kick-ass

Ten years later, Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. are back, crafting the exploits of Kick-Ass in comic book form, but there is one major change: the lead character.  Gone is the Peter Parker-like teenager Dave Lizewski.  In his place is Patience Lee, a 30-something war veteran with two small kids.  “I don’t think I’ve ever created a better [character],” Millar exclaimed. “I love mom heroes. I did it in Empress and I’ve done it again here.”

Mark MillarThe new ‘Kick-Ass’ comic will arrive in February and is part of Millar’s recent deal with Netflix, who purchased his Millarworld pantheon of comic ideas with the intention of adapting them for the streaming service.  There is more to the creation of a new ‘Kick-Ass’ than simple creative inspiration.  It seems there was something of a business angle as well, as Millar explained:

“When we sold Millarworld to Netflix, two properties weren’t part of the deal. Kingsman and Kick-Ass both had unique arrangements with Matthew Vaughn and it made sense for these to continue, so in the year or so where we were preparing the sale I came up with this great idea for a whole new take on Kick-Ass.  The entire story was all completely written in that year and it’s a monthly book, launching in February for the title’s 10th anniversary. It’s crazy to think that in the 10 years since it was created, Kick-Ass has spawned two Hollywood movies, video-games, toys, key-rings, PEZ dispensers, and even an upcoming board game. So the idea of it lying dormant was just insane and to be honest it’s the most fun I’ve ever had writing anything. I really love that world.”

PEZ dispensers?  Did that really happen?  At any rate, the comic did inspire two movies, 2010’s ‘Kick-Ass’ which was directed by Vaughn and starred Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Dave Lizewski and Chloë Grace Moretz as sidekick Hit-Girl along with Nicholas Cage, Mark Strong, Evan Peters and Christopher Mintz-Plasse.  A sequel arrived in 2013, directed by Jeff Wadlow with Jim Carrey essentially filling in for Nicholas Cage’s role, but it wasn’t as well received.  A ‘Hit-Girl’ solo film was discussed but never came to fruition.

But as far as the new version, Millar goes on to discuss the introduction of Patience Lee, likening her to legacy concepts like ‘Doctor Who’ and ‘The Flash’.

“The original four volumes of Kick-Ass, the Dave Lizewski story, got tied up a couple of years ago and this is a brand new character. I’d always wanted to do what Doctor Who or The Flash does and create a legacy character, Kick-Ass being designed for that. The idea is that he inspires other people to do what he did, just putting on a costume and cleaning up their neighborhood, and that’s what happens here.  I wanted to shake up the setting a little and shifted the whole thing to New Mexico. The lead is a woman this time, a mother in her early 30s with two young kids. She’s also a military vet who came home to find her life in a completely different setting from the way it was when she went to Afghanistan so the actual dynamic of the book is really different, but at the same time the flavor is identical.”

Want an idea of what to expect?  Millar supplied a few sample pages from the first issue.  There is no dialogue, so it’s hard to really judge whether the flavor is as identical as Millar says, but the art by John Romita Jr. may give at least some idea of what’s in store in the new series.

Kick-ass

On reuniting with Romita Jr., Millar said:

“We’d missed each other so much.  I’d honestly missed his daily insults and pages and just his little Italian face. I love him. We did Kick-Ass right after a Wolverine run back at Marvel and just love working together. Getting him back [at DC] after his big run was just the most incredible coup. We’re really proud of this book and have a lot of big plans for the launch ten years on from the very day when we released this little very simple superhero idea absolutely nobody knew what to expect of.”

Can Millar and Romita Jr. recapture the magic that made the original ‘Kick-Ass’ comic such a break-out hit?  Or will they create a new kind of magic?  Does this new spin on the concept mean we might see a reboot of the films, focusing on Patience Lee?

We’ll get our first hint when the first issue arrives on Valentine’s Day, February 14th, 2018.

Source: Entertainment Weekly