INTERVIEW: The Secrets Behind the Juggernaut's X-Men Black Destruction


As the Juggernaut, Cain Marko possess a seemingly limitless amount of physical might. Over the years he's used his mystical power to gain revenge on his step brother, X-Men founder Charles Xavier (and make a profit as a professional criminal, of course). For a short time, he even used his abilities for good as a member of Excalibur, but this fall, he'll step into the spotlight, and into the role of villain, for a solo tale as part of Marvel's X-Men Black one-shots.

In October's X-Men: Black: Juggernaut writer Robbie Thompson and artist Shawn Crystal will give readers a one-shot full of their title character's signature brand of destruction and rare moments of introspection into what makes Cain Marko tick. CBR spoke with the creators about the story, their sense of the Juggernaut, and the characters and forces they're pitting him against.

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CBR: The Juggernaut has been a number of different things over the years, from a revenge crazed brother to professional criminal -- he was even a hero for a brief time. So what's your sense of the character? Which of his qualities do you find most intriguing?

Shawn Crystal's sketch of the Juggernaut

Shawn Crystal: For me, he’s a living breathing wrecking ball. When I first encountered him as a kid, i was hooked. He showed up in a small arc of Excalibur, the cover of which was burned into my brain. Captain Britain pummeled into the earth with a giant food print in his chest, the Juggernaut walking away in the distance. I loved that story. I love Alan Davis. I would draw the Juggernaut over and over, trying to capture that size, that weight, that force. He is pure, simple, and focused. I could dive deeper into his character, but the truth is, I just LOVE drawing him destroying stuff. I love drawing the size of him in contrast to the characters he fights with, lets say, for example, just pulling this out of thin air… the X Men. It’s like a bunch of apes going against King Kong. Fun stuff!

I constantly think about his size, weight, and sense of force when I draw him. The simple act of walking around would be a destructive act for him. Every time he steps he leaves cracked floor boards, broken tiles, sunken earth. I want the reader to feel his pure force, even when not fighting.

Robbie Thompson: I think Shawn hit the nail on the head: when I think of Juggernaut, I think of a wrecking ball. He's unstoppable! And yet, as you pointed out, he's also had a fascinating history. Going back and re-reading his first appearance, I was struck by the journey he's been on. He's a bully when we first meet him, picking on Charles. He's been a villain. He's been a hero. And now he's a villain again. What fascinates me about him is this rage that drives him, the rage that Cyttorak saw in him has been with him his whole life. It helps him thrive and in some ways holds him back. Where does that anger come from? And what happens when Juggernaut stops? When he's forced to look inward?

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