X-Talk with Mike Marts #1

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6th December 2004

Trevor – A main thought on most X-Fan’s minds is the health of our Godfather of the X, Chris Claremont. Can you let the fans in on what’s up with him and what is going to be happening to the titles that he helms?

Marts -- After falling ill while attending a comic convention in Italy, Chris is now back in the States, feeling better and recuperating…basically getting some much-needed rest. It will still be a little while before Chris returns to the fold, however. But in the mean time, Tony Bedard has agreed to assist Chris on EXILES and Frank Tieri has stepped in to pen a few issues of NEW EXCALIBUR.

Trevor – If Bedard is going to be scripting the rest of C.C.’s Uncanny run, what is happening to Exiles?

Marts -- Tony’s run on EXILES has been extended by a few issues. Paul Pelletier and Jim Calafiore will continue to provide art chores on this series.

Trevor – With the revelation that Tieri will be giving a helping hand to C.C. can fans expect to see Tieri in any future X-Titles, if so what and when?

Marts -- Well, we’re currently wrapping up X-MEN: APOCLAYPSE VS. DRACULA, and then Frank gets right into NEW EXCALIBUR.

Trevor – Chris Claremont has been part of the X-Men’s world for longer than some of us fans have even been alive, what one story do you think defines C.C. as the so-called “Godfather” of the X?

Marts -- “The Dark Phoenix Saga” hands down. What other X-Men story does a better job of capturing what the X-Men are truly about? It has everything in it—life, death, love, hate, betrayal, old characters, new ones, etc. … and at the same time, I can’t think of a story that better captures Chris’s unique “X-Men” voice.

Trevor – Personally, what thoughts would you like to add about C.C. be it his contributions to Marvel’s own mythos or to you as a fan of his work?

Marts -- As a kid growing up reading X-MEN comics, Chris Claremont was my hero. Now, as an adult, I’ve been lucky enough to work alongside him and call him my friend. It’s been disappointing the last few weeks not being able to work with him, but we’re just glad he’s getting better and anxious for a quick return.

Trevor – This past Friday we had a conference call with Mark Millar regarding his upcoming Civil War run. He told the press that Wolverine and Xavier will not be having a huge role in the event. We know that to be untrue as Wolverine will have his own arc dedicated to said event and David Hine will be heading the aptly titled X-Men: Civil War. What does this event mean to the X-Men’s mythos? What so called “b” and/or “c” characters will be seeing a spotlight that the X-Office is hoping propels them to a higher fan-ranking?

Marts -- While Mark is correct in that MCW will primarily revolve around the classic Marvel heroes (Cap, Iron Man, the Avengers, etc.), the X-Men will in no way escape the biggest event to come out of the House of Ideas in a long, long time. True, the X-Men have had their hands full with their own problems ever since House of M, M-Day, the Sentinels arriving, the return of Apocalypse (I could go on…), but the X-Men will definitely be forced to act and react to the situations revolving around MCW. Wolverine deals with a specific assignment of his own in WOLVERINE, while CIVIL WAR: X-MEN, a four-issue limited series by David Hine and Yanick Paquette, will spotlight how Cyclops, Beast, Emma Frost, Iceman, Bishop and the rest of the Xavier Institute get involved.

Trevor – With the revelation that Charles Xavier is now a mere mortal can you let the fans in on what the X-Office has in store for him?

Marts -- Check out Ed Brubaker and Billy Tan’s “Rise and Fall of the Shi’Ar Empire” in UNCANNY X-MEN, on sale this July.

Trevor – What was the thought process behind humanizing both Xavier and Magneto?

Marts -- I’d have to ask Wanda Maximoff—and she isn’t really making herself available these days.

Trevor – Speaking about the pairing of Xavier and Magneto, can you give the fans a time table of when and if these two will meet next?

Marts -- Good question…I’ll have to get back to you on that.

Trevor – Will Briggs death in Genesis be addressed by members of the ONE in any other title?

Marts -- Yes, definitely. SENTINEL SQUAD will be forced to call in some reinforcements to compensate for their recent losses.

Binaryan – One of the things that made Decimation such a controversial event among X-Fans is that each of has at least a handful of bit players in the X-Universe who we have always wanted to see more of or who we see as having untapped potential as a hero or villain (or just an interesting bit player). As an editor, are there such characters that you find yourself drawn to or interested in and do you ever encourage writers to take a second look at such characters? Care to share your Top Ten Obscure X-Folks that you love?

Marts -- Okay, top ten obscure mutants…here we go:

1. Glowworm—remember him—from early X-FACTOR?
2. Destiny…not all that obscure, but she was great. Left us too soon.
3. Mammomax. How can I not list Mammomax?
4. Garokk—the Petrified Man. (Petrified of what?)
5. Negasonic Teenage Warhead. I’m glad Mr. Whedon is making good use of her.
6. Gamesmaster.Lots o’ potential.
7. Earth 616 Blink.
8. Flashback (from Alpha Flight).
9. Catseye. Not sure why.
10. Pixie.

cannonball ace –

1.) Is Shortpack ever coming back?

Marts -- Not anytime soon.

3.) With Ozymandias showing motives to take Apocalypse's place, is there any story ideas that are coming that will go in more detail on that and will he ever accomplish this.

Marts -- Yes.

PoppaBear69 -- With Brubaker taking over Uncanny, he has stated that to his knowledge, Warpath has enhanced strength, senses, speed, etc... but he never acknowledged the fact that Warpath actually learned how to fly as well, will he still have this power or was it an oversight on Ed's part?

Marts -- Ed is aware of this obscure aspect of Warpath’s power…time will only tell if we ever get to see it in play.

Gibbering Mute -- Mr. Marts, have you ever perused the fine collection of fan fiction on the UXN? I'd be great to one day get the opinion of someone in the comic business on them.

Marts -- Not yet, but I plan on it! I have trouble keeping up with my own books, sometimes!

Quicksilver19091 -- With the third summer's brother out, will Sinister be factoring into any stories to come soon. He was the man who started the whole thing after-all.

Marts -- I’d have to guess yes.

Northstar777 -- Has Nocturne lost her hex bolts seeming as how she hasn't used them at all recently?

Marts -- She uses them—check recent issues of NEW EXCALIBUR.

Dahsniper -- Do you have any future plans for Bishop and if so, what would they be?

Marts -- Don’t miss CIVIL WAR: X-MEN, on sale in July.