Jim Starlin at Awesome Con 2018
Youdontreadcomics.com caught up with Jim Starlin, the writer/artist responsible for Thanos, Gamora, Drax, and the Infinity Gauntlet itself, at Awesome Con this past weekend. He sat down with us to talk about his final Thanos trilogy, the inspiration for a fan-favorite character, and what it's been like to see his characters brought to the screen.
YDRC: How much from the previous Thanos Graphic Novel Trilogy will carry forward into the new trilogy, which launches with Infinity Siblings?
Starlin: Actually very little. Naturally, Thanos is in it, but we’re putting more of a focus between him and his brother, Eros.
YDRC: Will this be a physical battle between Eros and Thanos or more of a battle of minds?
Starlin: In many ways, it’s Eros versus several opponents. Thanos, for one. Himself, for another, which you’ll find out and which I can’t say any more than that. He’s actually his worst enemy and always has been. I wanted to do a little bit more with him. Eros is one I just sort of did as a toss away, because, when I came up with Thanos, it was from a psychology class back in junior college and, of course, I got more interested in the darker side than I did the lighter side, but they’ve done some things with him over the years, other writers...the sexual predator thing. And I though, I kind of like that, he doesn’t have to be a good guy. But he can, like his brother, do good things even though he’s not. And so I decided I would throw Pip and Kang the Conqueror into the mix and the whole thing sort of generated into a three graphic novel story that I didn’t see coming until I started putting it down on paper, and it’s worked out pretty good. I’ve written it all, Alan Davis is in the midst of pencilling it, and Mark Farmer is inking it right now. They are more than halfway through the second book. I have the third one done, I no longer work for Marvel. But I didn’t want to leave Alan hanging there, so I finished that off before I said bye-bye. Basically, it’s all set to go. They have an editor, Sarah Brunstad, who’s very good to work with, and I’ve been doing polishings on things after the pencils are in and stuff like that, just a little proofreading. I think the project is gonna go along and finish off quite nicely even though I don’t happen to actually be working at Marvel anymore.
YDRC: Is Pip the Troll as fun to write as he seems?
Starlin: He is. You know, he started off as Jack Kirby. Jack was spirited, this little guy with a cigar, but then, you know, Jack was never the degenerate that Pip was, and that’s what we needed was comic relief, he just sort of grew into what he is. You oughta see the way Alan Davis draws him. Alan is so good at expressions, and, in the two books he’s done so far, Pip steals the show just on the mugging that he does in the background of scenes.
YDRC: What do you think about the use of your characters in the Marvel Studios films? Did you ever envision that for them?
Starlin: When I started off in this business, if someone told me that four of my characters would be popular enough where they would be in films, and it would be two green misfits, a purple bad guy, and a glove, I would have never believed it. In fact, if I had to believe it, I might have gone off and chosen another career path. I always thought Thanos was just too esoteric and weird to even make it onto the screen. You know, I was just surprised as hell by this. It’s been a wild ride. The people with the movie company are very good to work with and basically I’ve had myself a great time doing it.