Spider-Woman would be more than happy to stay out of the current "Civil War" that's dividing Marvel's heroes, having left her life as an Avenger behind in an attempt to raise her newborn son in relative quiet. But her best friend is Captain Marvel, one of the generals in the battle dividing the superhero community, so staying out of the conflict and not picking a side was never really an option.
In "Spider-Woman" #10, writer Dennis Hopeless and artists Javier Rodriguez and Veronica Fish detail the case Captain Marvel tasked Jess and her friends -- former journalist Ben Urich, and supervillain-turned-manny Roger Gocking (aka the Porcupine) -- to investigate.
CBR spoke with Hopeless about the relationship between Spider-Woman and Captain Marvel, the strange places his cast will go on their mission for Carol Danvers, and Spider-Woman's upcoming battle with Roderick Kingsley, the original Hobgoblin.
CBR News: You kicked off your "Civil War II" storyline with a tale that had Captain Marvel hiring Jess, Roger and Ben for a job. Before that, though, Jess and Carol had a pretty big argument. Was this argument simply because of a lack of communication between two best friends? And what's your sense of the current relationship between Jess and Carol?
Dennis Hopeless: Carol and Jess are still extremely close. A little too close maybe. The argument they have in #9 is an argument only family and very good friends can have. No one is pulling any punches or being polite for politeness' sake. Jess doesn't want anything to do with the "Civil War" conflict. Carol is all up in it, and needs her best friend's help with a thing. If Jess were anyone else, Carol would've given up. If it weren't Carol asking, Jess never would have relented. The strength of their friendship is what makes writing them so much fun -- particularly when they disagree.
Carol hires Jess to investigate and vet some of the "lesser" visions of the seemingly precognitive Inhuman, Ulysses. What does that entail?
Issue #10 takes them from Black Bolt's Quiet Room to the Iowa State Fairgrounds, and eventually, all the way to the Blue Area of the Moon. Carol needs someone to travel around and check into the visions she doesn't have the time to vet. She needs confirmation that this kid is 100% accurate. Like Carol says at the end of #9, Jess and her team are uniquely equipped for this kind of job. The visions could've been anything and anywhere we wanted, so expect another Team Spider-Woman road trip around the Marvel U.
What are some of the issues Jess will be wrestling with as she investigates Ulysses' visions?
She feels pretty widgy about the whole thing. The idea of punishing people for crimes they haven't yet committed makes her uncomfortable. Jess trusts Carol, and has dedicated her life to saving the innocent, so she understands both sides of the argument -- but she sees the slippery slope, and it scares her.
One of the fun aspects of "Spider-Woman" is that her job as a P.I. often takes her off the beaten path of the Marvel Universe, and brings her into contact with some lesser-known, C-List characters. Will that continue in your "Civil War II" tie-in?
Yes! That's my favorite thing to do. I love deep cuts. I love weird '70s characters. I love how strange the dark corners of the Marvel Universe always are. For instance, my favorite page in issue #10 takes place in Monster Metropolis. We get to be pretty shamelessly weird and take full advantage, here.
How large a role will Roger and Ben play in this story? Coming from the backgrounds of reformed super villain and journalist it seems like they would both have interesting P.O.V.s on the events of "Civil War II" so far.
Roger and Ben are along for the ride, here. They are Jess's primary partners, advisors and confidants. And yeah, we'll definitely be playing with the idea that these two men see the world from wildly different perspectives. It's a fun dynamic, and we'll be taking advantage.
We've talked before about all the great things Javier Rodriguez brings to this book from action, to storytelling, page design and character acting. One thing I don't think we've addressed though is his ability to deliver on the book's comedic elements. Will this latest arc afford Javier the chance to depict some more comedy?
Javier is a comic genius; both definitions of comic apply there. He nails everything we ask him to draw, and often adds brilliant things that weren't anywhere in the script. Sadly, Javier is leaving the book with issue #10. He's doing layouts for that issue, and then moving on to draw some Dr. Strange. The incredible Veronica Fish will be doing finishes on #10, and then take over full art duties with #11.
I can't tell you how sad I am to be parting ways with Javier. He's my comic book soulmate. But "Spider-Woman" fans can rest easy; Veronica has hit the ground running. She's blowing us away. The book will continue to be gorgeous.
Finally, fans got a glimpse of the plans you and Veronica have for "Spider-Woman" come October's issue #13 via a Marvel NOW! Teaser which featured Jess and the Hobgoblin. It seems like this might be an especially personal story for Ben Urich since his nephew, Phil, was one of the people to wear the Hobgoblin costume.
This is Roderick Kingsley, the original Hobgoblin. I'm a huge fan of Dan Slott's selling franchises angle over in "Spider-Man." I've been itching to play with that concept for a while. We were actually planning to use Hobgoblin in an earlier arc and got sidetracked. I'm thrilled that we've gotten back around to him.
Obviously Ben has a very personal connection to Hobgoblin that we'll be exploring, but this story is actually very Roger-centric. We're building in some fun connective tissue fans might not expect.
This is going to be a big, character-driven superhero romp. It's the perfect story to follow on the heels of so much crossing over. Very Jess. Very Spider-Woman. You're gonna love it.
I'd like to conclude with my usual thank you to fans who have been buying, reading and supporting the book. I'm in the process of writing my 21st "Spider-Woman" script. That's huge. We couldn't have gotten anywhere near this far without Jess fans supporting us, and thanks to them, we get to keep on trucking. Thank you all so, so, much