Cult-favorite anime Eyepatch Wolves has launched a brand new merch line, permitting followers to snag the primary official shirts, posters, and different merchandise bearing the likenesses of Wolf, Crow, and the remainder of the Angel Metropolis gang. You’ll be able to test it out right here.
…Wait, what? You do not know what we’re speaking about? Nicely, that is as a result of Eyepatch Wolves is a wild new concept from John Walsh, an artist and documentarian greatest recognized by his YouTube deal with Tremendous Eyepatch Wolf. Walsh, who has over 1 million subscribers on the video platform, developed a merch line (and the world surrounding it) based mostly on one backside line concept: he needs to contribute a few of his personal artwork to the dialog, somewhat than simply discussing the work of others.
The venture relies on an concept Walsh had years in the past, which he had left behind earlier than turning into a beloved determine on the web. However he says that this is not simply merchandise: eagle-eyed followers will be capable of decide up on particulars within the merch that inform the story of the world of Angel Metropolis. The truth is, this merch is simply the primary wave…based mostly on the primary arc within the story that might be taking place within the background.
“Once I was youthful, I had this massive fictional story that I’d work on,” Walsh advised ComicBook.com. “I would sit down. I would draw characters. We’re speaking very early twenties. I would sit down for an hour and I simply draw a personality sheets and stuff. It was this utterly formless factor. It was simply me placing extra shit right into a fictional world. At a degree, it was a comic book e book. At a degree, it was a game. At a degree, it was all these items. Finally, I bought older. I bought a job and I finished engaged on it. All through the years, I all the time simply considered that as like, ‘Fuck, that was among the most creatively glad I’ve ever been.’ No viewers, no viewers, I did not even put these drawings on the web. I suppose a part of it was simply I wished to recapture that. Then after I did the Area Jam video, I suppose I felt that spark once more. I feel as people, if one thing makes you’re feeling like that, you are a idiot for not pursuing it, you recognize?”
What is the Area Jam video? You’ll be able to test it out under, however the brief model is, Walsh made a video final 12 months referred to as Area Jam 2 is a Lie, and it’s a lengthy type video that examines the frustration of Area Jam: A New Legacy by means of the lens of a pretend Area Jam sequel which, actually, completely ought to have been made, as a result of Walsh’s model is sensible and terrifying.
“The Area Jam video, that’s the most enjoyable I’ve ever had making a video,” Walsh stated. “I used to be out of my thoughts delighted making that video, and I’ve different initiatives deliberate which are going to be similar to the Area Jam video. However one of many issues concerning the Area Jam video, it depends on the mythos of Michael Jordan, and Bugs Bunny, and all that form of stuff. I actually wished to be like, ‘What can I do from scratch? Would this work?'”
And thus, again to Angel Metropolis. Nicely, again for Walsh. For the remainder of us, it is our first go to.
“I would like individuals to have the ability to make connections on this world,” Walsh stated. “Even what’s in there already, you may get a really delicate sense of what is taking place, should you simply need to concentrate. In the event you simply need to see them as cool designs, you may see them as cool designs.”
He added, “The entire concept of it’s every new run of merch goes to be a brand new arc. So this primary arc, to me, it’s totally very like episodes one to 4 of Cowboy Bebop or no matter episodes come earlier than Ballad of Fallen Angels, where you are simply hanging out with the characters and attending to know them. There’s clearly stuff occurring within the backgrounds, however the focus, I actually wished to be them, their life, and particularly the connection they’ve to one another.”
And, no. The plan — a minimum of for Walsh, and a minimum of right away — is to not get it optioned and make it actual. There is not any grasp plan to rework Eyepatch Wolves right into a manga or an anime or anything past what it presently is. The idea is bizarre and meta, however that is a part of what makes it thrilling for Walsh as a creator.
“I do know that sounds bizarre, but it surely’s like all I’ve wished to do is make this story work as a merch line,” Walsh stated, including that he could be open to one thing else down the road, however solely in the precise circumstances. “I come from the animation business. I perceive how tough animation is. I’ve learn sufficient books about game growth to grasp that that is animation squared. There’s a lovely simplicity to the way in which I get to do that, as a result of I get to scout my favourite artists on the web. I get to strategy them about making some actually cool stuff, and I get to put in writing all the pieces, and I get to regulate all myself. The second it balloons up into one thing greater, I would hand over that management. That would doubtlessly be actually cool, however as it’s, I’ve beloved making this a lot.”
The subsequent step is probably going where it will get extra sophisticated. There are some apparent teases (who’s coming?!), and a few doubtless much less apparent ones, within the present line of merch. However when you get right into a second arc, and you’ve got individuals making an attempt to piece collectively a 12 months or so of tales based mostly on a t-shirt…nicely, making that coherent is a enjoyable psychological train.
“Immediately, the problem is introducing the world and characters in a approach that is significant,” Walsh stated. “In the event you go on, there is not any descriptive textual content of something that is really taking place. There’s items of dialogue, however there is not any description for what the world is, who the characters are, something. So the issue was really conveying that by means of the items themselves. From right here, the issue goes to be advancing that story. I’ve some fairly particular issues I need to do, and a few fairly particular concepts on the best way to do it. It’s positively going to be a problem, as a result of I am completely certain that another person has finished one thing like this sooner or later, but it surely’s not like there’s lots of guidelines for these items both. This is not making a movie or a portray. It is one thing a bit completely different. I foresee it being a problem, however I am additionally actually excited for the individuals who take note of see where this goes as a result of I’ve some stuff deliberate.”