For the second month in a row, a format change for this column (we’ll be abandoning the Q&A format in favor of writing actual articles) has been scuttled by my inability to break away from the day job before Wednesday. I’m going to present the Q&A that Gavin Higginbotham and I did with Erik Larsen, unedited for the most part, so that readers can get this today.
Blog@Newsarama: We were actually hoping you could clear some things up. In the chaos of battle, I couldn’t tell which of these Vicious Circle types Kurr actually killed and which he just took out of commission.
Erik Larsen: I can’t really do much with this one. The point was to make this all seem chaotic and make it appear that Dragon killed the lot of ‘em–it also was left somewhat ambiguous so that I could use a few of these guys later if I wanted to. If I say “this guy’s alive” it kind of takes away from the punch of the issue.I liken it to that issue of Daredevil where it appeared that Elektra killed Ben Urich. We had to wait a month before we found out that he was okay. If I said, “this guy’s fine, as is this one and that one” it would lose something.
Blog@: I know you want to keep the death count under your hat, but it certainly seemed like last month we were talking about Dragonslayer being part of the effort to make the book more new-reader-friendly; he DEFINITELY looked dead. Assuming he was, can we expect to see the armor around anyway?
EL: No–the armor blew to bits as a last ditch by R.Richard Richards to kill Dragon–it’s gone. The armor’s creator is still out there, however, and presumably he can make more of the same.
Blog@: Will this issue mark a turning point in the way Angel and Malcolm see Kurr, or will they continue tryin to bring the old Dragon out of him?
EL: I don’t think either want to give up on the old man but both are pretty aware that he’s not the guy he was–at the same time they’re both responsible for his resurrection and as the story unfolds that’s going to weigh heavy on them. This is a monster they unleashed.
Blog@: Will Kurr’s skin remain that color for the rest of the story, or is this a momentary thing and he’ll have healed the next time we see him?
EL: He’ll be back to normal by the next time we see him. Some time will have passed between issues #160 and 161. One of the pitfalls of setting a book in real time is that you’ve gotta try and cover a lot of ground. You can’t have each issue spill into the next.
Blog@: Are there any halfblood Dragons left out there, who weren’t part of this issue’s battle royale?
EL: Not from the Vicious Circle. It was stated at one point that the villainess BattleAxe had a child and we can only assume that Darkworld Dragon was its father but at this point we haven’t seen that child.
Blog@: Does Overlord have some kind of plan percolating in the back of his head? Seems strange for him to have set himself up as an advocate for the freaks, only to send a bunch of them off to get pummeled.
EL: Overlord has all kinds of plans brewing–some of which will pan out–others of which will fall flat. This new Overlord isn’t necessarily as much of a mastermind as the old one was, though quite a bit deadlier thanks to the armor being overhauled. We’ll certainly be seeing more over Overlord in the months to come.
Blog@: Is Kurr not worried about these guys “coming back” or is he just trying to bleed them dry of his blood? He didn’t do the “stop, drop and eat brains” drill on any of the folks he pounded this issue.
EL: Mostly he’s making sure his blood isn’t being put to use in somebody that shouldn’t have it. Since most of the group lost their heads in the fracas, it really wasn’t necessary to eat their brains. And that was much more necessary with Darkworld Dragon who was fully functional. The Vicious Circle goons may have had green skin and a fin but given Dragon’s previous experience with Cutthroat and Glowbug–he knows they’re not quite as hard to dispose of as he would be.
Blog@: Nice to see Angel finally really step up in this story; did seeing her “mom” have anything to do with pushing her to the edge of cracking like that?
EL: She’s definitely in a fragile emotional state. She was just rejected by Daredevil and just moved back in with Mildred Darling, her stepbrother Malcolm and Frank jr. Seeing her mother after all this time was a slap in the face. Seeing her stepbrother backhanded by her stepfather really made her snap.
Blog@: Kurr seems to suggest that he’s allowing Malcolm to live because of their relationship; is there something there that’ll come into play later in the story, or is it just a very basic biological instinct thing?
EL: A bit of both. There’s something very special about Kurr and his son as well. Their people called Kurr the “chosen one” and his son would be one of those as well. Blood is thicker than water. Kurr sees himself doing what is right for his son in a twisted kind of way.