Gregg Hurwitz on Wolverine: Flies to a Spider
by Steve Ekstrom
Date: 07 October 2008 Time: 04:52 PM ET
Hurwitz on Wolverine: Flies to a Spider
Popular crime novelist Gregg Hurwitz is penning another Wolverine story this December.You might remember his first comic industry project, Wolverine Annual #1, which explored the fear of a small-time crook turned murderer as he becomes the main ingredient in one of Wolverine’s servings of “Six Pig-Sticker Dujour”. This time around, Hurwitz is getting a little more ambitious—he’s landed everyone’s favorite clawed Canadian in a bar full of the most ferocious bikers this side of …well, anywhere. Joining Hurwitz is up-and-coming Fear Agent artist, Jerome Opena— and let’s not forget to mention that this brutal one-shot is wrapped in a Tim Bradstreet cover. Newsarama contacted Gregg Hurwitz for a quick talk about his upcoming one-shot, Wolverine: Flies to a Spider, which hits shelves in December. Newsarama: So you're returning to Wolverine again this year with Flies to a Spider--how different is Logan to that of Frank Castle? Gregg Hurwitz: Logan's different in a lot of regards. There's more temper and fire there. He's more emotional. Frank is something of a cipher - he's a like a shark cutting through cold waters. Whatever he feels is buried so deep you can only suggest it when writing him. NRAMA: Tell readers about the new one-shot. What is Wolverine up to exactly? GH: Here's the pitch I gave Axel: Logan goes into a bar. ...and that's it. He manages to kick plenty of ass and draw who he needs to him. By the time he's done, you can guess what that bar's gonna look like. NRAMA: How do you connect with the savagery of Wolverine/Logan? As a writer, do you have to delve inward to find this sort of violence or do you understand the character more than you'd like? GH: More easily than I'd like to imagine, I suppose. It's always right there for me. In some regards, writing violence is the easiest part for me - it's when I find the emotional hook (like the motive, in this story) that I know I have the story. NRAMA: What other types of situations could you see Wolverine in? Would he be a good character for a crime novel? What are the character's strengths? What are his weaknesses from a technical standpoint? GH: He'd be great in a crime novel. What I love about Logan is that, unlike many other superheroes, he can be brought into the real world in convincing fashion. He's a samurai; the blade(s) just happen to be factory-packaged. When I've written him, as in my annual and here, I think of him as a roaming vigilante, from, say, an old samurai flick or a Western. He is the ultimate killing machine. His weaknesses? Christ, if I knew any, I certainly wouldn't say 'em out loud. NRAMA: In your work with last year's Wolverine Annual--you utilized a really interesting meta-literary connection to T.S. Eliot's "Lovesong of J. Alfred Prufrock" as a narrative device for the story. Do you wish to do more work like that in comics or was that just something fun you wanted to do the one time? GH: That was really fun, but more important than the "hi mom" stuff, it was a good way for me to frame out that story. It was really integral to the plot. I wouldn't say that's something I'm gonna reach for every time out (Next: Spidey in The Waste Land), but if tale and literary reference click again, who knows? NRAMA: Who are some other Marvel characters you would like to get your hands on for a one-shot? Or would you like to do something more ongoing? GH: I love writing Frank. I'm interested in either real-world guys who have gone over the top - Frank and Mike Trace, The Foolkiller - or the tortured classic characters. I really relate to Bruce Banner, for instance. Everyone's got a temper and destructive (and self-destructive) capacities, and so when he explodes, there's a resonance there for me. And his helplessness in the face of it... NRAMA: What comics are you reading? Who are some of you compatriots that you enjoy? GH: Right now I am loving Powell's The Goon. I can't get enough of it. It is everything I like about genre stuff. I'm like a rat clicking the pleasure button in a Thorndike box. I've also dug into some Geoff Johns. Oh - and I really love Loeb and Sale. They write with such delicious moistness. Something about those two guys together really explodes off the page. And of course - Ennis. NRAMA: What else are you working on currently? GH: I'm in novel-land a bit lately. The Crime Writer, my latest, just got released in a trade paperback here in the U.S. I got back from a tour in Russia for my Tim Rackley novels (The Kill Clause, The Program, Troubleshooter, and Last Shot), and I'm getting really psyched for my next, Trust No One, which will launch next summer - and will feature a contest for readers to pick out the Punisher reference.