THE BIONIC MAN started out as being based on Kevin Smith's idea on the characters. Phil Hester and Jonathan Lau have been killing it month after month in telling the story that re-invented Steve Austin for a new generation.
As the first arc approaches its conclusion, the question remains, what will happen next? To find out, we asked Phil a few questions about the future of the series.
Comic Vine: Has the second arc for THE BIONIC MAN been planned out?
Phil Hester: Oh, yeah. We've known how long Kevin's origin arc was going to run from day one, so we've been planning ahead for what to do for an encore. I actually think we have a full year of books planned for after #10. We've got pathos, giant monsters, political intrigue, and most importantly, unfettered bionic action.
CV: We recently learned that Steve Austin is forced to be a puppet to the OSI when they choose. Is this something that will carry on throughout the series.
PH: I don't want to spoil the end of the book, but let's just say the situation regarding the powers that be at OSI become... fluid by issue #10.== TEASER ==
CV: We saw the return of Jaime Sommers in issue #7. Once her series begins, will there be close ties in continuity or will the two books remain separate?
PH: They'll remain separate for reasons I can't go into here, but the ultimate nature of their relationship will be revealed in the pages of a Dynamite book, either hers, Steve's or a special edition of some kind. It's kind of a big deal and we don't want to give it short shrift, so we're letting Jaime's book start up and get its legs before handling the housekeeping necessary to explain why they're in separate titles. We're going to tease a little mystery for a while.
CV: Will we see Steve fight other types of threats besides the renegade cyborg, Hull? (What about Bigfoot?).
PH: Yes. Are you asking to be spoiled? Again, the beauty of the book, as opposed to the TV show, is our unlimited budget. We can afford to have Steve tossing buses and punching tanks... or fighting gigantic, hairy monsters. In fact, comics demands this level of action. So, yes, expect to see Steve tussle with opponents worthy of his power. He'll also suffer the consequent damage in a way the show couldn't touch. It's gonna be fun.
CV: How often does Steve need maintenance on his parts? Are all his parts completely silent? No whirring or other noises when we walks?
PH: Absolute silence, at least to the human ear. Other bionically augmented folk may hear his parts working, but not us. As far as maintenance, probably every six months or 5,000 miles, whichever comes first.
CV: What's your favorite part about writing THE BIONIC MAN?
PH: It's the Bionic Man! Seriously, Steve Austin is an iconic character fans fell in love with via the old TV show. Well, I think we're in a unique position to actually improve on the original mythos by bringing him into the 21st century and unleashing his capabilities in ways the show could never afford. No more ripping doors off cars, or barely being able to bust through brick walls. This Colonel Steve Austin is ready for much, much more. I'm grateful to be allowed to help bring you those stories.
THE BIONIC MAN #8 is on sale March 28.