In framing a conversation with writer Greg Pak about the new direction for Superman in Action Comics (as well as his new creator-owned project The Princess Who Saved Herself), we find ourselves also indulging in preaching the gospel of Adam Warlock.
In our conversation with Greg, we look at the importance of "bold, different takes", going back not only to his work on Hulk (Planet- and World War- specifically) and Adam Warlock, but also the major influence of Bill Mantlo's legendary work on Hulk and Micronauts.
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- IDW: In two weeks, long-time My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic writer (and someimtes also artist) Katie Cooke will be our guest on our Giant Size Comicpalooza 2015 Special. The latest issue of MLP is out this week, as is the six issue of Zombies vs Robots, which completes the backup story written by Steve Niles and drawn by firend-of-the show Val Mayerik.
- Artist Edition #66 is the exact same interview with Greg Pak presented here, but isolated on its own for relistening.
- Giant Size #9 (the first installment of a Spider-Man two-parter) covered the Clone Saga with writer Howard Mackie.
- Artist Edition #21 from 2013 features Greg Pak and Jonathan Coulton talking about the then-still-running, and eventually overwhelmingly successful Code Monkey Save World Kickstarter.
- Curious about Usagi Yojimbo? Check out Giant Size #21, our Creator Spotlight on Usagi creator Stan Sakai.
- Subscribe to the Giant Size Channel Feed to get all of the main Giant Size episodes, extras, and uncut interviews all in one place.
Reading and Viewing List
- Action Comics #41, which begins Pak and Kuder's new "Truth" storyline, is now available and works as a good jumping-on point (according to Moisés). No one really knows why Superman has lost most of his powers yet (find it at you LCS or grab it on ComiXology).
- Robot Stories (2003) was written, directed, and partially-shirtlessly-acted by Greg Pak. It is available on DVD or Amazon Video. Here's the trailer
- The 4-part Warlock by Greg Pak has never been reprinted as a collection, but is on Marvel Unlimited, and you can read a 2004 interview with Greg about the series here.
- In our Crossover Crisis Infinity series that covered the entire history of DC & Marvel "line-wide crossover events", we noted that Greg's World War Hulk (TPB, also on ComiXology and Marvel Unlimited) was a major bright spot. The preceding Planet Hulk saga (TPB, also on ComiXology and Marvel Unlimited) is, similarly, among the brightest high points in modern mainstream superhero comics.
- Greg writing Valiant's reboot of Eternal Warrior (v1 TPB, v2 TPB) came out of his having worked on Magneto: Testament (TPB) with editor Warren Simons, who became EIC of Valiant.
Gene Luen Yang and More of Greg's Influences
- Gene Luen Yang is taking over writing duties on the core Superman book, and Moisés is a huge fan of his preceding work. Check out his work, especially American-Born Chinese, Boxers & Saints, and The Shadow Hero.
- When he was younger, Greg loved reading Usagi Yojimbo, which you can either start reading in individual "books" at around $15 each, or pre-order the new softcover Special Edition of the first seven books, which was previously available as a now-out-of-print hardcover.
- The new "Usagi Yojimbo Saga" collections, which start at a Volume 1, actually pick up with Book 8. So reading order goes as follows:
- Special Edition (Books 1-7, September 2015)
- Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 1 (Books 8-10, out now)
- Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 2 (Books 11-13, out now)
- Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 3 (Books 14-16, out now)
- Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 4(Books 17-19, September 2015)
- Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 5 (Books 20-22, December 2015)
- Usagi Yojimbo Saga Volume 6 (Books 23-25, March 2016)
- Greg also mentions Harlan Ellison's Jeffty is Five (available in this collection and "Repent, Harlequin!" Said the Ticktockman as formative influences, as well as Memos from Purgatory ("about infiltrating a street gang").
- Bill Mantlo's work on Hulk is readily available in print (as well as on Unlimited). Especially if a Pak fan as well, The Incredible Hulk: Crossroads is a great story to start with if dipping into Mantlo's run for the first time.
- Sadly, Bill Mantlo's work on Micronauts has never been reprinted, but is generally not that hard to find in back issue bins. Some shops (like Austin Books and Comics will bundle together the entire run for a remarkably reasonable price.
- Ray Bradbury wisdom by way of Greg, regarding being "drunk and in charge of a bicycle".
- Adam Warlock By Jim Starlin: The Complete Collection collects the absolute "greatest hits" run of Jim Starlin Warlock stories. Find the error on the back cover, and we will send you a prize. Tweet at us, use the contact form, doesn't matter.
- Adam Warlock: Masterworks Volume 1 isn't that hard to find, either.
NEXT TIME ON GIANT SIZE
- A look at the crucial role of colorists in comics, shining the spotlight on Elizabeth Breitweiser in particular and featuring additional special guests Steve Epting (co-creator of The Winter Soldier and currently artist on Image's Velvet), Neal Adams spinning truth or myth (or something in-between), and finally Walt Simonson setting the record on the nuances of re-coloring.