Frank Barbiere talks Dejah Thoris #5, on sale in June from Dynamite. Cover art by NEN.
FRANK BARBIERE: Collaborating with Francesco and colorist Morgan Hickman has been great. Both of them are very talented artists who have brought a unique vision to the project, and as a writer it's always exciting to work with great collaborators. I feel like they've really given our arc a distinct look and feel, and visual identity is so important these days in comics.
BB: I know we are going for a new Dejah feel, but will we see any of the old classic characters in this run of yours?
FB: There are mostly references to various mythology and creatures of Barsoom, but we do see John Carter a bit. It's more important for me for the book to feel in the "universe" rather than featuring a large supporting cast of classic characters. I had quite a bit of fun coming up with new characters for my specific arc and purposes.
BB: Tell us in non-spoilery terms about the mysterious Councilman Valoris.
FB: Valoris seems to be a bit of a simple villain, but as we come into the climax of the book his true motivations and past will come clear. He has a very purposeful intent for wanting to tear down the monarchy of Helium, and as he comes face-to-face with a changed Dejah we're going to learn exactly who he is and why he's doing this.
BB: In most iterations of "John Carter," at least in the comics, you seem to sense a deep relationship between Dejah and her land of Helium, almost like a Scarlett/Tara thing. How important is that relationship here?
FB: It's the core of who Dejah is. Our series has been fundamentally interesting as Dejah is separated from Helium, both physically and emotionally by what she learns, and feels truly lost without her purpose. We are going to see her come to terms with this, and hopefully conquer her self-doubt in time for the final issue of the series.
For more information on Dejah Thoris #5, click here.