Cosmic Book News knew that eventually
Justin Jordan would be a household name.
We first happened upon the writer with his hit Image Comics series, The Strange Talent of Luther Strode, with our own Chris Bushley describing the book as "enthralling, action-packed, intriguing, gory and sickly sweet."
We then met Jordan at last year's New York Comic Con and briefly spoke about the series as well as snagging some autographed Luthor Strode issues.
So it came to no surprise when it was announced that Jordan had been picked up by Valiant Comics for the new Shadowman and by DC Comics for October's Team 7.
This November sees Jordan paired with superstar artist Patrick Zircher. Known for his work on Marvel Comics' Hulk, Thor, Iron Man and New Warriors, Zircher now brings his own talents to Shadowman.
We caught up with Jordan via e-mail to talk about the new Shadowman, about the following preview pages that were released and more.
Cosmic Book News: Were you a fan of the original?
Justin Jordan: I was. Shadowman originally came along when I was a teenager, and the whole Valiant Universe was sort of a revelation. They were telling stories differently than what I'd been reading before, and Shadowman was particularly interesting to me because it was a more street level, Batman or Daredevil type character.
Cosmic Book News: Valiant has launched four titles already, can you tell us how you became involved with Shadowman, and is there a reason why Valiant decided to go ahead with Shadowman as their next book?
Justin Jordan: Well, Warren Simons, the Executive Editor, liked Luther Strode, so I sent him pitches on a variety of stuff. Fortunately for me, Patrick also liked Luther, and when he talked to Warren he mentioned me, and it all sort of took off from there. I can't say why Valiant went with Shadowman as their next book, but I suspect that it's because Shadowman was one of the characters fans were really chomping at the bit to see.
Cosmic Book News: From the press release we see that Shadowman is Jack Boniface, what can you say in regards to this Jack versus the original?
Justin Jordan: In terms of his personality, he's actually not too different. His life is different, and his powers are fairly different, but I think fans are going to recognize our Jack.
Cosmic Book News: Speaking of Shadowman's powers, will magic and voodoo play a large role? And this Shadowman will have different or new powers?
Justin Jordan: Yup. Yup to all of them. Magic and voodoo play a pretty big role although in the case of voodoo, not necessarily in the way you might be expecting. But the book does introduce magic into the Valiant Universe, and I think we've done it in a way that fits the general Valiant tone. I definitely think it's cool but I may be very slightly biased.
Cosmic Book News: While this Shadowman is Jack, in the preview pages he does seem to resemble Michael LeRoi. Was that intentional?
Justin Jordan: Well, you'll need to read the first issue to get more of what's going on in those first few pages. Having said that, we do draw some stuff from the LeRoi version of the character, which is one of the advantages of doing a reboot like this; we have a lot of cool stuff to draw from.
Cosmic Book News: Can we get your take on Jack being Shadowman? Will there be an inner, or even an outer conflict as a result of him taking up the mantle of Shadowman. Furthermore, does he have a choice in the matter?
There's definitely conflict. When we first meet Jack, he's been looking for his past, and in the first issue, he finds it. Unfortunately, it's not what he wanted or expected. It's not that he doesn't want to be Shadowman
, it's that he has no idea something like that even existed, and when the mantle is thrust on him, he doesn't know how to react.
Which is what the first arc is about, more or less; Jack deciding how to handle this situation that he's been thrown into without warning.
Cosmic Book News: Can you take us through the preview pages? Right out of the gate we see the first issue is jam-packed with action and excitement. Can you give us a hint of what is taking place?
Justin Jordan: Hmmmm, how to talk about that without spoiling too much. Those first five pages? They're very, very important. What happens there sets in motion a lot of what happens in Shadowman as we go forward. So expect what happens there to echo through the series.
Cosmic Book News: And that may be Master Darque in the preview pages as well, what can you tell us about his relationship to Jack in the series?
Justin Jordan: That is indeed Master Darque. He's the big bad of the series, although in ways that might be a bit different than you'd expect. But Master Darque and the Shadowman are tied together very, very tightly in a story that goes back centuries.
Cosmic Book News: Will Shadowman interact with any of the other Valiant characters?
Justin Jordan: Yup. I mean, there's not much point of being in a shared universe if you don't, you know, share. We'll definitely be interacting with the rest of the Valiant Universe.
Cosmic Book News: Sounds good! Thanks for your time, Justin.
"Shadowman" #1 hits in November and be sure to follow Valiant Comics on Facebook and Twitter.