A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey


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Reading the first volume, I very quickly fell in love with the character of Hunter Rose and the noir -infused world that Wagner created for the character. Rose was fascinating, as were the narrative techniques being used to tell his story.

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Wagner has built a world that is distinctly his. I was honored to have the opportunity to talk to Wagner about the history of Grendel , what inspired this next incarnation of the property, and what might be next for the series. Grendel is a concept with over thirty years of history behind it, but you keep coming up with ways to reinvent it and expand on the lore. Is there anything you think readers need to know before going in to the new series? With every new incarnation or installment of the character, I certainly try to style things in such a manner that someone could pick it up fresh and still be intrigued enough by the story at hand to enjoy the current narrative.

And if new readers want to dive deeper into the dark history of the Grendelverse, they can find the entire saga collected in the four-volume Grendel Omnibus editions, available from Dark Horse Comics. There are also two volumes that collect the Grendel Tales series.


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Snyder, Guy Davis …the list goes on and on. Grendel is a centuries-spanning epic that, as you said, has always been about reinventing its narrative reality while maintaining a central core concept.

When last we saw Prime at the end of Devil Quest , he had accidentally time-travelled and had a run-in with Batman while attempting to commune with the spirit of Hunter Rose. How did that experience change Prime? The human warrior who surrenders himself to become Grendel Prime did so out of a fanatic belief in the power and purpose of his ultimate Commander-in-Chief, the Grendel Khan—Orion Assante, ruler of the first global empire and progenitor of the Grendel rank and identity.

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To help pay tuition and living costs we played in Brandon pubs every night - moving from the Cecil to the Brandon Hotel Viking Room to the new Beaubier - with occasional one nighters in military bases or dance halls, as well as taping sessions for our television show. We had morning classes every day at the University and labs all afternoon, so this routine got to be a bit of a grind but we managed to keep our marks up. For some time before we moved in we had been driving in to play the beverage room in the Cecil Hotel and now our move to the city coincided with all the hotel beverage rooms move to hire bands Charged by the Khan with protecting his only heir from the political turmoil that might result from his own death, Prime has since seen the empire he once loved and defended fractured into a hodgepodge of warring sects and incompetent leaders.

As a result, Prime has gone through various stages of increasing isolation from humanity and its affairs. He briefly found companionship with the cynical but still idealistic Grendel warrior, Susan Veraghen, but his cybernetic lifespan outlasted their many adventures together.

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Prime is the Grendelverse version of the Knight Errant, separated from his own world and forever doomed to never finding the Grail that will complete his mission and heal the world. Grunenwald: What inspired you to tell this particular story?

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The idea of needing to find another inhabitable planet because the old one is no longer usable feels unfortunately somewhat timely. In Grendel , humankind never really makes that exploratory leap off the planet and instead just stagnates in an endless cycle of codified ritual and continual warfare.

Believe me, there are many aspects of Grendel that I find sadly predictive of where we might be headed. Grunenwald: Grendel has come a long way from where it debuted, crossing formats and genres.

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How does removing Prime from the confines of Earth allow you to explore more about the character? As a young comics reader in the 70s, discovering Heavy Metal in my local magazine racks as opposed to the more kid-friendly spinner racks did a lot to stir my imagination beyond the realms of mainstream comics. The more adult subject matter and the fact that most of the stories were serialized and fractured, sometimes even coming to no conclusion, confused the hell out of me on one level but also showed me the vast palette of what comics could accomplish and how varied and different they could appear.

Can humankind migrate to other worlds without any of the violent incursions that have marked most of our previous expansions? And is sending a warrior that has so little of his own humanity remaining to explore such a possibility necessarily a good idea?

A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey
A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey
A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey
A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey
A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey
A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey A Walk-on Part in the War: A 70s Odyssey

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