See, you make jokes about Marvel being quiet and DC being on the charm offensive for a few weeks, and then bam! Marvel rules the August chart and take over the mothership with stories this week. I mean, Brian Bendis talked to Matt twice this week about Secret Invasion (A catch-up/primer and a main story), giving us bon mots like “I’m of the mindset that [the Secret Invasion series] has to hit all of its dates. The pieces are so delicate. It has to ship – the reveals are huge, and it does affect other books, and I think we all deserve a crossover book that ships on time.”
Of course, talking about Secret Invasion presumes the existence of a Marvel Universe post-World War Hulk, so Matt also talked to the now-double-sized Hulk creative team to discuss what’s next for our gamma-irradiated chum after he’s finished trying to take over the world, while Benjamin Ong Pang Kean spent his time chatting to Adi Granov about all things Iron Man. With our own Mr. Brady also discussing the new, very 1990s-retro, stage of the X-Men with the X-Editors and then talking to Robin Furth about the next Dark Tower series, the main site was in danger of running out of people to talk to Marvel creators, but to the delight of all involved, Mark Millar stepped in to lend his talents to the interviewing of Daniel Way. The result? An introduction like this:
To say Daniel Way is the best-kept secret in modern comics would be a bit of a disservice, considering all his comics sell so bloody well. Judging from the numbers on Wolverine: Origins, Ghost Rider, the Bullseye mini and so on, you know this guy already. Or at least you both know and like his work because you’ve been voting with your yankee dollars and making him, I think, the highest-selling comic-book writer of his generation. Out of all the twenty-something writers in the biz right now, he’s by far the most bankable and, in my both humble and worthless opinion, the best new guy doing work-for-hire at either of the big two… He’s Marvel’s little ATM and has a punchy, economic visual style that puts him up there with BKV and Garth.
And people say Mark is too obsessed with sales and money…
(This wasn’t the only case of creators interviewing each other this week; Mark Waid interviewed his creative partners on his new Boom! book, Potters Field, as well.)
Meanwhile, DC fans could console themselves with Dan DiDio explaining why Countdown has read so choppily so far:
As a couple of the storylines wind up, and some of them will start winding up very soon, one of the tings that we’re working towards right now is to be able to open up the remaining storylines to make them much more reflective and get into the characters that those stories are about. Also, you’re going to see less things typing in together. Once we get past the end of the year, with Countdown: Arena and such going on, all of the roads that lead to Final Crisis will basically be standing on their own. Countdown starts to become its own story as we focus on Mary Marvel, Jimmy Olsen and Karate Kid, and then you start to see the characters come loose from Countdown.
See? The problem is that Countdown isn’t its own story, it’s… uh… something else?
Other DC presence on the site this week consisted of the usual previews, Billy Tucci writing about his new Sgt. Rock series, Mike Hawthorne on the Vertigo series Un-Men, and Pete Tomasi talking about his Black Adam series, including his answering his critics:
I’m also amazed at the reaction to the violence level by some readers. Seeing that they were shocked by the shooting and stabbings and the little dinner stop on the mountain side that Teth takes—hearing that they couldn’t understand how DC would let a character like Black Adam of the Marvel family books be so brutal and violent. It really stuns me when I see responses like that because they know what kinda book they’re stepping into from the get-go. Here’s a character who, in the last few years, has murdered hundreds of thousands of people, punched out hearts, punched out faces and brains, did some pretty dastardly things in the recent series World War Three all of which is on panel I might add, and then suddenly they feel like this level of violence in Dark Age is coming outta left field. Well, gimme a break!
And something else I wanna add: the violence in Black Adam: The Dark Age, while obviously graphic, is not gratuitous in my opinion. I feel it serves a purpose and grows outta the story organically and is in keeping with the character’s motivations at this place and time. So, if you can’t stand the heat, get outta the kitchen as my ol’ pal Harry Truman would say.
The funny thing? Tomasi actually knew Truman. He’s that old.
Maybe you’re sick of the Big Two, and would rather read about companies who wanted to be the Big Two once. Luckily, we’ve got you covered there as well – Both Josh Fialkov and Jason Aaron stopped by to talk about their Top Cow: Pilot Season books this week, and you could also see Matt Wagner’s first image for Dynamite’s new Zorro book, as well. Alternatively, Garth Ennis briefly talked about his new Avatar Western series, Streets of Glory, Jamie McKelvie talked about Suburban Glamour, which I’m really looking forward to, and David Hine spoke about his Tokyopop book, Poison Candy, and revealed how unhappy his childhood was:
[E]ssentially what I wanted to do was write a story about being a teenager (before I forget what it was like). It’s about dreams, aspirations and fears for the future, Most of all it’s about betrayal. The key experience of adolescence is to find out that adults have been lying to you. Father Christmas, the Easter Bunny and Weapons of Mass Destruction don’t exist. Your Mom and Dad are not the Perfect All-American Couple. And when someone over thirty tells you to trust them, run for the hills! The perfect metaphor for that betrayal is the urban legend of creepy old people giving trick or treaters poisoned candy on Halloween.
Screwy childhoods. That’s why we’re all here, my friends. Sad but true…