Gold Digger is a manga-like action/adventure/fantasy/science fiction comic book written and drawn by Fred Perry, and published by Antarctic Press. Originally appearing as a series of serialized, 4-page short story segments in the pages of Mangazine #11-14 in 1992, it featured the high-adventure hijinks of Gina Diggers and her adopted were-cheetah sister Britanny.
Fred turned the story into a four-issue Gold Digger miniseries published in 1992 and 1993, and though sales were fairly low (barely over a thousand copies for each issue), he continued Gold Digger as a bi-monthly black and white comic book series beginning in 1993. This series ran through 50 issues, and led to to a color series with over 81 issues as of January 2007, as well as numerous annuals, specials and miniseries.
Gold Digger was conceived during Fred's tour of duty in the first Gulf War. A budding manga artist, Fred realized that his squadmates would pay money for pictures of beautiful women. He put this together with his love of Indiana Jones films to create Gina Diggers, an archaeologist/scientist. When he got home, he created a bodyguard named Britanny.
Gold Digger gained a small cult following, drawing from anthropomorphics fans as well as the small-but-growing manga market. (In the early 1990's, manga was still a fairly small, niche marketplace, and manga-style comic books drawn by American artists were largely shunned by most manga fans. There were only a handful of successful American-drawn manga-style comic series, including Ninja High School and Usagi Yojimbo, and Gold Digger was trying to break into that market). But Fred's perseverance paid off, and sales on the comic book slowly started to rise after the fifth issue. This was helped along with a Gold Digger Sweepstakes in early 1994, when there was a two-issue Gold Digger/Ninja High School crossover miniseries titled "A Science Affair", when sales on the series doubled between issues #8 and #9. Also at the time, Antarctic Press had a major break-out hit in Warrior Nun Areala, and sales on all their titles increased in 1994, as retailers started paying more attention to the company. Most of the sales increase from the crossover event turned into permanent readers, and interest in Gold Digger continued to rise throughout 1994 and 1995, until the comic book which was originally selling barely over a thousand copies, suddenly had an audience of several thousand readers.
The Gold Digger black and white regular comic book series ended in 1997 at issue #50, but quickly turned into a regular, almost-monthly full-color comic book series. As of 2006, more than 70 issues of the color Gold Digger series have been published to date. There have been numerous spinoffs and related comic books, including:
- The Gold Digger Annual (11 issues as of 2005), featuring short stories of the Diggers characters drawn by various other artists.
- The Gold Digger Swimsuit Special (10 issues as of 2005), with pinups and short stories of the Gold Digger characters by various GD fans.
- Gold Digger: Edge Guard - a seven-issue spinoff miniseries written and drawn by John Barrett
- Gold Digger Perfect Memory - an issue-by-issue guidebook to the series, with character designs, background information, and a whole lot more.
- Gold Digger: Beta - a one-shot that takes place around vol. 2 #41, the first time the story appears in color, sort of as a test to see how the series would appear in full color
- Gold Digger Mangazine Special - one-shot reprinting of the original short story from Mangazine
- Gold Digger Adventures - one-shot by Fred Perry with the Diggers sisters as kids.
Gold Digger, over the course of the series, has grown to include the following (but not completely limited to) places.
- Earth, the Earth in Gold Digger is set in modern-day, with a few technological advances available to only a few people as most don't seem to know about them too well. In addition, magic seems to be common enough that most people only look twice before accepting it. An example of this would be when Britanny, after finding a new super grocery store to shop at, refused to shift to human form to make things easier on the other shoppers. While they looked nervous and gave some slightly nervous looks, no one made any comment one way or another.
- Jade-Realm, a magical land that was found centuries ago. Home to many of Earth's magical creatures including Dragons, Elves, Trolls, Dwarves, and most of the Werecreatures (notable Werecreatures that are missing are the Wererats and Werewolves. Werecheetahs are now on Jade due to Raphiel's occupation as a member of the Edge Guard.)
- Undead Realm, home of Zombies, Lichs, Vampires, Ghosts and Ghouls. At one time was under the rule of the Lich King, it is now free of his rule. Among the most notorious of all denizens are the Deadites, who are known for being extremely perverted and lewd. Current ruler is the Vampiress Natasha.
Several other worlds also exist in Gold Digger, including the Retreat, Dark Home (home of the Wererats), Eden and Oblivion.
- Main article: List of characters in Gold Digger
Thanks to Fred's wide-ranging interests, the stories have ranged to include fantasy, sci-fi, superheroes, and parodies of ThunderCats and Voltron. Since then, the stories have started to intertwine. A good example of this was the recent revelation that the supervillain Array was one of the Draconic Heirlooms, which were given to them by their creators.
- Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow.
Speculation on the future of the series revolves around
- Three alien races from the universe before the Big Bang:
- the Artificers (a race with great technological prowess),
- the Gardeners (who channeled energy from 'universal foci' through symbiotic power-armor), and
- the Shadows (whose mastery of sixth-dimensional physics allowed them to enter other dimensions), and how they escaped destruction
- Dreadwing, an Iron Dragon, believed dead, now plotting his revenge against Gina Diggers using the Draconic Heirlooms
- The various Shapeshifting species, which were created by a mage named Iceron (who is reveled to be Gothwrain, the former high elder of the wererats)
|Fred PerryGold Digger by|
|Some of this page is derived from Wikipedia. The original article was at Gold Digger (comics). The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with WikiFur, the text of Wikipedia is available under CC-BY-SA and the GFDL.|