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KARL KESEL INTERVIEW 08/06/99

NIK: What do you think of the budding relationship between Kon-El and Cassie in YOUNG JUSTICE & WONDER WOMAN?

KARL: I think it bears watching. I like the way they play off each other, but I have certain reservations about it going too far. That being said, Superboy's romantic future is far from decided at present. Anything could happen!

NIK: Speaking of relationships, we see Knockout soon, how close is Tana's demise, umm I mean return?

KARL: Tana will be back sooner than some of you may like.

NIK: Will we be seeing Roxy & Rex anytime soon either?

KARL: Tom and I know how we want to bring Rex and Roxy back into the series, even if only for a while. As always, how soon we can make it happen is the problem!

NIK: After issue #69, when will we see Hawaii next?

KARL: Um, when you vacation there? (Seriously: I can't say. There's plenty of stories to do there, the question, as always, is when we'd have time to do them!)

NIK: Everyone knows that we will see many Kirby characters in Superboy, but what non-Kirby characters will we be seeing in the book in the future?

KARL: NONE! (Kidding). The Agenda rears its ugly head soon, we'll be introducing a new character called Doc Victory, and there MAY be an extended trip to Smallville in the future, but that's far from certain.

NIK: Speaking of Smallville, how will Superboy's involvement be affected by the new vision of the Superman titles? Eddie Berganza is a huge SB fan and I would think this relationship could finally tighten.

KARL: Eddie's been great to work with. Considering he's Mike McAvennie's Best Man at his Sept. 6th wedding, I think you could say the two of them get along pretty well. I think you'll see a lot more Superman in Superboy, and a lot more Superboy in Superman.

NIK: Many fans have expressed an interest of seeing the return of Krypto as a super-powered sidekick. Will these things happen during your tenure?

KARL: I'd like to see the caped canine, but I'm not so sure DC feels the same way. Don't hold your breath.

NIK: After 1 1/2 years back on this title, what character elements do you believe you've brought to the kid?

KARL: I think Superboy's self confidence as a hero and a leader is continually growing, and I don't just mean his 'tude. Hyper-Tension was a huge responsibility on his shoulders, and I think he came through it a better man (boy?) than he began. We see a lot more of that in SB 68 and 69, and especially in "The Evil Factory" storyline that starts in SB 70.

NIK: What is your opinion now on the Marz character elements of not-aging, increased ttk knowledge & his artistic abilities?

KARL: The same as they've always been. I understand why Ron wanted to freeze SB at 16, I always think his knowledge and imaginative use of his powers should increase, and his artistic abilities are an interesting wrinkle to the character.

NIK: You once spoke that you would have an issue that focused on the solar battery element of Kon-El's powers. You haven't had time to do this yet, but do you still plan on doing this?

KARL: I have no idea what story I might have had in mind when I said this. Can't say I have any specific idea in mind right now.

NIK: What do you see Superboy's opinion towards each of the members in Young Justice.

KARL: Well, I think he has a high opinion of all of them. I do think as Superboy's leadership abilities grow, you'll see more friction between him and Robin.

NIK: Any chance of a Superboy/Legion crossover anytime soon?

KARL: We'd all like to see one. I'm pretty sure you'll see the Young Justice/Original Titans meeting first.

NIK: In your mind, who is Superboy's best friend?

KARL: Well, keep in mind that I just finished plotting SB 72 today. From where I'm sitting, it's clear his best friend is Serling Roquette. Normally, I might say Dubbilex, but not around SB 72. We have a best bud character we'd dearly like to introduce ASAP, but no guarantees on when we'll have time.

NIK: In the latest issue, we've seen the introduction of the scientist that, in past continuity, created OMAC, does this mean that we will see the return of Buddy Blank?

KARL: I, um, er, I don't know what you're talking about.

NIK: Serling Roquette was also hitting on this doctor, will she ever get one of her 30-something men that she constantly flirts with?

KARL: Okay, Serling flirted with Guardian, yes. But I, the writer, did NOT think she was flirting with Doc whatshisname! She honestly and deeply admired his work! There was no other character who could known as much about him!

NIK: Serling and Rex both do bad things because of blackmail. Will Superboyever catch either of these two being weasels?

KARL: Before things get better, they're gonna get worse. Way worse. You think Serling owes Dabney now? Just wait.

NIK: What do you think was your strongest and weakest issue since your return?

KARL: Good question. But it's like asking a father to pick his favorite child. Probably "Hyper-Tension" was our high-point, but I also have a deep personal fondness for "The Demolition Run." I'm also extremely proud of our crossover issues, One Million, and the upcoming Day of Judgement issues. I think we took situations that were basically forced on us and used them to our advantage both times.

NIK: What do you like most and least about each of the characters in Superboy's book including the Kid himself?

KARL: What I like most and least with the characters in Superboy has absolutely nothing to do with the characters, and everything to do with my abilities as a writer. If there's anything I don't like about a character, It's my own fault, and I have the power to fix it.

NIK: Same question, now Young Justice.

KARL: Impossible for me to say. I think Peter does an amazing job, considering he has no real control over his three main characters.

NIK: What makes you want to come back each month & wrote Superboy? What do you think makes a reader want to return each month as well?

KARL: I hope it's the same answer for both. That Superboy is a fun, entertaining book filled with characters unlike any others in comics that you enjoy spending time with; that it takes you places you've never been before, keeps the pages turning, and when it's all over, you can't wait to start working on/reading the next issue.

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