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FCBD Interview: Creative Team Talks Bruce Lee: The Dragon Rises #1

Darby Pop is excited to introduce their remastered take on the iconic character, Bruce Lee!

This action packed book is a part of Free Comic Book Day 2016 and can be found at a participating comic book shop near you.

Grab your FREE copy of Bruce Lee: The Dragon Rises #1 and join in on the adventure!


Free Comic Book Day: For those who might be new to your comic book, give us a quick rundown of the story. 

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Jeff Kline: Bruce Lee never died.  And he hasn't aged.  But, he has no idea who he is, what's happened in the world in the past 40+ years, or why so many "thugs" want a piece of him.  With the help of a somewhat past-his-prime pal from the '70s --  Joe Toomey, P.I.  -- and a pair of precocious Teens harboring a secret of their own, Bruce sets out to solve the mystery of his past. Unfortunately, what he discovers is more insidious than Bruce could ever have imagined, and he soon finds himself doing battle with both an enigmatic Villain and his own limitations. BRUCE LEE:  THE DRAGON RISES is an all-ages book with plenty of fish-out-of-water comedy, genuine emotion, and -- of course -- amazing fight scenes.

Free Comic Book Day: What has been your favorite part of the book or character to tackle? 

Shannon Lee: My favorite part is always going to be the creativity of it. Breaking stories, giving notes, looking at art, working with writers and artists, incubating ideas, etc. As my first foray into the comic book world, I have also enjoyed just understanding the nuts and bolts of the process and business as well. 

Brandon McKinney: Trying to absorb the "essence" of Bruce Lee so I can better represent him in the book.  Even though he played fictional characters, he was a real person with real emotions and reactions that I want to show visually.  Fortunately the people at BLE (Bruce Lee Enterprises) and Darby Pop are helping me to do just that and I hope the readers agree!

Free Comic Book Day: What initially got you interested in comics? 

Shannon Lee: My brother used to read comics all the time so they were always laying around the house. I would pick them up and read them and I started to get into them. I even convinced my middle school teacher to let me bring one in to read to the class (it was an issue of the Incredible Hulk) and my teacher was actually impressed at the level of the writing in it. Anyway, I’ve been a long time reader. Also, I know there have been comic characters over the years that are clearly homages to my father and there have been a couple one off books here and there related to specific properties but there has never been a fully sanctioned Bruce Lee comic book and definitely not for All Ages. It just seemed that, not only was it time, but time was overdue to bring Bruce Lee to comics. I have long had a dream about my father having his own comic and about introducing him to a new generation of kids as well. 

Brandon McKinney: Believe it or not, it was Star Wars.  After "A New Hope" came out in theaters, I wanted the adventure to continue, and Marvel published a Star Wars comic book series.  It was at the corner store where I also discovered Spider-Man, Superman and the X-Men, and from then on, I was hooked.

Free Comic Book Day: What other titles would you compare to yours? “If a comic reader likes _______ , they should pick up my title"?

Jeff KlineIt’s definitely a singular title, but it’s a bit of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Power Pack, and Atomic Robo rolled into one, with a little Amelia Cole and Lumberjanes attitude thrown in.  

Free Comic Book Day: Tell fans why they should pick your book first on Free Comic Book Day! 

Shannon Lee: Because Bruce Lee! But seriously, our book is the first ever, official Bruce Lee comic book created by his family for all ages. Beyond that, our book is a fun, high energy, action packed book sprinkled with Bruce Lee’s amazing abilities and philosophies to inspire and entertain today’s young audiences. 

Brandon McKinney: Besides being free?  Well, "The Dragon Rises" Free Comic Book Day Issue contains the first half of the first issue -- 20 pages of content!  And it will also have a Behind-the-Scenes Special Feature with images and text, showing the process of how I learned to draw Bruce Lee. 

Free Comic Book Day: What is your favorite part about Free Comic Book Day?

Brandon McKinney: I like that FCBD has grown to become almost a national holiday, celebrating the amazing form of storytelling that is comics.  People from all walks of life come to their local comic store for what may be the first time, and will hopefully be introduced to something new.

Free Comic Book Day: Where do you plan to spend Free Comic Book Day? 

Shannon Lee: I’ll be splitting the day with cover artist Bernard Chang.  We’ll be at Golden Apple in Holywood, CA from 9-11AM and then at the Comic Bug’s Free Comic Book Day Comic Con event in Culver City, California from 1:30 on! 

Jeff Kline: I'm going to be a part of Jetpack Comics' FCBD extravaganza in Rochester, NH.  The store's owner, Ralph DiBernardo, really knows how to throw a party; it seems like the entire town participates, and attendees come from all over the country.

Brandon McKinney: I’ll be at Flying Colors Comics in Concord, CA, with Joe Field who dreamed up the first Free Comic Book Day way back in 2001!

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