R.J. Ryan: Yes…unless I get hit by a bus
You might still be able to go, I think it depends on the injury.
I saw lots of ambulances at San Diego 2015, but let’s get right into it; tell me about the development process for The Joyners switching from 3D to 2D?
It was never something David Marquez, who I have now been working with for seven years, or I ever really planned on with this book. As I said when THE JOYNERS IN 3D came out, this graphic novel was always pitched as a 100% 3D experience. But we did dangle the idea in front of our editor at the time, Stephen Christy, of the possibility of doing a 2D version. We made sure with our contract that the 3D version had to come out first and be the “main” version. And as we made the actual book, the thinking was always that any 2D version would be in Black & White and be a Comixology-only digital release. We never anticipated bringing in a colorist or doing a whole new print edition until BOOM! Studios president Filip Sablik and Stephen raised the possibility several months ago, which surprised Dave and myself.
Of course the idea of opening the title up to Comixology allows for a bigger base of readers (and some who can’t see 3D or may be too jaded by the prospect of it all) does that excite you?
We’re sitting on a ton of production material and back matter that has never been released anywhere but are undecided on how much of that will go in the print issues versus another collection down the road. The individual issues are around 28-pages each so they’re very meaty comics for your money.
The plan is to release the comic as individual issues?
What was it like from a production standpoint to literally drop a dimension from the project? Did Marquez have to get involved again?
The series will have new covers by David and Kelly.
Which is ironic because Civil War II will not have covers by David, although he is doing some variants. Marko Djurdjević (Thor) is doing the main covers on that one.
Very cool. The solicitation image is already stunningly beautiful. I understand that you wanted to include David Marquez’s name before yours in the credits of the new title– in this writer-driven medium, that’s a huge shift. What you can say about that decision?
I’ve undergone a philosophical shift. Comics is a visual medium and as far as we are concerned, we just decided the artist’s name on this one should go before the writer’s name. It’s weird and it’s not fully approved by BOOM yet at all — just something we formally requested in writing for all future editions.
I really believe in my heart that the artist’s name should go before the writer’s. I wrote this in three months and it took Dave more than three years to draw and 3D-ize, working every day. He has the harder and more important storytelling job, and I imagine that is true on a lot of comics.
As comics started getting adapted into movies and shows and became “intellectual property,” the cultural emphasis certainly shifted to the writer. People on the street consider Robert Kirkman the sole creator of The Walking Dead. That seems backwards to me and I have told this to Tony Moore‘s (Deadpool) face. No knock against either of them, this is just me trying to be intellectually honest about what a comic book actually IS.
I was a fan in the 90’s and thought it was really appropriate and cool that when Jim Lee (Justice League) left Marvel, he took it upon himself, as did a lot of those Image guys, to cast himself as the number one name on the cover. It made perfect sense to me.
Labor is TIME, that’s all it is. I can juggle five or six writing projects at once, a comic book artist has to focus on one thing at a time. And I can write a page of comic book script in an hour and that page can take two or three days to draw.
That said David and I are equal financial partners on THE JOYNERS.
What about the idea of inkers and colorists– fortunately, they can balance multiple projects at once, but they have a reduced page rate.
I think if a colorist wants to have his or her name on the cover, he or she should very clearly ask for that. I have never worked with an inker.
THE JOYNERS #1 (of 4)
Retail Price: $3.99
Writer: R.J. Ryan
Artist: David Marquez
Cover Artist: David MarquezWhat’s to love: The story Comic Book Resources called “a game changer” returns in an all-new, full-color serialized format! A landmark work by Invincible Iron Man & Civil War II artist David Marquez and longtime collaborator R.J. Ryan, featuring new color art by Bitch Planet’s Kelly Fitzpatrick.What it is: In 2062 Northern California, technology mogul George Joyner stands on the brink of revolutionizing American life (again) with his latest high-flying creation. Unfortunately, his family life is a mess, and his wife Sonya has had enough. Can George pull it together before she decides to leave him for good?
Fruit snack aficionado. @AlexandComics