I don't know what brings you to the conclusion that Rob having worked on Bloodstrike means that his Brigade Kickstarter backers are somehow getting screwed.
Not sure why you think these projects are mutually exclusive, especially given the lead time.
Read my post.
Liefeld repeatedly told his supporters when trying to get them to donate and subsequently that he was 100% solely working on Brigade and that the book they gave him $35K+ to produce would launch his comeback/new universe/whatever.
He still hasn't told his Kickstarter supporters that he's now focused (all his current promotional efforts) on launching a book that they won't recieve any awards from or haven't even been made aware of.
Rob's been pretty good at keeping the Kickstarter backers in the loop and has been very open about the delays and the reason for them (creative differences with the initial colorist, who bailed on him), and finalizing publisher and printer contracts (Image wasn't a given).
Not true. If you read the Kickstarter comments a lot of updates have only appeared as a result of requests for updates from supporters who were told months ago that the book was ready to go to press.
What he has been pretty good at is excuses; 5 different colourists, too many pages produced, various publishers chasing the book, conventions happening to soon to print it etc. etc.
It's not like Rob publishing Brigade through Image is somehow breaking his promise. The plan was never to self publish, so if it wasn't Image, it would've been another publisher. Why spread the Extreme titles all over the place if he didn't have to?
The plan was actually to self publish at one stage, Rob said so.
Publishing Brigade through Image isn't Rob breaking his promise, Rob working on Bloodstrike instead of the only book he promised to be working on is, as is prioritising Bloodstrike ahead of the book folks paid $35K without anything to show for it.
Up until a month ago Liefeld was actually planning on self publishing Bloodstrike himself at the start of February and selling and promoting Bloodstrike whilst all his supporters were wondering where Brigade was.
These books don't get printed for free, and Rob doesn't work for free. Don't think that because Image are the publisher, that nothing comes out of Rob's pocket (or Kickstarter revenue) to cover the costs associated with producing the book.
Actually Rob as per every other creator owned creator does work for free. He stated explicitly that the Kickstarter funds were ONLY to pay for the printing and distribution of the book.
The straightforward printing and distribution has become decidely murky because of Liefeld announcing he's printing Bloodstrike ahead of the book he pocketed $35K+ for and produced nothing for in response.
Liefeld committed to publishing over 100K free oversized Brigade #1, by becoming involved Image are now entangled in the chances of Liefeld not fulfilling his Kickstarter obligations and the possibility that he pocketed or diverted some of those funds himself if he doesn't fulfill his commitments and promises.
I'd like to know why Image is once again taking on printing and distributing books from a creator who time and time and time again has fucked them over and bailed on his reponsibilities.
As far as Rob having exclusive covers that only he will sell - how is that any different than a retailer exclusive cover?
Can't imagine Image going out of their way to facillitate a Retailer with a stench of stolen funds from their customers who had bailed on them on 3 previous occasions.
But it seems that as the same time that Image are trying to build their reputation and relationship with retailers they're cool with facilitating a guy who's fucked them over on multiple occasions, using money falsly taken from Kickstarter supporters to also produce a variant that won't be available to retailers.