Some villains might see a life of crime as a picnic, but their picnic is about to get ruined because Ant-man is back! "The Irredeemable Ant-Man," announced today at Wizard World L.A, is a new Marvel Comics ongoing series beginning in October, by writer Robert Kirkman and artists Phil Hester and Ande Parks. In part one of our two-part look at "Ant-Man," CBR News spoke with Editor Tom Brevoort about the series.
It was Robert Kirkman's desire to explore some of the tinnier corners of the Marvel Universe that lead to the new series. "Robert Kirkman is a little, little man, and so he's always had a fascination with the Ant-Man concept," Brevoort said. "And we were looking for a character that Robert could take and run with, the same way he does on his creator-owned series 'Invincible' and 'Walking Dead.' And with the Scott Lang version of the character having perished during 'Avengers: Disassembled,' there seemed to be an opportunity to re-examine the Ant-Man concept."
Readers expecting the star of "The Irredeemable Ant-Man" to be Hank Pym might be surprised. "Hank Pym plays a role in the new 'Ant-Man' series at the start, but I don't think I'm spoiling anything by telling you that he's not the lead character," Brevoort said. "This is an all-new Ant-Man with an all-new outlook-- he'll save your life, and steal your wallet."
Pym might not be the star of "Ant-Man," but the former hero-- who was seen in issues of "New Thunderbolts" equipped with his old Ant-Man helmet at a meeting on the Commission on Superhuman activities-- will be playing a role in some of Marvel's big summer stories. Brevoort revealed that Pym's membership in the Commission will be explored in the "Civil War" mini-series and upcoming issues of "Thunderbolts."
"Civil War" will also mark the debut of the new Ant-Man. "We'll see the new Ant-Man first in the pages of 'Civil War,' and then his own series will begin in October, and fill in the back story of who he is and how he got that way," Brevoort explained.
The new Ant-Man might be making his first appearance in "Civil War," but the character's background is tied to a storyline that's been finished for a while. "In what is perhaps the latest crossover ever conceived, the origin of the new Ant-Man comes directly out of Mark Millar's 'Enemy of the State' storyline in 'Wolverine' last year," Brevoort said. "So, the new Ant-Man is plugged into the Marvel Universe from the get-go."
Ant-Man's adventures in the Marvel Universe will pit him against a variety of villains. "Are there old Ant-Man villains? No, really, are there? Anybody? Egghead? Anybody? Probably new villains, and other villains from around the Marvel U," Brevoort said. "But like Dennis Leary in 'Rescue Me,' the new Ant-Man's worst enemy is really himself."
The stories where Ant-Man tackles both supervillains and his own personal demons will not be long, multi-part arcs. "We'll be doing short multi-parters, nothing as sweeping as a six-issue arcs, but not necessarily done-in-ones either," Brevoort explained. "It should be a good balance. And Kirkman is packing each issue with as much pure content as he can, in order to make 'Ant-Man' one of the meatiest reading experiences in the Marvel line."
Brevoort recommends "The Irredeemable Ant-Man" to anybody who appreciates good stories and has $2.99 American and assures readers that Robert Kirkman is committed to giving the book his all. Brevoort said, "Kirkman will probably still be writing the series after the rest of us are long dead."
Check back by 5:30 PST for part two of CBR News coverage of "Ant-Man" where we get Robert Kirkman to dish up some dirt on the series.
CBR's coverage of Wizard World Los Angeles is Sponsored by Comics Unlimited.