I finished the revised Chapter 3 cover, and I’m delighted with the outcome!

This artwork, created using acrylic paint, features Zatswan with the Ataraxian cast members. I contemplated making this the main cover of the Zatswan: Multiversal Guardian book because it showcases large images of Zatswan and Princess Allecka Xona, but I decided the Chapter 1 cover is a better overall representation of the story.

This marks a significant milestone as it is the beginning of the Chapter 3 corrections. Chapter 3 stands as the final section scheduled for revisions, bringing us near the conclusion of this entire redrawing phase. I’m thrilled because once these revisions are completed, the next era for Zatswan will be upon us! The comic series will surge forward with brand-new narratives. I’m itching to start drawing book two of the Zatswan saga, Stardust Romantique, but I know it’s best to get the editing on Multiversal Guardian done before that. Patience, patience …

In other news, I’ve created quick artwork for a Cyborg reboot.

Cyborg and Sarah Simms.

As discussed last update, many of Cyborg’s fans express dissatisfaction with certain aspects of the character, and I don’t believe DC Comics will deliver products that truly meet their expectations. Well, unless fans can move DC Comics to let me officially go ahead with my reboot, which I don’t at all expect to happen. Regardless, I do enjoy the prospect of putting out better Cyborg comics than big DC Comics.

Though I haven’t been a fan of the character, I decided to reimagine him in a version that I think would be cool, which addresses several problems I have with him. I removed the faceplate because I found it unattractive. The best route for Cyborg to truly succeed on his own is to make him a more attractive leading man. An ugly robot is fine for filling out an ensemble of quirky characters, but when said ugly robot isn’t finding much success as a lead, then I think it is okay to make adjustments as long as the essence of the character isn’t destroyed in the process.

Instead of a full-blown faceplate, the character’s eye can glow red when used for scanning. In fact, I restored many of his body parts. He is now only missing his forearms and lower legs, which I have no intention of restoring. While some fans advocate for Cyborg to regenerate body parts through nanotechnology, I believe that enabling this ability would detract significantly from the fundamentals of the character.

Over the years, Cyborg has (for some reason) become more and more robotic. His design strayed too far from the George Perez original. Mine brings many of the classic elements back but with alterations. Another issue with all the designs is the lack of colors, resulting in a dull appearance. I made subtle adjustments to address this. These additions not only enhance the character’s aesthetic but would also appeal to a younger audience. After all, children are often drawn to bright colors. I also find Cyborg’s other iterations to be overly intricate. I’ve opted for a simplified appearance, which gives a better aesthetic and makes it more accessible for younger fans to draw.

The character Sarah Simms (also shown in the image above) will play a significant role in my reboot. She was sidelined in the DC Universe and substituted by another Black Sarah (Sarah Charles) possibly due to toxic anti-miscegenation sentiments. The New Teen Titans creator, Marv Wolfman, was developing an interracial romance between Cyborg and Sarah Simms, but a “Black leader” wrote letters to DC Comics discouraging the pairing.

Some Black individuals have expressed frustration with the recurring theme of Black heroes being paired with White women. That pairing is hardly a universal occurrence, it’s just that when it does happen, it tends to provoke strong reactions from certain people. It’s often not acknowledged that there’s an audience valuing and cherishing depictions of interracial relationships in media. They should have the same representation and content that speaks to their experiences and preferences, just like any other audience. Personally, it’s disheartening to witness the potential for a 40-year-plus interracial relationship within DC Comics, involving original characters, being extinguished due to some people’s insecurities or prejudices.

In light of these considerations, Sarah Simms will be reintroduced as Cyborg’s love interest, as originally intended by Marv Wolfman. They will form a committed romantic relationship, complete with the sexual component. It’s important to clarify that this isn’t an attack on monoracial Black relationships. However, those seeking such relationships in fiction (or otherwise) do not need to disparage or undermine interracial relationships to get them.

I’m considering maintaining Cyborg’s connection with his Motherbox, as established during the New 52 phase of DC Comics. It offers great potential for him as a cosmic interdimensional hero—an aspect Zatswan readers know I adore. However, I have reservations. For Cyborg to truly stand out, he should develop independently from other main characters in the DC Universe. On the flip side, the interconnected nature of hero universes is something that can be taken advantage of. There are merits and drawbacks to both sides. While I’m inclined to retain the Motherbox connection, reaching a definitive decision will require further consideration. This leads to the other members of the Titans. None of them will be featured because I want Cyborg to shine as an individual hero in his own world.

There are still several aspects to consider, but this reboot idea has been an enjoyable distraction. I’ll probably continue sharing updates about it. If this is something you’d like to see more of, feel free to let me know. Also, if this version of Cyborg resonates with you, don’t hesitate to share your interest with DC.

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