05/09/14 @ 10:35 am EST
Tim Seeley Interviews Greg Pak About TUROK
Writer Greg Pak discusses Turok and writing diverse characters.
Writer Greg Pak has been redefining Turok for a whole new generation over at Dynamite. Tim Seeley interviewed Pak about his work on TUROK: DINOSAUR HUNTER and writing different types of characters.
TIM SEELEY: Hey Greg! I think we've met a few times, including once when I drunkenly, and from a distance I mistook you for Joe Hill. Yeah...I know. Sigh.
GREG PAK: I remember that! I kept walking, just to be on the safe side. Also, I am a coward.
TS: Anyway, let's talk TUROK!
GP: Woo hoo!
TS: Having the European arrival involve using dinosaurs as means of eradicating the native population...that seems like an ingenious parallel to Europeans arriving with smallpox infected blankets. Is it tough to manage the very serious aspects of what happened historically in a book that has to be about a bad ass dude fighting dinosaurs?
GP: My favorite genre stories all work on multiple levels. On one level, MARTIAN CHRONICLES is about genocide. On one level, JAWS is about government corruption. I think science fiction and fantasy provide great areas to play with multiple themes like this. The trick is always to keep everything rooted in the characters and to never squish them around in weird ways to accommodate whatever theme you think you're working on. Once you let a preconceived theme take over at the expense of emotional truth, the story becomes a tedious "message" piece that no one really wants to read.
TS: Turok has been "rebooted" a number of times, and has transitioned from comics to video games and back. What makes Turok such a fluid and adaptable character and concept?
GP: I think the best genre characters like this are incredibly simple at first blush, which allows you to explore them in all kinds of different, more complex ways. Turok's a Native American who fights dinosaurs. That simple statement implies all kinds of crazy things about the world in which Native Americans and dinosaurs live at the same time and can lead to a multitude of very different, rich stories. It's like the Hulk -- guy gets angry and turns into a supremely strong monster. Again, very simple idea that a hundred different writers can take in a hundred different directions.
TS: You're kind of known as a guy who is able to really pull the essence of a character to the forefront, especially after your work on Hercules, and most recently Superman. What's your approach when you get a new assignment? Is there a lot of research to find that "soul?" Or do you come into a project knowing that and that's what guides you?
GP: Hey, thanks for the kind words!
And it's a combination of both. I'll often take on a project because the instant I heard about it, I felt it in my gut -- I just instinctively knew the character and what the story would become. Sure, the project will develop organically and collaboratively and my ideas will change and grow. But often from the beginning I can feel that click. The Hulk and Superman and Turok are a bit like that for me -- from the minute I first started talking with editors about these characters, I felt at home. And then other times, I have to work at it longer to get under the characters' skins and figure out what's going on and what they really want and who the heck they really are. The toughest for me was probably Johann Schmidt, the orphan who eventually becomes the Red Skull, whose origin story we told in RED SKULL INCARNATE. I had to kind of work my way into that one, taking more time to read about habitual killers and psychopaths in order to figure out how he might have become who he is.
TS: With Storm coming up for you, and Turok under your belt, you're one of the writers breaking the ol' WHITE HETEREO MALE mold that has dominated superhero comics since the 60s. What's the importance of giving minority characters the proper starring spotlight in the modern era?
GP: Ha! Yeah, diversity in storytelling has always been hugely important to me. I grew up as a half-Korean kid reading Spider-man and Superman and loving them, and I still do. But I remember being hugely affected by characters like Storm and Robbie Robertson. When you grow up looking different from everyone around you, fictional stories can remind you that you still belong, that there's a place for you, that your dreams should never be limited by other people's racism. So yes, I think it's hugely important and worthwhile to diversify comics. The fact that Turok is Native American and Storm is black is a huge reason why I jumped on the chance to write those books.
TS: And why do you think there's a small but very vocal pushback against it?
GP: I've personally gotten no pushback from anyone about the non-white characters I've been writing. I love my readers -- they are FANTASTIC and I literally owe my entire career to them.
But of course, we've all seen racist rants online from people distressed about characters like Miles Morales and non-white actors being cast in THOR and FANTASTIC FOUR.
All I can say about that is... bless their hearts, but I don't care. The world is changing -- for the better -- when it comes to diversity in storytelling. That's good for everyone -- white people, too, because it opens all our hearts up to other people. And that's something to celebrate.
Make sure to check out TUROK: DINOSAUR HUNTER from Dynamite Comics!
01/28/15 @ 9:22 am EST
Dynamite; $3.99 According to Thomas Wolfe, “You can’t go home again.” But Mr. Wolfe didn’t mention anything about going home to your past. In the first issue of Twilight Zone a successful writer flies back to his hometown for a book signing. What he finds is more than he anticipated when he finds himself face to face with his younger self. Upon encountering his younger self, he must decide if he should help the troubled, abused boy or leave him to suffer knowing what the future holds after that suffering is endured. The story written by Mark Rahner is very interesting both for its philosophical and ethical quandary. The question posed to this man is one anybody would struggle to answer. On top of that is the eerie, unsettling feeling leading up to these moments. The weight of the title is enough to warn readers that this plane ride will not be the usual trip. Edu Menna’s art aides the story by drawing characters with haggard visages, setting the tone for a story both complicated and thought provoking. This first issue comes with covers by Guiu Vilanova, Francesco Francavilla, Jay Shaw, and Jonathan Lau.
01/20/15 @ 1:51 pm EST
Lots of Dynamite/Dynamic Forces news: Art sales, Reanimator returns, Looking for Group and Jungle Girl by Frank Cho 01/19/2015 by Heidi MacDonald Leave a Comment
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Dynamite and Dynamic Forces have been making a lot of announcements, and there isn’t even a con coming. Here’s the round-up: • Dynamic Forces CEO Nick Barrucci is selling art from his personal collection by Tom Raney, Mark Bagley, Scott Hanna, and Patrick Zircher from books like The Outsiders, The Punisher, Uncanny X-Men, Ultimate Spider-Man, The Order, Robin, and more. A portion of the proceeds will go to benefit the CBLDF. Barrucci owns hundreds of pages of art, and fans can order by artist: orders will be filled randomly for $75 a page. Here are the links to the pages: Part One Part Two Part Three
“Art collecting has been a passion of mine for years,” Barrucci explained. “For the past 30 years, I have been picking up pieces from my favorite artists whenever I can. I look at my collection on a regular basis, as I love to appreciate the form, ...
01/20/15 @ 11:04 am EST
is proud to announce that industry sensation Frank Cho
will return to Jungle Girl
, the comic book series that showcases Jana, a primal heroine in a prehistoric Lost World. Co-written by Doug Murray
) and illustrated by Jack Jadson
(The Savage Hawkman
), Jungle Girl: Season Three
will debut with a new #1 issue in April 2015, featuring an explosive cover by Frank Cho.Jungle Girl: Season Three
picks up where the previous series left off, following Jana's escape from an underwater city and a gigantic, otherworldly creature. However, her father soon reveals that those actions have doomed the Lost World in which they all live, as a wormhole appears in the sky and flaming debris begins to fall through. As the jungle burns, Jana and her friends must contend with stampeding behemoths and displaced, murderous natives. Furthermore, the rift presents a new, fearsome threat, for the fire from an alien dimension was not the only thing to come through.
"I'm delighted to be back with my co-creator, Doug Murray, and finish out the final story arc of Jungle Girl
," says Frank Cho, one of today's most recognizable names in comic book illustration. Cho began his career with a cartoon strip called University2
, published in the Diamondback
student newspaper at the University of Maryland, College Park. The series evolved into the nationally syndicated comic strip Liberty Meadows
, later published and expanded in monthly comic books. Cho became the go-to artist for high-profile comic book projects, including Mighty Avengers
, X-Men: Schism
, Savage Wolverine
, and many more. Over the years, he has garnered numerous awards including an Emmy Award for the Frank Cho's World
documentary, the National Cartoonists Society's Awards for Best Comic Book and Book Illustration, the Eagle Award, the Charles M. ...
01/20/15 @ 10:42 am EST
We have an exclusive first look at the solicitations and covers for Dynamite’s Legendery
comics, Legenderry: Green Hornet
#3, Legenderry: Red Sonja
#3 and Legenderry: Vampirella
#3. LEGENDERRY: GREEN HORNET #3 (OF 5)
Cover: Sergio Fernandez Davila Writer: Daryl Gregory Art: Brent Peeples
ON SALE DATE: April 22 Will our heroes escape from Tik-Tok’s clockwork deathtrap? (Probably. It’s only issue 3.) They should hurry, though, because waiting in the wings is the mastermind behind the gang war… The Brass Hornet! Catch an issue full of hot Hornet on Hornet action. LEGENDERRY: RED SONJA #3 (OF 5)
Cover: Sergio Fernandez Davila Writer: Marc Andreyko Art: Aneke
ON SALE DATE: April 15 Sonja always fancied herself a pirate extraordinaire… until now! As she and her newest ally sail the high seas in pursuit of a madman bent on defying death, Red comes face to face with one of the most, ahem, legendary pirates of all time! The question is: whose side is he on? The adventure exploring the outer reaches of the LEGENDERRY world continues! LEGENDERRY: VAMPIRELLA #3 (OF 5)
Cover: Sergio Fernandez Davila Writer: David Avallone Art: David Cabrera
ON SALE DATE: April 8 Alliterative action, as Vampirella faces and fights corruption with Kurtz, romance with Rassendyll and violence with Van Helsing. Hentzau’s plot is in motion, Vampirella’s secrets are revealed and the moral of the story is never let Dr. Moreau give you a haircut.
08/13/14 @ 4:10 pm EST
“We Were Part Of An Email Tree, So I Always Knew Who Was Writing What” – Nancy A Collins On Collaborating For Legends Of Red Sonja
Posted on August 13, 2014 by Dan Wickline
With this week’s release of Legends Of Red Sonja trade, we get to see the She-Devil with a Sword written by some of the top talent in the industry. Nancy A. Collins (Vampirella) had a story in the first issue of the series and she talks to Kevin Pearl about her involvement in the project.
KEVIN PEARL: What about the Red Sonja character most appeals to you?
NANCY A COLLINS: That she’s a no-nonsense kind of gal who knows how to get things done, and ...