until it’s not and then it’s needed for the story.

Only fools try to predict the future, but I think these fools did a pretty good job. ANALOG is an insecure world. The web is insecure, the economy is insecure, incomes are insecure, I think ANALOG will be prescient, unfortunately.

Courtesy of Image Comics

CV: Jordie Bellaire is an extraordinary and very busy colorist. How did you get her on board, and what do you think she brings to ANALOG?

DOS: I know Jordie through Declan Shalvey. We were out for Declan’s birthday and Jordie asked to see what I was working on. So I showed her, she was so interested in working on ANALOG she emailed Gerry there and then telling him she wanted to color it. I couldn’t believe it, I somehow managed to get one of the best colorists to color my first professional book. I knew there’s always a chance we could lose Jordie because she’s so busy, but we managed to keep her. Jordie has an incredible eye for color, she really knows how to lead a reader through a page and get them to look at what’s important. The pages she has colored so far are so good, she really makes me look professional.

The same goes for Joe Sabino, our letterer. Joe really knows his craft. His work is clear and easy to follow. His sound effects look great. I draw these pages hoping they’re good enough, then Jordie and Joe get their hands on them and make me look so much better, so I really appreciate their work.

GD: Jordie and Joe are the best. We’re very lucky to have them.

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CV: What are your goals for the series? Is this a limited run or something that has plenty of mileage on it?

DOS: I believe Gerry has plans for Three to Four trades, I know he has an ending in mind. I love drawing the characters and really enjoy working with Gerry so it will be a bittersweet moment when it does end. I’m excited to see how far we get.

CV: If the events of ANALOG were to happen, how would you react? Would you be okay with it, or would you be employing Ledger Men on a regular basis?

DOS: I’d be okay with it, I’m an open book… Okay, maybe hire one now and again.

I’m pretty boring. I know some smarter folks than me that have been deleting all their emails every 30 days — expecting a doxxing on some scale.

CV: Before we wrap up, are there any upcoming projects or more information about ANALOG you’d like to mention?

DOS: I hope retailers and readers give ANALOG a try, it’s a lot of fun and they’ll be surprised by the direction it takes. Even in the first arc they’ll be surprised, I know I was and it’s great. Gerry is really bringing us on an adventure! If you’d like to pre-order ANALOG our diamond code is: FEB180498

GD: What Dave said!

Want to know more about ANALOG?

ANALOG #1 comes out on April 4th, 2018. If you want to keep up-to-date with Gerry and David, follow them on twitter: @GerryDuggan and @DaveOSull


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