Frazer Brown reports some of the beats, as fast as he could type, from the Image Expo All Star panel, with Matt Fraction, Rick Remender, Jason Aaron and Jason Latour…
Your first comic?
MF: Batman #316, Crazy Quilt ‘the man who stole his eyes”
The Jasons: Atari Force, Blue Devil, dc 70’s horror
RR: Secret Wars #4
First time you wrote a comic?
RR: I wrote a comic called John Boogerhead and his laser exploits or something at school, and the teacher had it bound, I was like “fuck, this is real”. I still remember that joy… that was definitely the seed for transitioning to a professional… it’s about learning… it kind of ruins it… you can’t enjoy anything any more as you’ve read so much.
JL: I think it was my parents were, like, it’s the only thing he has any aptitude for… I cut out comic strips and made my own wallpaper, I don’t know if my parents saw anything in that other than not going down the road they went down?
MF: What road did they go down?
JL: Cocaine dealers and chld trafficking (joke)… in my early life, drawing was a way I could express myself and feel comfortable, there’s a performance art to drawing.. when you’re an artist everyone knows you’re an artist, but when you’re a writer you can’t get anyone to read anything.
JA: It’s all I could do, I have no fucking fallback plan.
A guy applauds
JA: Yeah, that guy likes it.This is all I can do and thankfully I’m allowed to do it for a while.
How important is genre in comics right now?
MF: Yeah, Jason
JA: I just like doing shit I can read, I liked a little bit of all of it… I get bored if I do the same thing… I don’t worry about genre.
MF: I went in to a comic shop and bought what looked cool. Lone Wolf And Cub … that sort of stuff… genre diversity is incredibly important, especially if your trying to grow audience.
RR: I move towards science fiction a lot of the time, my first books were superhero satire…
JL: Genre is just a language, ultimately telling any kind of story is about forming a connection with the audience.
You guys are a recent generation of creators influenced by the 80’s and 90’s… is there a comic that you think is the pinnacle of your career, that you are super proud of?
RR: There’s more I hate.
What if we had a barbeque, what would you boast about?
RR: Sid you just invite yourself over to my house?
JA: I’m always looking ahead. Just read all my shit.
MF: Worst thing is what I’ve just written, the best is what I haven’t written yet, Wednesday is always bad, it’s like your high school photos are out there.
RR: You can see a decline in a persons work when they believe their own shit. You’re like “shut up fuck head”.
Can you tell us about the female perspective on odyssey?
MF: I wanted to give my daughter a hero, who was the centre of the story in a very pure and clean way. If you’re doing the stuff, do something that doesn’t exist, not the 18th issue of fucking Batman, something new, like y’know Homer (laughs)
Your work on Iron Man made every superhero book look shit!
RR: Every one?
MF: (turns to panel) and don’t you fuckers forget it! (laughs) NEXT QUESTION!
Have you ever diverged from your story plan?
RR: You rework it and rework it, the outline is down, but once you’re writing dialogue, you see new opportunities and ways to go. You know your foundation and the rules and the beats you want to make. Other times feedback from friends helps you find new ways in.