AND NOW.......Part Two of the Brian Keene interview:
Q: Going back to Doom Patrol, Keith recently mentioned in an interview that your "change of pace" issue would relate to Ted Bruder/Fast Forward/Negative Man II, formerly of the Arcudi Doom Patrol. What drew you to this character in particular, and what's he been up to since the Arcudi run?
A: I loved the Arcudi run. I’ve never understood why it didn’t catch on. The characters were quirky—maybe not as bizarre as we’ve come to expect from Doom Patrol members—but certainly unique. Of them all, my favorite was Ted. I loved his cynicism and his worldview. It was wonderful characterization on Arcudi’s part. Ted was a character that stepped off the page. He stood out from others. He wasn’t necessarily a guy you’d like in real-life, but he was certainly the type of fictional anti-hero you could get behind.
As for what he’s been up to… well, let’s just say Ted has fallen on hard times. He’d lost his powers at the end of the Arcudi run, due to the meds he was taking. Now those powers are out of control. He doesn’t just see into the future or into alternate realities anymore. He travels to them. And quite often, the things he finds there follow him back to our Earth.
Q: Speaking of that run, readers have noted it's lack of original team members. Do you feel the Doom Patrol works best with it's original members involved, with mostly new and strange faces, or a combination (and why)?
A: As a fan, I prefer both. Yes, Cliff should always be present. To not have him there is akin to not having The Thing in the Fantastic Four or Superman in the Justice League. And I’ve got a soft spot for Larry and Rita. But I think newer characters like Crazy Jane and Danny the Street/Brick are just as engaging and vital to the overall mythos. I think they key is the bizarre factor. Would Nightwing make a good cast addition? Probably not. But Ambush Bug fits right in.
Q: The newest incarnation of the team focuses primarily on the originals - what are your thoughts on the Giffen/Clark run?
A: Like I said, as a fan, I’ve loved it. Consistently one of the best monthly titles DC produces, aside from the Vertigo titles.
Q: So Brian, what can you tell us about #16? What does Brian Keene have in store for the Doom Patrol?
A: A fill-in issue that builds upon the first 15 issues and lays the groundwork for some things to come. I don’t want to spoil things, so I’ll just do some random word association: Feral Rita, Nazi Larry, Steampunk Cliff, Homeless Ted, Mountie Ambush Bug and the Number Seventeen. That last part is important. What are the other Sixteen?
There are no pelicans in this issue, however…
Q: What can you share about Doom Patrol doppelgangers Feral Rita, Nazi Larry and Steampunk Cliff?
A: They all come from alternate reality futures, and they all spell bad news for our heroes.
Q: Some word association to finish off:
I’d do her.
Is more sane than we think.
- The Chief
Is really still that severed head from Grant Morrison’s run, and the current incarnation is a phony (my opinion only).
- Keith Giffen
Kicks more ass than Cliff.
- Brian Keene
Is very tired.
- Grant Morrison's run
- John Arcudi's run
- John Byrne's run
Not so much.
- Doom Patrol #16!
Buy two copies, and keep the series alive!
Brian, thankyou so much for your time and all the efforts you've put into Doom Patrol (so far). Best of luck with your upcoming novels and we hope to see you back in the Doom Patrol arena sometime in the future!
Thanks to you as well, my friend, and to your readers, too!