EXCLUSIVE: Artist Ryan Stegman Talks THE SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN, SCARLET SPIDER And More

Artist Ryan Stegman talks to us here about his first arc with writer Dan Slott on The Superior Spider-Man, the pressures of working on a comic book surrounded by so much hype, his role in bringing back Scarlet Spider and much, much more! Check it out.

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By Josh Wilding - 12/27/2012
After launching a new Scarlet Spider ongoing series with writer Christopher Yost and a team-up with Jonathan Hickman during his critically acclaimed Fantastic Four run, artist Ryan Stegman is now facing perhaps his greatest challenge yet. Next January will see the release of issues #1 and #2 of Dan Slott's The Superior Spider-Man and it is Stegman who will be providing his incredible artwork for both those and the third instalment the following month.

When plot details for Amazing Spider-Man #700 were leaked, they were understandably met with a great deal of upset and scepticism from fans. However, now that the issue has actually gone on sale, the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive (as you can see from my 5* review by clicking HERE). Regardless, with a bold new status quo now firmly established, it falls to Slott and Stegman to continue the story of the new Spider-Man. The latter was kind enough to recently take the time out of his hectic schedule to talk to us here at CBM about his past, present and future projects; specifically his work on both Scarlet Spider and The Superior Spider-Man.


Firstly, can you tell us about how you became a comic book artist and how you ended up working at Marvel?

Well, I guess I just aimed at being a comic book artist and somehow made it work out! I started by posting stuff on internet forums like Digital Webbing and then I got some interest from writers that had projects that they wanted to get going. So I'd draw stuff here and there and then I got a job drawing a book called "Midnight Kiss" for Markosia Comics. That was then transitioned into "Magician: Apprentice" for the Dable Brothers, a company that was then bought by Marvel. And suddenly I had Marvel editors and I was off to the races.


"Superior Spider-Man" has been one of Marvel's most talked about comics before the first issue has even been released; how do you feel to be involved in a book surrounded by so much speculation and hype?

Personally, I couldn't enjoy it anymore. I think it's probably much easier to be in my position than it is for Slott or Wacker. They bear the brunt of all of this. I am just the guy that draws it! But to have this many people care passionately about something you're working on is great. Even the negativity. They're all moved to think SOMETHING about it, and to me that's what makes good comics.


Do you enjoy interacting with fans on Twitter and seeing their reactions?

Absolutely. I do most of my fan interaction on Twitter because I think it makes my life easier in that it only allows 140 characters. So I can have short conversations with a lot of people rather than having long conversations with a few people. Because there's only so much time in the day. But yeah, I am very extroverted and yet I chose a profession where I work in my basement all by myself so I crave the interaction.


You've obviously known about the identity of the Superior Spider-Man for a while now. How did you feel when Dan [Slott] told you his plans for "Amazing Spider-Man #700" and beyond?

We were at C2E2 this past year when we went out for pizza and he laid it all out for me. I felt like I was in a secret CIA meeting. Dan was actually very open about it, he didn't seem to be too concerned about anyone finding anything out. But at the time, nobody would have known how big what he was cooking up would be. When he finished telling me EVERYTHING, because you see, ASM 700 is just the tip of the iceberg, I basically said, "Holy shit. That's amazing." I couldn't believe I was being given the opportunity to work on something so epic.


Can you take us through your working relationship with Dan and how it perhaps differs from other writers you've worked with?

The only real difference is that Dan writes more Marvel Style. Meaning he sends scripts without specific dialogue in them, but the descriptions are all there. And then he writes around what I do. But he gives plenty of info. On issue 3 of Superior, he's given me three pages of fight scene where I pretty much get to do whatever I want and that's a first. But yeah the major difference is that he gives a ton of slack and then is willing to work to what I do. And it's awesome.


What sort of input did you have in the design of the new costume and have you enjoyed putting your own unique spin on the suit so far?

I had no input! It was sent to me after I was given the job. I like it though, there's some cool features. As for adding my unique spin...Of course that's fun! I can't help but do that with every character that I draw. So I made some adjustments. I definitely make his eyes bigger than I've seen the other artists have. But I've always been a huge fan of the huge Spidey eyes, so I wasn't going to let anything stop me from giving him huge eyes!


We know that you're providing art for the first three issues, but how soon will you be back on the series after that?

You know, I'm not sure yet. That's a conversation that I'm sure I'll be having shortly! But probably around issue 10 I'd imagine? We'll see.


Is there any chance you can give us a clue as to what we should expect from the first arc?

Ha, I have to be very careful. But I think I can say that you will see a lot of things you didn't expect, that's for sure.


How much of a different approach have you taken to drawing the Superior Spider-Man to characters like Peter Parker or Kaine?

Well, Kaine is really where I took the detour. He's the different one. I made him bulkier and more menacing because that made sense for his character.


Talking of Kaine, what was it like for you to be involved with bringing him back to the Marvel Universe in his own series with Christopher Yost?

Definitely the highlight of my career up to this point. To see that book thriving and see other artists drawing that costume is just amazing. I hope it lasts forever. Part of me will always feel ownership over that character and the characters in that book because I was so connected to it. So I get such a kick out of it.


Did you manage to catch "The Amazing Spider-Man" in theatres earlier this year? If so, what did you think?

Ahaha...I'm tugging at my collar right now and gulping. I haven't seen it yet. I have a 22-month-old son and he's pretty much curbed the whole movie theater thing for me for a while. I OWN the Blu-Ray, but just haven't had the free time to watch it yet. As you can imagine, this Superior stuff is pretty much consuming me for the time being!


What advice would you give to anyone interested in becoming a comic book artist?

Practice, practice, practice. The thing that separates somebody that makes it from somebody that doesn't make it is just the work they put in. It's totally true and it's quantifiable. Just work harder than the next guy!


Finally, what would YOU like to say to fans about why they should pick up "Superior Spider-Man"?

Here's the truth: You have no idea what's coming. So you can complain and scream and say you're not going to pick it up, but if you don't you're going to regret it. Also, I drew it super awesome. So why not buy it, y'know?


Absolutely. Thanks for taking the time to talk to us Ryan!



The Superior Spider-Man #1 goes on sale on January 9th, 2013. You can check out Ryan's website by clicking HERE and follow him on Twitter at @RyanStegman.


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24 Comments
HelaGood - 12/27/2012, 9:52 AM
LOVE Stegman's work!!!!
SuperSomething616 - 12/27/2012, 9:57 AM
I like Ryan...i put a lot of stock in what he says...

Still doesnt stop me beinh peev'd off over Parkers treatment by Slott...
AlSimmons - 12/27/2012, 10:00 AM
Cool stuff may happen P[ock]er, but I don't want to read it, because it's not Parker. Now- go smash your own hands for agreeing to this crap.
longbowhunter - 12/27/2012, 10:01 AM
I liked ASM #700. Bust up the status quo for a while and we all know Pete will be back sooner rather than later. I'm not overly familiar with Stegman's work but I like Chris Yost quite a bit. Red Robin, New X-Men and X-Force were all great reads. I'd like to give Scarlet Spider a go.
Asterisk - 12/27/2012, 10:15 AM
He's a really good artist. I'm looking forward to this series very much.
hbk82287 - 12/27/2012, 10:21 AM
I see the whole octavius thing as peter's mind has been infected, they'll wipe it clean sooner or later. The fun part will be when others find out what happened.
AnonymousGuy - 12/27/2012, 10:27 AM
People need to stop thinking of this as a 'Spider-Man' comic. It's really a character study of Doctor Octopus when he's presented with some new knowledge and a second chance. It's a 'Doc Ock' comic if anything.
BrandoCalrissian - 12/27/2012, 10:33 AM
Overwhelmingly positive? I wouldn't have even had a bone to pick with you saying "mostly" positive (although even that isn't true). But overwhelmingly?
siggisuperman - 12/27/2012, 10:46 AM
I thought ASM 700 was great. I really like Dan's treatment of Peter Parker even if I don't like what Doc Ock has done to Peter. But if nothing bad happened to our heroes then it would be really boring... I am looking forward to seeing how they change it up with Spider-Man from now on..
Space - 12/27/2012, 11:01 AM
wait a minute, did he just threaten the readers?

well bring it on!

ibravosp5 - 12/27/2012, 11:07 AM
Man that ending was terrible.....I don't like it...spidey may never be a wise crack again and he may rape his own aunt.
KeefNCookies - 12/27/2012, 11:23 AM
"However, now that the issue has actually gone on sale, the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive."

I'm not sure whether to laugh or call you a liar. Shame shame.
IronLantern79 - 12/27/2012, 11:30 AM
Everyone is judging way to quickly here. I think a massive change up will do good for the series. And we all know Peter will never stay gone for good. I'm curious where it's gonna go. I'm willing to give it a chance. And I will also admit if the book ends up being a crap lol.


http://blip.tv/baronsmoviecrypt/baron-von-ghoulstein-s-movie-crypt-superman-animated-shorts-6484766
AC1 - 12/27/2012, 11:47 AM
"However, now that the issue has actually gone on sale, the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive (as you can see from my 5* review by clicking HERE)."

Sorry Josh, but what are you talking about? Just because you gave it a good review doesn't mean the overall reaction has been positive. It's been mixed at best, with a couple of people, yourself included, who liked it, a few more who thought it was OK, and a clear majority who despise it.

Anyway, as much as I think this is a bad idea, and as much as I've heard Slott is a terrible writer (and from the few pages of his work I've read, I'd agree that he's shit), I do like Stegman's art from what little I've seen, so at least Superior has that going for it (probably the only improvement). But I still don't understand why they're trying to make Spider-Man a Batman knockoff rather than leave him be his own character (painfully obvious by that pic above with a spider-signal, plus Dan Slott's comments from a few days ago).
BIGGGHEADTJ - 12/27/2012, 12:56 PM
There isn't a major comic book character that hasn't been 'replaced' at one time or another. Peter replaced Johnny, Dick replaced Bruce. John AND Guy AND Kyle AND Simon replaced Hal. Ben replaced Peter. Rhodey replaced Tony. Bucky replaced Cap. Eric replaced Thor.

This is the most COMMON of comic book plot devices yet people seemed to be reacting as if its unheard of to do this.

I seriously want to what some of these people have been reading all these years to be surprised by this?
Parker2017 - 12/27/2012, 1:12 PM
@ACira Agree with you Brother! Josh, rememebr Django Unchianted? (still was pretty cool seeing a moon walking horse) i felt it was okay, it was interestign and tarintino's acting had really impressed me...for once, which was weird, but it was still a fun comedy. The point i;m getting across is becuase you LOVE THSI book doesn;t mean everyone else does. I hoenstly think this was kinfda a bad conclusion to the whole world and story of peter parker and spider-man. I mean what hoenstly gives the right for octavious who ahd never once shown to be this icon? he still sounds the same, and as peter, and looks liek parker, what the vulcan mind meld thing is suppsoe to impress us? No! I hoenstly think tis the croooked way out.



@BIGGGHEADTJ No the point is DICK EARNED the right to be batman after Bruce, Ben Riely EARN the right to be Spider-Man, John-Kyle and Simon EARn there place and spot as lanturns. the difference here is that Ock was an evil, greedy, terrible human being both times after hsi death and reserections, what give HIm the right to jsut hi-jack Parkers body and get into the drivers seat, we were also promised NEW Powers, and MJ one of spideys trusted love oens should of seen passed this facade already, but sicne shes written liek an idoit, since OMD I don;t really know.
AC1 - 12/27/2012, 2:03 PM
How will he and MJ get together during Superior? Is MJ really so stupid that she won't realize Peter isn't acting like his usual self? Won't she figure out that he's not really Peter, considering how this kind of thing with imposters and stuff happens to people in the Marvel universe all the time (The Chameleon, Skrulls, Mystique, etc).
CaptainObvious - 12/27/2012, 2:09 PM
@BIGGGHEADTJ- Characters like John Stewart, Dick Grayson, and Ben Reily made their own paths in their lives and dedicated themselves to justice from the start. They were the logical and suitable replacements for the heroes when they died. Doc Ock, on the other hand, has slaughtered thousands for personal gain, killed and savagely beaten several of Spider-Man's loved ones and allies, and attempted to murder 99 percent of the human population in Ends of the Earth. Those are not the traits of a hero. Those are the actions of a psychopath.
duncboy - 12/27/2012, 5:21 PM
At the end of the day, it's just not a story I'm interested in reading (or paying for).
Opt1mu5Pr1m4l - 12/28/2012, 10:46 AM
I just hope Parker's spirit comes back and gives octavius the big dirt nap.
LordHuck - 12/30/2012, 1:50 AM
ACira

Because typical marvel shape shifters don't usually have all the memories of the person they are impersonating. Doc Ock does.

I will be reading Superior. It's a bold new direction.
DudeLove721 - 12/30/2012, 5:43 PM
"Overwhelmingly positive?"

It's fine to have your own opinion but don't outright lie about overall fan reaction just to blow smoke up your own ass, Josh.
AmazingFantasy - 12/30/2012, 8:00 PM
I probably will get this.
REDSTORM - 12/30/2012, 8:56 PM
He's coming to my LCS on the 9th, should I beg him to beg Slott be bring Peter back?

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