Atomic Revolver: "Saving the World for its Own Good"

Fed up with "cut-rate media content," six of comics' most idiosyncratic talents have banded together to create a virtual studio collective, committed to, in their words, saving the world through creative thinking. Jason Aaron, Tony Moore, Jeremy Haun, B. Clay Moore, Jason Latour and Seth Peck are Atomic Revolver, and their goal is to take over the world "for its own good."

"Hawaiian Dick" writer B. Clay Moore talked to CBR News about Atomic Reolver, its origins, and its mission.

Introduce us to Atomic Revolver.  Who's a part of the studio and what's its goal?

Me, Tony Moore, Jeremy Haun, Jason Aaron, Jason Latour and Seth Peck. The main goal is to pool resources and brainwaves. We'll be sharing a group blog and website, exhibiting together at cons, which most of us do already, collaborating on projects in various media, and leaning on each other for inspiration and creative guidance. This weekend, Tony, Jeremy and I will all be snuggled together in Artist's Alley at Wizard World Chicago [tables 5500-5504], but we have plans for a massive con presence to "officially" launch down the road.

Give us a little background on each of the members of the group and how you're all "related." How did this group come together?

Well, I'm a writer. At Image I've co-created "Hawaiian Dick" with Steven Griffin, "The Expatriate" with Jason Latour, and "Battle Hymn" with Jeremy Haun. I also spent a year at Image as the public relations and marketing coordinator. At Oni, I co-created "The Leading Man" with Jeremy Haun, and I've got a couple of things debuting from DC later this year and early next year, including a "JSA Confidential" story arc with artist Ramon Perez. Jeremy and I also kicked off Devil's Due's "G.I. Joe: Special Missions" with "Special Missions Manhattan" last year as well, but my focus is generally on creator-owned stuff. Oh, and I've got a short story appearing soon in "Marvel Comics Presents," featuring Stingray, with art by the amazing Lee Weeks. I'm also developing a creator-owned book with one of the industry's true heavyweights, but we'll have to wait to announce that one.

Tony Moore is the artistic genius behind the first six issues of "The Walking Dead" and is the co-creator of "Fear Agent" with Rick Remender at Dark Horse and "The Exterminators" with Simon Oliver at Vertigo. Tony is Eisner-nominated for his "Walking Dead" covers, too. He's currently handling covers for 12 Gauge's "Amory Wars," which fellow Revolver Jason Latour is coloring.

Jason Aaron made his splashy debut last year, writing two original Vertigo books: "The Other Side," with Cameron Stewart on art, was Eisner-nominated, and "Scalped" has been garnering all kinds of well-deserved praise. His first "real" work came when he won Marvel's Wolverine writing contest a few years back, so it's only fitting that he's got an oversized issue of "Wolverine" dropping soon, featuring art by Howard Chaykin. He's also one of the writers for Top Cow's Pilot Season line, and his "Ripclaw" one-shot features a gory but beautiful cover by Tony Moore. Like all of us, Jason has some stuff on the horizon that should excite readers everywhere.

Artist and writer Jeremy Haun co-created "Paradigm" with Matt Cashel at Image before we collaborated on "Battle Hymn" and "The Leading Man." He also did a "Desperadoes" book and a "Masters of Horror" book for IDW. His Marvel debut was on "Iron Man/Captain America: Casualties of War" with writer Cristos Gage, and he's currently in the middle of his run on Chris Claremont's "New Excalibur." Jeremy and I also have some high profile collaborations on the horizon, but it's too early to chat about those. The original graphic novel "Narcoleptic Sunday," Jeremy's first foray into writing, will hit shelves this month from Oni Press. A talented newcomer named Brian Koschak handled the art on the book.

Freelance artist and writer Jason Latour co-created "The Expatriate" with me at Image and draws the book. Recently he's been doing some color work for 12 Gauge and other Image books, working on his own creator-owned projects, and collaborating with me as the co-plotter, designer and cover artist on a new superhero book we're planning to do at Image. Jason recently wrote and drew a story that appeared in the second volume of "24Seven."

Seth Peck is an up and coming writer, currently co-writing with me a book called "'76," and is also co-writing a book with Rick Remender called "Sorrow" (both for Image). He recently contributed to the second "24Seven" volume and has lots more work in the pipeline. He and I are also in the process of converting a television pitch into comic book form.

Seth, Tony, Jason Aaron and I are all Kansas City area guys, and Jeremy just lives a couple of hours down the road in Missouri. Latour's basically a wandering gypsy, although he did camp out on Tony's couch for a month last summer. The regional proximity helps, but primarily the six of us are friends who all respect each other's work, with skills that compliment one another. Most of us are making an effort to do our own thing and push creative boundaries a bit, and several of us have collaborated here and there. It only seemed natural that we'd pool our resources as we work toward conquering new creative realms. 

What was the impetus for the creation of Atomic Revolver?  Who first floated the idea?

It's something we've all kicked around before, even with other creators. But it seemed like something that was on all of our minds, and everyone agreed it would be a good idea, virtually without hesitation. Initially, it was Tony, Seth, Jason Latour, Jeremy and I discussing it, but everyone loves Jason Aaron and his work, and he's a Kansas City guy, so we decided it was natural to invite him in. When we did, he told us he'd been thinking something along these lines would be a good idea, and jumped on board. The actual Atomic Revolver name emerged after a lot of screaming and shouting between the six of us. But that's how families operate, right?

Will this strictly be a virtual studio or will there be a physical space where some of you will work?

At this point it's strictly virtual, aside from those nights where Peck, Tony, Aaron and I end up at Tony's killing time. Ever since Tony came to Kansas City, there's been talk of a physical studio, particularly if we can lure Latour back here on a more permanent basis, but that would probably be a year or so down the road.

What benefits does a studio set-up of this sort offer to its members?

We'll be exhibiting together under the Atomic Revolver banner at shows, for starters, on top of sharing web resources like a group blog, e-mail addresses, and website. We'll be cross-promoting, collaborating, and developing new projects under the banner. We'll probably launch some AR merchandise before too long, as well.

On top of that, it's nice to have such blindingly creative people to lean on when it comes to bouncing new projects and ideas around.

And, as busy as all of us are on more than a few kick-ass projects, we'll probably appear together on con panels down the road to discuss the magic.

What can fans check out on the group blog?

Exclusive updates on new projects in and out of comics, sneak previews of concepts and art, and blistering blasts of caustic wit from Seth Peck. 

At the moment, the best place to receive updates on what we're doing and to communicate with us is on MySpace at www.myspace.com/atomicrevolver.

Are there plans to make Atomic Revolver a publishing or imprint name as well?  Will we see the name and logo on any of the group members' comics?

I think you'll see the name and logo referenced in some creator-owned books, but not on the covers for now. We haven't discussed publishing under the name yet, since we're all pretty busy with our creator-owned and work-for-hire books at this point. But we'll definitely be producing collaborative work --whether it be in comics, television or other media-- under the Atomic Revolver banner before too long.

Without sounding too full of ourselves, you simply won't find six people with more creative firepower than what you'll find in this group.

What can we expect from Atomic Revolver in the immediate future?

We're in the process of putting together an Atomic Revolver anthology, featuring the six of us collaborating with one another on original concepts. Jason Aaron and Jason Latour are working together, Jeremy and Seth are working together, and Tony and I are working together. The goal is to have this one out next summer.


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