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Sipping Sweet Tea and Carrying a Big Stick in SOUTHERN BASTARDS

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Aaron and Latour’s storytelling walks tall in October graphic novel

Earl Tubbs left Craw County, Alabama years ago, and with it bad memories and a whole world he didn’t want to come back to. His father was a former sheriff and is still a legendary figure in Craw. In SOUTHERN BASTARDS, a new Image Comics graphic novel by Jason Aaron and Jason Latour, Earl returns to reckon with his past and — even though he never wanted it — perhaps shape Craw County’s future. The first volume, HERE WAS A MAN, will be in stores in October

After a run-in with the violent Coach Boss, who runs the county and has the sheriff’s department in his grip, Earl faces a choice: Will he try to be the reluctant savior of Craw County, following in his father’s footsteps, or will he leave again and never look back? If he’s going to take on the rot at the heart of this small town, Earl is going to need to carry a big stick.

Creators Latour and Aaron have infused SOUTHERN BASTARDS with a sometimes uncomfortable authenticity that can only come from creators with deep ties to the South.

Latour, who has ties to rural North Carolina, spoke about his approach to the stylized characters and evocative colors SOUTHERN BASTARDS’ art in an L.A. Times Hero Complex interview. “Even though this is a very real-world story, it’s the type of thing I think would be hindered by strict realism, largely because for me the book is as much about how the story and ‘The South’ feel as anything,” said Latour. “So generally I concentrate my focus on tone and emotion, being more graphic and representative of the feelings or thoughts I want the colors to imply.”

Aaron, who is originally from Alabama, described how his background influences his writing in an interview with USA Today. “I’m able to write about the things I love and the things I hate about the South,” he said. “On the one hand, we want it to be a very smart look at the South but also a book about big dumb rednecks. We’re trying to do both of those at the same time so it’s dark and it’s funny and it’s real and even a little bit of the supernatural involved at times.”

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SOUTHERN BASTARDS VOLUME ONE: HERE WAS A MAN will be in comic book stores on October 1 and in bookstores on October 14. It is available for pre-order now and is specially priced at $9.99.

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