This year at San Diego Comic-Con we’ve unveiled a variety of sculptures and art prints that can be added to your collection in the coming months. And, although these pieces will not be for sale, we’re also proud to share a series of military themed life-size busts from Court of the Dead creator Tom Gilliland’s personal collection.
With these peculiar soldiers of the Underworld, Tom found the perfect opportunity to merge his fascination for authentic historical recreations and the rich fantasy of the Court. Designed and created in collaboration with the Court of the Dead artists, these one-of-a-kind studies were the team’s chance to go wild exercising craftsmanship, imagination and skill without regard for the constraints of traditional product development.
“I’ve always been particularly interested in what the soldiers of the dead would look like in the afterlife. I imagine the motley ranks of a fledgling, underdog army assembled from centuries worth of undead warriors,” Gilliland explains. “These single-bust studies are a great collaborative payoff to those daydreams.”
We invite you for a closer look at these soldiers of the Underworld, and the stories that evolved during the creation of each character in Tom’s personal collection.
Colonel TatterBurn, Leader of the 6th Nightshade HussarsThe Underworld’s affection for eccentric mortals is most evident in its enthusiastic embrace of the rogues and ne’er-do-wells that form the ranks of the Nightshade Hussars. These undead horsemen are united by their utter, reckless bravado and their enduring belief that their souls will be endlessly recycled as part of a collected consciousness. The infamous 6th regiment, led by the remarkable Captain TatterBurn, is particularly distinguished in their acts of valor and disregard for self-preservation. A braggart who lives up to every boast, Captain TatterBurn’s exploits are a favorite of Queen Gethsemoni.
Relic Ravlatch, Knight of VoxxingardThe venerable order of Relic Knights possess souls so steeped in dedication that they were born anew in the Underworld still committed to their crusades. As for their desiccated bodies, well, they consider themselves only temporary guests in these toughened husks. When a Relic Knight makes the ultimate sacrifice, its form is retrieved at all costs so that another may take up residence within it, a practice that has in part earned their order the nickname of “Old Bones.” With characteristics exemplary of his order, Ravlatch is stoic, introspective and endlessly patient. A formidable strategic adversary, the Relic has loyally protected the stronghold of the Bone Faction for many eons.
Dragoon of the Red Guard, Queen’s VanguardIt is easy to spot a member of this elite fighting squad at a distance, as the brilliant red-soaked banners of the Red Guard punctuate the parapets of Queen Gethsemoni’s walking palace. Starting as a blot of crimson on the horizon, and rapidly spreading like a pool of blood as they approach, their uniforms are painted with mortal glory, tattered and ravaged by their service to the Underworld. Drafted from honorable mortal men who sacrificed their own lives to save another, this Dragoon’s history is as tragic as any member of the Red Guard. Even so, the secrets of his past are known only to the Queen, who now holds the reins to his gallant adoration.
We hope you enjoy these character insights, and if you’re thirsting for more stay tuned for our recently announced book, Chronicle of the Underworld. A stunning, full-color visual compendium featuring a fantastic journey to unravel the wonderful secrets of the Underworld, this will be the ultimate introduction to the Court of the Dead!