COMICS: Kieron Gillen Talks In Details About His Marvel NOW! IRON MAN Series
Kieron Gillen (Journey Into Mystery, Uncanny X-Men) talks revealingly about his plans for Iron Man in this November's 'Marvel NOW!' relaunch, commenting on "Extremis", artist Greg Land, the connections to Robert Downey Jr.'s take on the character and more.
In a lengthy interview with our friends over at Newsarama, Kieron Gillen has revealed his plans for the Armoured Avenger in this November's relaunched Iron Man series. The British writer has quickly become one of Marvel's best, with fantastic runs on Journey Into Mystery (where he has made 'Kid Loki' a fan favourite character) and Uncanny X-Men. The Marvel NOW! series will see Gillen re-team with artist Greg Land, and he talks about all that and more below. Be sure to click on the link at the bottom of the page to read the Q&A in full.
On Whether He Has Talked To Invincible Iron Man Writer Matt Fraction At All:
We've talked a little, though less than you'd think. Primarily we've just been making sure our books line up, in terms of where he's leaving Tony and where I'm starting off. I'm a little nervous of showing him anything actually — I haven't shown any scripts, or any of the lettering copies of the finished art (we've got three issues in the can at the time of writing, actually). Actually, [Iron Man editor Mark Paniccia] tells me he's lobbed him the first issue and my scripts, so — er — go ask Matt what he makes of them. Don't tell me.
On What Makes Greg Land The Right Artist For The Series:
For the first arc — which consists of five standalone episodes connected by a larger plot — has a pacing miles away from anything we did on Uncanny. Is it less "superhero"? Hmm. Not entirely sure. The book is more adventure-led than Iron Man has been under Matt, and Uncanny had an almost paramilitary ambience at times. We're leaning heavily into the glamour of Iron Man's existence, that glossy showiness. Greg does that particularly well, both the sleek technological lines and the curve of a champagne flute. There's even some mild formalist stuff we're including, which I explicitly nod towards in issue #4. To state the obvious: how on Earth do you think Tony Stark sees the world?
On His Plans For "Extremis":
For me, the joy of Iron Man is that it's a suit. That's part of the fantasy. It's something he dons, the superhero costume as superpower. While it can be fun for a while to play with the tech-as-superpower aspect, I think it does detract from part of the core appeal. My take on Extremis is absolutely cut to the core. This is a programming system for humans. With its striking uses, I think we tend to get confused between the applications of the tech and what the tech could be used for. I mean, Maya didn't make it because she wanted to make dudes breathe fire. She made it because she wanted humanity to be able to redefine whatever it could be. So that's handy both as a metaphor for me, and as a device for generating new villains. Four Extremis kits, out in the wild, with four different groups, with four different ideas of what they want to do with it. And, for the sake of my over-arcing story, each one provides a different challenge to Tony, emotionally, physically and intellectually. Is Iron Man 3 about Extremis? That's interesting. If it is, I'd imagine it'd be splendid for people to come out of the cinema and pick up my book. Awesome!
On Whether Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark/Iron Man Influences His Take On The Character:
The plan is to make Iron Man recognizable, both to people who only know the movies and people who are embedded so far into the Marvel Universe they're pretty much characters in it. One of the ways I've tried to do it is actually to stress the differences a little, so that people who come from the films recognize something, and see that it's in a different but intriguing place. I mean, movie Tony is with Pepper. Comic Tony isn't. It's funny — people say that Comic Tony is so much more responsible than Movie Tony to me, and I find myself thinking, "Well, which one is managing an adult relationship with a serious woman?" I'm not saying they're wrong, but I see the differences as more complicated. And that, for me, is a useful device to make stories that are both interesting and accessible. But does RDJ influence me? I suspect a bit. Tony has more of a smart mouth than he had — say — 20 years ago, and that's totally RDJ. That said, I don't think anyone who's read my stuff would be surprised to see a Tony who's handy with his mouth in one of my books, y'know?
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