Netflix's Grendel - What We Know So Far

"Grendel" is the latest comic series adaptation in the works at Netflix, the company announced this week. A series based on the Dark Horse supernatural crime comic from creator Matt Wagner is in development at the streaming service.

Netflix and Dark Horse already have a fruitful partnership that has yielded the hit superhero series "The Umbrella Academy," which is based on the comic by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá, and the Mads Mikkelsen-led thriller "Polar," which is based on graphic novels by Victor Santos. They're also in production on the animated series "Samurai Rabbit: The Usagi Chronicles," based on Stan Sakai's long-running comic series "Usagi Yojimbo."

"Grendel," like most Dark Horse comics, is a stylish and sophisticated genre-blending series. Wagner began it in 1982 and has published new Grendel stories on and off ever since. At first, the comic follows Hunter Rose, AKA Grendel, an assassin who ascends to the top of New York City's criminal underworld. It eventually evolves into something much different, with Grendel becoming a character that's more like a spirit that possesses many different people. It seems like the show will be sticking to the early Hunter Rose storyline.

Here's what we know so far about Netflix's "Grendel."

When will "Grendel" be released?

"Grendel" was just announced, so it will be a long time before the eight-episode first season reaches Netflix screens. If we consider the timeline "The Umbrella Academy" followed to Netflix, the series was officially announced in July 2017 and released in February 2019. So if "Grendel" follows a similar timeline, which it might, it could hit Netflix in about a year and a half, maybe in the winter or spring of 2023.

The "Grendel" series is written and executive-produced by Andrew Dabb, a "Supernatural" veteran who is also executive-producing the upcoming live-action "Resident Evil" Netflix series. "Grendel" comic creator Matt Wagner is also an executive producer.

"I couldn't be more thrilled about the 'Grendel' saga, one of the longest-running independent comics series, finally being translated into live-action for the screen," Wagner said in a statement in the Netflix press release. "Under the sharp guidance of showrunner Andrew Dabb, our incredible creative team, sure-to-be stellar cast and Dark Horse Entertainment have teamed with Netflix to produce this provocative adaptation that will bring my characters and concepts to an all new audience and yet still provide excitement and surprises for die-hard fans."

Who's in the cast of Grendel?

According to Netflix, the antiheroic role of Grendel/Hunter Rose – who's sort of like Bruce Wayne if he became a criminal instead of a crimefighter – will be played by Abubakr Ali, a rising star who has been seen on the shows "Power Book II: Ghost" and "Katy Keene" and is starring in director Billy Porter's upcoming drama film "What If?"

"I'm especially excited to see Abubakr Ali bring the character of Grendel/Hunter Rose to life — he has the charisma, style and vital edginess that I've been envisioning in the role for years," Wagner said in his statement.

The cast also includes "The Punisher" star Jaime Ray Newman as Jocasta Rose, Hunter's much older lover; "The Flash" and "Debris" star Julian Black Antelope as Argent, Hunter's nemesis, a Native American man-wolf who wants to use his violent compulsions for good; and "Californication" veteran Madeline Zima as Liz Sparks, a detective on Grendel's trail.

Beloved character actor Kevin Corrigan plays crime boss Barry Palumbo. Emma Ho plays his young niece Stacy, who becomes very important to Hunter.

The cast also includes Erik Palladino as Teddy Ciccone, Brittany Allen as Annabelle Wright, and Andy Mientus as Larry Stohler.

What's the plot of Grendel?

Here's the official logline from Netflix: "Based on Matt Wagner's groundbreaking comic book series, Grendel follows Hunter Rose, a gifted fencer, writer and assassin as, seeking to avenge the death of a lost love, he goes to war with New York's criminal underworld, only to realize...why beat them, when you can join them?"

In the comics, according to Comic Vine, Hunter Rose is a brilliant renaissance man who's an author, a champion fencer, and assassin. As the debonair masked killer Grendel, he quickly ascended to a position of power in New York's criminal underworld, which puts him in conflict with Argent, the man-wolf vigilante.

"Grendel as Hunter Rose is almost a character out of time," Wagner told CBR in 2013. "He seems like a character who kind of missed the Golden Age of America in the '30s and '40s — the times he would have loved to have lived in." He's a very slick and stylish sort of antihero.