I'm really sorry for saying this, but... I'm making a Mario-related comic series myself. In fact, I even have covers for each of the volumes (or rather, "issues") for each story. The reason why I'm saying that my comic series is Mario-related is because it stars a character that's a fusion between Mario and Sonic, named Somari.
If you don't know who Somari is, it's a bootleg game for the NES that's basically Sonic the Hedgehog but with Mario instead of Sonic. I have seen artwork that shows Mario and Sonic fusing to become one character, and I've always wanted to know if I could not only do that, but also fuse the universes in which both Mario and Sonic reside.
The main star in my Somari "reboot" is, as I mentioned earlier, Somari, a chimpanzee girl whose clothes carry on the colors of Mario, even though Somari herself also resembles a Sonic character. For a year, I have dedicated an entire world to focus on Mario and Sonic as one by taking several other Mario characters and making them look like Sonic characters. It had been a pretty good run, but it wasn't long before fellow deviant of mine cartoonfanboyone decided to do a roleplay with me that starred him and Somari. I thought it was a good story, good enough to be a comic. I worked on the cover for our roleplay, but decided to make it the first "issue" in a series of comics.
Seeing your attempt at making a Mario comic series and then looking back at my own attempt, I'm worried that our ideas for comics might be too similar. I'm curious to know what the story is for your first volume might be, and I'm sure it'll be a great story, but I seriously don't wanna copy you. I often like to take inspiration from other artists as well as official artwork, as long as I interpret it my own special way so it's original, but both of our comic series are this close to being the same thing.
It's good that you haven't postponed the first volume in your series to sometime next year; I intend to release the first volume in my series around that point, right when the success of your first issue will settle down, so people will look forward to your second volume. Bottom line, I honestly do NOT want to copy you in any way, shape, or form; I didn't even use this as inspiration for my series. How I managed to make the cover for my series has a more different history (as I mentioned already). This might be a longer-than-a-flagpole comment, but I recommend taking your time when reading this. It would mean a lot to me if you did.