"Until the next issue, always remember that magic is green."An Urban Fantasy comic-book by Matt Wagner, taking influence from Arthurian Legend and The Monomyth.Disaffected every-man, Kevin Matchstick is thrust into a world of superhuman abilities, mythological creatures and magic baseball-bats after being discovered by Mirth, The World Mage. The comic-book follows his character arc, as he grows to accept and understand his powers and role as a hero.The first volume, The Hero Discovered, was released by Comico from 1984-1986. The Hero Defined was released almost a decade later by Image Comics, as Wagner needed to reclaim the rights after Comico went bankrupt. The final volume, The Hero Denied, has been announced with a release date of Summer 2017.
— Foreword, The Hero Discovered #2
- Author Avatar: Wagner openly acknowledges that both Kevin Matchstick's character and appearance are modelled on himself.
- Awesome McCoolname: Kevin Matchstick.
- Balance Between Good and Evil.
- Big Bad: Volume one has the Umbra Sprite. Volume two has Emil Gracklefint and returning Bigger Bad, the Umbra Sprite.
- Despair Event Horizon: Edsel's death.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Kevin Matchstick is a pretty atypical reluctant hero. Subverted in The Hero Defined, as he's grown to accept his responsibility, and seems to enjoy kicking supernatural ass.
- Inside a Computer System: Mirth hides in an ATM machine at one point, when his physical form becomes unstable.
- Inept Mage: Wally Ut.
- Scary Shiny Glasses: Sean. But then again, he's a ghost.
- Twice Told Tale: Mage is a (loose) retelling of Arthurian Legend, though it includes other mythological inspiration too.
- Urban Fantasy.
- When All You Have Is a Hammer...: Kevin tends to do this with Excalibur. Backfires dramatically in Volume 2 when this causes Excalibur to break, and Kirby is then almost killed.