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  1.  (1719.21)
    >>Is there a particular process you go through to investigate the mental conditions of a character, or do you tend to let the character speak for himself?

    Mostly just start with the characters and what seems right, and then do a little bit of research. As little as you have to, as James Ellroy said.

    >>now that CRIM relaunched, did it affect the pacing/beats that you had worked out ahead of time? i know the three stand alones were planned, but beyond that?

    Yeah, a little bit. Part of what Criminal is about, though, is the freedom of doing whatever story next strikes my fancy, basically. So, when I decided I wanted to do a different story instead of the Coward sequel right now, I just slotted Bad Night in, instead. It's my book, so I can do what I want.

    As long as Sean wants to draw it. Of course.
  2.  (1719.22)
    Here's the next five pages:





    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    Per your earlier comment (and it's obvious from your work), Jim Thompson is a big influence. Which of his books are your favorites?
    Also, did you read Robert Polito's Thomson biography Savage Art? I have to say, it turned me off of Thompson for a while; the parallels between his life and his characters' started to depress me.
    Any other pulp favorites? What do you think of Vachss?
    Oh, and thanks for stopping by.
  3.  (1719.24)
    Interesting art fact -

    After the first Criminal story, Coward, Sean asked our colorist Val Staples to use less fades and modeling and go more for a flat European style of coloring.
    • CommentAuthorchris g
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    Dear Bru,
    DD, Cap, and Iron Fist are my must-buy trifecta. So sad to see you leave Iron Fist.

    Anyway, can we expect you and Fraction to come back down the line for Iron Fist specials/one-shots? Orson Randall's gotta be the break out character of the year!!

    Do you like the vibe coming from the new Batman movie? It looks like a hardcore crime movie--with a superhero :)

    And will Matt Murdock ever have a good day?
  4.  (1719.26)
    Its true, we love us some images, and better overly large and discernable than itty bitty pixelated messes.

    So thank you.
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    Hey Ed...

    Are we likely to see any more Scene of the Crime?
  5.  (1719.28)
    I like some Vachss. I recently read Getaway Man and dug it.

    Dan J. Marlowe's the Name of the Game is Death is one of my all-time favorite pulp novels. I like it better than Thompson's books, probably.

    I dig Willeford and Woolrich a lot, and David Goodis has some great books. I probably read more modern crime and non-fiction than I read old pulp stuff, though. I read a lot of it a long time ago, though. My current favorite crime writer is Jason Starr. Find a copy of Hard Feelings or Twisted City. He's like a modern Jim Thompson or James M Cain, with some Patricia Highsmith in his plotting or something. But he's definitely got his own unique voice, all that said. He's on his way to becoming a best selling author with his last few books, too.
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    woah. i really *should* be reading CRIMINAL.

    thanks for sharing!
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    I have adored your work on Immortal Iron Fist, which is an accomplishment as before you and Matt took the book I never liked the character. I always considered him kind of lame, and didn't see much merit in him. And in recent years he almost seemed to be seen as a stock comedy character, a sort of 'look at the crazy ideas Marvel used to come up with' kinda guy.

    Then I read The Last Iron Fist Story and was blown away. So much so me and a housemate adapted it into a film script for shits and giggles. But I digress...

    Having loved your work on a book I would never have touched before, you came to take over a book which was my first comic, and my favourite on the market, Uncanny X-Men. I've enjoyed your work so far on the run, in particular I love your current arc.

    I am curious about what may have attracted you to this book, and now that Fraction is joining you, am eager to see the crazy, fantastical ideas you bring to that series too.

    Finally, I would say that I have recently, as a writer, come to appraciate the energy that comes from a collaboration. I just wondered, what kind of extra dynamics do you personally feel it brings to your work, and do you have a preference to solo writing or team writing?

    PS. My housemate has an original, inked page of Criminal which takes pride of place on the wall of our living room. Just thought you may like t'know
  6.  (1719.31)
    >>Are we likely to see any more Scene of the Crime?

    Not anytime soon, if at all. Although we did get the rights back recently, so who knows.

    We were going to do that as a series of mini-series, but it all got messed up back then and Michael took some other work and then too much time had passed, it felt like, and we wanted to do other projects. I still love those characters, though.
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    Hey, Mr. Bru,

    I know you enjoy passing on the suggestions for what you consider top-notch noir and gumshoe tales, be they prose or cinema. Whenever I can, I take these suggestions to heart, and search out the recommended titles. Laugh if you will, but, I just recently got to watch the newer/original cut of Touch of Evil. Amazing. The look on Orson's pal's face when he gets the bullet to the gut was what solidified that film in my personal top ten.

    The reason I'm writing this is because I've always wondered what you thought about my favorite noir film of all time.

    What are your thoughts on the 80's flick, ANGEL HEART, featuring Mickey Rourke, Robert DeNiro, and Lisa Bonet?

    Thanks for visiting Chapel, Ed.
      CommentAuthorEd Brubaker
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008 edited
    >>woah. i really *should* be reading CRIMINAL.

    There's two trades out already, that you can find out about at this link.

    And issue 1 of the new volume in our expanded format is still available.

    But please buy them from your local shop first if they have them.

    Also, if you haven't seen Criminal at your local store ever, please ask them to carry it for you, and maybe remind them that I write other big books that do well for them, like Captain America.
  7.  (1719.34)
    Hi, Ed.

    I was wondering if you could tell us a little about working with Sean Phillips--what kind of material do you give him to work with, and how tightly do you script things for him to draw? I am especially struck by the "black-out" panels above, and I wonder how you two split the visual work of writing?

    Also, any other creator-owned stuff in the works?
  8.  (1719.35)
    Wow. I really don't know how to use Whitechapel.

    I can't get the italics to work, I mess up the links...
    • CommentAuthorsardon
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    After i read your first Captain America i was amazed and always told people that i never thought i'd actually buy a Captain America comic but it is one of the few that i really look forward to every month. Thank you.
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    You'll get the hang of it, sir. It does link to Amazon, that's what counts.
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008 edited
    Dunno what yer talkin' about, Ed.

    (First few are sorted. FYI going forward: Italics need the "html" radio button at the bottom of the comments form to be ticked, and links just need some text after the <a href=""> tag to work.)
    • CommentAuthorkarabair
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    Hi Ed!

    I'm curious if there's any music (song/artist/genre/theme song) that you associate with specific titles or characters you write. I'm most curious about 'Criminal,' since it's closest to the 'real' world, but this applies to the superhero books, too. Is there anything special you listen while writing, to or imagine being on in the background of certain scenes?

    Also, if I get two questions -- the TV show "Homicide" was obviously a big influence on you and Greg in 'Gotham Central.' Do you have a favorite character/episode/storyline -- or just something in the show that spoke to you?

    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
    I'll pick up those Jason Starr books you recommended. Thanks.