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  1. #121
    Writer of Jack The Hunted Power Torch's Avatar
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    Hate to be the 3rd post in a row, but here is another two interviews with Duane! I hope there are this many interviews for The Shield in April haha.

    Duane, lately you’ve been working in a number of smaller shared-universes in comics – Valiant, Dark Horse’s ‘Project Black Sky’ superhero books, and now the Dark Circle. Is there a certain appeal, to you, to working in a setting that has the benefit of a larger continuity, but on a limited scale?

    Duane Swierczynski: My idea of the perfect shared-universe story is Jean-Paul Sartre’s No Exit. Three characters in a room in Hell. Cross that over!

    Seroiusly, though, I like shared universes when they are organic and story-driven, not marketing-driven. When Tarantino’s characters happen to smoke Red Apple cigarettes in a bunch of movies? That’s cool, and meant for fans to enjoy. When Michael Keaton shows up as Ray Nicolet in both Out of Sight and Jackie Brown? That’s very cool. When publishers break one story into 47 pieces? Um, not as cool. Valiant and Dark Horse were super-smart to limit the scale of their crossovers and make them story-driven, not market share-driven If a crossover ever happens with Dark Circle, I’m sure it’ll be organic and fun.

    What is your history with the Black Hood? I don’t know if most people realize that his first appearance happened nearly 75 years ago – when did you first encounter the character?

    DS: Ah, my first time with the Black Hood. I remember it clearly. I was carrying my bindlestiff, wandering the rails, when I happened to see this delightful pulp comic book on the wire newsrack! This was back in October 1940s, you see, the tail end of the Depression, so I dug down into my dungarees to see if any had any coins left…

    Actually, I was one of those people you mention, Brian. I’d never heard of the Black Hood until Alex Segura at Archie approached me.

    I mentioned the long history, but it isn’t exactly linear. Was there a particular past incarnation of the character that really spoke to you?

    DS: The original, for sure. Though the reason for a cop donning a black hood in 1940 is going to be very different than a cop in 2015. And that was the appeal. What kind of situation today would force a cop to slip on a mask?

    Greg Hettinger – the Black Hood of your run – seems to only really have one thing in common with a prior Black Hood; both he and the original Black Hood, Matthew Burland, are both police officers. Is the duality in his life as both a public and secret crime fighter an important aspect of the book?

    DS: Oh yeah. The fun thing about this book is that it all blurs together, and allow us to raise some interesting questions. Is it possible to be both a bad cop and a good vigilante? What are the limitations of the badge, and the limitations of the hood? How long can you keep a double life going before you start to completely crack?

    The character has a history as a superhero, but a lot of the press thus far has presented the book as more of a noir-crime story than a superhero story. How do you balance those two, at times, disparate elements of the character? Or, is this book a complete break from the superhero past of the character?

    DS: Shhhh, don’t tell anybody, but I’m not writing this as a superhero book at all. I’m pretending I’m writing a crime novel that Michael Gaydos happens to be illustrating as we go along.

    Michael Gaydos is a great fit for what I just described – an artist who has done a lot of work in the grittier, non-superhero comics world, and in the street level superhero world. What has Michael’s work brought to the project thus far?

    DS: An amazing sense of hyper-realism. Gaydos has the tough job—he’s not just the director and cinematographer, but he’s all of the actors, too, and has to convey expression and emotion and spirit. Wait until you see what’s he’s done with this series. It’s going to blow you away.

    Which of Michael’s previous work have his pages, thus far, reminded you of?

    DS: “Alias,” for sure. I remember reading those early issues and thinking, Goddamn, superhero books can do this? Gaydos’ art had a lot to do with that.

    How integrated is “The Black Hood” to the other Dark Circle books? When are we going to see other aspects of the Dark Circle pop up in this book, or see the Black Hood elsewhere in the Dark Circle?

    DS: SPOILER: At the end of issue #5 I’m going to have the Black Hood wake up in Hell with Inès Serrano and Estelle Rigault, and the Shield and the Fox will have to team up to rescue him!
    http://multiversitycomics.com/interv...int-interview/

    Duane makes a lot of jokes in this interview, but it's still exciting. Can't wait.


    HitFix: For those who might not be familiar with the character, who is the Black Hood?

    Duane Swierczynski: The Black Hood has been many different people over the years (in some versions, centuries), but essentially he’s a cop who feels compelled to wear a hood and fight crime on the down low. In this latest version, however, he’s a disfigured cop hooked on painkillers who hits the mean streets of the City of Brotherly Love on a revenge kick. It’s sort of my version of Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call Philadelphia.


    HF: Will this new version of Black Hood be similar to his Golden Age counterpart or draw more from his later incarnations?

    DS: I’ll be honest; when [Dark Circle Comics] editor (and fellow crime novelist) Alex Segura first approached me about The Black Hood, I had a queasy feeling. Did I really want to do another superhero title? I didn’t know the character at all, but the sight of the man in his Golden Age version of Spanx didn’t fill me with enthusiasm. At the same time, I happened to be kicking around an idea for a “good-cop-gone-bad” novel idea. So I channeled my inner Jim Thompson and pitched Alex the darkest, most violent and depressing Black Hood pitch I could think of, figuring he’d pat me on the head, thank me for my time, and move on to somebody else. But the joke was on me, because he liked it. Not only that — but Alex and co-editor Paul Kaminski asked me to go even *darker.*


    HF: Greg Hettinger is the main character, but can you tell us a little more about his supporting cast? The villains?

    DS: Greg’s a loner, but there are a few people who try to drag him back towards the light. One is his cop partner, who suspects Greg’s in some kind of trouble, but is hesitant to cross that line and outright accuse him of anything. The other is his speech therapist, who considers Greg a hero and seems to actually have a crush on him, despite the fact that he looks like Liam Neeson in Darkman.

    As for villains… well, there is a Big Bad. But I’d rather that he introduce himself. You actually see him in issue #1, but I won’t say where...


    HF: Any chance we’ll be seeing Black Hood’s team, The Mighty Crusaders?

    DS: Zero chance. Then again, it might be fun to introduce a crazy right-wing do-gooder group who call themselves “The Mighty Crusaders” and try to clean up Philly through extreme gentrification. Thanks for the future villain idea, Donna!


    HF: Why choose Philadelphia as the setting?

    DS: I’m a Philly boy, born and raised, and this is where my imagination goes to play. Besides, my city’s way under-used in comics, TV and film. The best Philly character in recent memory — the one character I recognize as truly being from this town, and of this town — is Breaking Bad’s Mike Ehrmantraut. He’s a bad-ass straight out of the Frank Rizzo years, and I can’t wait to see more of him in “Better Call Saul.” (And I keep praying that somebody will license the character for comics, so that I can pitch my “early Mike” series: No Half Measures.)


    HF: Black Hood is part of Archie’s new Dark Circle imprint. Exactly how dark are talking about here?

    DS: The first issue will make Archie Andrews curl up into a little ball and cry.


    HF: You’ve written crime fiction as well as graphic novels for years now. Is there a big difference between writing novels and comic books?

    DS: Novels are a marathon, while comic scripts are a sprint. With novels, you’re sitting at a desk, alone, going slightly crazy, for anywhere from six months to a year with zero feedback. Comic scripts are full-on collaborations, not only with your artist, but your editors and colorists and letterers and PR folks, etc. Writing comics reminds me of my days as a journalist, working on a staff of fun, smart people. Writing novels reminds me of being an awkward 15-year-old typing on a Commodore 64 in his bedroom, trying to be the next Stephen King. It’s very nice to be able to do both.


    HF: What drew you to this particular comic?

    DS: I probably answered this earlier, but I think it was mainly to frighten Alex Segura.
    http://m.hitfix.com/harpy/crime-nove...w-black-hood-1

    And we learn about a hint in issue one in who the big bad is. Interesting haha.
    Last edited by Power Torch; 01-28-2015 at 12:42 PM.

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  2. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by Power Torch View Post
    Ah, ok thanks. So maybe a Fly-girl serie haha, that would be interesting. Or The Web series? I read his stuff from DC's Red Circle. He was an interesting character.
    Website is jumping around like a flea on a frying pan but here goes.Always a possibility that Archie may contact the Simon and Kirby estates and ask to license The Fly. Dynamite just took a stab at Kirby's Captain Victory for 6 issues. The Fly is sitting around as a property completely unused as well as Simon and Kirby's Fighting American and possibly others I don't know about.

  3. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    What I'm saying is they made it sound like they were going to do something initially, but all we got was very little in dribs and drabs. Plus, we also have Afterlife with Archie and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina also coming out sporadically (at best).

    For this new, once-again re-launch, I want to SEE Archie actually produce product on a semi-timely basis before I get too enthusiastic about it. Archie's past track record on these non-Riverdale-continuity projects isn't exactly stellar.
    I think you are dead on with this assessment. Archie has an erratic track record historically. Circle of whatever color needs to be part of a total Valiant style buyout to really work.

  4. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by MECHANO View Post
    I think the Black Hood looks good, and I'm pretty interested in a female Shield... although, longtime fans may not be
    As long as her military background is credible and in these times I'm not sure why it wouldn't be. After all DC's Jaguar was female and was somewhat of an improvement over the original guy.His Vegas style mostly red jump suit that Kraven later stole a version of to go hunt Spiderman was a bit over the top.

  5. #125
    Writer of Jack The Hunted Power Torch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alton View Post
    Website is jumping around like a flea on a frying pan but here goes.Always a possibility that Archie may contact the Simon and Kirby estates and ask to license The Fly. Dynamite just took a stab at Kirby's Captain Victory for 6 issues. The Fly is sitting around as a property completely unused as well as Simon and Kirby's Fighting American and possibly others I don't know about.
    That could be, I could see that happen. It would be a waste for them to not let Archie use it. Not sure if The Fly is next though. We got a hint at who was next at NYCC:
    There’s one character coming to Dark Circle that no one is going to see coming, Archie teased. A “deep cut”, not a “single or a B-side”.
    Posted this before, but thought I would share it again. I can't figure it out haha.

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  6. #126
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    A lot of Black Hood things happening today. Two more interviews and a bunch of great reviews. I am not going to post the whole interviews like I have done, but feel free to check them out by clicking the link! They are both interesting. Also I will be posting links to reviews, but not sure if they have spoilers or not, so read at your own will. I will be posting what numbers they gave them.

    Interviews:
    Interview with Duane from IGN
    Interview with Duane from Comicosity

    Reviews: (Again could have Spoilers, did not check).
    Comic Book Resource's Review: 4 out of 5 stars!
    Comic Vine's Review 5 out of 5 stars!
    Newsarama's Review 8 out of 10!

    Here is a fun link, its a list of what some creators are tweeting about The Black Hood:
    Comic Creators Rave about The Black Hood!

    So really, The Black Hood is getting some great interviews and some great reviews! I am super excited to check it out. Wish I could get an early copy haha.

    Also here is something nifty. The Shield's Andrew Robinson Variant Cover made it in HitFix's best covers seen this week:
    HitFix's Best Comic Covers seen this week

    That is my 2nd favorite cover, after the one that is my avatar. The one by Torres. I am only getting two covers, so I am getting Torres, and the movie poster one (just because I love old movie posters) so I can't afford a 3rd, even if I want to haha.

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  7. #127
    Writer of Jack The Hunted Power Torch's Avatar
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    Here is another early review for The Black Hood: (May have spoilers, have not read it because I am not sure. Read at your own risk haha).

    Comicosity's Review 9.5 out of 10!

    All these great review. I am excited. Sounds like its going to be a powerful start to Dark Circle.

    Edit: Did not mean to make a new post for this, thought I was editing my last one. My mistake sorry XD.
    Last edited by Power Torch; 01-30-2015 at 08:13 PM.

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  8. #128
    pygophile and podophile Dr. Cheesesteak's Avatar
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    I had heard about this "Dark Circle" a while back but decided to actually give some real looking into it yesterday. I'm hyped and excited! These 3 titles along w/ the Waid Archie reboot and I may be reading 4 or 5 Archie titles (I get Sonic here and there)! Never thought I'd say that...
    Comics were definitely happier, breezier and more confident in their own strengths before Hollywood and the Internet turned the business of writing superhero stories into the production of low budget storyboards or, worse, into conformist, fruitless attempts to impress or entertain a small group of people who appear to hate comics and their creators. -- Grant Morrison, 2008

    Sometimes things are special because they don't last. -- Zhi, Tales from the Loop

  9. #129
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Cheesesteak View Post
    I had heard about this "Dark Circle" a while back but decided to actually give some real looking into it yesterday. I'm hyped and excited! These 3 titles along w/ the Waid Archie reboot and I may be reading 4 or 5 Archie titles (I get Sonic here and there)! Never thought I'd say that...
    I was in the same boat as you. I never thought I was going to have 5 archie titles on my pull list. These 3, plus Afterlife, and then the new Waid Archie series. But I am glad to see you join us. I am super excited for these titles to start. The Black Hood starts on the 25th of this month! I can't wait!


    Also on that note guys tomorrow (Monday the 2nd) is the last day to pre order The Black Hood to get it on its release date. Pre ordering at your store, if you have one, is very important for the sales of the comic, so if you have not, pre order it soon . If you plan on getting it, that is haha.

    You can also already pre order The Fox #1, and The Shield #1 now too by the way! I went and ordered all 3 last week. It was so hard for me to pick a cover for The Shield that I got two haha. The Hack one, and the Torres one. It will be costly, but worth it.

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  10. #130
    Astonishing Member Captain Craig's Avatar
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    The Dark Circle trio of titles will be the first time I've had any Archie titles on my pull list since they the TMNT Adventure comic and spinoffs such as Mutanimals etc.
    That goes back to the early-mid 90's I feel like. So easily 15-ish years.
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  11. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Craig View Post
    The Dark Circle trio of titles will be the first time I've had any Archie titles on my pull list since they the TMNT Adventure comic and spinoffs such as Mutanimals etc.
    That goes back to the early-mid 90's I feel like. So easily 15-ish years.
    Nice, well I feel like part of Archie's goals are met then haha. If a part of this was to bring new people in or bring people back, it seems to be working in my opinion.

    Here is another review, it says its spoiler free:
    Multiversity Comic's Review 8.8 out of 10!

    Also just another heads up, today is the last day for retailers and fans to pre order The Black Hood and get it on the 25th haha. Sorry if I sound like a broken record, but just thought I would warn those who don't know haha.

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  12. #132
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    Hey guys here is the final covers for The Black Hood and The Fox with all the trimming. Comicbook.com got an exclusive look at them:
    blackhood-1-121011.jpg fox-1-121016.jpg

    “These books are all very different. Black Hood is a dark noir, The Fox is a comic book acid trip and The Shield is a straight up conspiracy thriller – but we wanted some kind of unifying element that let people know that they were buying a Dark Circle comic," explained Alex Segura, Senior Vice President - Publicity and Marketing at Archie Comics, who is shepherding the line. "Something that served less as a unifying story element, but more of a seal of quality. Thankfully, our assistant editor Vin Lovallo is an amazing designer and came up with a look that is both representative of the Dark Circle line as a whole but also unique to each title. Not an easy feat. Hope the fans enjoy it!”
    Source
    Click the link to see the other covers with the trimmings as well.

    They look good. I like the style of the bottom trim. I like that each series will have a different style trim. It's nifty haha.
    Last edited by Power Torch; 02-02-2015 at 10:26 PM.

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  13. #133
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    http://comicsalliance.com/clear-visi...rcle-relaunch/
    new crusaders dark tomorrow is finally coming out!....

  14. #134
    Writer of Jack The Hunted Power Torch's Avatar
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    Yep! That exciting! Comes out next month. Also that is a great Dark Circle interview as well. They will also be releasing old impact and some old 80's Red Circle stuff digitally as well. I am excited for that. I will so check some of those out.

    Here is the cover for Dark Tomorrow by the way:
    DarkCircle04.jpg

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  15. #135
    Ultimate Member MajorHoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chrysalis_Changling View Post
    http://comicsalliance.com/clear-visi...rcle-relaunch/
    new crusaders dark tomorrow is finally coming out!....
    . . . That being said, we are aware that there are long-time fans of these concepts and characters. Which is why, for example, we’ll be debuting the New Crusaders: Dark Tomorrow Special as part of our digital plans. A lot of people really enjoyed that book and we solicited a second story that many fans thought lost forever. Well, it’s not. It’ll be on the Archie app and with all our digital offerings in the coming weeks and it continues the story Ian Flynn started in the first New Crusaders mini. Now, if people want more – if they really want to see these characters – they can vote in the clearest way possible, by grabbing a copy and moving the needle.
    Unless this is a digital first offering that will then have a later print component, I won't be picking it up.

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