Going Feral: Sacasa talks "Sensational Spider-Man"

Mon, January 23rd, 2006 at 12:00am PST

Comic Books
Dave Richards, Staff Writer

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"Sensational Spider-Man" #23
New York City has become a concrete jungle teaming with blood-thirsty predators and it's up to everybody's favorite web head, Spider-Man, to do something about it. This is the premise of "Feral," a five part story line that marks the beginning of writer Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and artist Angel Medina's run on "Sensational Spider-Man," formerly titled "Marvel Knights Spider-Man." CBR News spoke with Sacasa about his tale of urban horror that begins with February's issue #23 from Marvel Comics.

Sacasa said he's wanted to chronicle Spidey's exploits for some time. "I started campaigning for this title the second it was announced that Mark Millar would be kicking it off, but only staying on for twelve issues," Sacasa told CBR News. "I talked to my editor Warren Simons. Then, when I didn't get the job and Reggie took over, and I campaigned - begged - whatever - again to take it over after Reggie was done telling his stories. And this time the stars (Warren and Axel) aligned…"

Sacasa begins telling his stories in the wake of one the biggest Spider-Man tales in recent years, "It takes place right after 'The Other,'" Sacasa said. "With the title switches from 'Marvel Knights Spider-Man' to 'Sensational Spider-Man,' this title is very much in dialogue with the other Spider-titles. It is in continuity and whatever happens to Spidey in 'Amazing' and 'Friendly Neighborhood' will be reflected in our book."

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The plot of "Feral" has Spidey tangling with the darker sides of both friend and foe alike. "Something or someone is shifting the animalistic natures of Spidey's animal foes (and friends) into overdrive," Sacasa explained. "While Spidey's trying to subdue them - and battle his own darker, baser impulses - he's also trying to figure out what's triggering these changes. There is lots of blood, guts, fighting and web-slinging, of course."

The Lizard, Man-Wolf and the Black Cat are just three of the transformed characters that Spider-Man must confront in "Feral." "The Vulture has a cameo in the first issue, Vermin creeps into the second issue, and…it's a safe bet that there'll be others, as well," Sacasa said. "Who are the same as they've always been - basically - but much, much more aggressive and brutal and fearsome and consumed with bloodlust, especially Felicia Hardy."

Someone is behind the transformations in "Feral" and Sacasa was only able to give a cryptic clue as to the mastermind's identity. "It might not be a 'him,' and that's all I'm saying."

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Sacasa was able to confirm that two other characters, who are most definitely not "hims," will have roles in the story. "Mary Jane and Aunt May will definitely be playing a huge role in 'Feral,'" Sacasa said. "One issue pretty much focuses on them, in fact. They're alone in Avengers Tower, being stalked by… But no, I've said too much already."

Avengers Tower is just one of the many New York City locales that readers will visit in "Feral." "I'm a New Yorker and I truly think that there's no greater place on Earth than New York, so the city will definitely play a prominent role in 'Feral,' Sacasa explained. "Avengers Tower, the Natural History Museum, the West Side Highway, the Bronx Zoo, the sewers beneath the city… And that's just in our first issue. You name the place, we visit it."

Spidey might be receiving some help from one of Marvel's premier super teams as he treks across the city in pursuit of his savage friends and foes. "I'm pretty sure the FF is going to guest-star in the…third issue, I think," Sacasa stated. "No New Avengers, though. They've got their hands full holding the rest of New York together."

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Sacasa plans on being on "Sensational Spider-Man" for the long haul and is already planning his next story arcs. "I'm gonna stay on this book as long as Marvel lets me, which will be twelve issues, at least," Sacasa explained. "And it's a little too early to spoil what's coming up after 'Feral,' but two ideas we're kicking around are 'Mysterious' and 'Sinister,' so you can go from there."

Spinning yarns featuring everyone's favorite web-slinger is the culmination of a long dream for Sacasa and he couldn't be happier with his artistic collaborator on his tales. "I grew-up loving Spider-Man, reading Spider-Man comics, wearing Spider-Man pajamas, playing with Spider-Man action figures, etc. etc.," Sacasa stated. "It's really an honor to be writing Marvel's crown jewel - especially right now, when so many cool things are happening to him and, really, the entire MU. And - Angel Medina's art is just so mind-blowingly good it's scary."

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