An DCU:NG Email Interview with Jerry Ordway
Jerry Ordway is just one of the many current creators who have tapped into the "fun" well that was missing during much of the last decade of comics. By restoring the Big Red Cheese to his iconic status, and making him interesting again, Ordway has done what many readers considered impossible: Take a basically cornball do-gooder with a costume and attitude of a time gone by, and make him work for a modern audience. DCUNG was fortunate enough to have Jerry take some time out of his busy schedule to do one of our exclusive email interviews. Thanks, Jerry!
DCUNG: What first got you interested in comics, both as a hobby and as a career?
JO: The Marvel Superheroes show on TV in the mid-sixties was my comic inspiration. It was a pretty cut-rate show, using panels from the comics, with limited animation, but as an eight year old, it was great. I then happened upon the actual comics, and was hooked! That was in May of 1968, and I still collect!
DCUNG: What was your first professional work in comics?
JO: I inked a Carmine Infantino-drawn story for Mystery in Space #94 (I think) which came out in 1980, or '81.
DCUNG: How did you first come to work on Power of Shazam?
JO: I replaced John Byrne doing the Shazam graphic novel (He quit) and did my own take, inspired by the Republic serial of the forties. After that, DC asked me to launch the monthly, which I did, as writer and cover artist.
DCUNG: What do you prefer, writing, drawing, or some combination of the two?
JO: I like collaboration, but I am most happy writing and drawing my own stuff, 'though deadlines usually prevent me from that!
DCUNG: Since this site focuses on the teen heroes of the DCU, let's find out your feelings on Captain Marvel Jr. Dan Jurgens' take on him is that he's having trouble interfacing with the guys in the Titans (especially Risk). What's your take?
JO: I think Dan's "take" is good. My view on Junior is that he's most comfortable when he's the team captain, be it in Baseball, football, or superheroics. He's used to being the star performer from his days in high school sports, so he doesn't mix well with Billy Batson and Mary. He finds it hard to accept being third in line for the Power with no hope of moving up the line!
DCUNG: Any plans to have the Titans appear in Power of Shazam?
JO: The Titans will appear in Shazam #41, along with Cap Junior.
DCUNG: When Jurgen's team of titans disbands at the end of his run on the book (when Devon Grayson takes over) what are you plans for Cap Jr.? Will he be involved in Young Justice?
JO: I don't know about the Titans line-up, but Junior is back in Shazam as of Issue #42, and will be tied up for awhile!
DCUNG: What's up with Thunder? Will she ever appear in the Legion books? Will there ever be a crossover with her 20th Century counterparts?
JO: Thunder was supposed to appear when the Legion was in our time, but our storyline that allowed that to happen, kept getting pushed back over and over, so we missed the window of opportunity! She will be available to the Legion guys after around Shazam #45!
DCUNG: Why do you think teen heroes (especially sidekicks) are becoming popular again?
JO: I think these things always go in cycles. Who would have thought that Robin would be popular again? Sidekicks were dead, and now they're thriving!
DCUNG: Which comics or characters would you most like to have a chance to draw or write?
JO: I always thought it would be fun to do the Marvel characters someday. Spider-Man, Daredevil, or Captain America, especially.
DCUNG: Any future plans or projects we should be looking for?
JO: I'm taking over pencilling Shazam as of issue #42!