Thursday, January 26, 2012

New Green And Johnson Interview On Newsarama

Over on Newsarama, there is a very good interview with Supergirl writers Michael Green and Mike Johnson, discussing what has been going on in Supergirl so far and what we can expect moving forward. Here is the link: 

As always, I highly recommend going to the site and reading the interview in its entirety. It really gives a lot of details about the story so far, with lots of hints about what is coming up.

As usual, I picked a couple of segments of the interview that struck me and added some of my comments.

Newsarama: In issue #5, Supergirl finds out that it's all true. Krypton's really gone. How important was this moment for the title? It's a real turning point, isn't it?

Michael Green: For us, her finding out what happened back home, and that "home" is gone, is probably the most foundational part of her back-story. If Superman's never-ending story is, "what is my place in this world," because he got to grow up here and be an out-of-place child here, her story is so disruptive that her story becomes, "what happened to my world? Where did those people I love go?"

We wanted to make sure we gave as much attention to those emotions as possible, and really make that the first big piece of her story, finding out that it's all gone and dealing with it. It's real loss. It's everyone know you know and love is no more. There's nothing to do about except honor their memory by staying a good person in the face of it.

So the interview starts off with a bang with this response from Green. The biggest thing I like about this answer is that he says that the best way for Supergirl to honor Krypton is to be a good person. There isn’t the ‘sulk and isolate yourself’ feeling from this response, the biggest concern I had about the characterization of this new Supergirl.

Nrama: Supergirl has been constantly in danger in this comic, and when she found out that her world had been destroyed is coupled with danger yet again.

Green: We wanted to keep her from being allowed by life to have too much time to process and grieve. She's getting bad news while still very much a participant in her adventure. So it wasn't something that she heard and then got to sit with for a long time. I think if Clark had his way, he was going to give her the bad news and then sit with her as she cried it out. But she resisted that, because she just wasn't ready to hear it. And as a result, it's just been a roller coaster for her.

Johnson: And part of that is the larger story that we're building to, which is how she got here, because as you saw in issue #5, somebody got their hands on the shard that recorded the father's death, and why would that be in her pod with her? Who put it there? And who ultimately sent it there, even though the pod was her father's plan to have her survive the death of Krypton?

Glad their take on Clark’s response mirrors my own. I do think he will want to help her and hopefully she will allow him to help her work through these issues.

And I am glad that I was asking the right questions in my review of Supergirl #5. Who did rocket her? Who did put the crustal in there? We assume Zor-El got killed. So is it time for an Alura sighting?

The picture above looks like Kara sparring with some robots. This must be part of ‘Zor-El’s plan’ or part of what she was preparing for. It also explains why she thought Tycho’s robots were from Zor-El. He has to have been a military scientist. Notice how she is wearing different style boots? I wonder if she could fold the 'over the knee' portion down to make more like a buccaneer style version.

Nrama: Mahmud Asrar drew a very emotional moment, when she saw her father die. And you really relied on him for this, didn't you?

Johnson: It sounds horrible to say, but my favorite panel so far that we've seen is the panel where she just sort of screams and lets it all out.

But you're right that we relied on him in that moment. We told Mahmud, "We're not going to put any captions or dialogue here, so it's all on you." And he just nailed it, better than we could have imagined.

And any words would ruin that image. But it's the most emotional moment that we've had so far.

Green: And that moment, the scream that you see as she realizes she has lost her family, was the moment we'd been building toward, that moment of her really feeling it, her realizing it's true, and just being in pain.

I’ll concur that this panel was powerful and didn’t need anything else. Asrar just shines on this book.

Nrama: We found out who the Worldkillers are, thanks to the appearance of this new villainous character, Reign. And Supergirl isn't really not on the same side as Reign, and yet she they're both looking for the same answers. What does Reign represent for Kara?

Johnson: Reign will be an ongoing, important member of Kara's rogues’ gallery. And the best villains, I think, have something that connects them intrinsically to the hero. Reign is a twisted reflection of Kara. She has all this power, but she's a little bit of a loose cannon.

Green: We wanted Kara to be able to see some of herself in there. And in a way, it's temptation, because she's so much in pain that there is a part of her that does want to be like Reign and get angry, and use that pain to get even or just feel better by taking what she wants. And that is a real temptation, especially given the insane amounts of power she woke up with when she landed under the light of a yellow sun.

I called Reign a dark reflection of Kara and I think she has the power to stand toe to toe with her. So I am glad that she isn’t a one-off rogue, but an ongoing adversary. We still need to learn more about her … but she sure is interesting. And nice splash page here!

Nrama: It's always seemed a bit of a coincidence that all these Kryptonians landed on Earth just because it had a yellow sun. It sounds like Reign is thinking the same thing?

Johnson: Yeah, that ties into a larger story that's unraveling, and it's kind of mirroring Kara's adaptation to Earth. You'll see the unraveling of that mystery.

It's very convenient that this happens to be the safe place for Kryptonians after the death of their planet. And feeding into that as well is the question about the House of El itself, because Jor-El and Zor-El both had different plans, different responses to the threat to Krypton, and the difference between the brothers themselves is something we want to explore over the next year.

Hmmm, maybe my militant Zor-El prediction is right. I just hope that there isn’t any ‘Kill Kal-El’ style nonsense in the brother’s different viewpoints.

Nrama: Last time Superman and Supergirl met, they didn't exactly see eye to eye, as we discussed in our last interview.

Johnson: [laughs] That's putting it mildly. But there's a meeting coming up between Superman and Supergirl that deals with how their perception of each other might have evolved now, given their acrimonious meeting the first time.

I still think, after realizing that Krypton and her family are gone, that Kara should reach out to Kal for some support. Not reliance! Support. That is what families do. Despite the cover to Superman #6 (with Kal punching Kara), I hope the two come together.

Nrama: Then to finish up, can you give us any hints about what 2012 will bring to Supergirl?

Green: The next arc really is about, OK, I'm here on Earth, I've taken a stand and said this is a place worth defending. Now what do I do? And we'll see her meeting people and making new friends, or maybe making new enemies. Because if you're going to be somewhere, you have to talk to creatures there and learn their language.

Johnson: In Supergirl, over the next year, the series will be all about getting Kara to the point where the trauma, while not over for her, is at least resolved in the story. It's going to be about her adjusting to life on Earth and the new challenges and decisions that brings.

Again, all good news here. She thinks Earth is a place worth defending. That is a far cry from ‘she has no love for humanity … so don’t piss her off’!'

It sounds like she'll be the hero I want her to be.


Anonymous said...

I don't want her to hate humanity, but I'm glad they have found a way to make reactions to us and what is happening to her much more believable than anyone in the previous series did.

I do like "don't piss her off" though. She's a teenage girl who has been through so much and had the powers of a god. I would think pissing her off would be a bad idea.

I'm still hoping Superman plays a smaller role than last series. Nothing ruins Supergirl for me more than when Superman is cast in the role of smarter, stronger, better overprotective father who needs to do everything for her.

Uncle Screensaver said...

Now they just need to recognize the fact that her new costume is NOT appropriate. As one person noted, not only does the high cut and the Crotch Shield pose a problem, but the lines on her costume makes her look like a doll. She also pointed out that a skirt over biker shorts/ tights is much more appropriate and what young women wear. I add that the marketing of Supergirl that isn't just a pink S-Shield is a modified Classic costume, and there's no way they could market Kara in this costume. The pictures of Cosplayers in the new costume show too that the boots are a fail, but of course, not only is this a super suit, it's DCnU's stance of Pro-Sexism & Misogyny in their universe.

I saw that sales on Supergirl have fallen, and I've read many comments that it is too decompressed, and boring as a result. Still, she's still flying high, and I'm happy that Kara still exists in the DCnU, and that soon I will be reading Kara Zor-L's adventures too!

Martin Gray said...

Interesting chat. What's this about people having had a problem with Kryptonians traditionally winding up on Earth ... weren't they mostly pointed there by Jor-El with the single contribution from Zor-El?