Firing on all cylinders: Matthew Rosenberg on bringing WildCATS back (and into the DC Universe)
Matthew Rosenberg chats WildCATS, WildStorm, and writing action
There's not many better examples of the 90s era of comics than WildCATS, Jim Lee and Brandon Choi's action-packed team comic featuring a covert action team (hence, CATS) fighting against an alien invasion of Earth.
WildCATS was wildly popular and was the central book in Jim Lee's own company WildStorm, which he later sold to DC Comics in 1999. The characters were folded into the DC Universe during the New 52, yet there hasn't been a WildCATS books in a decade, so WildCATS fans were delighted when a couple months ago, DC Comics announced that WildStorm would be coming to the DC universe with an anniversary special and, of course, a brand new WildCATS series from writer Matthew Rosenberg (4 Kids Walk into a Bank, Detective Comics) and artist Stephen Segovia (Action Comics).
In this interview, Popverse sits down with WildCATS writer Matthew Rosenberg to talk about what fans (and new readers) can expect from the series.
Popverse: So Matthew, you're bringing back WildCATS for the first time in 10 years— Why?
Matthew Rosenberg: Why? Because WildCATS is one of the best modern comic books, and it's been way too long. I think people deserve it! We've been through enough, and we deserve great comics, so the WildCATS are coming back.
We deserve action.
We deserve action and cool characters and all of that good stuff. It's the 30th anniversary— it felt right. A lot of people at DC have been asking for it, and I'm just the one who got lucky enough to do it.
So is this going be a modern thing? Is it a '90s throwback? What's the vibe?
It's all of it. What we're trying to do with the book is put the WildCATS in the modern DC universe by paying tribute to everything they've been through. It's not just the classic first run Image era. It's every era. We're taking pieces from all of it and integrating it and making something new. For long time fans, whatever era of WildCATS you love, we've got some of that in there, but then it's new and modern for people who've never read WildCATS, and we're trying to show you why they're the best team in comics.
So a little from every era.
Because there's a lot of eras and they're quite different.
They are. You know, a big thing was the rosters, the characters. A lot of people look for the original lineup and then Alan Moore's team and then the later generations of WildCATS, and we're picking characters from each and sort of mixing them up and adjusting them a little bit and changing them. But the core of everyone is going to be the same. I think so far, a lot of people who have seen the cover image have been like, 'Where's this character I love?' I would just say that 'Everyone be patient.' It's okay. What you see on the cover of the first issue is not the end of the book. There will be a lot more characters and a lot more changes and exciting things happening.
How does WildStorm continuity fit into the DC Universe?
WildStorm continuity is complicated because it's its own thing clearly, and it's not easy to integrate that. The WildCATS themselves come from a war between these alien races, the Daemonites and Kherubim, and having that be the force that created the WildCATS doesn't quite fit with Green Lanterns and Superman and all those things. So it's a little bit mysterious when it starts, and it's a little bit unclear. We're sort of playing with who they are. They're a mysterious team by nature.
There's gonna be elements that WildStorm fans recognize, and there's gonna be new things they don't, but they just have to be patient with us. And they'll see that there's a lot of love we have for the WildStorm universe. It is all built to fit logically in the DC universe.
I don't think a lot of people necessarily think: Matthew Rosenberg-- action. What has it been it like working on an action book?
I love it. Stephen Segovia, who's drawing it, makes it easy because he's just drawing explosive crazy beautiful chaos in the most fun way. But it's fun because these characters naturally fit in that world, like they are tough and cool and funny and weird. You can do this same thing that I like to do with a character but do it in a helicopter that's falling out of the sky or a shootout as a building collapses. You can still have all those great character moments that I think WildCATS fans expect but blown out and huge in a big way.
We're trying to fire on all cylinders with this and make it as big and crazy as we can, and the fun challenge is making it bigger each issue. So the first issue is wild and then every issue we blow it out more. It's a difficult write for me, but it's a fun challenge that I'm really excited about.
WildCATS #1 from Matthew Rosenberg and Stephen Segovia will be available wherever you buy your comics November 7.
WildCATS, Stormwatch, and more are back for DC's Wildstorm revival this November