Netflix made Millarworld its first-ever acquisition in August, and now Mark Millar has revealed the first comic franchise he will create for the online entertainment service. Six-issue fantasy series The Magic Order, written by Millar and drawn by Marvel all-star Olivier Coipel (Thor, The Avengers, The Amazing Spider-Man), is due out in spring 2018. The comic will be available in print at comic stores and other retail outlets, in addition to being available digitally.
Netflix offers the following synopsis for the series:
We live in a world where we’ve never seen a monster and these people are the reason we sleep safely in our beds. Magic meets the mob in The Magic Order, as five families of magicians sworn to protect our world for generations must battle an enemy who’s picking them off one by one. By day they live among us as our neighbors, friends and co-workers, but by night they are the sorcerers, magicians and wizards that protect us from the forces of darkness … unless the darkness gets them first.
“We wanted to make a splash with our first book for Netflix and this is it,” Millar said in a statement. “I love dark fantasy and there’s an enormous gap in the market for something like this. Netflix hiring Olivier has also made me the happiest guy alive. I’ve been after him for almost ten years so to finally have our names in the same book is an absolute honor.”
Even readers disinterested in fantasy may find something to like about The Magic Order. Speaking to EW, Millar describes The Magic Order’s concept as “more like The Sopranos than Lord of the Rings,” admitting, “Fantasy I think can be off-putting for people because it’s often missing a human angle, a realistic hook that makes it open to anyone. So my idea with The Magic Order was to take something that’s essentially about a secret order of good wizards who got rid of all the bad things hundreds of years ago, but live quietly among us now with blue-collar jobs and ordinary domestic lives. They have this secret life, but to the outside world it’s all very normal.”
In addition to putting out Millarworld comics, Netflix will work with Millar and company to develop films, TV series and kids shows based on the publisher’s ample portfolio, an arrangement that Millar says he has factored into his approach as a writer. “Millarworld was always, first and foremost, a comic book company, but since we sold to Netflix it’s obviously become something that crosses all media,” he told EW. “If something was turned into a movie, that was a lovely novelty in the past, whereas now when I’m creating stories as a member of staff, I need to keep my eye on the whole picture. We’re thinking of these as movies and TV shows, and the ones we feel would be great for comics will also appear as comic books.”
See The Magic Order’s first cover below, and our picks for the 10 best Mark Millar comics of all time here.