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Interview: Jim McCann On Hawkeye & Mockingbird (And Dazzler)

The Heroic Age is here

As a big fan of Hawkeye and Mockingbird from their days together in West Coast Avengers, I was overjoyed when Secret Invasion brought the two back together. Then we had the New Avengers: The Reunion mini-series written by Jim McCann. Things got even better when it was announced that Jim would be writing an ongoing Hawkeye and Mockingbird series. Here are the answers to some of the questions I had on my mind.
Comic Vine: Let's back up first, did you pitch the original New Avengers: Reunion story or were you approached to write it?
Jim McCann: When I knew we were bringing back someone at the end of Secret Invasion and that Mockingbird was a contender, I pushed hard-core for her to be the one.  I was then asked “Ok, what would we do with her, what would make her stand apart from any other character in the Marvel U, and what would her relationship to Hawkeye be?”  That’s when the Mr. & Mrs. Smith of the MU came in and my pitch for THE REUNION was born…and green lit!
CV: What about the ongoing series. Was it because of you spectacular mini-series that made Marvel want to do an ongoing or was it always in the plans? 

Once we saw how well the mini was doing, and I had made no secret that I wanted to keep writing these two, we had plans for a follow-up mini. David Lopez was on board as well--we developed a great relationship with each other and with the characters and so I jumped at the chance to work with him some more.  I plotted out the mini and was ready to start it when I got the best email ever: we were now an ongoing, debuting in the Heroic Age.  So, I pushed the mini storyline back (it will be an arc down the road for the series now) and approached this fresh as a book that I hope will be on stands for years!  At the end of the day, though, I have to say that it was the fans’ & retailers’ support of THE REUNION that made this possible, so thank you!
CV: In the first issue of the mini it opens with a letter from "the desk of Leonard Samson" with some bits blacked out (classified). Considering this information was classified, will we see the "evil" Samson show up in the future?
No, that was in there because at the time Doc Samson was counseling abductees of the Skrulls such as Mockingbird.
 == TEASER ==
CV: Will your series focus more on the two (and the WCA) or will we see any interaction with the Avengers?
The main focus of the series is absolutely the core duo--the action and adventures they get into and the consequences of those actions.  But we are in the Avengers family, so you will see them. Like, how about seeing Steve Rogers & Captain America in the first issue? And some more familiar faces very soon!
CV: Are you dealing with the "why" part of Clint's decision to go back to being Hawkeye or will that be handled in Avengers?
We’ll be telling that story soon in HAWKEYE & MOCKINGBIRD.
CV: Will we see Kate Bishop show up or do we have to wait until Avengers: Children's Crusade comes out in July?
You’ll see Kate & Clint cross paths in something I am writing, but that’s all I’m saying. And DO buy Avengers: Children’s Crusade!  Allan Heinberg & Jimmy Cheung are magic together!
CV: How far along do you have the series mapped out?
JM: The
first 2 years are pretty solid in my mind with a 3rd year starting to.  I could write them for as long as they will let me. I have tons of story to tell, but I like to approach this as a long-form serial, so while I can’t wait for them to cross paths with character X or fight villain Y, it needs to come from the story first and fit naturally.
CV: On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you to be writing the Dazzler one-shot?
Musical analogy--turn that up to 11! 
CV: I know you've probably answered this a million times, but what is it about Dazzler that you love so much?
She is such a relatable character to anyone who has felt different or an outcast.  To me, she is the perfect mutant as minority metaphor because of what she’s been through.  She’s an icon that’s become a bit of a joke, but deep down I see the incredible potential she has.

CV: How many more Dazzler stories do you have in you?
I have a mini that I’d love to see green-lit and beyond that, as many stories as they’ll let me tell!
CV: What was your favorite Dazzler issue and why?
Issue 38 of her solo series. Outted and having lost everything, she had to learn to get a tougher skin and stand on her own. She took part in a real-life Danger Room scenario against Colossus and Wolverine and beat them. And then, just when you think she needs people the most, she turns down the X-Men for a second time, having the self-confidence to make it on her own. It encapsulates the character for me.
CV: Would you rather see her more active in X-Men or do you want her staying away (so you could maybe get your hands on her again)?
I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive.  Look at Wolverine & Beast--they can be in both worlds.  Or Iron Man, Cap, Thor, Hawkeye & Mockingbird.  I think characters can be on a team and still have solo adventures.  I’d love to see her play a larger role yes, and that’s starting to happen more--she’s in SECOND COMING: HELLBOUND as well as my one-shot this month.  And of course I’d love to take her on a bit more, too!
CV: What are the chances of Dazzler popping up in the pages of Hawkeye and Mockingbird?
Not very likely, unless it’s Clint & Bobbi’s date night at a Dazzler concert. Even that wouldn’t make a good story.  At this point, there’s no organic link, so anything I would do to force that would come off false and not do the characters or the fans any justice. So, I’ll be happy to keep them apart for now.
12 Comments Refresh
Posted by goldenkey

I love Hawkey, but his mask has just got to go.  The pirate boots too.  Weak.  The ultimate costume is just waaaaaaaay better.
Posted by The Devil Tiger
@goldenkey said:
"I love Hawkey, but his mask has just got to go.  The pirate boots too.  Weak.  The ultimate costume is just waaaaaaaay better. "


Yup. Definitely !
Posted by mrrpm01

Great Interview I am waiting for the Clint and Kate story line myself!

Posted by sora_thekey
@goldenkey said:
" I love Hawkey, but his mask has just got to go.  The pirate boots too.  Weak.  The ultimate costume is just waaaaaaaay better. "
Yep.... but usually people go back to roots!
I am really excited to read Dazzler and H&M...
Posted by No_name_here

I got to hang out with this cool cat at C2E2 (he's doing a book with Archaia called RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN.) Very glad to see Jim making a splash with these two titles.

Posted by FoxxFireArt

It's funny. I never got around to seeing Mr. and Mrs. Smith, and normally Angelina Jolie can get me to see about anything.
Never been much of a Dazzler fan. Just could never connect with her. I'm sure it's great for him to work on two characters he cares about.

Posted by Strafe Prower

This is great :)

Posted by Ice Princess

Jim McCann's love for both Dazzler AND Mockingbird makes my soul smile.

Posted by Blue_Shield

I've loved Hawkeye/Mockingbird since the WCA days, and can't wait for issue #2 with the new Phantom Rider.
Posted by War Killer

I like this guy, he seems to love the characters he's writing and from the Reunion (which I have and it is amazing!) he's got the Hawkeye and Mockingbird down! I can't wait for this series! ^__^

Posted by charlieboy

more dazzler!!!! can't wait for hawkeye and mockingbird.