Return of Wolverine artist Declan Shalvey has revealed he once pitched Marvel a Banshee-led X-Men series. Shalvey, who wrote the recent Old Man Logan vs. Deadpool and is drawing another undisclosed Marvel project, revealed the unused pitch in the latest edition of his e-mail newsletter (which you can subscribe to here).
Here is Shalvey's full write-up, reprinted with his persmission:
With St-Paddy's Day just past, I thought I might talk a bit abut my failed BANSHEE pitch.
A while back I had an idea: I'd love to do a Banshee book. I realized it wasn't a project likely to get greenlit (no pun intended) but once the idea popped into my head, I started to wonder what that book could be. So, along with an artist who will remain anonymous, I pitched the boom to an editor at Marvel. I got a surprised ("I'll say this much Dec, no one has ever pitched me a Banshee book before") but also positive reaction to it. It bounced around a bit, and I gave it a second shot, trying to sweeten the deal with redesigned characters and to fit in the 'colour' approach they'd been using on the X-books of late (as X-MEN: GREEN). Again, the response was positive, but there were just some basic factors that worked against it. To be clear, I'm not sharing this as a slight against Marvel ("they didn't recognize my genius," etc) as it didn't work out for various reasons as they were very cool to take my pitch on board. I know they definitely gave it some thought, but it just couldn't work out.
I got the sense with Banshee not being an A-list character, a more known artist would have to be attached, so I suspect it would have gone ahead were I to agree to draw it. For me though, I just couldn't sign up to a commitment like that until INJECTION is finished.
I won't share the whole pitch (Just in case, you never know...) but it's safe to say it's not happening, and I thought it'd be interesting to show here. This was the was the main thrust of it.
Sean Cassidy is back from the dead. Completely (and suspiciously) healed from his experience with the Death Seed, he has retired to his ancestral home of Cassidy Keep. Wanting to be left alone, but old ties keep pulling him back to the world. Sean, reunited with his daughter Theresa, decides to make his home a sanctuary for troubled mutants. A quiet place, a safe space where they can learn to deal with their powers. A place where secrets are buried, in some cases quite literally. But secrets don’t stay buried, and troubles always follow no matter how far you hide. BANSHEE is the story of a broken family, trying to become whole again.
I had this big arc planned, family drama along with introducing the main cast (Banshee/Sean, Banshee/Theresa, Chamber, Marrow, Artie and Leech), a host of new mutants and a mysterious threat. Speaking of the cast, I also redesigned the costumes to fit in with this new team dynamic...
I was pretty happy with this idea, I thought it had legs. In my mind I would write it for another artist and between arcs, I could write/draw standalone issues. I thought Sean Cassidy has so much of an interesting backstory, I could pop in here and there with interesting stories from his past, while the main artist would draw the larger, modern-day stories.
At the end of the day though, Banshee is not a major character so it was always going to be an uphill battle. Marvel were great, the feedback was very positive, but the marketability was a fair concern and it was not soething I could dedicte myself to fully. I've mentioned before I want to write and draw a project, but I can't accept a commitment like while INJECTION is still in development.
Who knows, maybe I'll be able to come back to this in some form someday...