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CBR TV: Bendis & Oeming on the Evolution of “Powers” on TV and in Comics

by  in Comic News, TV News Comment
CBR TV: Bendis & Oeming on the Evolution of “Powers” on TV and in Comics

While it took nearly fifteen years to become a reality, “Powers” is finally a live-action TV show on PlayStation Network. During WonderCon 2015 in Anaheim, California, CBR’s Jonah Weiland welcomed the co-creators of “Powers,” Brian Michael Bendis & Michael Avon Oeming, to discuss how the arrival of the show has affected their work on the comic, the way Oeming’s art has changed over the years, and whether they would ever redo any of the earliest stories.

Bendis Talks His “Powers” TV Writing Debut, Importance of GIFs and F-Bombs

On how the “Powers” TV series has affected the approach to the comic book:

“We just got in our craw for the new volume which is coming out the same time as the show that what the comic should be now is this. Like the best version of ourselves, and the best version for somehow who saw the show and is looking to hop in,” Bendis said of the approach to the current volume of “Powers.” “Yeah they might try the first trade, but they also might try the new first issue, and it should be the best version of us, and the best first issue.

“At the same time, some people thought it was a revamp or a reboot, like it was starting over from scratch. I was surprised that people would think that because I don’t think that a creator-owned comic has ever done that, so it didn’t even occur to us to do that,” Bendis continued. “Like a TV show would have a new season, the new season is pretty viewer friendly, this would the same thing for us. A new #1 is a nice reader friendly place to be. Here’s Mike at his best — and I do think it’s the best thing that Mike’s ever done — and we’re just gonna be as — where we go and what we do is different than everything else on the market.”

On how Oeming adjusted his art and the series has gone in unexpected directions over the years:

“It took me probably two trades worth of material to figure out how to draw Walker and Deena,” said Oeming of finding his “Powers” groove. “I’ve definitely learned and grown with the book. And the book itself, because we’ve been around for fifteen years, it moves and changes in ways that we don’t always plan, and those are never bad things, they’re always interesting things. Many a times I thought we were coming to the end of ‘Powers’ because we would write such a crazy corner for the characters that the only way to kind of come back was to take a break and do a new #1 kind of thing.

On Oeming’s desire to redraw the first year of “Powers”:

“He has asked me, numerous times, ‘Could we just redraw the first year of ‘Powers?”” Bendis said of his co-creator’s not-so-secret desire. “Hitchock remade a couple of his old movies. So I go, ‘There’s a Hitchock version, there’s a George Lucas version, and it’s a fine line.’ Anybody looks at their own work and all they see is the mistakes. It’s so hard, you’ve got to just let it go and just do better the next time. We’ve had this conversation, he wants to redraw it all.”

“It’s almost the first thing I do when I look at anything I’ve done is I just look for what’s wrong first. Every now and then I’ll see something I like,” Oeming said of looking at past works. “Usually I’ll look back and go, ‘Why can’t I draw like this anymore? I used to be able to do this,’ and then ten years from now I’ll look back at what I’m doing now and ask the same thing. That sort of self-doubt is kind of what pushes you to keep doing better.

“Like Ed Wood said, ‘We’ll do it better next time,'” Oeming added.

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