Top Cow

 

In the comic book industry, writers are a dime a dozen. Everyone and their dog has a script that’s sure to toss the industry on its ear. But who are the writers that are actually doing it? Who’s making a splash big enough to make waves and who is making more subtle moves that might go unnoticed? We all know the big names in the big companies. We always hear about the Bendises (Is that the correct plural of ‘Bendis’? Bendisies? Bendi?) and the Snyders, but who should you be following that doesn’t get their names plastered all over the comic store? Who are the movers and shakers that aren’t getting their names shouted across social media? This list is here to help.

 

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Om Nom Nom!  That is the sound of Hollywood devouring yet one more comic book project and turning it into a movie.  This time around, the succubus-like company is 20th Century Fox and the property is a little (and little known) piece called Theory of Everything.

The story revolves around a brilliant yet unappreciated scientist who is trying to rescue his wife from a parallel dimension.  Written by Dan Casey with art by Thomas Nacklick, Theory of Everything was published by Top Cow Productions as part of their “pilot season” series – an attempt to test the potential goodness of new comic titles.  Just one comic was made, but they pitched it to Fox and the movie execs ate it up.

Well, I guess we’ll see where this one goes as they get closer to actually producing it, but it’s a pretty nifty way of selling an idea to a movie company.  Hell, they didn’t even have to finish the actual series!  Lazy writers…

 

Thanks to ComingSoon for the heads-up.

Matt Hawkins, best known to the world as the President of Top Cow Comics, recently spoke with us about the new series he’s writing called Think Tank. Shortly after this interview was conducted, Top Cow announced that Think Tank would become an ongoing series.

Here now are Mr. Hawkins’ thoughts on slacker geniuses, unbelievable tech, scientific ethics, and the cost of being the boss.

Since the book just came out, how would you describe Think Tank for the uninitiated?

Matt Hawkins: Think Tank is a book about a research scientist who was seduced into service for DARPA and the military at the tender age of 14 by being given a full ride to Cal Tech and the promise to be in the leading lab in the world. David of course accepted and got sucked into a world he became disillusioned about later. The story starts with him already being disillusioned and he is a bit of a slacker genius at this point. He doesn’t finish what he starts and sort of does just enough to get by…which is more than most of us could do but he’s expected to do more. A new military officer has been put in to oversee the lab who’s goal it is to get David to work again. He created some amazing tech for them and they want more. This is the nature of the conflict.

The tech in the book seems scarily within the realm of possibility. How much research did you have to do?

Hawkins: The research for this has been lifelong but more specifically for this project in the last year. A lot of this is based on my own interactions with scientist friends and people I know. Research for me is an ongoing curiosity and not really a chore. I find it to be the funnest part.

The book raises interesting points about scientific responsibility. Do you think scientists should be held accountable for their creations, or is it the duty of the user?

Hawkins: Oh I think people have a responsibility for what they create. There will always be more questionably moral people who will look to use whatever it is for their own advantage, which frequently translates to evil. I believe in science and what we’re doing now is pretty amazing, but there is a responsibility to make sure that this stuff is controlled. There are bioweapons being developed and tested daily that could wipe out the whole world if they got out… and in some cases with some of them in less than 24 hours.

Was it difficult juggling your duties as Top Cow’s president with writing?

Hawkins: Yeah this is just a matter of sleeping less!

While we’re at it, what’s a typical day as president like?

Hawkins: I always have more than I can do to get done but I prioritize and try to knock one or two things off my to do list before I get into email, phone calls, etc. Afternoons I have a lot of meetings, review contracts, cut checks, run profit and loss analysis…all kinds of boring shit.

Think Tank #1 went to a second printing and it is still on sale at your local comic book shop.  

 

This July, Top Cow Productions’ Minotaur Press imprint is coming out with their first original graphic novel, Sunset. Written by Christos Gage and featuring art by Jorge Lucas, Sunset tells a good old fashioned noir revenge story… starring senior citizens. I recently got the chance to ask Gage a few questions about Sunset, his mad research skills, and the possibility of more creator-owned work.

[Editor’s note: This interview was conducted before it was announced that Gage would join Neal Adams for Marvel’s First X-Men]

I believe I’m right in saying this is your first work for Top Cow. How did Sunset come about? Did you approach them with this story in mind?

Christos Gage: It actually started a couple years ago when I was talking to them about possibly doing a Darkness story set in Vegas in the 50s. That didn’t pan out, but I said, “You know, if you like that, I have another idea you might dig.” It was serendipitous, really. And yes, this is my first work for Top Cow. I’m really honored that they’d make it their first original graphic novel, and set me up with an artist as amazing as Jorge Lucas! (more…)

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