Out Of The Chaos King Comes Order: Interview With Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente
This October the fate of all space and time will be decided when Chaos War begins written by Grek Pak and Fred Van Lente with art by Khoi Pham.
This five issue limited series described as “bigger than the Infinity Gauntlet” and “more cosmic than Annihilation” sees the re-formation of the God Squad, this time consisting of Hercules, Thor, Amadeus Cho, Sersi, Hellstorm, Venus, the cosmic heavy weights Galactus and the Silver Surfer, with the added support of the family of Hulks.
The foe they face may be the Universe’s most dangerous threat -- ever. Mikaboshi, the demonic god of evil, wishes to wipe out existence using an army of enslaved space gods.
Cosmic Book News spoke with the writers behind Chaos War, Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente, who discussed Hercules, Amadeus Cho, Thor, Mikaboshi the Chaos King, the cast of characters involved and a tease regarding the return of a certain fan favorite cosmic character...a Starlin original? Plus more.
CosmicBookNews: Can you tell us a bit about the Chaos King? With the Silver Surfer and Galactus involved, he must pose a pretty big threat, more so than we have seen of him as Mikaboshi? (Chaos King being Mikaboshi‘s true form finally revealed?) Galactus is said to be from before the Big Bang. Does the Chaos King predate that and is that why Galactus takes notice?
Fred Van Lente: Yes, you are correct – According to Japanese mythology, Amatsu-Mikaboshi is the Void that pre-dated all existence. All existence, even the universe that Galactus originates from. In his original, Terran form, he laid waste to Olympus and killed Zeus in the ARES mini-series.
Since then, and his departure from Earth in Secret Invasion, he has taken over the realm of the Skrull gods and has been engorging himself on the pantheons of other alien races – including the Shi’ar, as seen in Assault on New Olympus. So he is more powerful than ever before – arguably, he’s the most dire threat the Marvel Universe has ever faced.
Greg Pak: Most supervillains want to rule the world, or maybe the universe. Not return all existence to the chaos and darkness that existed before creation itself. The Chaos King is a whole new kind of threat.
Will the Lion Of Olympus have changed since we last saw him? At times we see Herc with a beer in one hand and a girl in the other; will this responsibility of leading the heroes give us a “different” Herc?
FVL: Yes, he will be radically changed. But I don’t want to give away the ending of the current Heroic Age: Prince of Power mini-series to say exactly how.
GP: Let’s just say the entire universe will have to reassess its opinion of Herc.
The newly-crowned Prince of Power, Amadeus Cho, is shown still holding Hercules’ Mace. What part will he take in the coming drama? Will he go back to the “sidekick” role or has he come into his own as of late?
FVL: No, Amadeus is officially the new Prince of Power. When Herc returns he’ll either be demoted to playing second fiddle to Cho … or maybe he’ll be promoted…
In regards to Thor, seeing how he has also faced Mikaboshi, what will his role be? (Judging from the cover of issue one, he and Herc still need to settle their differences.)
FVL: Yes, and you’ll need to read Chaos War #1 to see just how those differences work themselves out. Thor is second only to Herc in being Chaos War's major character. Big things are involved with him and I’m interested to see the reaction when they’re rolled out.
The family of Hulks will be wrapping their own cosmic battle up with Hiro-Kala in "Dark Son" when they find themselves involved in the Chaos War. Will we be seeing a lot of “Hulk Smashing?”
GP: Absolutely. Who better than a family of Hulks to throw at a bunch of insane demons and gods? The Hulks will be fighting the critical second front in the Chaos War against the kind of enemies only the strongest ones there are have a prayer of defeating. Get ready for some mind-bendingly Marvelicious abstract entity exploration as well as a wrenching emotional rollercoaster as the fight gets more personal and brutal than the Hulks ever anticipated.
Although the Chaos War involves the Gods, it also has a Cosmic flavor in that heavy-hitters like Galactus, the Silver Surfer and Sersi will be involved. Are there any other denizens of Marvel Cosmic coming into play along the way, and will this adventure have a mythical feel or a cosmic climate (ala Bob Layton's recent Herc work)?
FVL: Why yes, several in fact that have not been announced yet – including one whose return cosmic fans have been clamoring for for some time.
GP: Pip the Troll! Kidding. Although now that I think about it…
Can you elaborate at all on any of the other characters in the Marvel Universe that might be involved in the coming Chaos War? We can see members of the Fantastic Four are present, the Avengers and even the X-Men.
GP: It’s a big, fat story that affects everyone. Plenty of cameos and starring roles to go around.
Will Lord Chaos and Master Order be involved in this tale or any of the other Marvel abstracts? What about the Celestials or any of the other Eternals such as Ikaris or Makkari?
GP: At least one Marvel abstract plays a key role in the “Incredible Hulks” tie-in. And Sersi plays a huge role on the new God Squad, which debuts in “Chaos War” #2.
What was your inspiration for this current God Squad story arc? Was this something planned from the beginning of Incredible Hercules or did it come about recently?
GP: Fred and I have been planning this story from the beginning. Many of the smaller details have shifted around as we’ve developed the tale and the exact timing of everything came together fairly recently, but this is the big massive crossover event we’ve been itching to write for ages.
That being said, it’s entirely accessible to brand new readers. If you’re hungry for epic Marvel cosmic crossover craziness, we’re ready to heap your plate.
Any connection at all between this and ongoing Thanos Imperative, since some of the same characters are involved on a cosmic stage?
GP: For fear of spoilers, our lips are sealed.
Thanks for your time. Looking forward to the Chaos War!
Chaos War #1 and #2 hit this October! Look for it!