Top Cow’s second annual Pilot Season competition has come and gone, and two books emerged victorious: “Twilight Guardian” and “Genius.” The two winners have each earned a new series from Top Cow, and CBR News caught up with “Twilight Guardian” writer Troy Hickman to find out what’s in store for his title character.
“Twilight Guardian is a woman who each night puts on a hoodie and a mask and patrols a nine-block area around her neighborhood,” Hickman said of his new series’ heroine. “Is she a superhero? Maybe. Is she crazy? Maybe. We're learning about her life in dribs and drabs. So far all we're sure about is that she works at a drycleaners, she lives by herself, she spends time with her mother, and she probably had some sort of romantic break-up. Also, she has 22,000 comic books, and she reads one every night (and we the readers get to see a page from each one).”
Hickman says the book has a very broad appeal, and one that is not easily summed up in solicitation copy. “It concerns twilight people, and the lonely feeling of autumn nights, and what a superhero is, and who we are as comic book readers, and about a million other things,” the writer explained. “I end up feeling like a goof because when people ask, the most accurate thing I can say is that it is what it is.”
When last we spoke to Hickman about “Twilight Guardian,” he told CBR News he thought his only chance at winning the Pilot Season contest would be if all of his distinguished competitors were hit by meteors. How does the writer account for the fact that all of his colleagues are still standing? “All the other creators were struck by meteors,” Hickman remarked. “However, Topco Labs (a subsidiary of Top Cow Entertainment) was able to clone them. So from now on, every other comic from the Cow will be written by either Jay Faerber or Josh Fialkov. Also, Rob Levin will be able to recline on a throne made entirely out of Matt Hawkins clones.”
But in all seriousness, Hickman knows he has only the fans to thank for making “Twilight Guardian” emerge victorious. “I really have to credit it to the myriad folks out there who voted for the book,” Hickman said. “Being the recipient of all that effort and consideration is the best part of all this. Well, that and winning.”
Hickman said he only learned that “Twilight Guardian” was among the winners one day before the general public. “[Top Cow Publisher] Filip [Sablik] sent me an e-mail letting me know, and at first I just assumed it was a cruel joke (he also often calls me up and asks me if I have pig's feet -- which is really mean, since I do, in fact, have pig's feet),” Hickman explained. “I have to say that I was pretty flabbergasted. We had been getting weekly reports, and ‘Twilight Guardian’ was in the coveted top two every week except the first, but I guess it never really seemed likely that I might have a shot. In fact, even now I keep expecting to hear someone say ‘Psych!’”
The upcoming “Twilight Guardian” series will see the title character deal with triumph, tragedy and Choc-ola. “I'm going to try to expand TG's world to some extent, so that we see some interaction with the world beyond her jurisdiction,” Hickman said. “Also, I want to delve more into her past and how she got this way. Comic books will also play a major role, and we're going to have some fun with them. And for those folks saying, ‘Where are all the senses-shattering slugfests?’ Well, we may have something for you, too (a punch, right in the breadbox!).”
With the new series, Hickman is attempting to strike a balance between telling an ongoing story but also writing single issues that stand alone. “I really miss the days when you could pick up a comic without having read the 247 issues that preceded it, even if it had a strong continuity,” Hickman said. “Sometimes, of course, that's not possible. When I did arcs in ‘Witchblade’ and ‘City of Heroes,’ I pretty much had to have a certain ‘continued next ish’ aspect. When I can, I prefer to write comics that can be enjoyed totally on their own, even if it's an ongoing series, like my ‘Common Grounds’ work.”
Look for the new “Twilight Guardian” series next Fall from Top Cow.