Grendel: Devil by the Deed Master’s Edition reimagines the origins of Matt Wagner’s iconic anti-hero

Writer and artist Matt Wagner is returning to the origins of his best-loved creation, the masked assassin Grendel. A new “Master’s Edition” hardcover, published by Dark Horse, expands the original ‘Devil by the Deed’ story into a full graphic novel with 120 pages of new art, coloring by Brennan Wagner, and lettering by Dave Lanphear.

You can see a selection of these pages showcasing Wagner’s striking art in the gallery below.

The Grendel saga began all the way back in 1982’s Comico Primer #2. That story marked the beginning of what would become a sprawling Grendel mythology that has spanned many different variants of the character, though Hunter Rose remains the most popular.

“It’s surprising even to me that the original Grendel storyline, which spawned so many incarnations of the character and a forty year narrative history was, in fact, only 37 pages long,” said Wagner in a statement. “So it was incredibly exciting for me to return to one of my first and most influential stories after so many years…recapturing the style and substance of the original Devil By The Deed but through the eyes and skills of a much more seasoned creator. Hunter Rose has always held a special dark spot in my creative soul and I’m thrilled that Dark Horse continues to be such an enthusiastic partner for all things GRENDEL!”  

Dark Horse’s official synopsis for the book reads:

“Matt Wagner returns to the seminal “Devil by the Deed” Hunter Rose story that started the epic, centuries-spanning Grendel saga.

In this all-new reimagining of “Devil by the Deed,” Wagner brings his decades of experience and artistry back to the famous narrative that first began his lengthy and illustrious career as a comic-book author. The original tale of the dashing and diabolical Hunter Rose was deceptively brief, considering its cultural impact. Over the years, Wagner has expanded on the story of Hunter Rose and now he weaves the most dramatic of those elements into a brand-new graphic novel. Grendel: Devil by the Deed-Master’s Edition is Matt Wagner at the height of his artistic and story-telling prowess, featuring 120 all-new story pages that will dazzle first time and longtime readers alike.”

Grendel: Devil By The Deed Master’s Edition is out now from Dark Horse Comics.

Grendel has crossed paths with Batman several times, despite the characters being published by different companies. But that’s not even scratching the surface of this list of the most unlikely comic crossovers ever.

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