Citywide Blackout

Neil Kleid shares his first trip to the horror genre with Comixology Originals title “The Panic”

July 13, 2022

“The Panic”—a five-issue apocalyptic comic series on Comixology—has quickly drawn me in with its deep characters and gripping story. So, I just had to speak with series creator and writer Neil Kleid for this episode.


In The Panic, ten strangers become trapped on a PATH train beneath the Hudson River when their car comes to an unforeseen halt. They are forced to depend on each of their fellow commuters in order to survive. Things go very wrong as they work their way above ground and those left must fight their way through more than rubble to make it to safety. But the darkness is closing in, and with it their own individual fears and paranoia—along with cultural, racial, and political biases. It’ll be a long road to the end of the tunnel . . . that is if they don’t kill each other before they get there.


Neil and I talk about the origin of this series, which began as a novel set amidst Sept. 11, 2001. We look at how the story was updated and adapted to a comic format, and what had to be changed during this process. Neil worked with Andrea Mutti as co-author and artist, and we talk about the gritty visuals and how they came to be.


Neil also shares the theme of loss of control and security, how they are utilized in “The Panic.” We dive into the different characters and how they interact as they try to save themselves and learn what happened.

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