ComicBoards Interview

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An Interview with Tom Brevoort, by Randy "Moonstonelover" Burtis

ComicBoards Exclusive!

My thanks to Tom for taking the time out of his very busy schedule to do this.


  • Q: As an editor what is your view on crossovers?
  • A: I like 'em when they're good. I don't like 'em so much when they're mandatory. Crossovers have gotten a bad rep recently due to so many people feeling like they "have" to buy comics they don't really want. But the fundamental appeal of crossovers remains as strong as ever, even with those selfsame fans.

  • Q: How did the Thor/Iron Man/ Avengers crossover come to be? We have a taste of it already with the Thor issues being out, what else can fans expect. What are some reasons for those who donít normally collect all 3 titles to go and get all of them?
  • A: I'm sure this will surprise some people, but the initial nugget was Joe's (Quesada) idea. He suggested doing a crossover among the three titles offhandedly at some point when we were discussing things. From there, the three writers got involved, and it became readily apparent that any crossover story would have to center around the recent events in THOR, which would give us good character fodder.

  • Q: It was just recently announced that Iron Man writer Mike Grell wonít be continuing on the book. What issue is that effective?
  • A: Mike's last full-on issue is #64, though #65 is still largely what he had done as well.

  • Q: How does that effect the proposed ďManhuntĒ storyline. There has already been a couple of covers released?
  • A: We're still doing "Manhunt", though it will end up being a somewhat different story than was originally planned. Writer Robin Laws will be finishing that up, with Michael and Sean.

  • Q: In the interim, what contingency plans are in place for Iron Man the comic?
  • A: Um...don't know that we need any contingency plans just at the moment.

  • Q: Can you tell us or give hints on the new writer?
  • A: Nope.

  • Q: Will the rest of the creative team, Mike Ryans and Sean Parsons, continue on the book?
  • A: They'll certainly remain on board for the duration of "Manhunt."

  • Q: What is your view on the price increase coming to Iron Man and other titles? Isnít Iron Man in a different level than some of the other books listed? Can you dispel rumors of reboots or cancellation of Iron Man?
  • A: Well, nobody ever likes price hikes, but they're the price of doing business sometimes. The feeling was that everything selling at a certain level or below would need to increase its cover price in order to remain viable in the long term. But there are no plans to cancel IRON MAN (or THOR, for that matter--they were the highest-selling titles affected by the price increase)

  • Q: You have stated many times your view on continuity, but can you recap and apply it to the titles you edit?
  • A: Continuity is a tool, no more and no less. I think people tend to take an extremist and often unrealistic viewpoint on continuity, both pro and con. The history of the characters should inform the stories you do in the present day, but not to the extent that somebody who's never been exposed to the earlier works can't make heads or tails of what you're doing. For example, we had a discussion on the boards about ARMOR WARS recently, and the death of the Titanium Man at Tony's hands during it. And one or two people asked me why, if it bothered me, I didn't do a story dealing with it. And my answer is that ARMOR WARS is twenty years old, and virtually everybody who cares about that sequence is here on the boards. Heck, some of the current readership of IRON MAN hadn't been born when that story came out. As such, I'd rather focus my efforts on telling new stories, rather than trying to somehow retroactively correct the stories of twenty years ago. If an opportunity arose for us to address it painlessly in a current story, I might take it. But I'm not going to go out of my way to do so.

  • Q: What are your top 3 favorite Iron Man armors?
  • A: I like the "real" suit, the traditional red-and-gold suit the best. I'd put Iron Man back into it pemanently if I thought I could get the necessary reader acceptance--most of the latter-day suits have been attempts to get back to something resembling that suit, but not quite. I also have a real fondness for the pointy-masked helmet, and the original grey/gold boilerplate suit, not to mention the first Space Armor and the Stealth Armor.

  • Q: What are your favorite Iron Man villains?
  • A: Unfortunately, Iron Man's never had one of the stronger rogue's galleries in comics. I like most of the obvious candidates--the Titanium Man and the Crimson Dynamo. I thought Justin Hammer was a great villain in his day. I like the Mandarin despite himself.

  • Q: Hypothetical question: Counter Earth sucks Joe Quesada into it and the EIC position is void. Would you ever consider the position?
  • A: If they offer you the job, you pretty much have to take it. That said, it's not a position I covet. I'd rather spend my energies on making actual comics than in setting policy, sitting in endless meetings, and so forth.

  • Q: Is there a Marvel book out there you would love to edit?
  • A: FANTASTIC FOUR. But I already edit that.

  • Q: Is there anything new on the Iron Man front fans can look out for?
  • A: Well, not that I'm ready to reveal much just yet, but there is a new upcoming series out of my office that I expect IRON MAN readers will want to pay attention to.

  • For the place to discuss the interview check out the:
    Iron Man Message Board - Your place to discuss comics