Interview: Brett Booth on Redesigning the A.R.G.U.S. Armor in the New 52

Posted by G-Man (19193 posts) - - Show Bio

We often think how cool it would be to live in a world where superpowers exist. The problem is along with the superheroes, there also comes the supervillains. For a group like A.R.G.U.S., we often wonder what their true intentions are. Their motives can sometimes be questioned but that really falls on the person or persons calling the shots. These soldiers are, for the most part, just doing their jobs. And they likely will be putting in overtime this Fall when there apparently won't be any heroes left.

Recently DC unveiled an early look at the redesigned armor by Brett Booth and Philip Tan. As A.R.G.U.S. starts having a bigger role in the New 52 universe as well as an upcoming FOREVER EVIL one-shot, some thought and care had to be put into the redesigns. We had the chance to ask Brett Booth, no stranger when it comes to redesigning characters, about the process and what we can expect.

FOREVER EVIL: A.R.G.U.S. #1

Comic Vine: You're one of DC's go-to guys for character redesigns, was anything specially asked for when doing the new A.R.G.U.S. agents' armor?

Brett Booth: The original notes asked for a bit bulkier look, but Brian Cunningham asked me to sleek them up a bit, but also to not make them super complicated. Having drawn Steve Trevor in JLA I knew what he meant, complicated! Took forever to drawn him (it was worth it though, cool design!) If I remember, the writer wanted a battery pack on the back, Brian was sort of on the fence about it. Said I could go either way.

CV: How would you describe the changes? Are they simply cosmetic or do they serve more of a purpose?

BB: David [Finch] gave them lots of little pieces that fit together in JLA, I took a more Batmany approach, under armor with chest, head protection nothing to big, and nothing too complicated to draw multiple times. These were for the ARGUS soldiers, so chances are you'd be drawing lots of them!

CV: How durable is the new armor? Could the agents stand up against big powerhouses now?

BB: I don't think they'd be able to protect you for long against Superman but you might be able to keep Cyborg or Aquaman at bay... for a few minutes;) Also, no pun intended:) Batman's going down! Or so he'd have them believe;)

CV: What's your approach when redesigning characters? Do you go through several takes or do you think it over first and then put the pencil to paper?

BB: Really it depends. Sometimes the design just pops out, other times it's a struggle. I tossed the first two ideas I had, didn't look sleek enough, too complicated. I just didn't like them. I usually take an evening to sort of formulate an idea, then the next morning I draw it up. Sometimes I get lots of input from the writers/editors so it's not that difficult. Other times it's like pulling teeth (my own!)

CV: When you designed this armor, did you think about what it'd be like if you had to actually wear it?

BB: A bit, you want the to be able to move so you don't have to fudge too much stuff when you draw it. Sometimes things like shoulder pads and knee pads just don't really work... you sort of have to mess with them when drawing them so the character do things like lift their arms or turn their heads. I didn't have too much problems with them for the ARGUS #1 cover and since this was just sort of a base soldier, you can add or subtract things pretty easy. The design is 'loose' enough that other artists and mess with it pretty easy to create their versions (we're big on that).

We can expect to see more in the New 52 and be sure to look for FOREVER EVIL: A.R.G.U.S. #1 on sale October 23.

Staff
#1 Posted by cameron83 (7643 posts) - - Show Bio

SHIELD? Is that you?

lol jk

Looks great,but it doesn't hold a candle to the batsuit...at least I hope so :p

#2 Edited by Psycho_Soldier (128 posts) - - Show Bio

ugh this cover,...

where did I see you?

#3 Posted by Squalleon (5210 posts) - - Show Bio

I really like the concept of ARGUS and new 52 Steve Trevor. I hope DC doesn't forget them after Forever Evil.

#4 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (36172 posts) - - Show Bio

I wouldn't mind if DC gave ARGUS an ongoing so they could do all there super spy stuff with it

#5 Posted by RulerOfThisUniverse (6488 posts) - - Show Bio

Love the redesign!

#6 Posted by Zeeguy91 (1186 posts) - - Show Bio

Ugh, can Booth just...not design things. He can draw things, yeah, I can tolerate that, but almost every one of his redesigns has been incredibly 90s looking. The only one I like is his design for Blue Devil.

#7 Posted by Cavemold (1684 posts) - - Show Bio

is a bret booth designs ment to suck>

#8 Posted by Krissyjump (106 posts) - - Show Bio

Yeah... I think Finch's design was significantly better.

#9 Posted by jwalser3 (5296 posts) - - Show Bio

Sounds kind of cool.

#10 Posted by blkson (785 posts) - - Show Bio

I wouldn't mind if DC gave ARGUS an ongoing so they could do all there super spy stuff with it

A Team 7 like book?

#11 Posted by TheManInTheShoe (3904 posts) - - Show Bio

Seems cool. I but it seems a bit much, for being a spy agency they look too red. but it works.

#12 Edited by darknightspideyfanboy (1523 posts) - - Show Bio

@themanintheshoe: i think after forever evil there meant to go up against checkmate

#13 Posted by Outside_85 (10619 posts) - - Show Bio

@blkson said:

@jonny_anonymous said:

I wouldn't mind if DC gave ARGUS an ongoing so they could do all there super spy stuff with it

A Team 7 like book?

Sadly that one was piloted by the biggest badasses with guns in the DCU, it had a well liked writer and an interesting premise... and it was dead by issue 8, I predict an ARGUS book will have the same lifespan.

Wish Booth would be allowed to pitch a redesign for Raven...

#14 Posted by Akindoodle (1042 posts) - - Show Bio

SHIELD? Is that you?

lol jk

Looks great,but it doesn't hold a candle to the batsuit...at least I hope so :p

Well, to be fair, they DO look a LOT like SHIELD

#15 Posted by blkson (785 posts) - - Show Bio

@outside_85: I never read it but it seems like an ARGUS like book.

#16 Posted by Psycho_Soldier (128 posts) - - Show Bio

The only good thing about spies in the N52 was the feature from Men of War 5

#17 Edited by BR_Havoc (1344 posts) - - Show Bio

Someone please explain to me why Booth's 90's extreme style is liked when Liefield the creator of the style is hated? One thing that never made sense to me but then again I never was a fan of that style to begin with.

#18 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (36172 posts) - - Show Bio

@blkson said:

@jonny_anonymous said:

I wouldn't mind if DC gave ARGUS an ongoing so they could do all there super spy stuff with it

A Team 7 like book?

Sadly that one was piloted by the biggest badasses with guns in the DCU, it had a well liked writer and an interesting premise... and it was dead by issue 8, I predict an ARGUS book will have the same lifespan.

Wish Booth would be allowed to pitch a redesign for Raven...

That's true but DC had planned to cancel it after like two or three issues

#19 Posted by longbowhunter (8003 posts) - - Show Bio

Anybody at DC heard the term "less is more"?

#20 Edited by lifeboy (1675 posts) - - Show Bio

I guess its ok. I like the armor steve currently has in JLA, but whatever. Just as long as DC continues to keeps amanda and steve in the forefront of JLA as they have been doing. They are the best thing to come out of the reboot for me.

#21 Posted by jesusdisciple001 (546 posts) - - Show Bio

even though he hates religion and is a jerk about it i still want to say when someone has talent they do now if he could just make his cannon guns realistic like how leinil francis yu,kim jacinto etc.do he would be not considered 90's except for some of his costume designs

#22 Posted by jesusdisciple001 (546 posts) - - Show Bio

although ig guara has better armor designs check out the green team book solicits ppl and buy the book it's really good

#23 Edited by SOG7dc (8563 posts) - - Show Bio
#24 Posted by SwampPing (156 posts) - - Show Bio

@br_havoc: Why do people love the rolling stones but hate nickelback? Some people do things better than others.

#26 Posted by Shika1Dude (120 posts) - - Show Bio

is it jus me or does this guy's art suck, im all for team DC and all, but i dont like brett booth's Art, Hate that he is drawing fill in titles for Batman/Superman :@

#27 Posted by Shika1Dude (120 posts) - - Show Bio

@br_havoc: your right, it has this dated style about it, not nice at all, im not digging it

#28 Posted by blkson (785 posts) - - Show Bio

Some of you folk are just cold blooded.

#29 Posted by BR_Havoc (1344 posts) - - Show Bio

@swampping: I do not really think that example works because they're from two very different era's. The Extreme style is very dated and it like the hair metal of the comic book world I just do not understand why an average fan can say Liefield is the worst artist ever but Booth's work is good?

#30 Edited by ahgunsillyo (116 posts) - - Show Bio

Comic Vine: You're one of DC's go-to guys for character redesigns, was anything specially asked for when doing the new A.R.G.U.S. agents' armor?

Brett Booth: The original notes asked for a bit bulkier look, but Brian Cunningham asked me to sleek them up a bit, but also to not make them super complicated.

This strikes me as a very interesting and amusing thing to say. Whenever I see Brett Booth's character redesigns for the New 52, one of the first things I always think is that they're always needlessly overly complicated. Every one of them has enough seams and lines to make your head spin. I know I've shown this before in another thread, so you'll have to forgive me for posting it again, but come on.

HIS STRAPS HAVE STRAPS!

Does he really need THREE logos (one on each shoulder, and another on his chest that doesn't actually have anything in it)? And then he not only needs a utility belt AND the chest strap (which, to be fair, is a holdover from the original design), but extra utility straps on each bicep!

And if you look at his redesign of Doctor Fate for Earth-2:

Do you really need all the extra textured seams on the gauntlets, boots, and collar? Did the cape really need to have feather-esque frills at the end? More importantly, did The Helm really need all those extra accents and details? All of these details just kind of scream "complexity for the sake of being complex," which really harkens back to that 90s mentality of putting pouches and straps on everything because pouches and straps make everything seem cooler (see Red Robin design above).

It just seems that if what you're going for is to "not make them super-complicated," then choosing Brett Booth to redesign the costume/uniform is an incredibly baffling decision.

#31 Posted by WaveMotionCannon (5836 posts) - - Show Bio

Not feeling this design, not very good or functional. Reminds me of a uglier version of the IO armor from Wildstorm.

#32 Posted by Ace20XD6 (235 posts) - - Show Bio

To me they kinda look like a bad Image Comic from the 90's

#33 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6836 posts) - - Show Bio

Gosh that looks awesome. Love ARGUS and love Trevor and love how we are really gonna see them up and coming for Villain's Month. Gosh that Brett Booth can draw...::whistles::

#34 Edited by darknightspideyfanboy (1523 posts) - - Show Bio

@ahgunsillyo: i like dr.fate new look but red robin not so much i rather have this look

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