Simmons issued a statement via representative today responding to the allegations, claiming that his work was “meant as an homage” to the artists that inspire him. He also apologized to Manga fans and artists who may have thought he’d gone too far in his intentions.
“Like most artists I am inspired by work I admire. There are certain similarities between some of my work and the work of others. This was simply meant as an homage to artists I respect, and I definitely want to apologize to any Manga fans or fellow Manga artists who feel I went too far. My inspirations reflect the fact that certain fundamental imagery is common to all Manga. This is the nature of the medium.
“I am a big fan of Bleach, as well as other Manga titles. And I am certainly sorry if anyone was offended or upset by what they perceive to be the similarity between my work and the work of artists that I admire and who inspire me.”
Radical Publishing has halted production on its American Manga series Incarnate while they investigate claims of plagiarism against the series’ creator Nick Simmons, son of KISS founder Gene Simmons.
Radical Comics launched the series, which Simmons wrote and penciled, back in August and released three single issues, which were to be sold later this year in a collected volume. Read their full official statement regarding the allegations here below.
Earlier this week, accusations arose against Simmons on the GameFAQ forum stating that his artwork on Incarnate was copied from popular manga titles like Tite Kubo’s Bleach, which has sold over 50 million volumes worldwide. The Bleachness fan site posted side-by-side comparisons of the artwork from both titles to show similarities, and even superimposed the images. There’s also word balloons that show similar dialogue between the new comics.
The image at top is one of the examples from the Bleachness site [note, we do not have either source material to verify the claims]: on the left is a panel from Bleach; the center is a panel from Incarnate; the image on the right is a both of these images superimposed.