Okay, here's our 5 page Magnus "teaser". The first page is attached, and I'll send the rest again in seperate emails.

This is the book that I was supposed to write with Sean Clauretie (Noble Causes, Badlands) doing pencills, and Damon Hacker (Noble Causes) doing the inks.

Sean's email is:
Damon's email is:

This, of course, was our man vs. technology future book. It starts off with the Robot Fighters being more like a "task force" for human/robot interaction.

Robots are put into position to take over civil service jobs all over the world. They, in essence work for the city/state/government.

They begin to "extrapolate" their programmiing, and start physcially replacing and murdering certain government officials, starting with various Mayors and finally moving on to the president (or maybe they didn't stop there...) viewing those positions as the next step of "civil duty".

The robots manage to have the robot fighter corps. dismantled due to the threat they propose to their plan to replace everyone on earth in any kind of "civil service" position so as to rule the planet in their utmost efficency for the "better".

However, they do not manage to take out General Magnus and he's the biggest threat. Magnus manages to leave the city and retreat into the mountains where he finds the remains of his mentor "1-A". There he develops a plan to vanquish the robots and cuts a swath through New York City and frees the US. However, he's unaware that this is/was a world wide problem, and the story continues from there.

I had 7 issues plotted out. That was the premise of the first 4 issues, with the 5th issue focusing on the degraded outlook of the people of this new world through the eyes of it's children. Issues 6-7 were going to be about child abductions that were supposedly executed by a robot (in hiding as a human), and Magnus hunts it down, and in the process, discovers that he/it is actually a member of the local police force. Here's the first page, which spotlights a meeting of the robots and how they "replace" these people in positions of power and who their ultimate target has to be.

-Chris Sotomayor

By Rick Johnson
Monday September 16, 2002


Mike Tomas contacted me to give his side of the recent Valiant revival, that Chris Sotomayor explained last week. Tomaras writes:

"I had spoken to Chris Sotomayor, yes I wanted his help because he had the experience of publishing comic books. Now then I went to the people in possession of the rights to Magnus and Solar. They told me to give them a proposal. I did, we had three meetings discussing the project. This started in mid-Febuary, by the end of June I was told that everything was on track, and should be cleared through their legal department and then their president. I was told, and have it on tape that the properties were "UNOFFICIALLY" ours we just had to wait for approval.

"I told Chris this and he said we should get started on the preview magazine we wanted to put together. I told him we should wait until the contracts are signed, he insisted the right way to go about this. Have every thing done, and it be set so as soon as the contract for Magnus and Solar were signed we would be ready to publish.

"Reluctantly against my better judgment I agreed and set forth on the projects. I waited a week in the beginning of July and called the company. I left messages each time. For the whole month of July I called them three times a day, in the mean time I had given Chris the same number to call. He also could not get them on the phone. Which he seems to forget to mention in your article?

"By the end of July Chris kept calling me to get the contracts done. OK, how to get them when you cant reach the people? Finally in the beginning of August, I got a hold of the person in charge of the licensing of Magnus and Solar. He apologized saying that they have been busy with movie and gaming projects. I asked him the status of our bid. He told me that no one saw it yet, and that he would get it done as soon as possible. August 13th Chris calls me and tells me that Image is interested and we would get a sweet deal. Chris went on to tell me to call up the ;icensor and telling him that we had to sign the contracts soon or we would lose the deal. I did just that, I left a message with them telling them.

"On August 15th I got a e-mail from the ;icensor telling that, at this time they are passing on our bid and don't foresee any publishing for Magnus and Solar. Here it is, the e-mail I got:


I wanted to update you on Classic Media's decision on the comic publishing future of Magnus and Solar. After reviewing your proposal with the management team and our multiple medium strategy for these properties, they have chosen not to move forward.

This is not a reflection on the quality of your team. I hope we can find another project we can work on together. As you know our library is very deep.



John Fraser
Classic Media

"Since then I have left numerous messages and still have not gotten a reply from them. Now I told Chris, he gets angry at me for this not working out. What Chris did not mention in his notice is that we have two other projects pending with two other companies. Now then seeing the lack of professionalism on his part, I can only hope that they do not see his article and make us lose these other projects. The projects I am keeping mum about until contracts are signed. If he doesn't want to work with me fine. Things fall through in business all the time, but don't try blaming me for something I had no control over. Like the licensor turning us down. That is just foolish and childish. Totally unprofessional on his part.

"A few days later when Chris calmed down he sent me a e-mail which I will post right here detailing what he told me.


I have a source (I can't name him) that tells me that he has some interesting and somewhat intimate information regarding our dealings with Classic Media. First off he said that Classic Media has never wanted to sell the comic book publishing rights to Magnus and Solar, and when John Fraser was asked at a licensing show in June, he commented that there was a cease and desist order on any parties claiming to own or be in negotiations over the rights to these properties. He also mentioned that John Fraser does not see any future in, nor want to take part in any comic book publishing ventures with any Classic Media characters. Including (and not limited to) Magnus, Solar and the Harvey properties.

It seems that John Fraiser took you for a ride and had no intentions of giving the rights over to us.

And it seems that this was waaaaayyy before any of my marketing/media leaks. You got hosed.


"Which Chris does not mention in his scathing article about me, which if you ask me is even more childish an unprofessional behavior? No one seems to remember the Motown Comics line where Chris was also the editor. Just to remind you it was also a forgettable line of books which came out during the gluttonous period of comics in the mid '90's. So far Chris has issues with other people in the industry and feels that he can attack me because if he tried attacking people at DC Comics he would be turned away. Same at Crossgen, Marvel, and Image. He is apparently a bitter man with problems towards other people. I thought of him as a friend at one time but when he flips out like a child that didn't get the toy he wanted for his birthday.. well it's another story.

"As far as I am concerned I am glad that I do not have to work with a guy like Chris Sotomayor whose true nature is nasty, and his logic flawed.

"In respect to payment of the work that has been done that will be taken care of. The financial advisor who handles that as well as the backers were on vacation. I have informed all artist involved that they will be paid with an added sum of money for their patience in the whole matter. To them I apologize for the delay.

"I would like to apologize to all the fans who wanted to see these books out there.

"I myself among those fans, I am very disappointed."

VALIANCE DISMISSED Remember that new "Magnus Robot Fighter" and "Solar: Man Of The Atom" artwork I've been printing recently? That gave the impression that a revival from an unnamed publisher was on the way?
A number of individuals were hired to work on the properties and began churning out material.
I've just been told that they have recently informed them that the books aren't going to happen after all - and that as a result, they're not going to get paid for work completed at the publisher's request. I hear there may be a number of other originally upcoming series in the skip as well.
NOTE I mentioned a specific publisher in a previous version of this column - not only was the publisher not involved, it's not in their publishing mandate to have been involved. I'd like to apologise to that publisher for not realising that.



Mental Studios released a image attached to a project unpaid-Avatar artist Pat Quinn has been working on, colours by Chris Sotomayor.
It's Solar, folks. Check it out here.