Interview: James Tynion IV Talks TALON

Posted by No_Name_ (17403 posts) - - Show Bio

We are currently two issues into TALON, the latest DC series being written by James Tynion IV and Scott Snyder which centers around a character named Calvin Rose. For those of you who aren't familiar with the series, it is an off-shoot of Snyder's work on the 'Court of Owls' story arc. The series features Rose, a former Talon and a man by the name of Sebastian Clark. Each of these two men wants to enact their revenge on the Court of Owls, but they have two very different means to that similar end. If they want to take down the Court, they are going to need one another. We recently caught up with the series' writer, James Tynion IV and asked him questions about the current series as well as questions about what characters readers can expect to pop up in the coming issues.

Comic Vine: You and Scott both came up with the idea for Calvin Rose, Right?

James Tynion IV: Absolutely, yes. Back when they were first talking about the TALON series, Scott and I sat down and debated whether or not we wanted to dig into. We went home separately and came up with a few ideas and then from there we started building the character and the story we wanted to tell. It's been a really fun ride and it's been great introducing Calvin to the world. I love the character and I think he comes alive a little bit more in each issue.

CV: In the first issue we find out that the Court of Owls and their Talons are still very much alive and continue to be a threat in Gotham even though they have been weakened by Batman. How do you plan to continue integrating them into Calvin's story and for how long?

JT: Well, for the how long we're going to have to wait and see a little bit, but I think really the first two issues set up who Calvin was and what his real mission is going to be as the series progresses. The next few issues are really going to show him out on the attack for the very first time. We're talking about a guy who spent his life on the run, and is kind of antithetical to everything he has done before to not turn around and fight. So, this is something he's going to have to adjust to, as well as working with a collaborator in Sebastian Clark. I think that the Talons and the Court -- as we see them in the next few issues -- are certainly going to notice that this old, wayward Talon has turned his attention back to the Court and is going to start some trouble, and they are going to have to retaliate in a way that Calvin never would expect and it's going to put him in a very dangerous position in the issues to come.

== TEASER ==

CV: The Talon that appears in the first issue to attack Calvin Rose, will she return to pose a threat to Calvin in future issues?

JT: After the fight with Calvin in that issue, Sebastian neutralized her. We will find out further down the line that she has been picked up and moved over to Blackgate [prison] along with the other Talons who were apprehended, but we are going to see a number of Talons in the next several issues including ones who are sent directly to fight Calvin as opposed to ones who are simply protecting the assets of the Court, like the Talon we saw in #1 and the many more that were implied later in the issue.

CV: By the end of issue #1 we saw the alliance forge between Sebastian and Calvin, but is this everything? We did receive a brief explanation behind Sebastian's motives to take down the Court, but will we be learning more about the character?

JT: Absolutely. Sebastian is a key character from issue #1, on in this series. He is going to be the sort of the vision aster of Calvin's work in the next…all the issues to come. His relationship to Calvin is key to this series and we are going to see that it's not exactly an easy relationship starting with issue #2, their first real mission together. Neither of them are used to working with another person so they are going to come head-to-head a little bit, and their relationship will develop from there. There is a lot more to come about who Sebastian Clark is and what his relationship and animosity to the Court is, and that all started in issue 1 and continues in issue 2 and beyond.

CV: So this is a related question, how would you describe their relationship and how do you plan to mold it?

JT: Well, I would say that it is antagonistic at first just because they aren't used to operating with a partner. What Sebastian Clark is going to want is someone who is going to do exactly what he says and follows the missions he's planned out to a 'T,' and Calvin hasn't had to listen to anyone in over 7 years and he doesn't like the idea of someone sitting at a computer, telling him what to do. That's really going to reign on them even though they have very similar goals and aspirations…We'll see them come together after that adversarial relationship because they both want the same thing in the end, although they want that thing for different reasons.

CV: In the preview for the third issue of the series we see Calvin fighting a blonde woman. Can you tell us about who he is fighting and why in these few pages?

JT: Issue #3 is going to bring us to New York City where Calvin is going to run into people from his own past. These are people related to his past in New York City, so I can't reveal to much about it just yet but I think there are a whole batch of characters that come into play starting with issue #3, including the two you see in the preview and they are not too happy to be seeing Calvin when he first arrives.

CV: So they know him previously then? There's a history there?

JT: I think we'll have to wait and see there…they are aware of him because of his history in New York City.

CV: So Calvin, like Dick Grayson, has a connection to Haly's Circus. Do you plan on integrating the Circus into his story, and how important is Haly's Circus to him.

JT: It has a very close place to his heart. Because, essentially, over in NIGHTWING Kyle Higgins has been playing with the connection between the Court of Owls and Haly's Circus, I didn't want to double dip into that too quickly. But I would say that there is history to explore there in the connection between those two characters and their relationship to Haly's Circus where both of them started to form into the men they are today.

CV: Any plans to incorporate -- no pun intended -- Calvin into the Bat-Family? Do you foresee any team-ups between Calvin and Batman or any of his supporting characters in the near future?

JT: Well, I'd say first we're going to have to see how Batman feels about someone running around Gotham and the whole DC Universe wearing a Talon costume especially after the event in Batman in the last year. We're going to see how Batman feels about what Calvin's up to in the next batch of issues, but I don't think he's going to be joining the Bat-Family just yet, I'd say.

#1 Posted by longbowhunter (6805 posts) - - Show Bio

I initially started buying this to support new talent coming into DC (like James IV needs my support, he's got Scott Snyder backing him). But Talon has quickly won a spot in my monthly pull. Its by far my favorite Bat family title, unofficial or not. 

#2 Posted by browell3 (4 posts) - - Show Bio

Man, Talon suuuure does remind me of Gambit. It's like seeing Gambit as part of the extended Bat-Family. Just an opinion, it looks cool.

#3 Posted by mpierce2690 (316 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm really liking the book, but it really would have rather seen James Tynion IV jump on a major character's book that is in desperate need of a new writer such as Hawkman, Teen Titans, Green Arrow before the Lemire announcement, etc.

#4 Edited by crowncoke (206 posts) - - Show Bio

I have to agree that Calvin has a Gambit flare to him. I was almost seeing Gambit mixed with Azrael. I think Talon will have to be a pull for awhile.

#5 Posted by HollowPrince665 (97 posts) - - Show Bio

I cannot wait to see where this story goes. I love the art and story of it. Maybe somewhere down the line, itd be cool to see Nightwing or Batman actually meet Calvin, but as I said somewhere down the road.

#6 Edited by doordoor123 (3721 posts) - - Show Bio

I hope Alfred survives Death of the Family because I would love it if Sebastian was a personal friend of Alfreds and they're both living secret lives.

#7 Posted by Baberaham_Lincoln (921 posts) - - Show Bio

My LCS still have issues 0 and all that, should i pick this up and follow it?? or should i choose Earth 2 instead?? both have different flavours i know, but i only ask based on the level of enjoyment you get from reading a series... which of the two (earth 2 and this) are enjoyable and fun reads?

#8 Posted by TitanTempest (347 posts) - - Show Bio

@browell3

@crowncoke said:

I have to agree that Calvin has a Gambit flare to him. I was almost seeing Gambit mixed with Azrael. I think Talon will have to be a pull for awhile.

I can see what both of yall are saying. Throw in a li'l Batman Beyond aspect, of a figure helping behind the scenes on a computer and I agree completely.... I love the idea of new characters and new writers entering DC, growth of the comic universe is what comics should be all about

#9 Posted by doordoor123 (3721 posts) - - Show Bio

@mpierce2690 said:

I'm really liking the book, but it really would have rather seen James Tynion IV jump on a major character's book that is in desperate need of a new writer such as Hawkman, Teen Titans, Green Arrow before the Lemire announcement, etc.

Wellll that is a little bias.

I think Lobdell is doing okay on Teen Titans. And the sales aren't at all bad. Just because you don't like the direction of the book doesn't mean the writer should change.

As for Hawkman, Liefeld destroyed it and it needed a new writer when Liefeld came on. Frank Tieri is on it alone now and he is actually a good writer. The problem is that the book needs a new direction. It needs to be essentially "rebooted" like Green Arrow will be with Lemire. Tieri is getting a bad rap for working with Liefeld though. Unfortunately sales aren't going to get much better with that unless there is a writer change. Does it need one? no. But it should get one.

#10 Posted by doordoor123 (3721 posts) - - Show Bio

@Baberaham_Lincoln said:

My LCS still have issues 0 and all that, should i pick this up and follow it?? or should i choose Earth 2 instead?? both have different flavours i know, but i only ask based on the level of enjoyment you get from reading a series... which of the two (earth 2 and this) are enjoyable and fun reads?

I suggest this over Earth 2. Earth 2 is good, but I think this is better. This is just my opinion though.

#11 Posted by ccraft (5074 posts) - - Show Bio

I cant wait for the batman confrontation. This series is good so far, I have no reason to drop this title any time soon.

#12 Posted by kid Apollo (709 posts) - - Show Bio

this kinda sounds like a warped version of how DC used to be. Calvin's the guy who started in a Bat comic and is now trying to do his own thing in the world, and Sebastion is his Oracle

#13 Posted by Cavemold (1676 posts) - - Show Bio

@Baberaham_Lincoln said:

My LCS still have issues 0 and all that, should i pick this up and follow it?? or should i choose Earth 2 instead?? both have different flavours i know, but i only ask based on the level of enjoyment you get from reading a series... which of the two (earth 2 and this) are enjoyable and fun reads?

i would buy talon over earh -2

#14 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

I agree with Tynion here, whether Calvin Rose comes into the Bat-Family or not is predicated on just how willing Bruce is to have a Talon running about Gotham. There's bound to be a showdown to see if Bruce will tell this fellow that he's alright or not.

#15 Posted by crowncoke (206 posts) - - Show Bio

I agree there aer also similarities to Batman Beyond, I had not thought of that when reading Talon. As for the title continuing and Calvin being in the BatFamily... I do not think that Bruce has to totally embrace Calvin. He could accept him but not want him too close at hand... Thus Calvan returns to NYC. Of cource those are only my opinions.

#16 Posted by Loki9876 (2993 posts) - - Show Bio

I'm gonna buy the TPB so don't cancel it DC.

#17 Posted by wessaari (622 posts) - - Show Bio

ya, i skimmed over issue 2, and thought it was good, but the first two issues were just over the top fantastic. I dont have a lot of bank so i would need to drop a title to fit this one in my budget, but honesly this is one of the best new series out right now. I am so excited and hope Tynion, Snyder, and March keep blowing this out of the park

As for putting Talon in the Bat-family, Tynion said it best. Bruce isnt gonna like Calvin running around as a Talon in Gotham, but if he is gonna be a future ally, it is going to take some time

#18 Posted by Imagine_Man15 (1801 posts) - - Show Bio

@Baberaham_Lincoln said:

My LCS still have issues 0 and all that, should i pick this up and follow it?? or should i choose Earth 2 instead?? both have different flavours i know, but i only ask based on the level of enjoyment you get from reading a series... which of the two (earth 2 and this) are enjoyable and fun reads?

I'd read Talon over Earth 2. Earth 2, while a fun read, has plenty of aspects that tend to fall flat, whereas Talon is pretty much solid all around (at least it has been so far)

#19 Posted by SavageDragon (2248 posts) - - Show Bio

The 0 issue and the 1st issue were spectacular. Issue 2 was real good, just not at the previous level in my opinion. Not crazy about the new art but its still solid. Like everyone is saying on here its a great start to this series. Really interested to see where this book leads, I for one am on board.

#20 Posted by benette_rivera (55 posts) - - Show Bio

@@browell3 said:

Man, Talon suuuure does remind me of Gambit. It's like seeing Gambit as part of the extended Bat-Family. Just an opinion, it looks cool.

This.

#21 Posted by TheReaper111 (127 posts) - - Show Bio

god his costume is lamer than watchmen's nightowl......

#22 Posted by DocFishstick (241 posts) - - Show Bio

i love this book and hope they do team him up with nightwing. it could be a great story. can't wait to see where this story will go.

#23 Posted by Baberaham_Lincoln (921 posts) - - Show Bio

@Imagine_Man15: yeah i bought talon #0-2 and i had fun reading that!! thanks man =D

#24 Posted by wessaari (622 posts) - - Show Bio

Guillem march is perfect for this series. That page with Calvin jumping onto that truck and back up to the beam was awesome

#25 Posted by markslurpee (79 posts) - - Show Bio

I adore this series, it's the first comic I bought and I haven't been disappointed yet.

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