Letters to TLRH #5 Jan 5, 2013 14:12:49 GMT -5
Post by Susan Hillwig on Jan 5, 2013 14:12:49 GMT -5
Notes from the Road: The Road Ahead
Well, here we are, the last issue. I hoped you enjoyed this brief jaunt off to the left, to a place that no longer exists in the DCU (which isn't exactly a bad thing), and if you've come this far with me, maybe you're willing to come a little further.
As I mentioned in the introduction to TLRH#0, there are two DC2 projects that owe their existence to "The Long Road Home". The first is "Lead Us Not Into Desecration", a 3-part tale that you can find in Justice League #15, Weird Western Quarterly #10, and JL#16 -- if you want to want to see what Hal and Jonah's "Hell of a day" looked like, this is my take on it.
The second project is, of course, Jonah Hex: Shades of Gray, the ongoing adventures of our favorite bounty hunter in present-day DCU (issue #12 will be out later this month). This was a notion that I began fiddling with as TLRH was wrapping up in 2005: to place Jonah in modern times instead of "the future", and see how he deals with a world we all take for granted, as well as one full of superheroes. Plus I wanted the added wrinkle of avoiding time travel -- somehow, someway, our Jonah Hex would be the one that had lived to the ripe old age of 66 and been killed in 1904, but had been resurrected in the present -- I wanted a young, unscarred Hex with all the skill and experience he’d accumulated over nearly seven decades, one that never had to go back to the past, and who could perhaps learn from all his mistakes and finally have a decent life in the here-and-now. Problem was, I couldn't come up with a feasible way to do it. So for the next five years, I turned this odd little gem over and over in my head, looking at it from every angle and imagining what sort of trouble Jonah could get into...but I could never nail down a satisfactory “how” when it came to bringing him to the present. Without a way to bring Jonah Hex back that made sense (to me, at least), I couldn’t proceed.
Then Geoff Johns dropped “Blackest Night/Brightest Day” in my lap. He did all the “how” work for me, and I give him a thousand thank-yous for it. After a brief pondering of the “why” in particular to Jonah himself, I got to work on the first issue, and it's been just as much fun to write it and share it with you guys as it was when it simply existed in my head as a "what if" scenario. And for those of you who, like me, are lamenting many of the changes that have taken place in the DCU since August 31, 2011, let me inform you that Jonah Hex: Shades of Gray takes place pre-Flashpoint and always will. Considering this series is built upon a story involving alternate futures, it seems appropriate that we continue to follow a path that has been abandoned by the powers-that-be. Some characters that no longer exist in the DCU are alive and well here, and I'm sure that, as time goes on, the gulf between SoG and the DCNu will grow.
Oh, and if you're wondering about that epilogue with Stiletta...that's new to this edition of TLRH, and the consequences of it will be dealt with eventually. We've got a lot of ground to cover between here and there, though, so be patient. Time is on our side.
- Susan Hillwig