In addition to being part of the upcoming Hasbro cinematic universe, classic '80s franchise "M.A.S.K." is set to return to comics thanks to IDW Publishing. Announced via USA Today, the new series from writer Brandon Easton and artist Tony Vargas will tell the origin story for this new, "Fast and Furious"-style take on "M.A.S.K."
Easton promises that the series won't merely retell the conflict between Matt Trakker's M.A.S.K. (Mobile Armored Strike Kommand) and Miles Mayhem's V.E.N.O.M. (Vicious Evil Network of Mayhem).
"This is a M.A.S.K. for the 21st century with a diverse team of specialists who are chosen for a top-secret program with a painful learning curve," said Easton. "Ultimately, each participant will have to choose a side -- and no matter which side they choose, the consequences will be great."
Easton describes the aforementioned Matt Trakker as equal parts Elon Musk and Idris Elba -- "an engineering genius and intellectual bad boy who has been in search of stability since the loss of his father at an early age." The evil Miles "Mayhem" Manheim will also be a competent villain and master manipulator. "V.E.N.O.M. will be a true force," said Easton. "They don't lose often nor do they accept defeat with grace."
While the series will bring the property into the 21st century, Vargas says that "color combinations and vital identifiable components" of the characters will remain consistent with their '80s counterparts. This includes updating the Camaro/jet Thunderhawk and motorcycle/helicopter Condor.
"We won't be going too grim, gritty or dark," said Easton. "However you're not going to see a teenage kid riding a cowardly robot across the battlefield."
The appeal of the franchise remains the same, though, as Easton described. "Imagine if your car, motorcycle, SUV or yacht could change into a more powerful vehicle complete with state-of-the-art weapons systems and other cutting-edge technology. The possibilities are as fun as they are disastrous."