The speedster known as Quicksilver is arguably the fastest man in the Marvel Universe. Pietro Maximoff’s speed and innate heroism allows him to run the aid of his Avengers allies and reach a crisis anywhere in the world in almost no time. He can run away from things as well, but he often doesn’t need his speed to do that. After all, his gruff demeanor and sharp tongue are just as capable of creating a distance between him and his friends and foes.
That mix of nobility and volatility has made Pietro a fan favorite character and a fascinating part of many group dynamics. This May, fans will get a chance to see him in solo action when writer Saladin Ahmed and artist Eric Nguyen kick off Quicksilver: No Surrender, a five issue series that spins out of the current Avengers: No Surrender event. The series finds Pietro stranded alone in a mysterious frozen reality, and hunted by an alien monster.
Ahmed spoke exclusively with CBR about the chance to dig into and explore the complex nature of his title character via a solo book, the dimension Quicksilver is stranded in, and the tone of the series, which incorporates the title character’s snarky attitude with elements of existential and survival horror.
CBR: What made you want to tackle a series starring Pietro Maximoff? Which aspects of his character are you especially interested in?
Saladin Ahmed: The initial connection was made by Marvel coming to me. I think they reached out to me because of the way I dug into the mentality of Black Bolt and made him an accessible character that’s apart from other characters in a way.
Pietro is a similarly off-putting character, but for very different reasons, especially to the other characters around him. He has a fanbase, but I think a lot of readers have always found him hard to access. I think that is the reason Marvel came to me, and I’ll be tackling that with Pietro.
Some of the things about the character that are of specific interest to me are the contrasts. He came from very humble beginnings. He was this Romani kid living on the streets growing up and he became an Avenger. So he’s come this big distance. I found that fascinating. That’s very different than working on Black Bolt who was born a king.
Plus he’s the very best at what he does. He’s not one of the most powerful characters in the Marvel Universe, but he’s the fastest. At least one can make that argument. I always like to think what it would be like for these characters to live with these powers and what these powers sort of serve as a metaphor for. So a lot of what I’m thinking about and looking at in this book is anxiety, impatience, and stress. I’ve written some melancholic books, but this is a book that’s really manic in a way as to match Pietro and his power.
It occurs to me that another way in which Quicksilver is different from Black Bolt is that he’s very vocal and not always the nicest guy.
[Laughs] No, he’s not and we’ll dig into where that abrasiveness has come from. It’s not out of nowhere. He’s a sharp tongued and short tempered guy. Part of that is a function of his power. Part of that is a function of what he had to deal with to get where he is.
I’m looking forward to stripping Pietro down to dig into all of that. Because we haven’t seen a lot of that. He’s kind of a constant team member. He’s an Avenger, a member of X-Factor, paired with his sister, or paired with whoever. But as far as looking at him in isolation we haven’t had a lot of that. I’m looking forward to doing that.
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