Wednesday, 25 March 2015
Al Ewing Insight on Captain Britain and the Mighty Defenders
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Secret Wars (2015)
Secret Wars Correspondence: Captain Britain & The Mighty Defenders
Al Ewing opens the door to a world where heroic Faiza Hussein gathers her forces against a brutal descendant of Luke Cage!
A new Secret Wars demands new warriors. Spinning out from the core conflict into one of the countless Warzones! comes a new team of Defenders led by a Captain Britain with a twist.
“It’s Faiza Hussain, who became Captain Britain in the Age of Ultron tie-in I did a long time ago, when Brian Braddock passed on the title to her,” explains CAPTAIN BRITAIN & THE MIGHTY DEFENDERS writer Al Ewing. “She’s escaped the Age of Ultron universe and now she’s finding her way across Battleworld, searching for the other Captains Britain, and helping where she can along the way. She’s a healer by nature, and this is a situation where she can help and heal.”
The new Defenders spring forth from what’s left of a universe where scientist Ho Yinsen becomes an armored pacifist hero named Rescue. Ewing’s love for the concept cemented it in his brain for future exploration, leading to this Secret Wars installment.
“These Defenders are: She-Hulk, who’s relevant thematically, given her legal background,” he notes. “White Tiger, a version who doesn’t have the powers but fights on in her brother’s name anyway. Hobie Brown aka Spider Hero—a callback to my earliest MIGHTY AVENGERS issues there, with Hobie taking his friend’s name in tribute after this universe’s Spidey died during Spider-Verse. And last but not least, Ho Yinsen’s teenage daughter Antonia Yinsen, aka Kid Rescue, who’s keeping her Dad’s dream of universal peace alive as best she can.
“And they’re up against—Boss Cage! And the brutal and merciless futuropolis of Mondo City! Boss Cage, the clone of Luke Cage’s possible-future grandson Danny, is a fairly thinly-veiled expy of my personal favorite comic character, Judge Dredd, and I was very happy to see him when Jeff Parker first conjured him up a while back. For Boss Cage, the law is everything, and Mondo City law puts the welfare of its citizens over all other concerns—which is bad news for any neighboring territories with lots of resources who can’t defend themselves.”
CAPTAIN BRITAIN & THE MIGHTY DEFENDERS features locales that will challenge readers with their dichotomy.
“It’s a junction between two cities, or two chunks of cities,” says Ewing “On the one hand, you have Yinsen City, which is a lush paradise full of greenery, vertical farming, solar power and total sustainability. So they’re getting along pretty well on Battleworld, because their bit has everything needed to sustain life already in it. The chunk of Mondo City that survives on Battleworld, meanwhile, just has prisons, cops and weapons—infrastructure wasn’t as integrated, so they’ve lost it all and everything’s breaking down. It’s a recipe for conflict, and what we end up with is a conflict between two different types of British comics: dystopian dark satire and bright, sunny whimsy.
“Surely the bad guys won’t win this? But they’re the heroes of their own story—and anything’s possible on Battleworld, True Believer!”
The writer’s enthusiasm for the book stems from the freedom given to him to explore situations and scenarios both familiar to him, and expansive.
“When I was told about Secret Wars, there were a number of ways to cross over with it, depending on what sort of story I wanted to tell,” Ewing says. “I wanted to do an alternate universe story that distilled some of what I’ve been doing in [CAPTAIN AMERICA & THE MIGHTY AVENGERS], and continue those themes of people standing together to fight what can't be fought alone. And this is it!”
The book’s artist, Alan Davis, stands as no stranger to multiple versions of Captain Britain, having juggled a few in his time at Marvel.
“His involvement is a spur to me to write the absolute best possible plot I can,” Ewing explains. “Something that’ll stand the test of time and be remembered as a glittering diamond of a comic for generations to come. So no pressure!”
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