"Highlander" #0 Director's Commentary with Brandon Jerwa

Mon, July 31st, 2006 at 12:00am PDT

Comic Books
Jonah Weiland, Executive Producer/Publisher

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"Highlander" co-writer Brandon Jerwa stops by to provide a "Director's Commentary" to Issue #0 of the Dynamite Entertainment series which debuted last Wednesday. Go behind the scenes to see how this book was made.

"Highlander" #0 is written by Brandon Jerwa with Michael Avon Oeming. Art for "Highlander" #0 is by Lee Moder with a cover by Gabrielle Dell'Otto and a photo cover. Check your local comic shop for copies today.

HIGHLANDER "DIRECTOR'S COMMENTARY"
by Brandon Jerwa

I'm extremely excited about this series. I think we've put together something that will reward the long-time fans but still appeal to readers who may not have caught on to "Highlander" before now.

So without further ado, let's crack the BEAUTIFUL cover and take a look at HIGHLANDER # 0…

PAGE ONE

I wanted to start with immediate action. I think some companies use their zero issues to act as a sort of preview, but I wanted to get right into the story. The "perp" is running, his pursuers hot on his trail and BOOM - he runs right into a chain-link fence and has to turn and fight.

A few details:

The male agents are wearing blue-and-white striped shirts beneath their outer shirts, indicating Spetsnaz (Soviet Special Forces).

The night club door sign reads "KALEID NIGHTCLUB - Employees only" etc. The name of the nightclub comes from an old Depeche Mode "b-side" song; I thought it just had a nice, European ring to it.

PAGE TWO

Nice color shift here, especially when we get into the nightclub proper. That was something Oeming made a note of - blowing out the bright colors on the dance floor. It is the 80s, after all. Note the criss-cross belt on the girl's skirt in the last panel.

PAGES THREE-FOUR

Lee Moder has a real handle on the art chores here. He conveys physical action with a real sense of movement and brings a touch of animation to things. I love the shifting lights on page four, as Tasya turns her head to see the tattoo on the perp's chest. It translates to "There Can Be Only Kurgan." We had gone over several ideas for the tattoo, but Lee came up with this one and it's fantastic.

Lee Moder and I met for the first time at this year's San Diego Comic-Con, and became fast friends, spending most of our off-time together with a few other friends. He has intense devotion to his art, and I was impressed to see that he bought a bag full of art reference books at the convention.

PAGE FIVE

Cue Connor MacLeod, the immortal Highlander. With all due respect to Roxanne Hart (the actress who played Brenda in the first movie), I think Lee's Brenda is a super-hottie. Yow!

PAGES SIX-NINE

We're putting the band back together: Connor reluctantly meets with old friends Arman Volkov, Paul Furio and Tasya Desny. Paul Furio is actually named after a friend of mine, and strangely resembles him, although I provided no reference to Lee.

Page seven has a glimpse of the Kurgan as we will see him later in the story. He's different from the version in the first movie, and we will explain the change from his appearance in the 60s to the 80s version. There's a reason…

PAGE TEN

BANG! Nothing notches up the tension level more than a potential source of information ventilating his brain-pan.

PAGE ELEVEN

I was sitting in a hotel room in Los Angeles the day before appearing on I've Got A Secret and ended up in a phone meeting with Dynamite. It was suggested that we have a trigger event in the 1980s and I said I'd work on it. A few minutes later, my brain clicked on it: Chernobyl! I double-checked the dates, and sure enough, we were in business. I thought it was a nice touch, tying something real-world into the proceedings. Let's hear it for editors who actually have good ideas!

PAGE TWELVE

The end is only the beginning. Cliffhanger!

There you have it, folks. I hope you enjoy Highlander #0 as much as we enjoyed putting it together, and I expect to see you lining up for issue #1!

 
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