Behind the Umbrella: When My Chemical Romance's Gerard Way Got Into Comics
As the frontman of 21st century rock heroes My Chemical Romance, Gerard Way knows a thing or two about telling a killer story. In 2006, MCR released one of their best and most ambitious albums, The Black Parade, a concept album about death and the afterlife that became a worldwide hit.
Way used that boost to follow another one of his passions: writing comics. (His first comic, On Raven's Wings, was published in 1993, when he was only 16. It lasted for only an issue after the artists left the project.) His new project, The Umbrella Academy, was published in 2007. It focused on a group of unconnected kids with superpowers who train to become superheroes and break up, only to come together years later to investigate a new threat.
To date, three volumes of the series have been produced, with a spin-off, Tales from the Umbrella Academy, also recently published. (Way has confirmed plans for a fourth volume in the future.) The first six-issue volume, "The Apocalypse Suite," won an Eisner Award, one of comic's highest honors, in the category of Best Limited Series. Years later, the heroes of the Academy made their way to television: an Umbrella Academy series debuted on Netflix in 2019, with production underway on a fourth season.
MCR's last album to date, Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, was accompanied by a six-issue comic series that published in 2013 and 2014, ending just after the band's breakup. While the world awaits for the band's reunion tour to begin in 2021 (on hiatus from the year before due to the COVID-19 pandemic), Way's comic stories offer some killer entertainment to tide fans over.