After my initial interview with Joe Casey and one with Nathan Fox about the return of Jack Kirby’s Captain Victory And The Galactic Rangers, I realized I had more questions about the project. How it was going to work having multiple artists and what was the basic format? And why had he chosen the artists? So I went back to Joe and asked a few follow up questions.
BLEEDING COOL: I wanted to pick up from an answer you gave in our previous interview about using multiple artists. You basically said it takes an army of modern, cutting edge artists to match the energy and power of Kirby. What is it about Kirby’s art that makes it so difficult to match the intensity for a single artist?
JOE CASEY: Well, just take a look at it. Literally, pick up any Kirby work from the late 1930’s to the early 1990’s. There’s an energy and a power there that never, ever went away, right up until the day he transcended the Earthly plane. It’s one thing to be such an idea-generating, page-producing machine… but to be artistically great on top of all that… no one since has even come close.
BC: You also said that the stories are structured for each artist. What is the format for the series and how does it allow for so many shifts in art style? Is this a collection of short tales or is there some kind of plot device that breaks the stories into segments?
JC: It’s one big, sprawling story, but I’m utilizing each artist in what I hope is a really unique way. As I’ve structured this thing, the artists aren’t interchangeable. Only Jim Rugg could’ve drawn the sequence he drew in issue #1, and that holds true for all of them.
BC: I’m told that you picked which artists you brought onto the book. Can you go through some of the artists and tell us what was it about his or her work that made them right for this project? What it was about their work that made you choose them?
JC: I suppose I’m more of an art geek than I’ve ever really let on, but if you look over my career and my choice of collaborators, I think I’ve got a pretty good track record. But with this one, I wanted to go big. The material deserved it. But big doesn’t always mean trying to perfectly match Kirby’s style. Going big can mean going big in ambition, too. Which each of these artists, I was already a big fan of their work. Some of them — Nathan, Ulises and Mahfood — I’d worked with before. The others, I basically e-mailed the other guys cold. Luckily, they were either fans of Kirby or, in the case of Rugg, Fiffe and Marra, we’re really into Captain Victory specifically. So we’re all thrilled to be here… and the work they’ve been doing has been amazing.
BC: You have eight artists totally. How many of their works do we see in the first issue? Are there other artists you want to bring in as the story progresses?
JC: You’ll see at least two or three artists in any given issue. And there are definitely other artists that I’d like to pull into this cosmic cesspool of creativity. Stay tuned.
JC: Like I said, it’s all one, big cosmic epic, enormous in scope and deep in emotion. There are many different shades to the story, so each artist has been matched with a specific aspect of the story that hopefully fits their sensibilities. So far, so good.
BC: Since you are writing stories geared toward each artist… how do you keep track of everything when you are dealing with eight different artists at once?
JC: It’s actually a complete pleasure. I’m writing issue #4 right now, and to be writing a sequence for Benjamin Marra is pretty amazing to me. I’m just such a fan of his work, so to be able to channel our shared love of Gulacy’s Master of Kung Fu and totally geek out together on the page is one of the things that makes this gig such a big deal for me. On some unspoken level, it’s really what I got into this business to do… to collaborate with artists I respect and try and make something much greater than the sum of its parts. I hope all the folks involved in this book feel that way. From what I’ve seen so far, it sure seems like it.
For more on Captain Victory And The Galactic Rangers, click here.