Prior to Eve Ewing being hired for her first-ever Marvel comics series, fans took to the Internet to launch a petition to get the attention of the movers and shakers at Marvel. One thing led to another and that same petition has led to Ewing writing Ironheart. We've got to admit -- after sitting down to chat with her at C2E2 this past week, there's probably not another person on the planet as excited about Riri Williams and the title is most certainly in good hands.
Here's what Ewing had to tell ComicBook.com about Ironheart, Marvel Team-Up, and... Ororo Munroe?
ComicBook.com: Ironheart is your comics debut. When and where did you say "Hey, I want to write comics."
Eve Ewing: Well, I always thought that I would write some sort of self-published, indie comic. My father is a cartoonist and a caricature artist, and I've been a little bit of a cartoonist myself, and drawn some things that I never published, and wrote things I never published. But the honest answer is that, when I was younger, and I was reading superhero comics, it almost never occurred to me that there would be space for me to enter into this career. I didn't have role models that looked like me, or came from where I come from. Women, much less women of color, much less black women. So, I always thought like, "Oh, I'll do some kind of indie work."
And, I knew that the boys around me, my friends, and people I dated and stuff like that -- I thought "OK, that's something that they'll get to do." But that's... it's like kind of a depressing answer, but that's the honest thing. It's almost as likely as me saying. "I want to grow up and be an astronaut," or something.
In a way, that was almost more feasible in my head, as someone who has no proclivity for physics or science, but there was Mae Jemison, you know what I mean? So, if you had asked me, when I was younger, which do you think is more likely, I would have probably gone that route. But as I got older, and this opportunity arose, I just got more and more excited thinking about it. And I've always been interested in studying comics writing, as it transferred to other forms of writing.
So, I'm always telling people, "Read Ivan Brunetti, read Scott McCloud." Regardless of what kind of writing you actually do. These are principles of good storytelling that everybody can learn from. So, yeah, I've surprised myself.
Ironheart #3 just came out and #4 is set to come out soon. What's the future look like now? Obviously, there's this funky new ninja guy, right?
Well, obviously, I can't tell you too much and it's funny because we work ahead. So, I'm thinking now up to about Ironheart #12. I know where I want the story to go and am writing Ironheart #8 right now. In terms of where we are right now, and what everybody else knows... So, in Ironheart #3, we get the reveal of this villain, "Midnight's Fire", who is actually -- old-school Marvel readers will recognize him from the New Warriors era in the '90s.
And I just thought he was such a cool character, and would be somebody interesting to bring back into Riri's space for a variety of ways. So, he's going to continue to get on her nerves and get under her skin, in ways that are not going to be easy to shake.
New Warriors, that's a deep cut.
As a new writer, is there a Supreme Intelligence-like computer where you log on to and it's a database of sorts?
Well, you know, I used some of the same pedestrian things that everybody else uses. I use the Marvel.com app because it is really amazing, and Marvel Unlimited, and just Google. But, I think one thing that's really amazing about writing for a company that has an 80-year history is, you have this entire backlog of amazing characters, and in the next couple of issues, there are some new characters that I've created. I think it's really incredible to reach back and say, "OK, who have we seen in the past, and how could they link up into this person's space and into their narrative?"
It's almost like the game that all comic book geeks play, which is so-and-so versus so-and-so, right? But an expanded version of that of like "OK, well what happens if this person, who has these hang-ups, and these anxieties, and these weaknesses, meets this person, that excels with these things, and how can they get under each other's skin, psychologically, right?" In addition to, of course, the awesome fight scenes that happened.
I mean, with Riri and Midnight's Fire, one main issue is that she is not a good melee fighter, so she always wants to get distance then shoot people from far away. It's kind of her thing. That's basically her power, right? So, what does it mean to fight somebody that's an elite ninja, that can transpose, almost teleport from space to space, and can see what you're doing before you do it?
So, just on a fight choreography level, that's really fun. But psychologically they have a lot of ways that they're going to butt up against each other.
You're doing Riri's debut solo run, but she's also part of Champions, right? Is there a lot of communication between you and Jim [Zub] and that Champions team about the character?
Yeah, Jim is awesome and I love Champions so much. Independent of Ironheart being part of the team, I think it would still be one of my favorite titles. I love teen heroes. I love hero squads. So, I feel really grateful about all the character development that happened in champions before Ironheart launched as a solo title.
And I am grateful for the continued tensions and dramas and stories that are happening there, some of which are going to move into the Ironheart solo title, in perhaps unexpected ways. But yeah, Jim is great and he and I have had some really good conversations. He has his hands full because he has to talk to me, and Jeremy [Whitley], and all these different people and Saladin [Ahmed], and check in with us like "OK. Is this cool? Is this cool?"
So, yeah, we have an epic hero squad email thread, that reflects the epicness of the team itself.
Marvel Team-Up is coming up.
Yeah. Next month.
Kamala Khan and Peter Parker. What can you tell us about that? Besides the fact that it's just a team-up.
Through the magic of solicits, some of the stories already creeped out. But, I guess, what I can say is like, for me, of course, is the biggest, most absurd honor, to be able to write these two characters, that I have so much respect for. One of whom is not only one of the most iconic characters in the Marvel roster, but actually one of the most iconic characters of anything ever created in film and television, right? Being able to write Peter Parker and Spider-Man, it's just phenomenal to be able to have access to character with a history and a legacy like that.
Then Kamala has become a favorite of many, as a newer, still a newer addition, but who has a fan base, and an established rapport, that matches that of some of the more established heroes. And like I said, I love teen heroes. I just think she's incredible. So, it's been really fun for you to write both of them. At this point, I'm just leaning into writing the fully ridiculous things that pop into my head, and I have a really supportive editorial team that helps me do that.
So, the story is patently absurd. And it's kinda fun, as a writer, to be like, "I have three issues to write this really ridiculous story." Which, I guess, I can say, because the solicits are out. So, in the story... So, don't read ahead, if you don't want spoilers, person reading this. But Peter and Kamala switch bodies. It's a body-swap story. So, it comes with that, all the awkwardness of... both of them have these very embodied powers, right? And that they both, as teens, had to get used to. Seeing Kamala takes us back to Peter's younger days, right? Of what it means to be a teenage superhero, whose balancing school and family life and all that stuff.
So, both of them have to get used to their powers, and think about what it's like to inhabit a body of somebody that is a very different social position than you, very different person than you. Then it's also just silly and fun. It's a body-swap story. And it has to wrap up in three issues.
Patently absurd. That sounds like one hell of a pull quote. You could write that on the front of the comic.
Yeah. Well, you've seen the cover for Ironheart #7, just came out, and it's a zombie apocalypse story, featuring Ironheart and the Unstoppable Wasp in a zombie apocalypse.
Yeah. I'm like, because why not?
Now that you're getting your feet under you in the comics world, you're writing Peter Parker, it doesn't get much bigger than that.
Yeah. Lucky me.
But who has a target on their back? Who is your go-to, your grail character to write?
Well, I'm just trying to have a good time until Marvel... as long as Marvel allows me to do what I do. So, I'm trying to live in the present. To be really honest with you, until recently it was Kamala. I really thought she was the person that would be a dream to write. And I got to do Team-Up, and also play a really small role in Miss Marvel #38, which was a really special, super-team collab experience.
And the cool thing is that, another person would be Miles. And Ironheart #7 is going to be a Miles and Riri adventure. So, the cool thing is, I can bring in some of these characters, in creative ways. So, I'm living the dream, in terms of my superhero checklist.
I guess, one more I would have to add would be, Storm, of course. But we'll see what's on the horizon for that — see if there's a Storm on the horizon.
Ironheart #4 is now on comic store shelves while Marvel Team-Up #1 is set for release on April 3rd.1comments