Comics, Characters & Creators

FAVORITE ARTISTS YOU HAVEN’T WORKED WITH YET?
Easy, Bolland, Michael Golden (even though I got a cover out of him), Craig Russell, Enki Bilal, Manara, Steranko, Mignola, Otomo, I could go on.

WOULD YOU EVER WANT TO DO A LUKE CAGE BOOK?
Luke is in every book I write almost. He has kicked some serious ass in The Pulse and The New Avengers.

ARE THE ULTIMATE MARVEL TEAM UP STORIES MEANT TO BE THE SAME CONTINUITY AS THE REST OF THE ULTIMATE TITLES?
Everything but issue 9 is continuity. But even nine isn’t too far off from what we did.

WHO’S THE WORST CHARACTER IN MARVEL AND DC?
Metamorpho.

YOU’VE GOTTEN THE WORST ASSIGNMENT EVER. WHICH BOOK IS IT, AND WHY?
Following Jim Lee on anything.

HAVE YOU EVER WRITTEN ANY COMICS WHILE ON THE BOWL? IF SO, WHICH ONES SO I CAN READ THEM ON THE BOWL?
I actually have – not telling.

HAVE YOU EVER CONSIDERED HAVING THE ULTIMATE AND REGULAR MARVEL UNIVERSES COLLIDE AND CROSSOVER?
Ew, no. What is this, DC? :)

DID IT RAIN MORE IN DAREDEVIL BECAUSE ALEX MAKES RAIN LOOK SO COOL?
YES!!

WHAT WERE SOME OTHER NAMES THAT WERE DISCUSSED FOR THE MARVEL ICON IMPRINT?
Well, I voted for Marvel EGO, but someone said it was taken. We toyed with Epic but figured the name was tainted now, and was an uphill battle marketing wise. The logo is very nice, and no, it is not an I.

WILL THERE EVER BEEN AN ULTIMATE DAREDEVIL COMIC?
That is Marvel’s call. They are looking for good pitches and haven’t found one.

WHEN DO YOU TAKE OVER AS MARVEL’S EIC?
I couldn’t afford the pay cut. And I could not do a third of the job Joe has (done). Not by a long shot.

COULD YOU EXPLAIN THE AVENGERS REBOOT/RENUMBERING THING?
The renumbering is totally a story oriented thing. Joe really hates renumbering. It has to be special. I actually don’t remember if it was my idea or not, but I was in the room and it probably was my idea (or I definitely voted yes).

WHY DID THE “SEE ISSUE #” NOTES DISAPPEAR FROM COMICS?
The editor comments went out of date because of the internet.

IN TORSO, YOU REFERED TO GAYLORD SUNDHEIM. I’VE HEARD HE WAS A FAKE CHARACTER, IS THIS TRUE?
Gaylord was mentioned in Ness’ The Untouchables. A much better recourse than the Anti-Ness (Steve) Nickel book. The Nickel book was great for cross reference though. We used the name in place of the real killers because we don’t know it and because I thought that the name was so odd, it has some signifigance to Ness. It might be more true than not.

WHO ARE YOUR TOP 5 FAVORITE COMIC WRITERS?
Ellis, Rucka, Brubaker, Vaughn, Millar.

DID STICK EVER MAKE AN APPEARANCE IN YOUR DD RUN?
No.

WOULD YOU USE STICK IN AN ULTIMATE DD ORIGIN?
Yes.

WHO ARE YOUR TOP 5 FAVORITE ARTISTS FOR BOOKS YOU DON’T WRITE?
I think (Mike) Deodato’s re-invention of himself is stunning.. (Bryan) Bolland, (Dave) Gibbons, (Howard) Chaykin, (Mike) Mignola, (Bryan) Hitch, JG Jones, (Carlos) Pacheco, I could go on and on…

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE MIXED CASE LETTERING JOB BEING DONE ON THE MAJORITY OF YOUR COMICS?
I had a choice to go back to all caps but decided, to my shock, not to. Powers stays uppercase because Ken is a great hand letterer.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE MARVEL DIGEST SIZED TRADE PAPERBACKS?
I think they are addorable. There is a USM one, I have copies. But I don’t know how you can get it. (It) might be a walmart thing..

ANY FUTURE POWERS MERCHANDISE PLANNED? (STATUES, POSTERS?)
Fingers crossed, there’s going to be some kick ass powers merchandise announced sometime soon.

WHAT’D YOU THINK OF RUCKA’S SUPERMAN?
I am not a big Supes guy but I will read Rucka’s. I did get the Gotham Central trade and its gorgeous.

DO YOU THINK YOU’RE COOLER THAN STAN LEE?
No. He met Fellini. I met Jamie Rich.

WHICH WILL WE SEE FIRST? AN ULTIMATE HOBGOBLIN OR THE RETURN OF THE ULTIMATE SIX?
Hobgoblin.

NAME SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE AVENGERS WRITERS.
Geoff Johns. Roger Stern.

DO YOU LIKE STEVE GERBER’S WRITING? WHAT’D YOU THINK OF HARD TIME?
I have not read (his) Hard Time, haven’t seen it. I am a big fan of his old Defenders stuff and we should all have something like Howard the Duck on our resume.

DO YOU LIKE KURT BUSIEK’S WRITING?
I like Kurt’s creator-owned stuff more than his work-for-hire. And I say that, full out admitting that I hate when people say that about me. Because I know he cares just as much for the creator-owned as he does his work-for-hire. But I like his creator-owned voice more. Just my opinion, and I hope, if he sees this, that he understands it is not a slam, in any way. That said, if not for his Avengers run and ideas, I would not have mine. The best news about my Avengers stuff is Marvel finally got their Avengers hardback together.

IF YOU COULD WRITE ANY DC BOOK WITHOUT RESTRICTIONS, WHICH WOULD IT BE?
No joke, Plastic Man with Alex Maleev. Dark noir stretchy guy.

HOW’D YOU LAND THE AVENGERS GIG?
I did not ask for the Avengers. At an editorial meeting I was casually riffing on what I thought would be cool to do in the Avengers and I was given the gig.

THESE EDITORIAL MEETINGS.. ARE THEY CONFERENCE CALL OR DO THEY FLY YOU EAST (OR IS THAT CODE FOR ORGY?)
This was in person. They flew us up. There was a lot of touching, but not really a full out orgy.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF CHAYKIN/TISCHMAN’S BITE CLUB?
I like Bite Club and am a big fan of David Hahn, the artist.

HAS THE LOVE TRIANGLE BETWEEN GWEN/MJ/PETER CHANGED SINCE YOU STARTED WRITING IT?
The characters did take over on this one.

RECOMMEND SOME COMICS?
Love Fights, Cheat, District X

WHEN DID YOU KNOW WHAT YOU HAD PLANNED FOR CHRISTIAN WALKER’S/DIAMOND’S ORIGIN?
I knew by issue 3.

NAME SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE SPIDER-MAN ERAS?
Stan Lee Death of Gwen Stacy Stern/JRJR

HOW COME THE PULSE WAS BI-MONTHLY?
The Pulse was bi-monthly to accomodate Brent Anderson, and so I can craft it the way I want. Not every comic has to be monthly. In my opinion, most would do well if they weren’t.

WHAT AGE GROUP DO YOU SEE USM FOR?
All ages.

SOME COMICS ARE ACCUSED OF BEING “WRITTEN FOR TPBS”.. THOUGHTS?
Some movies are made fully knowing they will be on DVD too, what the fuck is that about? There is no rule. Stop buying into that. There is [an] awareness of [the] format, just like we know the book itself has to be 22 pages with ads. That is how it goes. Good writers make it work, bad ones don’t. Same with everything. None of my books are [written in the 'decompressed style'], there’s no such thing.

DO YOU THINK THE MARKET COULD SUSTAIN A TPB/DIGEST ONLY TITLE?
Right now, it really is not feasible. Retailers would have to seriously rethink how they spend. Maybe one day. It is leaning that way for some books.

HAVE YOU GIVEN ANY THOUGHT TO CHANGING THE FORMAT OF COMICS?
I do a lot of format busting inside the pages — see, well, any of my books..But the size and shape is so important to so many readers and retailers. Any change is a serious sales killer. It really is. See the VERTIGO (VERTICAL) thing. I would love it, but I also like people reading the books.

IN REGARDS TO DAREDEVIL’S ORIGIN, DO YOU LEAN MORE ON STAN LEE OR FRANK MILLER’S VERSION?
I think Stan.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF DAREDEVIL AS A SWASHBUCKLING SUPERHERO?
I like it, but it doesn’t fit too much into the story as it’s being told.

WHAT’S THE FUNNIEST/WEIRDEST SPECULATIVE POST YOU’VE SEEN ONLINE ABOUT WHO’S BEHIND AVENGERS DISASSEMBLED?
Most of them are in the contest thread :)

DID YOU AND MACK DISCUSS BLINDING KINGPIN?
Mack did it, and I told him a while later I had an idea. Which he is way cool with.

DO YOU THINK CHARACTER DEATHS EQUATE TO SELLING OUT BY USING SHOCK VALUE?
Nope. A premature death, dramatically, is the only kind that has any effect. And it certainly doesn’t guarantee a book’s success. In fact, it’s riskky. Frankly — I think it’s absolutely impossible to do what you just accused me of. You can’t shock people into buying comics. Has that ever worked? I killed a lot of people in Torso too :D There is no magic sales formula. If there was, POWERS would be number 1. Quality is all I care about.

DOES MIKE OEMING MODEL HIS CHARACTERS OFF OF ANYONE?
Yes.

WHICH C OR D LIST CHARACTER WOULD YOU MOST LIKE TO WRITE?
Jessica Drew.

IS FORTUNE AND GLORY THE FIRST APPEARANCE OF WALKER AND DEENA?
We were doing POWERS #1 while I drew that.

DID PULP KILL THE ROLEPLAYERS BECAUSE HE’S NUTS OR BECAUSE HE WAS HIRED TO DO SO? MY FRIEND SAYS HE’S NUTS.
He was right.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF MARK MILLAR?
Mark is a really good person. He likes to talk shit, but he’s one of the good guys. And there are some people in this business who truly suck.

WHICH CAME FIRST? MARVEL’S MAX IMPRINT OR ALIAS?
Max was created to publish Alias.

WHO’S YOUR FAVORITE COMIC ARTIST?
Michael Golden

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO RON ZIMMERMAN?
He’s fine. He’s a good dude.

DO YOU HAVE THE END OF ULTIMATE SPIDER-MAN PLANNED OUT LIKE YOU DO FOR POWERS?
I do not have an end for USM [...]

IN THE EARLY ISSUES OF USM (THE 40’S) FLASH KEPT TRYING TO ASK PETER FOR HELP OR SOMETHING, I’M GUESSING THAT WILL PAY OFF SOON? I’M DYIN’ HERE..
Flash issue is [USM]#65

HAVE YOU EVER READ STRAY BULLETS BY DAVID LAPHAM?
[...]I do like Lapham a lot, even though I think he hates me. (I was only joking. Half of comics hates me thought, seriously.)

CAN YOU RECOMMEND ONE COMICBOOK THAT I’VE NEVER HEARD OF THAT YOU’D THINK I’LL LIKE?
The Shadow by Howard Chaykin. Chaykin is my hero.

WILL I NEED TO BUY AVENGERS IN ORDER TO GET COMPLETE STORIES IN DAREDEVIL? KINDA LIKE HOW DD/ALIAS WAS?
You need to buy everything with my name on it :)

DO I HAVE TO READ ALL THE AVENGERS DISASSEMBLED TIE-INS TO KEEP UP WITH WHAT IS HAPPENING?
Nope, but it’ll be fun for you if you do. It was very specifically designed that way.

DID YOU USE BAGLEY FOR THE FIRST ARC OF PULSE TO SHOW THAT JESSICA HAD MANAGED TO DEAL WITH THE ISSUES THAT WERE SCREWING WITH HER HEAD? BECAUSE BAGLEY DREW THE FLASHBACKS AND IT WORKS NICELY TO SHOW THAT THE SCREWED UP GAYDOS JESSICA HAS MOVED ON WITH HER LIFE. OR IS IT BECAUSE YOU GUYS WANTED TO WORK TOGETHER EVEN MORE THAN YOU ALREADY ARE?
Both actually. Thought it was pretty obvious, but no one got it, including Bagley. :)

WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU READ USM #1? HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT IT NOW?
I haven’t looked at it. I’m sure I hate the colors.

DO YOU GET TIME TO READ OTHER BOOKS? WHAT ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO?
I read tons of books. Very excited for Green Lantern: Rebirth. Wolverine will be Millar’s best. I love Warren Ellis [...] Iron Man will be amazing. The art is stunning.

ARE YOU PARTICULARLY FOND OF DD #161 (DD VS. GLADIATOR)?
I like Gladiator. It’s a damn good idea for a villian. That is a good issue. My first Miller ever.

DID JESSICA JONES EVER TRY TO KEEP HER IDENTITY SECRET BACK WHEN SHE WAS A SUPERHERO?
She had a secret id, she tossed it unceremoniously.

IF YOU WERE OFFERED A SPOT AS MARVEL’S EDITOR IN CHIEF, WOULD YOU TAKE IT AND GIVE UP WRITING MONTHLY STUFF?
I couldn’t take the pay cut. :D I love that joke. Really, I do not want the job. I would fire everyone :D

WHAT DO YOU SEE AT THE BIGGEST PROBLEM WITH COMICS TODAY?
Fans rewarding bad behavior of creators and publishers. (Late books, bad rushed comics, solicitation lies..)

WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THOR? HE IS MY FAVORITE HERO, HE WILL DIE? NO MORE COMICS OF THOR? HE WILL NOT BE IN AVENGERS IN DISASSEMBLED OR IN THE NEW FORMATION? PLEASE GIVE ME HOPE!!
Hope.

HOW CAN DOC OCK TAKE A PUNCH FROM SPIDER-MAN IF HE IS JUST A REGULAR GUY WITH THESE CRAZY MECHANICAL ARMS? WOULDN’T A FULL SHOT TO THE JAW JUST FUCK HIM UP ROYALLY?
Crazy people don’t feel pain.

IF YOU COULD HAVE POWERS CROSSOVER WITH ANY BOOK, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Um, whatever Jim Lee is drawing :)

IF YOU COULD KILL ONE CHARACTER, WHICH WOULD IT BE, AND WHY?
Just one, what fun is that? :)

IF YOU COULD BRING ONE CHARACTER BACK FROM THE DEAD, WHICH WOULD IT BE?
Karen Page.

DID YOU EVER READ THE LAST AVENGERS STORY?
I’ve been looking for it. It’s hard to find.

IS ULTIMATE NICK FURY BLACK OR INDIAN? CAUSE HE SAID HE WENT TO COLLEGE IN INDIA, BUT HE LOOKS BLACK.
Black. I’ve been to Spain, doesn’t make me Spanish.

JESSICA DREW ISN’T A BOTTOM FEEDER?
She has the best hair in comics :D
…BUT SERIOUSLY!?!
Drew used to be a Hydra agent and a SHIELD agent. How does that do ya? You may be making too much of the bottom feeder comment.

WHAT MAKES JESSICA DREW ONE OF MARVEL’S BEST CHARACTERS?
[The] best hair in comics. Plus, she releases a hormone that makes everyone around her (boy or girl) attracted to her.

WHO’S THE MODEL FOR JESSICA IN ALIAS/PULSE?
That would be Mrs. Gaydos and don’t get all JonnyZ on me. Family stays at home.

ARE YOU A FAN OF CHRISTOPHER PRIEST’S WORK?
Yes, but I haven’t read enough.

DID YOU NOTICE THAT BOTH THE ULTIMATE AND CLASSIC MARVEL U DEATHS OF CAPTAIN STACY AND GWEN STACY WERE BOTH 31 ISSUES APART? DID YOU INTEND TO DO THIS?
No, wow, that is odd.

WHAT’S YOUR OPINION OF ENGLEHART’S AND THOMAS’ RUN ON AVENGERS?
Oh, I am a huge fan of it and was beeming when my Essential Avengers came this week. I am an Avengers fan.

IF YOU COULD DO WHATEVER YOU WANTED ON A SUPERMAN BOOK, NO CONTINUITY, USE PROFANITY, WHATEVER, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
Realize the character has no value in our more modern culture and cancel it.. Then USM would be the number TWO book :D

HAVE YOU EVER HAD A CHANCE TO SIT DOWN WITH CHRIS CLAREMONT AND TALK SHOP?
Actually, Chris has been quite nice to me of late, and though we haven’t spent a lot of time speaking, it’s all been very pleasant. Me and him are cooking a little something.

WHO TITLES THE ULTIMATE SPIDEY TRADES? WHAT WILL THE ONE WITH ALL THE TEAMS UPS (DR STRANGE, WOLVERINE, HUMAN TORCH) BE CALLED?
I do mostly, and I think it’s called WHORE.

YOU’VE SAID WHEN POWERS V2.1 [SWITCHED FROM IMAGE TO MARVEL] IT HAD A DIFFERENT ENDING [..] I WAS CURIOUS WHAT THAT ORIGINAL ENDING WAS.
We didn’t show Retro Girl, just teased it.

AS A DAREDEVIL WRITER, DO YOU VIEW DD’S RADAR SENSE AS A TOTALLY SEPARATE THING OR DO YOU VIEW IT AS A COMBINATION OF HIS ENHANCED SMELL/SOUND/TOUCH?
Stan says it’s separate, it’s separate.

ARE THERE ANY PLANS FOR SOLO TITLES FOR ANY OF THE ANNOUNCED NEW AVENGERS WHO DON’T ALREADY HAVE SOLO TITLES (SPIDERWOMAN, CAGE, SENTRY)?
I would not be surprised.

DO YOU READ… ?
EX MACHINA?

Yes. SHE-HULK?
Yes. BONE
Yes. 100 BULLETS?
Not anymore. CARL BARKS or DON ROSA’S UNCLE SCROOGE?
Of course. ASTRO CITY?
Yes.

HOW LONG DO YOU PLAN TO REMAIN ON USM? DO YOU HAVE #100 PLANNED OUT?
Editor’s Note: Brian is now well past issue #100 of USM.

IS SHIELD AN ACRONYM OR THE NAME OF THE COMPANY IN THE ULTIMATE UNIVERSE?
Name.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE STORY ABOUT A BAD CHARACTER?
Alan Moore’s Clayface story.

DID YOU EVER READ JAMES ROBINSON’S STARMAN?
Yes. I liked it.

DO YOU DO STUFF FOR CBLDF?
I offer, they never follow through, so I donate my time to ACTOR and Doctors Without Borders.

WHO DO YOU WANT TO TAKE OVER WHEN YOU LEAVE…DD?
Brian K. Vaughan and David Finch would be cool. (Editor’s Note: Ed Brubaker and Michael Lark took over DD upon Brian’s departure.) ULTIMATE SPIDEY?
If I don’t say Kirkman he will cry. So Kirkman, but I am never leaving, so calm down Kirkie!

ANY CHANCE OF GETTING DARKHAWK ONTO THE AVENGERS AT THIS TIME? THAT WOULD MAKE ME PICK UP THE SERIES!
I would gain you and lose about 70,000 people.

IS SECRET WAR AND DISASSEMBLED CONNECTED? IT REALLY SEEMS SO…
They are both written and published by the same people.

WHY DO YOU ALLOW BOOKS WITH YOUR NAME IN TO BE SUBJECT TO MERELY COMMERCIAL MOVES (LIKE VARIANT COVERS?)
Well, I appreciate your very well worded thoughts on the subject. Truth is I have no or very little say in the matter of variants. It’s an entirely different part of the business than the one I am in. But I do know that retailers love them. They ask for them and the ones you see are more often than not ones that retailers, when asked, requested. Fans like them too. Look, they sell. I say, do what I do, only buy what you like. Only support the books by creators you think really want to give you the best they have. If it has more than one cover, look at them, and buy the nicest one. And don’t worry about what anyone else is buying.

DID YOU DISCUSS WHAT YOU WERE GOING TO BE DOING WITH SHE-HULK WITH SLOTT OR DID HE JUST HAVE TO GO ALONG WITH YOUR PLANS?
Tom B did. And he didn’t have to do anything. His book is his book.

HAVE YOU READ ANY OF SCOTT MCCLOUD’S BOOKS? THOUGHTS?
I loved the first one, hated the second one, looking forward to the new one. McCloud was on this board arguing with me about the second one, he’s a stand up guy.

IS CAPTAIN AMERICA OUTDATED AS A SOLO CHARACTER?
Not one bit.

WHAT SAY DO YOU HAVE IN THE CHOICE TO MAKE DIRECTORS CUTS ALA AVENGERS 500?
They are really cool about stuff like this. They ask for all our extras and ask what we would want in it. They do it on the hardcovers too.

WHAT ARE YOUR ‘MUST READ’ COMICS?
Planetary, Astonishing X-Men, Global Frequency, Ultimates, I could go on and on..

THE MAIN CHARACTER IN FIRE, BEN, IS BASICALLY YOU WITH A FUNKY HAIRCUT, RIGHT?
That was actually my hair at the time.

WILL WE EVER SEE A COMIC DRAWN BY YOU IN COLOR?
Yes. My next drawn book will be black and white.

YOU MENTIONED SCOTT LANG WAS A FAVORITE CHARACTER OF YOURS. WHAT WAS IT ABOUT HIM THAT APPEALED?
Read Alias. I think it’s all there. I love flawed characters dying to redeem themselves.

NAME DROP TIME – THOUGHTS ON:

 

  • CHRIS CLAREMONT – Rather pleasant chap
  • ALEX ROSS – Scared to work with me :D
  • JUDD WINNICK – Great guy.
  • GAIL SIMONE – Future superstar.
  • BILL HICKS – Missed
  • QUENTIN TARANTINO – So far hasn’t missed.WHAT DOES/DID IT MEAN TO YOU PERSONALLY AND PROFESSIONALLY TO WORK ON DAREDEVIL?
    It meant everything. It’s the book with the highest standard of excellence attached and it taught me what a comic could be.

    IS JESSICA DREW STILL AN AGENT OF SHIELD?
    Yes.

    YOU STATED THAT SUPERMAN WASN’T A RELEVANT CHARACTER ANYMORE. WHY?
    No, I said I didn’t think he was identifiable. Peter Parker is totally identifiable, I wonder if Superman is.

    WHAT CLASSIC FF STORIES DO YOU WANT TO SEE IN ULTIMATE FF?
    Galactus, baby! Inhumans. Herbie. Namor. Negative Zone.

    THE R KELLY GUY IN THE POWERS SUPERGROUP TPB WAS ALSO A PARODY OF PORNSTAR PETER NORTH, RIGHT?
    [..] It was only R Kelly. Someone showed me the tape, it’s shocking.