Peter Milligan and Brett Parson’s NEW ROMANCER is a romantic comedy with sci-fi undertones. It tells the somewhat sordid story of Lexy Ryan, a lovelorn computer programmer working for a soon-to-be-shut-down dating website who inadvertently finds herself getting caught up with a newly revived Lord Byron and other legendary romantics…some of whom take the love-and-war thing a little too literally.
It’s a complex look at the intersection of modern love and classic romance that might not work were it not for the playful, exuberant art of Parson and the eccentric collection of characters—drawn from all throughout time—that his art brings to colorful life.
Below, Parson shares a few character sketches from the series, and offers his thoughts on them.
I wanted Lexy to be cute, but she's had a weird life with no friends, raised by her eccentric scientist father in Pittsburgh or who knows where. So she's kind of a "geeky-tomboy-girl-next-door" cute, but hopefully without being too cliché. She has a really strong personality, and it keeps growing and getting more interesting as the story goes along. She's been so much fun to draw!
Lord Byron and Casanova were loosely based on Morrissey and Adam Ant. From there they each grew their own style and look. Although the story takes place in modern day Silicon Valley, there’s still a subtle '80s vibe hidden deep at the heart of the story. I wanted the world, the technology and the characters to let that vibe out a little bit.
Each of the characters is exaggerated and weird in their own way. I feel like since it’s a comic and they can't move or talk, it’s important for their personalities to shine through in their appearances and expressions. I hate it when characters are flat or recycled. So I try my best to make everyone as unique and individual as possible. However, they're all constantly changing the more I get to draw them and discover who they are. I think that's been my favorite part of working on the series—watching the cast develop and grow with each issue.