But very few. And they're among the most respected names in DC's roster, like Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison and Paul Levitz.
On Green Arrow, J.T. Krul is one of those writers that DC wants staying right where he is. In September, he'll relaunch the title he's been writing since last year, giving Oliver Queen a new #1 issue while adding artist Dan Jurgens to the creative team.
According to DC's solicitations for September, Ollie Queen "travels the world" and is armed with "cutting-edge weaponry and illegally gained intel courtesy of his team at QCore."
Krul will also be launching a new title for DC, Captain Atom. Newsarama talked with him about both titles, and we start with the first installment where we discuss the new status quo for Green Arrow.
Newsarama: J.T., it feels like a lot of your run on Green Arrow to this point has been defined by Brightest Day. Does it feel good to get a new #1 where you can really get a fresh start on the stories you want to tell about this character?
J.T. Krul: Having Green Arrow tie into Brightest Day was absolutely perfect for the story I needed to tell coming out of the gate. The entire run so far centered on Ollie questioning his own moral resolve and identity - was he even a hero anymore given all the flaws and failings of his recent past. He was definitely down on himself. In the Brightest Day run, he ran into those themes head-on, magnified by circumstance and the presence of such people as Galahad and Jason Blood/Etrigan the Demon.
On a side note: How cool does Paul Cornell's new book sound?!? And Diogenes Neves did a killer Etrigan in our Green Arrow book, so you can only imagine how awesome Demon Knights will be.
But coming out of it, the intention was always to re-establish Green Arrow as a true hero of his city. I am way ready to start showcasing Ollie in that light again.
Nrama: How would you describe the comic in general as we get this new #1 issue?
Krul: Oliver Queen is a billionaire with a mission — to do everything he can to make the world a better place. Through his company, he is able to achieve quite a bit, but some things require a more direct approach — and a bow and arrow. It's the core of Green Arrow: a bit of that Robin Hood vibe as he strikes out against the greatest threats to people's lives and freedoms. He may have that ivory tower, but in his heart he is a man of the people — and he always will be. The problem today is that the threats out there stretch way beyond the city limits, so Green Arrow will have to expand his territory, so to speak. Think globally.
Nrama: You mention that he is a "man of the people." Fans have voiced some concern about his views on society possibly changing from the left-leaning status quo Ollie has had for so long. Do you want to address those fears?
Krul: I don't think anyone needs to worry about that. For me, that agent of social change component is a core aspect of who Green Arrow is. He's driven to fight for the little guy — to stand up against what's wrong with the world. He may not always have the solution to the world's problems, but that won't stop him from calling them out bluntly. It's not always going to be at the very forefront of what he's doing, but it's a foundation of his character.
Nrama: As you relaunch Green Arrow, will we see big changes from what you were doing before? Are you free to describe any changes in particular that you want fans to know about?
Krul: I can't say much beyond what's already out there. The biggest change from what I was doing before centers around the fact that Oliver Queen is a billionaire and has his role within Queen Industries — and the fact that his identity is a secret. But again, it's all true to the core of Green Arrow.
Nrama: Will you still be able to build upon some of the new concepts you introduced in Green Arrow before Flashpoint? His rogues? His supporting cast?
Krul: For the time being, we felt it was best to focus on other aspects for the book, but obviously there are elements I would like revisit at some point. The main focus though was keeping it fresh — completely accessible for new readers.
Nrama: You said he's a billionaire. Does that mean lots of expensive gadgets? Anything else you can tell us about what this status quo offers him?
Krul: Just that he's driven by this compulsion to help people in any way that he can, which is true for Oliver Queen as well as Green Arrow. Given his position and status in the world, Oliver sees it as an opportunity to affect real change. And, yes, the time has come for the return of his patented trick arrows.
Nrama: We've seen that Arsenal is acting as an antihero in the post-Flashpoint world, apparently outside Ollie's influence. But can you confirm whether other familiar characters from Green Arrow's supporting cast might be showing up in Green Arrow now?
Krul: Not now. Green Arrow does have a lot of family with regard to other costumed heroes, but as with the last launch I did, my focus is going to be on Green Arrow - keep him the star of his book before we bring in other heroes and such.
Nrama: What does Dan Jurgens bring to the comic? How does he help define the overall tone?
Krul: Dan brings quite a lot to the book. Not only is he an extremely gifted artist, but he's also a writer, which has been very helpful as we went through this whole development process. As for tone, it's a gritty book but Dan is bringing a touch of lightness to it with his style. It looks and feels fun.
Nrama: Anything else you want to tell fans about Green Arrow?
Krul: We're really bringing back the fun and action of Green Arrow with this book, while still having that edge to it. It's as though he's becoming the James Bond of the DC Universe, but he's not quite as refined as a British agent. And, Green Arrow hates martinis.
Check back soon on Newsarama as we talk to Krul about his other new DC series, Captain Atom.Got a comment? There's lots of Newsarama conversation on FACEBOOK and TWITTER. More on DCnU:
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