Vince Staples is bringing a comic book launch carnival to Long Beach

Revered Long Beach musician and rapper Vince Staples will be signing copies of his new comic book “Limbo Beach” at El Dorado Park Thursday, May 12, as part of a carnival celebrating the upcoming release of the highly anticipated graphic novel.

News of the comic book came as a surprise to many when Staples announced the project in June 2021. Musical artists embarking creatively onto the page is not unheard of, having been executed by the Gorillaz, Chuck D, Yungblood, and other artists in recent years. For Staples, this will be his first foray into the graphic novel universe.

Published through music-based publisher Z2 comics, “Limbo Beach”  is about a group of teenagers who wash up on an uncharted, abandoned amusement park island called Limbo Beach that endows unique superhuman abilities to those who live there. The novel follows the newest member of the Wunderlosts, which is a band of superpowered misfit teenage raiders who rule the island, who go on a journey to discover the truth about the obscure amusement park. Z2 comics describes the graphic novel as being “equal parts ‘Lord of the Flies’ and ‘The Warriors.’”

The idea for the graphic novel was conceived by Staples and co-written with prolific comic book writers including Bryan Edward Hill who created “Batman & the Outsiders” and “Titans” and Chris Robinson, author of “Children of the Atom.” The novel is illustrated by Buster Moody, who is known for illustrating several off-shoots of the popular “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” comics including “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Amazing Adventures” and “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Bebop & Rocksteady Hit the Road.”

The underlying message behind “Limbo Beach” Staples said in a press release, is “the story of lost children fighting to regain their stolen youth.”

“It takes place in a world similar to the one that we all live in, where we are shaped by our experiences and those around us. I appreciate the opportunity to create these stories in a way that I never have before. Hopefully, it is the first of many,” he continued.

The Limbo Beach Carnival is designed to emulate the dystopian, circus-like world of “Limbo Beach” and will feature games, music, face painting and roaming clowns.

The event is open to the public and free to attend, but those who pay $25 can purchase an advanced copy of the comic book for Staples to sign. Click here for more information.

It’s unclear if Staples will be performing, but the artist will be signing copies from 4-7 p.m. The carnival will be at El Dorado Park at the West Willow Grove Reserved Picnic Site at 2800 N. Studebaker Rd.

Z2 comics says the graphic novel should be available for general purchase from retailers on May 31 and pre-orders are available online through the publication.

The release of “Limbo Beach” comes on the heels of Staples’ fifth studio album, “Ramona Park Broke My Heart,” which was released in April. The name for the critically acclaimed album comes from the Ramona Park neighborhood in North Long Beach where Staples was raised, though the artist was originally born in Compton.

Vince Staples: King of the Beach

Editors Note: This story has been updated with the correct address to West Willow Grove Reserved Picnic Site at El Dorado Park.

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Cheantay Jensen is reporter and award-winning videographer who covers entertainment, art, food and culture for the Hi-lo section of the Long Beach Post. And sometimes breaking news, you know, just to keep things interesting.