Crowdwatch spotlights new and notable crowdfunded comics projects that are worthy of attention—or support. This week, the life of Jack Kirby on stage, Strong Female Protagonist in print, A disembodied Mexican leg, a luminous Italian comic, two anthologies, and the return of Footprints.

King Kirby, a play by Crystal Skillman and Fred Van Lente
by Fred Van Lente and Crystal Skillman

Goal: $9,500
Pledged as of 5/20: $3,857
End date: Friday, June 20, 2014

As the co-creator of Captain America, the Fantastic Four, the New Gods, and a host of other popular characters, Jack "King" Kirby is widely credited with defining the superhero genre. Jack led a remarkable life, one filled with many triumphs, but also its share of tragedy. Now, for the first time, his story is making its way to the stage with "King Kirby," a play which examines the life and legacy of the "King of Comics."

"King Kirby" is written by husband-and-wife Fred Van Lente and Crystal Skillman, directed by John Hurley, and stars Steven Rattazzi, Amy Lee Pearsall, Joe Mathers, Nat Cassidy, and Timothy McCown Reynolds. It will make its debut on June 20 at the Brick Theater during its 2014 Comic Book Theatre Festival (a full schedule can be found here). Funding will go towards the show's production, space, and contributors.

Strong Female Protagonist: Book One
by Molly Ostertag and Brennan Lee Mulligan

Goal: $8,000
Pledged as of 5/20: $6,649
End date: Thursday, June 19, 2014

Once she began attending college, Alison Green left behind her life as the teenaged superhero Mega Girl. Now she's just trying to live as a normal, middle-class American undergrad, albeit one with a passion for social justice. However, trouble from her past continues to find her, adding more stress to her already busy life.

Strong Female Protagonist is a webcomic created by Brennan Lee Mulligan and Molly Ostertag and updated twice a week since it began in 2012. In that time it's drawn praise for its wide appeal and relatable issues, and has amassed a sizable following. The completed book will collect the first four chapters (which can be read here) in a 220-page, black and white paperback with a color cover. Estimated delivery date is October, 2014.

by Emanuele Tenderini and Linda Cavallini

Goal: €44,000
Pledged as of 5/20: €23,534
End date: Saturday, May 31, 2013

Miriam and Kite are transported to Lumina, a parallel world of light and the cradle of creation in the universe. They become drawn into a conflict between two dueling deities, one of which imbued its power into the children before it was killed by the other. Shortly after arriving, however, Miriam is captured and it's up to Kite to navigate the mysterious and dazzling new world and find her.

Lùmina is a new sci-fi/fantasy graphic novel from Italian creators Emanuele Tenderini and Linda Cavallini which utilizes innovative production and printing techniques for an unique reading experience on both screen and page. The final graphic novel will be available in Italian, French, and English, and is expected to arrive in February, 2015.

The Leg: The Remarkable Reappearance of Santa Anna's Disembodied Limb
by Van Jensen and Jose Pimienta

Goal: $10,000
Pledged as of 5/20: $8,466
End date: Wednesday, June 4, 2014

For nearly 50 years, no one knew what became of deposed Mexican President Santa Anna's missing leg after it was exhumed during a rebellion in the 1880s. But now it's back and on a mission to save Mexico and restore it's owner's legacy.

Years in the making, The Leg is an original graphic novel by Van Jensen (Green Lantern, Pinocchio, Vampire Slayer), Jose Pimienta, Matthew Petz, and J. Chris Campbell based on one of history's most bizarre mysteries. The 180-page, full-color book has already been finished and just needs to be printed and distributed. Estimated delivery date is June, 2014. To download a preview of the first chapter, click here.

Footprints: Bad Luck Charm
by Joey Esposito and Johnathan Moore

Goal: $6,500
Pledged as of 5/20: $4,335
End date: Sunday, June 1, 2014

After a successful campaign in 2011 for a four-issue miniseries, creators Joey Esposito and Johnathan Moore are back with a new one-shot, Footprints: Bad Luck Charm. Returning are Bigfoot, Jersey Devil, Nessy, and Choop, private eyes based on the popular urban legends.

The new comic contains two stories, a prequel which takes place in the 1960s, and a sequel wherein Foot and crew search for the Lizard Man in South Carolina. The finished book will be 24 pages in full-color. Estimated delivery date is August, 2014.

Speculative Relationships: A Sci-fi Romance Comics Anthology
By Tyrell Cannon, various

Goal: $9,000
Pledged as of 5/20: $4,952
End date: Wednesday, June 4, 2014

In the spirit of the popular romance comics of the mid-20th century, Speculative Relationships collects a series of space-themed love stories by a group of dedicated independent artists.

Contributors include Mike Manomivibul ("Made 2 Be 2gether," who also provides the cover art), Isabella Rotman ("The Dream Program"), Daniel Warren Johnson ("The Purest Form"), Rinko Endo ("The Same Moon"), Scott Kroll ("This Thing Called Love" and "Four Out of Five"), and editor Tyrell Cannon ("Corridor C" and "Burning Heart"). The finished book will be 80 pages in black and white with a color cover. Estimated delivery date is July, 2014.

Horizon Anthology
By Jeremy Lawson, various

Goal: $7,000
Pledged as of 5/20: $6,262
End date: Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Horizon plays off the concept of what happens after "Happily Ever After," with a series of stories that turn the fantasy genre on its head. The book brings together a diverse group of creators, each with their own unique style of storytelling.

Contributors include Adam Del Re, Ally Shwed, Angael Davis/Patricia Daguisan, Athena Currier, Bryant LaMare, David Stoll, Ian McGinty, Jen Hickman, Jeremy Lawson, Jorge Corona, Laura Neubert, Morgan Beem, Moses Nester, Nicky Soh, and Sarah Stern. Many of the artists had work featured in past successful projects such as Playlist Anthology and Tip Jar Sketchbook. The final book will be 144 pages in full-color. Estimated delivery date is September, 2014.

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