Earlier in the month Stjepan Sejic put up a post on his Deviant Art Journal stating that he was putting up his charming dark fantasy, Death Vigil, up online for free. The intention of this is to get it in front of as many eyeballs as possible in order to keep the series alive, and further than the intended 8 issues, in light of dropping sales. From there he provided links to where the issues could be bought digitally and the trade paperback collection can be pre-ordered for those who enjoyed it. I’m here to tell you where you can find these free issues and, hopefully, in the process help you discover what could be your new favorite comic.
For those who haven’t heard of this series, Death Vigil is about about an army of gifted people who battle against the growing forces of evil known as the Primordial Enemy. But, the catch is you need to be dead to join. The series follows Clara Jenkins, who wields reality-altering weaponry, and her makeshift family of fellow soldiers as the fight the good fight of good vs evil. Mix that up with plenty of dark fantasy action, humour and fantastic art and you get a series that’s friendly to new readers.
One of the highlights of this series would have to definitely be Sejic’s beautiful digitally painted art. Even though it’s full of plenty of dark tones, the art shines through with it’s beauty and detail in both characters and environments. Additionally, his characters look fantastic, with interesting character designs which are full of expression that help carry the humour of his script.
Why not just crowdsource Death Vigil? Mostly, it’s because he doesn’t want to have to go down that path, stating “I don’t do crowdfunding. I make comics. I publish comics. If people love and buy my comics… I get to make more comics.” Which I believe is a fair enough justification. A crowdfunding campaign is a very lengthy and time consuming process, which takes a lot of time away from doing what they love – making great comics.
Early I mentioned that much of the inspiration for Stjepan Sejic to give Death Vigil away for free was due to dropping sales, although this is not a knock on the quality of the work. It’s more on how the comic book market is at the moment where there’s a general attrition of sales over time with the majority of comics before it begins to level out. As I said this isn’t always due to the quality of the work, but more a market in which consumers are continuously dropping titles in order to read new ones or read a few issues and decide to wait for the trade paperback instead. Unfortunately, this happens with great indie titles on a regular basis and some of them sadly end before their story can be told.
Let’s not make Death Vigil one of those comics!
You can read free copies of Death Vigil issues over on Stjepan Sejic’s Deviant Art page. At the time of writing this, issues #1-6 are available to read for free.
If you do check out Death Vigil and you’re digging what you’ve read I highly recommend you buy it in your preferred format. You can find it at Comixology, Image Comics Digital and DriveThru Comics as well as issues at all good comic book stores. If trade paperback is more your style, you wont have to wait long as it will be available in July. You can find more about pre-ordering your copy here. Also, keep an eye out for issues #7 and #8 which will be in stores and digitally very soon.