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EXCLUSIVE: Richard & Wendy Pini Look To the End After 40 Years of Elfquest

CBR: The idea that there could be a happy ending to The Final Quest, the idea that you could go home again, that element, without necessarily going into spoilerific details, was always there from the start?

Wendy: Yes.

Richard: The word we hear the most is “bittersweet.” The word we hear almost as much is “inevitable,” because this was built in, baked into Elfquest’s DNA from the start.

Wendy: Elfquest, at least the story arc that involves Cutter, is a classic hero’s journey. Without us doing it consciously, it followed the steps, the 12 steps of the hero’s journey. And what we discovered about Cutter, at least in mythological terms, is that he’s a demigod, because he is part-High One. Part of him is this little hunter, gatherer, fighter figure. Very scrappy. So you’ve got the feminine and the masculine perfectly merged.

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Richard: And what happens to all demigods?

Wendy: That’s where I was going with this, you take Hercules or Achilles, in fact, it’s very common in mythology for demigods and other godlike beings to be taken down by the tiniest thing. So, in Cutter’s case, it was a spider and we planted that spider so early in the story, and had it show up so often in the story and, yet, the fans never caught it.

CBR: Sort of an eight-legged Chekov’s gun?

Wendy: That’s a good analogy, yes!

CBR: You’ve hinted that this isn’t the end, there’s a new beginning in the works. Without necessarily giving the game away, when and what can we expect next?

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Richard: We’ve been talking for several months, first and foremost with Dark Horse because they’re our home now. We are also talking with a small and selected set of creative people that we’ve worked with before and that we trust because [Wendy’s] done with deadlines.

Wendy: I am done with deadlines! I’ve been doing deadlines since I was 19 years old and I want to know who I am when I’m not under pressure.

Richard: But we are still going to very carefully shepherd stories and artwork into the future, I can safely say.

CBR: Become more curators and showrunners?

Richard: Showrunner, that’s a good way to put it!

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Elfquest is available in its entirety now through Dark Horse Comics.

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