There's a new person in charge of Postal's town of Eden in the new series Deliverance - and he's aiming to bring what series co-writer Bryan Hill calls some "Old Testament" style law and order.
The mail-carrier-turned-mayor Mark returns in Postal: Deliverance #1, out this week from Image Comics and Top Cow.
With Mark as the Mayor of Eden, and he's struggling with keeping peace - and how his Asperger's affects his approach.
"He's very logical and rational and emotion is seen as an impediment," Hawkins said. "That creates some tension and so much room for drama. I love these kinds of human stories. I'm always amazed in reality how people knowingly do things that are bad for the emotional reasons. I'm one of the worst for this as I allow my emotions to rule me all the time. Crafting realistic characters and putting them through the grinder is always fun, especially when they emerge stronger for it."
"Mark’s reason and logic don’t allow for hesitation," co-writer Bryan Hill added. "He’s a cold king of a dangerous kingdom, and the law is the law."
Hill said this new volume of Postal offered the chance to shift the style and tenor of the series.
"I wanted to explore this world from a new angle, bringing in some new genres into the storytelling," Hill told Newsarama. "This is definitely more horror. I’m going through a strong horror phase."
Going through a "horror phase" might be one thing for Mark on his own, but he has his wife Maggie and daughter Eva with him in Eden - which makes it something they must all deal with.
"[Their relationship is] about to get tested in the most serious ways," Hill said.
"Mark loves her in a way that isn't always evident," Hawkins added. "He thinks many steps ahead and never acts impulsively unless he's doing it as a facade to accomplish something. That can strain a relationship. I've been married to two women for over half my life and relationships are tough for all of us, but imagine not having what people would refer to as normal emotions. Imagine having to fake feelings at times in order to make other people feel comfortable. He is kind of Spock meets Data. I'm stuck on the Star Trek references as I've been streaming all the old series in order and half-way through The Next Generation.”
But being Mayor has the sharpest of learning curves. Mark has had to adapt to keep the laws, but what has himself learned now that he’s at the top. Hawkins said Mark has to be stronger than ever and learned how hard his mother actually had it.
"He has to rule with an iron fist to get the criminals that live there to do what he wants. He comes to respect his mother far more once he walks in her shoes."
Continuing in on Mark and Laura’s relationship and how it hasn’t always been the best (to say the least), Hawkins talks about how if they were to band forces this time around, it would go drastically different because of their now shared experiences.
"He's always loved his mother and she, in her own way, loves him too. They have a fascinating relationship that unfolds as we write them which is kind of fun. When Bryan and I first embarked on it we never thought it'd be this way. It's kind of fun when the writing organically morphs into something you didn't quite expect."
Finally, talking about the endings for these characters and if Hawkins believed they get “what’s coming to them”, he said they don’t have definitive curtain calls.
“We did with Postal #25 and we could have left it there, but the two one-shots, Laura and Mark, spawned a whole bunch of questions and ideas about where we could go with it. We have a definitive story arc for Deliverance, but the final fates of most of these characters will not be determined in this first couple story arcs. It might be a lame thing to say, but to be determined!”
While Mark, Maggie, and Eva live out this new stage in their lives in Eden, Mark's mother Laura has attempted to start a new chapter of her life away from it all by retiring to Florida. But for someone from Eden, getting past their past is easier said than done.
"If you take her out of Eden, she’ll just try to recreate it where she is. Because that’s who she is," said Hill. "Rulers in exile, forced or self-imposed, rarely let the method go. In many ways, she’s more dangerous in our world than she ever was in Eden."
"Laura is, in my humble opinion, the best character in the book," added Hawkins. "Her decisions are always practical but she's not afraid to use violence as a means to an end. I've always looked at her as an end justifies the means kind of person. She's tough and doesn't show weakness, but we get to see how it affects her."
As the core characters of Postal live on, the core creators of the series have changed slightly as original artist Isaac Goodhart has stepped out, with Raffaele Ienco taking his place after doing the two previous one-shots.
"I really enjoyed doing the Postal: Mark one-shot and the cover to Postal: Laura with Isaac Goodhart doing the interiors on that book," Ienco said. "Isaac's straight 26-issue run on Postal was an amazing achievement. Not many artists stay on a book that long anymore so he deserves accolades for that. My pages from Postal: Mark got me my first DC Comics work; a six-issue run on Batman: Sins of the Father so I hope fans will be excited for my art style on Postal: Deliverance this turn.”
After four years, 30 issues, and Hulu optioning it as a live-action series, Postal has become one of Hawkins' favorite creations - and he doesn't plan on Deliverance being the end of it.
"Postal has been one of the best projects I've ever worked on and it and Think Tank are my two favorite series I've ever done," Hawkins said. "Think Tank is more me and Postal is more Bryan and me so Think Tank is a purer version of what stories I like to tell. And it's not wrapped up yet."
"We wanted to do more stories and fortunately, the trades sold really well and allowed us to do so," the writer added. "These characters are so interesting and as long as we can come up with clever stories and good twists and the sales are decent enough I'd like to do this book and Think Tank for the rest of my life!"