The South Pacific theatre of World War II is usually seen from the perspective of the Marines fighting from Guadalcanal to Okinawa. Fever Ridge takes you to the oft-unseen locales explored by the 6th Infantry Division of the 6th Army through this historical series inspired by real soldiers and their incredible experiences.
Created by Andy Schmidt. Art by Chee.
1942. After a series of staggering victories, the Japanese seized control over all the Dutch East Indies, an archipelago extending from Sumatra to New Guinea; one million square miles of former Allied territory now under the flag of the Rising Sun. Lead by General Douglas MacArthur, American forces tried to repel the Japanese from the Philippines, but were outgunned and outnumbered. Forced to retreat, things got even worse when 80,000 Filipino and American soldiers were by the Japanese, and MacArthur barely survived an attack by Japanese assassins. The Japanese thought that things were over, but instead they just got personal.
Now, MacArthur has a new plan to retake the Philippines, and he’s got a special squad in mind to make it happen – the 6th Infantry Division, AKA the Sightseein’ Sixth, an elite division that earned their nickname fighting all around the world. Made up of highly talented soldiers including Staff Sergeant Franz Detzner, a German expat and veteran sniper of the Spanish Civil War; Private First Class Erik Ritter, a butcher’s son with a shadowy past and a talent for blades; Corporal August Oszyk, an exiled history professor from Poland and the fittest man in the camp; Private Joseph “Ned” Stringfellow, a former football player with surgical aim; Private First Class Martin McDonald, a Native American former farmer with excellent tracking skills; and Corporal Federico Garcia, a Filipino guerilla fighter, the Sightseein’ Sixth has set their sights on retaking the Philippines – or dying trying.
But it won’t be easy. In addition to facing off against the Japanese, the men of the Sightseein’ Sixth will also have to survive the harsh jungle conditions of the Pacific Rim, including deadly diseases, unmapped terrain, 10,000-foot mountains, unbearably hot lowland swamps, alligators, spiders, snakes, wild boars, and native tribes with a taste for human flesh. But all those things aren’t the only challenges hidden in the jungle – along the way, the men discover a German soldier still flying the flag of the Kaiser who says he’s been stuck among the indigenous people of the island since 1919. He claims to know everything about the jungle and its people, and with his help the Americans could score a decisive victory against the Japanese, but is this mysterious German wanderer to be trusted, or is he hiding a dark secret?
Saving Private Ryan meets Apocalypse Now in Fever Ridge, a tale of brotherhood and personal sacrifice set against the backdrop of World War II. Based loosely on the experiences of writer Mike Heimos’s own grandfather, Fever Ridge is the story of one of General MacArthur’s often overlooked battles to retake the Philippines from the Japanese, told through the eyes of a group of wildly different young men who must find the strength to come together and face the impossible.