#02 – Crossbone by Beausephus

| November 2, 2011 | 1 Comment

CROSSBONE by BeausephusCHARACTER NAME:  Crossbone


BASIC CONCEPT : A mercenary inherits mystical metal that allows him to create amazing weapons from the “mystic metal armor” that also imbues him with the abilities of those who controlled the magic metal before him.


So, it was the early 1990s and everybody drew like Liefeld or Jim Lee.  This representation of the character “CROSSBONE” stays true to the original design of the character from 20 years ago.  Look at the twin katana hanging improbably off his back, the tatters/ribbons defying gravity and basic physics… nothing surprising.

However, this character will always have a special place in my creative history.  All of the artists/comic creators in my Middle School started making up company names and imprint titles for their various creations.  Some of the more memorable names include “Assassin-Nation” and “Uptown Tribe”.  My “company” was “Crossbone Productions” and under this imaginary banner I created sketchbooks full of interconnected superheroes and even drafted a 7 page origin of the imaginary universe all of these characters inhabited.  At the center was the character Dark Skull, who would eventually be renamed “Crossbone”.  This interconnected universe traversed the centuries and even incorporated the Age of Exploration and the Cold War… I thought it was groundbreaking stuff when I was 12.

The character Crossbone shows the visual style of the 1990s but contains clear inspiration from Hawkman and the various “grim n’ gritty” mercenary-with-a-heart-of-gold characters that littered the comic landscape.  The metal that Crossbone inherits is essentially a nod to Hawkman’s Nth Metal.  Because I wanted to create a hertiage character a la the Justice Society and Infinity, Inc. I thought it would be cool if there were centuries of warriors all using this mystic metal (I forget the exact name I came up with) and passing it down to a successor.  (Green Lantern, etc…) The twist was that even though the metal gave its bearer abilities it forced the bearer to live a century but slowly the metal  stole their soul/drained their life force.  The metal absorbed the abilities of all who used it and imbued the current possessor with all of the abilities of the centuries of “heroes” who wielded it previously.  So after centuries the current “Crossbone” had superhuman physical abilities and combat knowledge.

In retrospect, there was not much to the character beyond the history, but I thought I was crafting pure gold.  It did however, lend itself to multiple story lines all over the entirety of the interconnected superhero universe, even resulting in villains spurned/rejected by the “mystic metal.”

It’s interesting that these themes – generational heroes, titles passed down through the centuries – are all the rage with characters rebooted in modern continuity (The Immortal Iron Fist series, the current Bendis Moon Knight relaunch, Spawn…the list goes on).

“Crossbone” was the lynchpin of my adolescent comic book creations and looking back at even the flaws and shortcomings of the character I think the 12-year-old me had some pretty damn good ideas.


Category: 2011, Superhero

About the Author ()

Teacher, Playwright, Performer & Superhero Enthusiast. My first crayon drawings were of Superman and Captain America. I always wanted to draw comics but never followed that passion beyond some self-published zines and forays into early internet comics. I've worked in various aspects of graphic design and fooled around with a spray can at various stages of my life, keeping my pen busy and full of various inspirations for the doodles in the margins of my notebooks. Inheriting an iPad changed my productivity with the ability to draw, edit, color and post onto the internet via one device in the limited time I have to mess around with my doodles and drawings. My 5-year-old son is my biggest fan and the main reason for my artistic renaissance. He's the reason I'm drawing more often and the person I draw the most for. For the 30 CHARACTERS challenge this year, he is my co-conspirator and collaborator. His excitement and innocent love of superheroes and drawing has kept my inner cynic/critic at bay and we are having a blast this year making up a whole new universe of heroes, robots and monsters for the internet. -updated Oct. 2012

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  1. Love this guy’s visuals. He looks great!

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