The legend of the Monster Slayer Twins is an important part of the Navajo creation story. And soon, an adaptation of the story will be gracing the shelves of comic book stores around the Four Corners.
“The Heroes” is the work of Moab, Utah-based writer and artist Keith Jim. It is his first published comic book, and the official launch of the title will take place Oct. 27 at Farmington’s Tales of Tomorrow.
“As long as I can remember as a kid, I had a comic book with me, and that’s led me all the way to here,” Jim said.
Adapting the legend into a comic book is Jim’s way of passing it on, he said. Jim was raised in Rock Point, Arizona, and his grandfather would tell him the story, he said.
“My main goal is to actually get it out there and let the younger generation get a hold of this story,” he said. “It’s a really awesome story. I love it. My grandfather, he told me this story every night, and I loved it so much that I think it’s something we should keep and keep passing it down.”
The comic, which is being co-written by Michael Fromm, is an origin story, Jim said. It starts long before colonizers came, during a time when the world was inhabited by monsters that killed people. Changing Woman lived among them and had two boys: Monster Slayer and Born for Water. They got tired of the way things were and visited their father, the Sun, who gave them weapons with which to slay the monsters.
Tales of Tomorrow owner Steve Clark compares Jim’s art to that of Michael Turner, an artist known for creating comics such as “Witchblade” and “Fathom.”
“I like the way he draws women – really strong and realistic,” said Ren Harris, who also runs the comic book shop.
The launch for “The Heroes” is the first such event that Tales of Tomorrow has hosted. The store is always looking to nurture local artists and writers, Clark said. The launch will coincide with Halloween ComicFest, an event during which free comics will be given out and costumed fans can win prizes.
After the launch, the next stop for “The Heroes” is Indigenous Comic Con, which will take place Nov. 2-4 in Albuquerque, Jim said. He then hopes to get the comic into shops in places such as Santa Fe and Flagstaff, Arizona. They can also be found through his Facebook page.