Tag Archives: The Horsemen


As Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at the University of California at Riverside (UCR), John Jennings examines the visual culture of race in various media forms including film, illustrated fiction, and comics and graphic novels. He is also the director of Abrams ComicArts imprint Megascope, which publishes graphic novels focused on the experiences of people of color.   His research interests include the visual culture of Hip Hop, Afrofuturism and politics, Visual Literacy, Horror, and the EthnoGothic, and Speculative Design and its applications to visual rhetoric.

Stories are the first technology and humans live in metaphor. It’s through our myths, our folklore, our culture and our religion that we build an understanding of the world. Long before any type of mediation or distortion of those stories there was the human voice; the power of oral  tradition. There was nothing “lost in translation” because the story, the meaning, the poetry, and the narrative were incarnated in the griot.

The griot is the warrior poet; dedicated to telling the stories that bind us together as a people. It’s for that reason, I feel that the company that Jiba Molei Anderson started two decades ago was aptly named. Griot Enterprises is a shining example of what’s possible when the spoken word becomes the actual and one of those primary actualizations is the amazing comic book series: The Horsemen.

The Catalyst flips the script!

Jiba, like myself, was raised on the enticing and exciting offerings of what was becoming American popular culture. A child of the African Diaspora growing up in the Motor City: Detroit, Michigan, Jiba was surrounded by positive images and ideas around Black stories, music, literature and philosophy. So when he was pursuing his Masters of Fine Arts degree at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, it only made sense that he would fuse his love for the medium of comics and graphic design into a beautifully radical story world.

If comics are our “modern mythology”, then why do we only show a small sliver of culture in that space? Despite our love for characters like Superman, Thor, Hercules, Captain Marvel, and Wonder Woman they only show so much. The African Diaspora is an amazing spectrum of gods, spirits, and stories that not only translate well into super hero comics but also educate the masses about the rich history of Africa and the diversity of Black identities in the world.

The Trickster gives no fu%ks!

Imagine a team like The Justice League of America, The Avengers or The Uncanny X-Men, but instead of beloved but well-trod paths of adventures focused on primary white protagonists, you get a coalition of characters based on the pantheon of Yoruba gods and goddesses that have chosen “horses” to possess in order to save the world from itself. I’d been researching Voudou when I came across Jiba’s work I had just finished reading  the book The Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti by dancer Maya Deren. So, the notion of being “ridden” by ancestral spirits was fresh in my head. I was immediately sucked into the world just by that wonderful connection. 

Jiba’s concept, character design and story arc was truly compelling from day one and now we’re here with The Horsemen being a cornerstone of the Black Age of Comics and the Black Comix Movement! With an unmistakable style and grace, Jiba has taken the power and culture of the Diaspora and reified it into a legendary story that not only pays homage to the ancestors but also celebrates the love for comics culture in ways that have never been explored before. Combining impressive design with clear and engaging storytelling, The Horsemen is a vital part of the global Black Speculative Arts Movement, a part of culturally diverse comics culture, and I am very glad that this book is out there educating the masses.

So please pour some libations and give thanks to this groundbreaking series! Happy 20th anniversary, Jiba, and thanks so much for showing us how to build new worlds through our own culture!


The Mermaid reveals her secrets!

With 41% funded, we’re officially at the halfway point in our campaign thanks to our 38 backers to date. Help us get to the 50% line this week when you pre-order The Horsemen: Birth of the Spark today!


Check out this review of The Horsemen from Wingless Entertainment president Brian J. Lambert!

The Avenger is charged!

Jiba Molei Anderson’s The Horsemen is classified as a superhero comic but make no mistake what we witness is the rebirth of gods.

For those that are new to these deities, while they are given a new treatment, they are well within the constraints of their traditional mythology. Not only that, but Anderson also alludes to their deep history in an easily accessible way.

The Creator triumphant!

The tales weaved before us have multiple layers but they never seem to get bogged down. We enter the world of our story after events in the past have changed the course of history. Evil forces have controlled the world after the war that saw our Horsemen leave the first time.

Their resurgence means that we are at a crossroads. There’s a duality to the story that feels real. The gods are fighting for peace, which itself is a dichotomy. The ruling class attempts to keep the status quo, they fight the prophecy that is born from it. It’s interesting to see gods with subtle gradations of human nature.

The Architect destroys to build!

Another piece of this puzzle that Anderson nails is the shifting narrative. It’s used in movies to great effect and usually less so in comics. But there are jumps from character to character as they are all interviewed and spin one overall story. While doing so, it doesn’t get jumbled or forgotten.

Anderson’s love of music permeates his stories and there’s a rhythm to the tale that easily translated through his words. As the story progresses, we also see how the god-like power of our protagonists ripples throughout other lives. I don’t want to give too much away, but I will say that heavy is the head the wears the crown.

The Light shines!

Anderson’s art is bold and powerful like the characters it represents. There are strong lines and the intensity of the battles (both mental and physical) is translated through the illustrations. You can tell this is a project that Anderson holds near to his heart, not just because of the time he’s dedicated crafting it, but also because of the painstaking way the details are rendered and the story is told.

Jiba Molei Anderson’s Horsemen is a story that opens the door to mythology and comics in a way that’s only been seen recently with the resurgence of Thor from Marvel Comics. Anderson’s fresh and true to culture take on The Horsemen is a breath of fresh air.

35 Backers. 37% funded. Help us get to 50 backers this week when you pre-order The Horsemen: Birth of the Spark today!


“The gods have chosen them to protect humanity from itself…whether humanity wants them to or not. They combat those who control the fate of the planet. Through their actions, the world would never be the same.”

Created by Jiba Molei Anderson, The Horsemen is the saga of seven ordinary people thrust into extraordinary circumstances, as the gods of ancient Africa possess them.

It all began with a dream…

“When the first issue dropped in 2002, I was mad nervous. I didn’t know how this would be received. We sold over 3500 copies through Diamond (which would be major numbers today, still managed to be in Diamond’s top 300 for the month).

The official debut was Motor City Comic Con. That would be the true test. That weekend, we sold out of the box we brought with us to the con by Saturday. I had to go back to my mom’s crib in  to pick up another box and we almost sold through that one by Sunday.

The biggest proof of concept came when I was trying to sell a copy to someone who already grabbed it at his LCS. He was not my target audience, but said it was the best book he had read that week.

I also met, and shook, Billy Dee Williams hand that weekend…”

– Jiba Molei Anderson

With the release of the Divine Intervention first issue in 2002, The Horsemen became a pioneer of the Afrofuturism movement in comics by using the Orishas as the basis for the superhero mythology.

20 years of The New Mythology… It’s a celebration!

The groundbreaking series celebrates its 20th anniversary with The Horsemen: Birth of the Spark!

“In 1995, I moved to Chicago and received my MFA in Visual Communication from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. It was at SAIC when I understood that the creation of comic books were an exercise in graphic design with script, illustration, layout, color story, etc. all components of the overall product.

My thesis project was going to be a book on the history of African American superheroes and linking them with the Orishas of the Yoruba faith as it were one of the religions that survived the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade through “hiding in plain sight” as it were.

This thesis project was the birth, and first appearance, of The Horsemen…”

– Jiba Molei Anderson

Written and Illustrated by Jiba Molei Anderson, The Horsemen: Birth of the Spark is an 80-page, 8.5″ X 11″ “Treasury-sized” volume, which continues the New Mythology saga with four stories filled with metaphysical intrigue, psychedelic locales, and pure AfroFantastic action!

The first Orisha makes her entrance and commands your respect.

The Elder Champions of Creation face their greatest challenge in The Consonance: Revelations!

The Claw of Akebulan. The Sage of Gaia. Daughters of the Lion and the Grace. Mothers to the Scions of the Avenger.

Discover the truth behind the emergence of the Orisha in The First Iteration!

The bill comes due as The Horsemen come face to face with humanity’s spiritual rot.

The Horsemen battle humanity’s psychic decay in the Birth of the Spark!

Witness a reinterpretation of the very first Horsemen story published in the now-legendary 1999 Griot Preview Book by The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny variant cover artist Aries Art!

Ogun illustrated by Black Comix legend Shawn Allyene.

The Horsemen: Birth of the Spark will also feature three pin-ups by indie comics legend Shawn Alleyne, articles by Wingless Entertainment founder Brian J. Lambert & scholar Lisa Kottas with a foreword by the co-architect of the Black Comix movement, John Jennings (Kindred, Parable of the Sower, Black Kirby) plus plenty of bonus materials celebrating this momentous milestone!

20 years ago, the world was introduced to The Horsemen and a world filled wonder, mystery, and grandeur told through a Pan-African lens. In doing so, The Horsemen helped change the climate in the comic book industry. Come and help us raise a glass and give cheers by entering The New Mythology on June 6, 2022!

The Horsemen: Birth of the Spark Kickstarter


The Horsemen is the culmination of the journey to find my voice as an artist and storyteller.

I’ve been a student of mythology since first seeing Clash of the Titans in 1981. I read the Greek myths, the Norse myths, Egyptians and so on. Around the age of 16, I started studying the myths and folktales of Africa and decided that I wanted to create a series of illustrations based on the gods and goddesses of various regions.

The conflict between the gods of myth was established at the beginning…

I created a concept called The Race in 1993. The Race were the descendants of the heroes and demigods of mythology. These descendants had a recessive gene that, when activated through either proximity or severe trauma, would gain super powers. They were pawns in a war between two gods, Exodus and Othello. Whosever side they joined would tip the scales of the war in either god’s favor.

Also during that time, I created another concept called Jom & Aida based on not only African mythology and African cinema, but also the opera Aida as performed by Leontyne Price, which was the story of an Egyptian princess. I wanted to use the idea of death and rebirth as the central theme.

These concepts never came together…

…Until 1997.

The children of gods and monsters. B/W vs. the Color art for the “Birth of a Nation” chapter in The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny

I was developing my graduate thesis at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; writing, designing, and illustrating a book on the history of African American super heroes and their connection to the gods and goddesses of Africa. I had taken a class on Afro-Caribbean art and rituals, which exposed me to religions like Vodou, Santeria, and Candomblé. It also exposed me to the African root faith systems of these religions, most notably the Ifa faith of Nigeria.

Finally! This was my chance to do those African god illustrations I had always wanted to create! The book was going to be called The New Mythology. I used the names of seven Yoruba gods, the Orishas, and their aspects as the chapter titles for the book. But when I got around to actually developing my depiction of the Orisha, I realized that I couldn’t illustrate them in traditional African dress.

It was a book about super heroes and the Orishas had to be illustrated as such. I delved into creating these super heroic interpretations of these gods. Jack Kirby’s reimagining of Norse mythology was my inspiration. As the thesis took shape, I realized that I did not want to let these designs exist only for a thesis only a few people would see in a graduate exhibition and nothing else. These characters would become my official entry into the comic book industry.

Ogun, the Lord of the Forge! B/W vs. the Color art for the “One Day War” chapter in The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny

But, what do I call them?

I remembered the title of a book that I had to read for the Afro Caribbean Art and Ritual class; The Divine Horsemen by Maya Deren. I dropped the “Divine” and the rest, they say, is history. As for the book’s premise, thank DJ Krush. On the title track of his album, Meiso, Black Thought of the mighty Roots Crew said these fateful words:

“Who controls the eight immortals, but the number seven, in this continual maze?”

The eight immortals became the Deitis, with Exodus and Othello among them. The Race (now called The Manifest thanks to Mark of the Cloven writer Jude W. Mire), Jom, and Aida folded into this new universe, this New Mythology.

The New Mythology Saga. Retailers and readers can grab the entire series for their bookshelves when they donate to campaign!

66 backers. 78% funded. With only 7 days left in our campaign, we are a mere $1050.00 from reaching our goal. Help The Horsemen reach their Manifest Destiny by donating to our Kickstarter today!




Since the beginning of this campaign, The Horsemen creator Jiba Molei Anderson has been getting a lot of “likes” for the artwork on social media. This may be the largest number of “likes” for his art that he’s received in recent years.

Thank you. Sincerely. Thank you for the warm reception.

But you know what would really show that you like the art, and the concept, of The Horsemen? If you pledged to the Kickstarter!

Look at what you’ll get when we exceed our goal!

For as little as a $10 pledge, you help ensure that the heroes YOU want to see reach the public. And, if we exceed our $5000.00 goal, all backers receive TWO 24” X 30” print-ready PDFs featuring the heroes and villains of The Horsemen Universe.

You know what else you’ll get? Wait for it…

Five digital comics from the members of The Blaxis! That’s over 160 pages of content for only $10.00!

Likes are great, but backing this campaign shows real love. So help The Horsemen reach their Manifest Destiny by backing our Kickstarter campaign today!



I was asked this question recently:

“How does it feel to be an Afrofuturism pioneer in the comics space”?

It feels a little weird honestly. When I created The Horsemen way back in 1997, I was looking to fill a hole and make my mark in the comic book industry. I was inspired by the pioneers of the Black Age of Comics in the 90s. Milestone Media, Brotherman and Tribe showed me the value in carving a space that didn’t really exist before. It just so happened that I was influenced by science fiction, politics and mythology. It just so happened that I wanted to infuse the world I was creating with a West African / African American sensibility.

The Consonance. The Horsemen, The Manifest. Three generations of heroes sharing one destiny…

The Horsemen reflects my worldview. I wanted to show a very modern Africa, I was extremely tired of the “famine and underdeveloped” narrative that the continent is saddled with in this country. I also wanted to address the problems that Post-Colonialism left behind on the continent as well.

I wanted the world of The Horsemen to feel real, free from the mythology of Afrocentrism and its adherence to Egyptology.

I’ve always been a fan of alternate dimensions and, mythology is great tool in exploring that concept. Unlike the Marvel Universe, which treats the gods of myth as aliens from other planets, I prefer to think of mythological beings as realized potential if certain roads were traveled as opposed to others. In the broadest of strokes, you could link my work to Jonathan Hickman (East of West) or Rick Reminder (Black Science) even though The Horsemen precede both of those titles by a good number of years.

The Horsemen was Afrofuturism before the term was coined.

The Hordes of Ragnarök, The Deitis, and The Cloven. They are set on ruling the world… Or bring about its destruction.

The word Afrofuturism didn’t really enter my radar until 2005 though it had been around since 1995 or so. I was just doing my thing. I even tried to separate what I was doing from what I thought was a certain aesthetic. Eventually, I had to admit to myself that I was an Afrofuturist, which didn’t happen until, like, 2014. So, even though one could call me a “pioneer,” it’s still taking some time for me to accept that appellation…

But I’m getting used to it.

Are you a Defender of Creation? Or do you pledge you allegiance to the Agents of Oblivion? If we exceed our initial goal and raise $6000.00, all backers will receive these 24” X 30” print-ready PDFs featuring the heroes and villains of the Horsemen Universe. We’re 35% funded with 16 days left in our campaign. help The Horsemen reach their Manifest Destiny by pledging to our Kickstarter today!



“The gods have chosen them to protect humanity from itself…whether humanity wants them to or not. They combat those who control the fate of the planet. Through their actions, the world would never be the same.”

The New Mythology saga

Created by Jiba Molei Anderson, The Horsemen is the saga of seven ordinary people thrust into extraordinary circumstances, as the gods of ancient Africa possess them.

With the release of the Divine Intervention first issue in 2002, The Horsemen became a pioneer of the Afrofuturism movement in comics by using the Orishas as the basis for the superhero mythology.

 “I wanted to work with a different faith system, a system that when The Horsemen was created, no one, I mean no one, was thinking of.  No one was thinking of using the Orishas as a launch point for a comic book world at that time.”

– Jiba Molei Anderson

The Horsemen would go on to become a critical success and has generated a cult following. Its fan base would include Hollywood talents such as Tony Todd (Candyman, Star Trek DS9) and Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings, Stranger Things) and comic book royalty like the late Dwayne McDuffie (Justice League Unlimited, Milestone Media).

Also, The Horsemen has made an educational and historical impact being included in a long-running exhibition at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art as a small example.

The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny (standard cover)

The next installment of The New Mythology, The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny is a 64-page journey of three tales that continues to chronicle the past, present, and future of the Horsemen Universe!

Ogun: Season of Ice (written by Kofi Malik Boone)

Written by Kofi Malik Boone, Ogun: Season of Ice tells an early tale of the Master of Iron as he defends a newly – freed people from the wrath of the sinister Mbwari!

The Horsemen: The One Day War

Witness the psychic death of a nation’s mythic identity as The One Day War tells the story of what happens to those who choose violence against The Horsemen!

The Manifest: Birth of a Nation

In Birth Of A Nation, a new race rises from the ashes of an apocalypse. They are not Orisha nor are they Deitis. They are the Manifest and they are all that stand between Creation and the forces of Ragnarök!

Géroux Noél-maxence Aurèle. Kenjji Jumanne-Marshall. Sean Damien Hill. These are the three premiere artists in the Black Comix community, along with series creator Jiba Molei Anderson, who will be providing exclusive variant covers for this Kickstarter. Check out this cover from the good Mister Hill to show you how we do things!

Kenjji Jumanne-Marshall (WitchDoctor, Teen Wolf) lends his skills to creating a cover for The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny!
Rising star and Mega Universe architect Géroux Noél-maxence Aurèle AKA Neon Pen will grace us with a cover as well!
The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny variant cover by Sean Damien Hill (The Hated, The Crossing, Luke Cage)!
This variant cover by Jiba Molei Anderson will also be Griot Enterprises’ first NFT available in the “Consonance” tier of rewards!

Check out some of the good will the book has generated over the years:

“The characters of Shango, Eshu, Ogun, Oya, Oshun, Yemaya and Obatala are beautifully drawn and characterized according to their personas in the Ifa pantheon. The scenes featuring enforcers of divine will is exciting and action filled, with little dialogue on their part which adds a welcome bit of mystery to them.”

– Ra’Chaun Rogers

Griot Enterprises is a proud member of the Blaxis. All retailer rewards will receive a poster featuring members of the New Standard in comics!

“The Horsemen series is a slow burn. It’s something to be enjoyed over time as a true epic should.”

– Brian Wycoff

“Anderson’s tale however is no superhero story created with the goal to ‘merely’ entertain his readers but to challenge them to a battle. If one engages in Anderson’s battle and in turn recognizes The Horsemen’s Hip-Hop aesthetics, the ‘mere’ superhero comic unfolds a variety of layers of meaning.”

– Lisa Kottas

With Manifest Destiny, our goal is to take The Horsemen to the next level from cult classic to wide audience hit. Come along for the ride when the Kickstarter campaign for The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny, written and illustrated by Jiba Molei Anderson (with Kofi Malik Boone), and become a part of The New Mythology on August 17!



4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape is an anthology series that records the living history of #BlackComix, past, present and future. Here is the second in a series highlighting the Visual MCs and Literary DJs who decided to grab the mic!

bloo12 by Blossom Blair

Meet the cover artist for Mass Appeal: Vol. 07 in the 4 Pages 16 Bars anthology series!

Blossom Blair is an illustrator who likes painting sparkly girls. A brief introduction that belies an amazing talent, Blossom creates images of whimsy and true Black Girl Magic. Ms. Blair also happens to be the sister of 4 Pages Literary DJ Greg Anderson-Elysée, creator of Is’Nana the Were-Spider!

Justice written by Brian J. Lambert

The Angel has blessed the Cipher!

Fresh off their own successful Kickstarter, Wingless ComicsJustice will be one of the entries in 4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape Vol. 07 – Mass Appeal!

Justice is the brainchild of Brian J. Lambert, lead contributing writer at Wingless Entertainment. Brian published his first novel, Ascention- The Chrusion Saga Book 1. Brian was selected as a Reader’s Favorite Book Award Finalist in 2019 for Ascention.

He has also edited numerous independent works, including, Is’nana the Were-Spider by Greg Anderson Elysee, Akolyte, by Derek Allen, Nia Caler, by Dorphise Jean and the upcoming graphic novel, Beyond 13th, by Michael Ralph.

Shield of the Interceptor written by JayDee Rosario

Unstoppable Comics enters the Cipher!

Finding himself frustrated with the glaring lack of representation in the industry, JayDee Rosario started Unstoppable Comics in 2008 to give a space to perspectives not usually seen in mainstream comics.

Tired of stories that centered wealthy playboys and infallible gods, JayDee’s characters were inspired by folklore and the people around him. Unstoppable’s flagship title Shield of the Interceptor is loosely based on Arthurian legend and pays tribute to David Flynn, one of JayDee’s best and oldest friends who lives with acromegaly, a hormonal growth disorder.

The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny coming this fall!

But, wait… There’s more!

Griot Enterprises is proud to announce that its flagship title returns this fall with The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny!

The next installment of The New Mythology, The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny is a 64-page journey of three tales that continues to chronicle the past, present, and future of the Horsemen Universe.

Written and illustrated by Jiba Molei Anderson (with Kofi Malik Boone), the Kickstarter for The Horsemen: Manifest Destiny will begin in August and the book will be released this October. But everyone who backs the Kickstarter campaign for 4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape Vol. 07 – Mass Appeal will receive a 24-page B/W preview of Manifest Destiny absolutely FREE as a special thank you to everyone that made Volume 7 of the hottest anthology in comics a reality.

With 65 backers and 6 days left in our campaign, we are under $500.00 from our funding goal. Help us get over the finish line by donating to the 4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape Vol. 07 – Mass Appeal Kickstarter today!

4 Pages 16 Bars Kickstarter


There Are No Gatekeepers


That’s an interesting word. Let’s check Webster’s Dictionary for the definition:




• an attendant at a gate who is employed to control who goes through it.

• a person or thing that controls access to something.

“the primary-care doctor serves as the gatekeeper to specialists”

It’s the second meaning that I see some refer to when discussing the comic book industry.

The Gold Standard returns this week in your LCS

Lately, I’ve been doing  a LOT of podcasts, interviews and presentations. All of them, in one form or another, incorporate the question, “How does one get into the comic book industry?” That question is easy to answer:

Make a comic book.  

Simple answer, right? Perhaps it’s too simple an answer. There must be something more involved to the process. There’s a reason why some comics succeed and some don’t, right? There has to be. For some, there has to be some outside force that’s preventing their ascension to the top of the charts.

“Money for marketing. That’s it. We don’t have enough money for marketing. Naw, it’s because we’re not unified as one comic book company. Yeah. That’s the reason why our books don’t get the acclaim that DC or Marvel get. No wait, I got it! The reason why we’re not getting noticed is because of the industry gatekeepers! Yeah! Distribution! Marketing budgets! Lack of corporate funding! All them gatekeepers. That’s why!”

Ummm… No.

There are no gatekeepers.

The grand finale to an epic run is also hitting the stands this week…

There is nothing keeping anyone from creating, printing, distributing and marketing your comic book. There is nothing in the way of preventing said creator to find, advertise and sell to their intended audience.

Print-On-Demand (POD) printers and distributors such as Amazon, Drive Thru Comics, Ka-Blam, Barnes & Noble will not only print books as needed, but also place them for sale in their online marketplaces with no cost for set-up fees nor minimum print runs.

Independent creators don’t need to follow the success model of the “Corporate Two.” We don’t have to pay for that infrastructure to be successful.

In terms of marketing, I have found that independent comic book creators actually do MORE promotion than the “Corporate Two” from consistent posting on social media, podcasts, conventions, etc.

Regina King is about to bring this gem to the screen!

Many of us #BlackComix creators already have our own comic book companies. Many of us have our distribution streams down pat as well as promoting our products throughout social media and other venues. In addition, there is an entire network of conventions, and a growing number of Local Comic Book Stores (LCS) that are owned by and cater to the African American audience.

Independent comics are having a moment, especially #BlackComix. For example, The World of Asunda (Niobe: She Is Life) is being developed for an HBO series, Bitter Root is being developed at Legendary (directed by Regina King) and more. Hell, my book The Horsemen is part of a long-term installation in the Smithsonian.

So many independent Black creators (that apparently don’t have the budget for promotion) are making power moves that are getting noticed. You may try and write off Kickstarter, but these cats are selling in-store numbers based on the funding goals.

I am SO looking forward to having this book in my hands this summer!

So, at the end of the day, the real fantasy is that #BlackComix are languishing unheard when cats like YouNeek Studios (Malika, EXO) signed major distribution deals with Dark Horse or a Black Comix company like Advent Comics signing with Diamond Distribution to get their books into your LCS or brothers like John Jennings (Kindred) are overseeing imprints like Megascope and pushing content that the public, at large, are picking up.

Nothing holds us back. Personally, I’m not competing with DC or Marvel. Different companies, different sizes, different goals. In fact, I’m not competing with anyone but myself.

There are no gatekeepers.

So, if there are no gatekeepers, how does one garner acclaim for the book that they want to create? The answer that question is simple:

Do the work.

Books like Abbott exist because the creators did what needed to be done!

This is doing the work:

Make the product. Make sure that the product can stand shoulder to shoulder with the industry standard and make sure that your product stands out from the rest.

Figure out what success looks like for YOU, not the “Corporate Two.” You don’t have corporate dollars. You don’t have damn near 100 years of market saturation. So why try to fashion your business after a model that is, honestly, outdated?

Market your product. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a lot of money to market effectively. Again, social media has democratized the playing field. Me interacting with you, right now, is an act of marketing. But you have to know who you are as a brand to market effectively.

BE AN ACTIVE PARTICIPANT IN THE COMMUNITY. Real talk, the reason why this question pisses me off is because every who asks this question is not doing their homework. Again, y’all so focused on what the “Corporate Two” is doing, y’all haven’t really been paying attention to the network that has already been created. I see more cats bitching about Black Superman than showing love to a book like Tuskegee Heirs. There is a whole history of #BlackComix that has been present since the beginning of the industry. More cats need to read up on it.

And don’t say that the work isn’t promoted because it pops up in Facebook groups & ads, Instagram and Pinterest posts as well as Twitter feeds all day, every day.

The reason why I created the 4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape anthology series was to show that we don’t need one company to represent #BlackComix. Just like Hip Hop isn’t just Death Row or Tommy Boy or Disturbing Tha Peace, #BlackComix isn’t just Stranger Comics or Advent Comics or Griot Enterprises. It’s a culture hence the tagline “Comics Are Hip Hop.”

At the end of the day, those who complain and worry about gatekeepers, quite simply aren’t doing the work. They’re trying “game” the system and plan for success before putting pencil to paper. The rest of us are working the program and making it happen. There’s a whole community already there and it is strong. Y’all just need to pay attention… Because there are no gatekeepers.

Vol. 07 – Mass Appeal… The Cipher continues!

BTW, The Kickstarter of 4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape Vol. 07. – Mass Appeal launches in June 1. Click here to be among the first notified!



August 17 is the day that this #MeanOlLion makes his annual solar rotation. The only thing I ask for my birthday is…

Buy a Griot Enterprises product.

For example…

The Griot Enterprises Bunker Bundle

Want to read some great stories but don’t know where to begin? Then enjoy this affordable sampler of titles from Griot Enterprises! Return to the black & white format that put the company on the map with the 48-page one-shot Contrast: Blackness In White! Eshu, Navigator of the Crossroads travels the 256 Paths to recruit heroes from the dimensions of Black Comix in 4 Pages 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape presents The Union! And enter the worlds of The New Mythology with Griot’s flagship title, The Horsemen!

$5.00 for Digital, $20.75 for Print40% off the cover price!

Next up…

The New Mythology Bundle

Obatala, The Creator. Yemaya, The Protector. Oshun, The Light. Oya, The Catalyst. Shango, The Avenger. Ogun, The Architect. Eshu, The Trickster.

The Horsemen is the story of seven ordinary people thrust into extraordinary circumstances, as the gods of ancient Africa possess them. They have been chosen to protect humanity from itself…whether humanity wants them to or not.They combat those who control the fate of the planet. Through their actions, the world would never be the same. Read the groundbreaking Afrofuturistic saga from the very beginning and discover who controls the Eight Immortals but the number Seven!

$26.00 for Digital, $73.00 for PrintOver 40% off the cover price!

Oh, and what’s this?

The 4 Pages 16 Bars Bundle

The 4 Pages | 16 Bars: A Visual Mixtape trade paperback series is a celebration of where true diversity exists in this industry, a sampler for potential fans to enjoy unique intellectual properties, a showcase for existing and upcoming talent as well as a source guide for those fans to purchase these books.

Each of the artists and writers in this series bring a unique, but shared viewpoint, in the creation of their work. The comic book industry is more than DC or Marvel. The scene is more diverse than Image or Dark Horse. This is visual Jazz, Rock, Funk, Hip Hop and electronic music. This is art for the people.

$25.00 for DigitalOver 50% off the cover price!

And last, but certainly not least…

The Devil’s Due Pack

“I’m hella uncomfortable at any attempt at glorifying the “sambo” image…”
– Someone who hasn’t read the book

“I’m good on this. Consider a name change…”
– Someone who hasn’t read the book

“And this is why people don’t take Black people seriously in the world of literature…”
– Someone who hasn’t read the book

Imagine what they would say if they actually read the book?

He rose up against those who oppressed his people. Using an image meant to denigrate a race, he united a people and created a mighty nation. Now, he must rise again to save the nation he created from the corruption within.

Incendiary, triggering and revolutionary, JBD: The Devil’s Due Definitive Collection, written and created by La Morris Richmond, featuring the art of Jiba Molei Anderson, Seitu Heyden & Barton McGee is available NOW from Griot Enterprises!

$4.00 for Digital… %50 off the cover price and the full trade paperback (with extras, natch) will available in Print ($24.99) and Digital ($9.99) formats August 23!

This is Leo Season! It’s a celebration! Drink up, be merry and grab some books from Griot Enterprises to build your collection of Black Comix!