In Tom Taylor’s latest multicultural tale of brilliance and whimsy, The Deep takes us to what could only be described as new depths of ageless family entertainment. Here there be monsters, science, and the normal day to day excitement that makes up a normal family life. Fitting that such a tale should begin with an issue title stated simply as “Here Be Dragons”.

 

Arted by James Brouwer, The Deep is a must have for lovers of oceanic scenescapes everywhere. Fun for the whole family, I highly recommend grabbing your copy the very day it drops, and tucking your own family in with it that very same evening.

 

I had the opportunity to correspond live across the globe with writer Tom Taylor this evening. A dear friend and awesome creator, here is the result of our playful interview transcribed merrily for all of you guys below…

 

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N – Hey, Tom! I just read The Deep and I gotta say wow, great stuff! Great to have a chance to chat with you about it as well.

 

T- Glad to hear you liked it. We’re very, very happy with it. James Brouwer makes my heart feel like rainbows.

 

N- Hahaha!! Nice. So what made you decide to write a family tale? Was it something you guys had been planning for a while or a recent inspiration?

 

T- Often ‘all ages’ stories don’t have identifiable characters for ALL ages and both sexes. We wanted to make sure that The Deep had universal appeal.

And ‘The Deep’ truly is a story about a remarkable family of aquanauts, not just one character. It’s about all of them. They all get there moments to shine.

 

N- I like that, good call. Are there any other continuing characters to be revealed in the series besides the main family that we can look forward to shaking things up?

 

T- There is a nasty, horrible woman who you will meet in chapter two but the least said about her, the better. She bugs me. She bugs Kaiko Nekton more. There is Jeffrey, the fish, although he doesn’t say much. This could be because he’s a fish… or it could be that he’s hiding something!! … it’s probably because he’s a fish. There is also one other character who will be revealed. A mysterious character. Bom Bom Bom.

 

N- Ooh!! Suspenseful!! Hahaha, love it. So how has living in Australia helped influence your tale? Any real life oceanic experience, or solely created from your minds eye in the best of ways?

 

T- I don’t think living in Australia has effected this book too much. Although we do sing that ‘our home is girt by sea’ in our National Anthem, but this just means that we are one of the few countries that know what ‘girt’ means. Yes, Australian’s grow up surrounded by the ocean, and our holidays are always spent swimming and putting our hands in rock pools to see what crabs and other incredible creatures we can annoy. However, for me, it’s the things that I HAVEN’T seen in the ocean that fascinates me. The things that NOBODY has seen…

 

N- I agree, that line in Pirates “You’re off the edge of the map now, here there be monsters” was one of my favorite adaptations of that age old map warning. So cryptic and haunting and the ocean is so vast, powerful, and dangerous, that the last thing you’d ever want to encounter is a monster. What’s your favorite maritime beastie? Any plans to include it in The Deep? And what is “girt”?

 

T- I feel like lying to you about ‘girt’… just to spread rumors. Australia is ‘girt’ by sea. Which basically means that we are surrounded by sea. But it would have been nice to tell you it meant we all lived underwater and had gills. Ah well.

My favorite maritime beastie, of those we know exist, is the Colossal squid. This creature is the very heart of why I wanted to write a book like this. The fact that here we have one of the largest creatures on Earth, and yet we’ve never even seen it in its natural habitat.

It’s wonderful to think that things like this can still exist, that this leviathan can be part of our world and yet we can’t get near it. We can’t touch it. We can’t download it. We can’t reach it with just the touch of a button. There is still wonder and mystery and magic in this world, and its embodied by the colossal squid.

 

N- Hahaha!! Well thank you for not lying about girt, I’d have thought something was “fishy” anyway though. I’ve hugged my good friend James enough that I’d have definitely noticed some gills. I like that phrase “can’t download it”. Some things are just so old it’s hard to imagine them ever being broken and categorized by us modern souls no matter how advanced our technology becomes. I think it’s important to have that, life needs mystery. Once the mystery is gone you can no longer truly call it living, it is simply existing.

Alright! Last question then! What does The Deep represent to you and why should we go out and read it?

 

T- The Deep: Here be Dragons, represents what I wish comics were more often; fun. Not bogged down by personalities, tortured pasts, shortcomings and ‘real’ life. James Brouwer and I have tried to make The Deep absolute escapism. A story full of humor, full of action and full of adventure. A story you can share with young people that will hopefully spark their love of comics. Not a safe story by any means. Young people don’t want ‘safe’. I know, I used to juggle knives and eat fire for a living. This isn’t a children’s book. This is an adult’s book which can be shown to and shared with children. It’s more like my Star Wars: Adventures stories and less like my Star Wars: Blood Ties :) More thrills less… decapitation.

We’ve also tried to make The Deep more representative. Not every family looks like the Incredibles. We haven’t made a big deal of this. We simply wanted a unique cast of heroes who aren’t FROM anywhere. Their ethnicity and countries of origin aren’t important. The sea is huge and covers the globe, and so do the Nekton family.

I’ll leave you with the words of Ant Nekton, the youngest member of family Nekton…

 

“My family are explorers.

We have been for generations.

Some argue that there is nowhere left to explore, that everything on earth that can be discovered has already been found.

They say that to truly explore we need to leave our planet.

While others look up to the stars, my family knows that there are also stars beneath us, that there are an infinite number of things that shine brightly in the darkness below.

Most of our world lies unexplored, unexplained. There are things lurking in the seas that have only ever been spoken about in myth.

My family are explorers.

We have been for generations.

We explore… The Deep.”

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Well, there you have it guys! The “88 pages of awesome” known as The Deep will be making its big debut splash on August 4th, 2011 for the “ridiculous price” of $9.95. So yeah, if you love the deep, dark mysteries of the ocean as much Tom Taylor clearly and truly does, why not follow him and Brouwer along on their latest journey?

A journey, to The Deep! – N

 

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