No announcement yet.

FABRICE SAPOLSKY talks INTERTWINED #6, the grand finale, out March!

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • FABRICE SAPOLSKY talks INTERTWINED #6, the grand finale, out March!

    FABRICE SAPOLSKY talks INTERTWINED #6, the grand finale, out March from Dynamite!

    BYRON BREWER: Fabrice, as your first fantastic arc comes to a conclusion in March’s Intertwined #6, you have so many balls being juggled in the air I don’t know where to begin asking you questions. How long has the first story of this series been in the planning stages for you, and as the climax approaches in March have you told the initial story you set out to tell?

    FABRICE SAPOLSKY: Actually, when I first had the story in mind, back in early ’15, the series’ title was just “The Spirit of the Earth”. But I found this too on the nose, and it would’ve been too close to Will Eisner’s Spirit, so I changed it for Intertwined. Most of the elements were already there. I still have the memo I wrote on my iPhone in the plane during my Paris-Beijing trip. I refined the story after, but most of the stuff you can read in the published version has been planned since day one. The pacing has changed. Some scenes came before, some after. Initially, the character of Luca was supposed to be a twin girl to Natalie, who we met briefly in issue #4. But yes, it’s basically the same story.

    BB: On his way to making some decisions, Juan Jin of a sudden has blood on his hands. Although he will most likely go on to challenge his Metal counterpart, does Luca’s death diminish Juan’s status as either a Spirit or a hero?

    FS: I think Luca’s death is a key factor in Juan’s decision to become a hero. He only realized in issue #5 that he couldn’t just go back to doing Kung Fu for the rest of his life after his New York adventure. There’s a bigger picture here. Spirits are warriors. They defend the Elements. They fight for justice. They can kill. Is that a good thing? We’ll see how Juan can change the Spirits from the inside. I think, being from a different generation, not having been groomed to be the next Spirit of the Earth, he’s more spontaneous. He’s – pardon the pun—a breeze of fresh air on the Spirits’ lair.

    BB: We’ve talked about Juan Jin in these interviews and how the character reflects the writer. Tell us of Nei Chang and what was behind the creation of this character. What aspects of Fabrice Sapolsky does Chang reflect?

    FS: Nei Chang’s character is loosely based on a real member of the Triads (the Chinese mafia). He’s the Darth Vader type. A guy who used to be good, but trained to be ruthless. If it was the X-Men, he’d be Wolverine in his early days. Somebody living on the edge of darkness. But with a strong belief in what he was drafted to do. That’s the Darth Vader syndrome. He thinks he can save people by going to the dark side. When Nei Chang murders the Spirit of the Earth, it’s because he thinks his peers are morally corrupted. And he wants to clean the house. You’ll see in the end why, and it’ll shock you. I also wanted to convey a message: if you’re too close to the book, you can’t read. You misinterpret. And people can die because of your bigotry. Nei Chang is a self-proclaimed judge, jury and executioner of the Elements. As to how he’s related to me… Well, I think we all have our dark sides, don’t we? Writing fiction is a way of controlling them.

    BB: For such a spiritual, kung-fu-fightin’ book there is certainly much real-world reality here, as seems your forte. What if anything can you tell us about the Haitian refugees (whatever their fate) and their inclusion in this adventure?

    FS: As we saw all through the series, the Haitians have a huge part in the story. To Juan, they’re brothers in arms. They left a country which, at the time, was ruled by a dictator. Mother Nature hasn’t spared their island either. The country has been struck by many typhoons and earthquakes. As I said more than once, Haitians are terrific people. Always optimistic despite all the trouble they experienced. To me it was a no-brainer, considering how the Elements have played a huge part in their history, to include them. And if we get to do more Intertwined, you’ll see Haitian heroes along the way. But you’re right, I always saw comics as a Trojan horse of sorts. You mainly write fiction. If you only want to see fiction, well, you’ll be happy. If you want to read through the panels and words and think about the world we live in, there’s plenty of stuff in my books too. Comics aren’t just a single-layered thing. Plus, the series is called Intertwined for a reason, right?

    BB: We’ve spoken of the research you have done for parts of Intertwined. Was there anything you did particular for Chinatown?

    FS: Not really. Remember that this first story arc is an introduction. We see the story through an immigrant’s eyes. So I tried to act accordingly. The more I wrote, the more I felt I had to discover Chinatown.

    BB: Is it me or has Fred Pham Chuong been hitting on all cylinders for this book?

    FS: I couldn’t agree more. And it seems like the pressure of finishing the book on time gave him an extra boost. His work on the series is better and better. He’s on fire! (laughs)

    BB: So, if Intertwined does have a sequel/second season, what in March’s grand finale issue, #6, should we look at to get our mouths watering for Intertwined 2?

    FS: The final issue will leave the situation very open for all characters. Again, it’s a story I could write for years. I have plenty of material in my head. There’s a lot more to tell about the Spirits of Wu Xing. Their history. Their legacy. The evolution of their power. And there’s the human element. Juan’s journey, of course. Will he stick as the Spirit of the Earth? Will he come back to Hong-Kong? I also planted seeds for romance in the book. A lot of the Kung-Fu movies of the seventies didn’t really make room for that. But later, in the 80s and 90s, there were some pretty of interesting Kung-Fu/romance tales. I want to capture that and include it in Intertwined too! I could go on forever. But in the end, it’ll be in readers’ hands. The more they buy the book, the more we’ll produce stories. So you guys should do that: buy Intertwined! (smiles)