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Deathstroke Vol. 1: Legacy (The New 52) Paperback – August 14, 2012
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Author Q&A with Kyle Higgins
Q. What's it like working on a huge initiative like The New 52?
A. Depending on the day, it's a combination of exciting, inspiring, nerve-wracking, and a whole host of other adjectives (laughs). This past year has been a whirlwind for me. Coming off Gates of Gotham with Scott Snyder, I kind of jumped into the deep end of the pool by launching two New 52 books concurrently (Nightwing and Deathstroke). And, while the spotlight of The New 52 has been intense at times, I'm happy to report that I'm still swimming.
Q. How are you balancing making these stories and characters feel fresh and new while still respecting what came before?
A. That's actually the most challenging part of all this. With a book like Deathstroke, we moved on from a lot of the continuity that came before. We tried to boil the character down to his core and start fresh. I took the aspects that I liked and expanded on them, crafting a story that—in my mind—felt new for Slade and also tapped into the angle of respect. He's the older gun that's trying to show the new generation he's still got it.
Nightwing has been a bit trickier. Dick Grayson was once Robin, then Nightwing, then Batman, and now Nightwing again. And while we try to stay away from specific instances of old continuity, Dick is a character that exemplifies the idea of change. He's built on it. Our first story, which dives into an aspect of his life that hadn't been explored too much before (the circus and the secrets it might hold) was our way of referencing and paying respect to the old … while still breaking new ground.
Q. What stories or creators inspire you most when working on your character?
A. For Nightwing, I have two big influences: Chuck Dixon and Scott McDaniel's run (1996-2000) and Batman: the Animated Series. Growing up, Chuck and Scott's series was the first book I bought every issue of, month and month out. It's the run that really defined the character for me.
As far as Batman: the Animated Series goes, Loren Lester's portrayal of Dick Grayson was also pretty seminal. His is the voice I hear every time I write the character.
For Deathstroke, my single favorite moment/portrayal of the character was in Brad Meltzer's Identity Crisis.
Q. So what do you consider to be your character's definitive stories?
A. Nightwing: Dixon/McDaniel's first 25 issues; Batman the Animated Series: "Robin's Reckoning" and "Old Wounds"; Teen Titans: the Judas Contract. For Deathstroke: Teen Titans: The Judas Contract; DC Universe: Last Will and Testament
Q. What have you thought about the response so far for The New 52 and your title(s) as whole?
A. Honestly? It's been pretty amazing. The willingness of readers to give these books a chance—in particular, my books—has been nothing short of fantastic.
Q. Do you keep up with any of the other New 52 books? Which ones and why?
A. I try to! Scott Snyder's Batman, Josh Fialkov's iVampire, Pete Tomasi's Batman and Robin, Gail Simone's Batgirl, Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato's Flash, Scott Lobdell's Red Hood, Geoff Johns's Aquaman … the camaraderie that we as creators have built over the past year has made the DC Universe feel like one big family. We all try to support each other.
Q. Has social media and increased direct interaction with DC Comics' fans changed your writing/drawing approach at all in regards to The New 52?
A. Not too much. I try to write stories that I, as a fan, would want to read. That said, I do keep an ear to the ground to see what people are reacting to and what they're not.
Q. What creators have influenced the new direction you've taken with your book?
A. Scott Snyder has been a big influence. Between his Detective Comics run, our collaboration on Gates of Gotham, and his plan for the Court of Owls, my current take on Dick Grayson has been informed a lot by Scott's work.
Q. So many classic characters have had their looks changed. What has been your favorite character redesign, even if it isn't in your own book?
A. Supergirl, Batgirl, and the Flash.
Q. There seems to be a lot of storylines integrating both Nightwing and Scott Snyder's Batman title. How in depth is the collaboration process with you and Scott?
A. Well, Scott is one of my best friends, so a lot of the collaboration happens without us even realizing we're doing it (laughs). Since Gates of Gotham, working together has been pretty effortless—we both approach story from the same way. That, coupled with the fact that we're on the phone together a couple times a week and G-Chat all the time, and story conversations just kind of inevitably happen. We just try to keep things fun.
Q. Kyle, you've written Dick Grayson as both Batman (in Batman: Gates of Gotham) and Nightwing now. What differences do you find yourself weaving into the separate personas of Dick?A. I think the biggest difference is humor. In Gates, Dick was a bit more stoic than I write him in Nightwing. He wasn't as upbeat and quippy, which I think was a combination of the seriousness of the threat, feelings of insecurity, and the fact that he was wearing the Bat cowl.
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Top Customer Reviews
I enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would. While the primary focus is Slade cutting a bloody swath through whatever and whoever gets in his way, it isn't totally devoid of storyline. It might be a bit short on character development, but the motives for the lead are established well, so I was not looking for anything heavily introspective. You get a good idea of who this man is, and you get some backstory about his father and his son relevant to not just the story arc but to the overall theme of "Legacy". As someone that came in with almost no idea who this character was, I never felt like I was at a loss for what was going on nor that I was in any way distracted from the narrative of this story. It stands alone very well.
The action certainly never stops progressing. And it is violent. It reminded me a bit of the older school action movies; aggressive, over the top violence. I almost felt like he should be smoking a cigar while cutting his enemies in half... literally. That isn't a complaint; I rather enjoyed it for what it was. I would say, however, that this really isn't suitable for younger kids or the squeemish. A female friend of mine has dabbled a bit in certain Batman stories and other titles, but I would never, ever suggest this to her. ;)
The gist: A lot of fun, violent action with a kick butt anti-hero that doesn't completely skimp in the story or dialogue department. A good read, if it suits your taste.
although i have not read comics in well over 20 years i have recently picked up a few of the New 52 collections to see what DC has done with the recreating of it's Universe.
while this new Deathstroke has been slightly changed and i would guess DC would say he has been made more modern he is not as enjoyable a character as the original 'Stroke. this Deathstroke is much more savage and takes no prisoners.
this collection presents the first story arc of the new book. the stories are action oriented - they are brutal and they are a quick read. although this first story is not an origin of the new Deathstroke it does introduce the character to us and it gives us some backstory and insight to the character. old supporting characters are dropped and new ones are added, the new supporting characters add to the story but i miss the characters that were dropped.
this collection interested me enough and held my attention enough for me to comeback to the next collection to see how Deathstroke develops as a book and as a character. the one major problem is that i have heard that the creative team has changed. that is a shame - i think with the stories presented in this collection they provided a good starting point for the New 52 Deathstroke and i would like to see where they go from here.
it is mentioned that the armour worn by Deathstoke contains Nth metal, the same metal that Hawkman's gear is made of and gives him the power of flight and apparently additional abilities in the New 52 - but Deathstroke's costume containing Nth metal is only a passing line and we do not learn any more about it.Read more ›
It is ultimately a good read for fans of Deathstroke. However, Im not sure this is the comic for you if you want to get into Deathstroke...
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not exactly a compelling story or anything. But introduces an older, tired Deathstroke, bringing in his son and father,showing why he does what he does. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Nicola Mansfield