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Infinite Crisis' Aaron Lopresti Talks Tales from the Dark Multiverse

Infinite Crisis is one of the biggest comics events in the history of DC. Created by Geoff Johns and Phil Jimenez, the event ran from 2005 until 2006 and served as a sequel to 1985's Crisis on Infinite Earths, with many of the characters who played a key role in that book returning. Infinite Crisis saw a lot of high-profile deaths, including that of Ted Kord/Blue Beetle. However, James Tynion IV, Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan's Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Infinite Crisis #1 imagines a world in which Blue Beetle survived his confrontation with Max Lord and Checkmate.

Taking place in the Dark Multiverse, which was introduced in Dark Nights: MetalInfinite Crisis sees Blue Beetle survive only to become a threat more dire than the original catastrophe that he was trying to stop. The book features a lot of twists and turns, though in the fashion of the Dark Multiverse, things go terribly, terribly wrong for the heroes involved.

CBR talked with Lopresti by email about Infinite Crisis, the design choices that went into the book and more.

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CBR: What was your relationship with the original Infinite Crisis when you started working on this book?

Aaron Lopresti: Obviously I was familiar with Infinite Crisis as well as the original Crisis on Infinite Earths series, but my main attraction to this project was the opportunity to draw so many of the characters in the DC universe. I also thought that getting to mess with such an iconic story arc would be a lot of fun... and it was!

Can you walk us through the design of this alternate version of Blue Beetle?

I incorporated some different elements that DC’s editors and I thought needed to be included (Superboy Prime, Omac, Beetle's original costume, etc) in the initial designs. As we moved along in the process, we kept adding and changing until we got to a place we were all happy with. I thought it was important to add some machinery to Beetle’s face and costume as that was reflective of the Omac presence in this new incarnation of Beetle. He would be human, but not entirely. My designs were sent to cover artist Lee Weeks and he streamlined them for the final design of the cover.

There are a lot of really stellar visuals in your Infinite Crisis. Was there something that you really enjoyed drawing?

I liked drawing some of the quiet confrontation scenes between both Beetle and Batman and Beetle and Booster [Gold]. I was able to effectively use shadows to convey Beetle’s slow descent into the “Dark Side.” Also, the last couple of pages of the issue, with the final confrontation with Booster and the other heroes, are the most memorable.

When retelling the scene between Max Lord and Blue Beetle, you duplicate the layout and framing of the original Countdown to Infinite Crisis right until the latter departs from his original path. Can you talk a bit about the choice to closely follow that art?

That was actually a request in the script from James. It made sense story-wise. I did add a bit of my own slant to those pages while still keeping them true to the original. That way, I felt like I was contributing to the art, instead of just copying or tracing the scenes.

The relationship between penciling and inking really is a collaborative one. What was your experience of working with Matt Ryan on this book?

I’ve worked with Matt for years. Matt is always willing to collaborate on our approach to the art. He is extremely flexible, style-wise. I often have said that he inks just like me, except with more patience and control.

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In terms of visualizing this book, did you guys primarily work with James Tynion IV in more of a full script style or more in a plot script style?

Somewhere in between. The script was broken down into specifics, but it was still loose enough in some areas to allow me to do my own thing. I really enjoyed working on the project with James. I’m very proud of how it turned out.

Was there anything about the process or work that you found particularly challenging?

I found that getting caught up with all of the Infinite Crisis costumes and characters was challenging. More than once I had a character in the wrong costume or I was using a character in the background that wasn’t supposed to be there. Luckily, the editors were always on top of those things and I was able to make the changes and adjustments before they became a bigger problem down the line.

Tales from the Dark Multiverse: Infinite Crisis #1 is available now from DC Comics.

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