Nick Fury was a staple of classic Marvel Comics, and now that role is being assumed by his son - the young Nick Fury - in his first ongoing series. Debuting this April, Nick Fury by writer James Robinson and artist ACO brings back the psychedelic sensibility of his father's solo adventures to the 21st Century.
Joining Fury is Frankie Noble, his counterpart in Hydra. The pair will embark on cat and mouse adventures that take place over short arcs, channeling the style and energy of the elder Fury's memorable adventures. Newsarama spoke with Robinson as Nick Fury was announced to find out more about where these new adventures will take the Marvel Universe's rising espionage star.
Newsarama: James, this is the first solo ongoing series for young Nick Fury. How did this project come about, and how did you get involved?
James Robinson: Not to be glib, but as I recall, it began with me asking editor Mark Paniccia why no one had done a comic with young Nick Fury.
Newsarama: Nick Fury hasn’t been in an ongoing series in a little while - since Secret Avengers. What’s his status quo when this series begins?
Robinson: Well the last we saw of Fury was a really great serial out of Civil War II: Choosing Sides by Declan Shalvey. That wasn't so long ago, but yes, since there Nick has been off the table. Part of that time has been me writing the scripts for the series and ACO doing his amazing Byzantine art.
Nrama: Nick Fury appears a bit like your Scarlet Witch series, in that it will focus on smaller arcs or single issue stories. What makes that format so appealing to you for these characters?
Robinson: It isn't that I'm mad for either single issues or for long multipart arcs. It's whatever suits the comic and the character at that time. In this instance, the Fury we had in mind and the missions we intend to send him on, suited the single issue format.
Nrama: Will there be an overarching story that Nick is involved in? What kind of threats will we see him face?
Robinson: If there is an overarching thing to this series, it’s the idea of Fury just beginning to feel comfortable stepping into the shoes of his father. The other thing we'll see going from issue to issue is Fury's game of wits and skills with a new character - Frankie Noble, Agent of Hydra, who is very much the opposite number to Fury in all ways.
Nrama: Nick’s father, Nick Fury, Sr., has been showing up in small appearances as the Unseen lately after being relegated to the moon after Original Sin. Will we see Nick come into contact with his father?
Robinson: Not in the first six issues, although we refer to him and the long shadow he casts on Nick as the series unfolds.
Nrama: Who is Nick’s supporting cast for this series?
Robinson: This is a book where Nick is the main character. We've seen him as part of S.H.I.E.L.D. already. This is Nick, acting and doing on his own. The one Marvel presence is Hydra in the form of Frankie Noble and all the insanity she brings to Nick's missions.
Nrama: You’re working with ACO on this series, who you worked with previously on an issue of Squadron Supreme. How has your partnership evolved since then?
Robinson: Well, I feel fortunate to have done that issue of Squadron with ACO, in that it afforded me the opportunity to see the range of his art and how best to write a script so he had the freedom to run with it. His style really is unique. Totally unlike any artist I've worked with before now. Readers are going to be blown away by what they see in this book.
Nrama: From the looks of things, ACO is bringing some psychedelic influences to his Nick Fury pages, a la Jack Kirby and Jim Steranko. What aspects of that era are you hoping to capture in your stories?
Robinson: I think ACO and I are both in love with the style of that time. The clothing, pop art, bold graphics, and the fact that this was a time when spy fiction was at it's peak, no doubt tying in with the Cold War that was going on. It's interesting that this book found its way at a time when Russia seems to be getting up to its old tricks, so maybe we're tapping into the zeitgeist now too.
Nrama: Bottom line, what are you hoping to accomplish with Nick Fury? What can readers expect from this series?
Robinson: Bottom line? I hope to surprise readers with the unique feel of this series, both with the amazing art by ACO and also the fun, exciting feel of each issue's adventure. It's a wild ride.