[INTERVIEW] Greg Pak Talks X-Men’s ‘Storm’ #4, ‘Death Of Wolverine’ & Working With Victor Ibáñez! [NYCC 2014 EXCLUSIVE]

Posted by & filed under , , , .

By Jorge Solis (j.solis@mstarsnews.com) | Oct 13, 2014 02:30 PM EDT

There has been no mutant, no X-Man, quite like Storm, which is why Marvel Comics has given the popular heroine her own prominent ongoing series. During the New York Comic Con 2014, we spoke with writer Greg Pak about how he and artist Victor Ibáñez have taken readers on incredible journey, to Storm #4 presenting all sides of the titular heroine –– as the hero, the leader, and the goddess. In the aftermath of Death of Wolverine, we see the Mistress of the Elements in a different light as her own world has been thrown into chaos.

MStars spoke with the Planet Hulk scribe about the early beginnings of the X-Men super heroine series, his collaboration with Ibáñez, and the heartbreaking impact of Wolverine’s death on her mindset.

MStars: How did you become involved with Storm?

Greg Pak: I got a call from the editor Daniel Ketchum, and he said that he had gotten the green light to move forward with the series starring Storm. It’s the first ongoing series the character has ever had. “Would you be possibly interested in writing?” he said. I loved the character since forever!

Over the years people have sometimes asked me what Marvel characters I’d like to write. I used to say Storm, Silver Surfer, and Doctor Strange. In the last few years, I had a chance to do a Silver Surfer mini. I did a Doctor Strange: Season One book. And then, I get this call from Daniel! It was impossible for me to say no! [Laughs] It was a huge opportunity and I jumped on it.

MS: Tell me what interests you about Storm, who has become such a strong leader.

GP: I really love that this character has this diverse background. She has an understanding and sympathy of people on every level. She was a street kid and a thief. And then eventually she became a queen. She’s seen it all.

I’d liked the idea that Storm is a person who is going to have a natural affinity for the underdogs. She’s going to see things other heroes would miss. She’s going to stick out for the people who are going to need her, no matter what the consequences are. That’s a great kind of hero to write stories about.

Throughout the series, she’s going to go through places no one else would. She’s going to stand up for folks others may have forgotten. And she’s going to get into trouble as a result of that! [Laughs]

MS: Tell me about artist Victor Ibáñez.

GP: Victor is amazing! He has such a huge passion for the character. From the very beginning, before we had even talked, he was just so clear. Basically from the very first pint we started communicating, it was clear he was very excited sabot the character.

He just instinctively got everything that I was going for. he draws her like a real woman, a real person. At the same time, he knows how to cut loose and bring out the goddess.

What makes the book work is the emotion and he is able to tap into that character. When you see the way he draws her, you see the emotions on her face. Sometimes they’re big, sometimes they’re very subtle; he always nails it! He makes her feel real. You can’t ask anything more from an artist than that! That’s the greatest gift an artist can give you; to make those characters live and breathe.

MS: Tell me about the themes of relationships through these past issues, especially with Callisto and Forge.

GP: I think of the things we’ve been doing in the first few issues is exploring Storm’s strongest relationships from the past. We see the status of those relationships are in the future. We see how this mission she’s building for herself is affecting those different relationships. You’re going to see big payoffs in all of this as the story continues, from issue #4 and onward.

MS: Tell me about how the death of Wolverine will affect Storm’s mindset in issue #4.

GP: In issue four, she’s again going to see an old friend, Yukio, who actually is the character whose wildness inspired to get the Mohawk back in the day for the first time. Yukio has always been very close to Wolverine. In the wake of Wolverine’s death, Yukio and Wolverine had been mixed up in some business. And Storm is going to come in and try to take Wolverine’s place there. She feels this obligation to finish up what Wolverine started.

The big questions is wether Storm is going to go as far as Wolverine might have gone in these circumstances. We’ll find out what it does to her relationship with Yukio.

We’re seeing her taking on challenges that other folks won’t. She’s possibly putting herself in danger, and also putting the relationships with the people she loves in danger. Bringing all these people onto the stage and seeing how these people are affected by these steps Storm is making, and how it affects Storm in return, it’s just a good recipe for drama.

MS: What would you like to explore further down?

GP: One of the things that comes up with superheroes in general is how a person, who aside from their powers, is a normal person like you and me. How can they handle these tremendous powers?

Storm controls the weather. That sounds pretty simple when you say it. But when you think about what it means, it’s actually terrifying. Somebody who controls the weather that could affect life or death for billions of people, everybody on the planet. We’re definitely doing to explore Storm’s responsibilities, and the dangers of being inherently that strong. That’s something we’ll explore in upcoming issues.

We’re also going to see when the wider world pays attention to the kind of things Storm has been doing throughout these first few issues. She thinks she has been doing the right things regardless of the consequences. Now those consequences re going to catch up with her.

MS: What other projects are you working on now?

GP: I’m writing Action Comics and Batman/Superman from DC Comics. And hope you check those out too! I had a blast with those! I’m co-writing an arc of Turok: The Dinosaur Hunter with the great Paul Tobin. That’s issues of nine through twelve.

And then I just had a book I’m really excited about. It’s called Make Comics Like The Pros. It’s a how-to book I wrote with Fred Van Lente. And it is on sale! You can ask your local comic shop for it. or you can get it from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or whatever online retailer you prefer. It contains all our secrets! So if you’ve ever been interested in making comics, and want a practical guide, every step in the whole process, check it out!

Storm #4 will hit stores everywhere on Oct. 15.