Comics Interview: Randy Queen Discusses Darkchylde/Darkness Crossover
Randy Queen was previously interviewed for scifipulse.net in February of 2009.
As established in the previous interview, Queen is the creator of the comic book series Darkchylde and the soon to be released Starfall. Currently, Queen is spreading the word about the upcoming Darkchylde/Darkness crossover titled The Darkness/ Darkchylde: Kingdom Pain; which, in addition to containing new Darkchylde material, will also have nine preview pages for Starfall. Set to come out in December, this one-shot is the ideal gift for any fans of Ariel Darkchylde.
Nicholas Yanes: The big news and topic of this interview is The Darkness/ Darkchylde: Kingdom Pain. Can you share with us how this project came about? Did you approach Top Cow, or were you approached first?
Randy Queen: It was brought up during Starfall talks that because it’s such a huge project, it might be nice to reintroduce fans to my work with something smaller in the interim. So that’s how it began. And I saw it as an opportunity to make some important things happen, with Jackie being responsible for bringing Ariel back, and with him getting a new costume in the process. Suddenly it became more interesting beyond just my drawing Darkchylde again.
Yanes: Once it was decided that this story would come out, what were some of the creative difficulties you encountered during the making of this title? For instance, Darkchylde and the Darkness are two distinct characters, but there are moments when the presentation of their powers look similar. Was this ever an issue?
Queen: Certainly the responsibility is to have fun with the fact that they are both monster makers, but also define how they are very different. I don’t see them similar at all, really. Primarily, Jackie is a killer, an assassin. That’s how he was brought up. Ariel couldn’t be farther on the other end of the spectrum. Jackie can summon evil, Ariel can physically become it. So my goal is to define and also freshen things. Make these guys seem new.
Yanes: Continuity is often a significant concern to comic book fans. Is this story going to be in or out of continuity? Additionally, will this story make Ariel part of the official Top Cow Universe, or will she continue to be her own separate property?
Queen: There’s so many reboots of things, I think the fans decide, ultimately, what is canon to them. Do you follow Rob Zombie’s storyline or John Carpenters? In researching Darkness, I went back to the establishing DNA of the Silverstri/Ennis books, but Jenny’s passing also plays a role. With Ariel, there are significant callbacks to where we left her, and to her prior meeting with Witchblade, which allowed this to have some weight.
Yanes: Fans of Darkchylde have been practically starving for more stories featuring Ariel. Can you tell us a little about what the issue is about? Also, what can fans of only The Darkness look forward to in this crossover?
Queen: The story is about “waking up,” but it’s not just Ariel that is being reactivated, something else wants to emerge. Something at once a victim and an incredible threat. Visually, I think you’re getting the best looking Darkchylde ever, thanks in no small part to the exceptional color work by Sarah Queen, which adds so much emotion. Fans will be getting a new reference point for all players, myself included.
Yanes: After this one-shot, can fans look forward to another Darkchylde miniseries in the near future?
Queen: It sounds reasonable, right? Candidly, fans need to be vocal in their support and vote with their wallets. I’ve got the story ready in my back pocket. But I do have this mountain to climb in Starfall, and it’s a pretty big one.
Yanes: Last time we talked, I brought up the topic of a Darkchylde movie. Has there been any further progress on this front?
Queen: Yes, but I can’t say what.
Yanes: Additionally, since we last talked, the vide games Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 and Batman: Arkham Asylum have been released and The Darkness 2 video game remains in productions. What are your thoughts on Darkchylde being turned into a video game? Is this something you’ve consider? Overall, do you feel that the Darkchylde story could ever be successfully adapted into a video game format?
Queen: Darkchylde is as good a mythos as any comic book thing out there, so yes.
Yanes: On this note, what are your multimedia hopes for Starfall? Do you already have an actress in mind to play the lead role? Is there a stockpile of Starfall themed pajamas waiting to be sold on QVC?
Queen: I just want to survive the creation of the thing and then everything else is gravy. I want Top Cow and myself to have a new marquee character. No pajama stockpile that I’m aware of, but this interview will become retroactively humorous if ten years down the line if that comes to pass. Starfall actress? Jessica Biel certainly has the right physicality. She needs to look like she could throw a punch and really mean it. But it will probably be someone who’s 15 now, falls in love with the book, and by the time she’s 25 she’s a huge star with enough clout to make the film happen. Same thing for the director, he’s probably 17 now.
Yanes: So after the nine preview pages of Starfall in The Darkness/ Darkchylde: Kingdom Pain, when can we expect Starfall #1? Beyond this, are there any other projects your fans can look forward to?
Queen: We are doing the best we can, so we will see. I would have liked to have seen it sooner, but at this stage summer 2010 seems terrific to launch. I am as excited for fans to see these pages as I am the story that precedes them. Sarah pulled the Starfall stuff up recently so we could have a fresh look, and I was blown away excited at how awesome they look. You can see the time on the page, it’s ridiculous. Sick. Sick. Sick. It actually made me a little nervous.
Yanes: Finally, if you wanted your fans to add false information to one Wikipedia entry, what entry and what information would you want added?
Queen: I’m not a fan of people doing that, because journalists, and companies go there as a point of entry and get things wrong because little Willy in Wisconsin is bored. I would just like it if Wikipedia could become a recurring theme in our Sci-Fi Pulse interviews, so thrill me.