The Travelers #0

Title: Tony DiGerolamo’s The Travelers #0

Veni, Vici, Vidi, Veni

Issue stats: 20 pages, b&w, $1.50
Writer: Tony DiGerolamo
Penciller: Brian Dawson
Inker: Carmen Imperato
Cover Enhancement: Kevin Daily

Distribution: Available as a retailer incentive through FM International & other distributors
First shipped: Available direct to fans as of November 1998

First Appearances: Emperor Rheemus, Stavus, the Oracle, Father Shambles, Sgt. T.S., Princess Chastity, Miss Margaret, Locust the Wizard, the Fork of Lightning, Sir Dan the Optimist, Barbara the Barbarian, the Mighty Cubby, Rob, Lester, Squire Douglas, Emperor Rheemus as the bronze statue of Flavius, King Rudolfo, Queen Virginifin, Medevial Jersey Devil pin up

Issue quirks: Ashcan format

Issue Events: Originally designed to showcase the series, the ashcan became a retailer incentive. For every 10 issues of The Travelers #1 purchased, retailers received a free copy of the ashcan. Some ashcans were given away as promotional items during the Pittsburgh Con of 1998. 500 years ago, evil Emperor Rheemus attempted to kill his arch enemy, Stavus, by crushing him with a bronze statue. He is struck by lightning and killed. 500 years later, our hapless adventurers dig up the statue and accidentally bring it back to life. Rheemus, now trapped in the statue of the man he killed, runs amok and then is defeated.

Issue Synopsis: Issue opens 500 years before our characters. An evil emperor (Rheemus) of a Roman-like civilization (Roma) has killed the previous emperor (Flavius) and is now attempting to destroy Stavus and the Oracle. (Stavus is an ancestor of Sgt. T.S. and the Orcale is an ancestor of Shambles.) During the climax of the battle, Rheems picks up a bronze statue of Flavius and prepares to crush Stavus with it. However, he is struck by lightning and killed.
Five centuries later ,the City of Beastlyville stands in the same area. Workmen dig up the statue of Flavius and Locust the Wizard and Shambles accidentally shoot it with a magic item called a Fork of Lightning. The blast brings the statue to life and we discover that the spirit of Rheemus is trapped inside the statue.
Rheemus/bronze statue can only speak Latin, but it recognizes Sgt. T.S. and Shambles. The statue runs amok. Locust and the others stop it by wrapping a copper wire around the statue and magnetizing it with the Fork of Lightning. Drained of power, Rheemus, a motionless statue again, is stuck as a curiosity at Princess Chastity’s theme party.

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