Talking Justice League vs. Suicide Squad with Joshua Williamson and Jason Fabok

jl_ssquad_cv1_dsJustice League vs. Suicide Squad #1 introduces the League to Amanda Waller’s Task Force X for the very first time! And while they’re busy fighting each other, a character from the League’s past makes his REBIRTH return (hint: bringing his nosebleeds with him) and creates his own team of bad actors, villains you never saw coming!  Written by Joshua Williamson and art by Jason Fabok (with different artists for each issue) the first issue is action-packed.

Announced in September, Justice League vs. Suicide Squad is a six-issue mini-series with two being released in December and four in January and will tie-in with Suicide Squad #9 and 10, and Justice League #12 and #13.

The series has been a long time in the making beginning even before Rebirth started. Williamson was initially pitched with the idea by Geoff Johns and Jason Fabok had been on a break after drawing the previous DC epic “Darkseid War” but was lured in by the epic nature of the story.

I got a chance to talk to the two and get the scoop as to what we can expect from the event series and a bit about the first issue.

Graphic Policy: With the two teams being so high profile, what pressure do you two feel as creators knowing that there’s possibly more than comic fans looking at this?

Joshua Williams: One of the rules is that you never know when it’s someone’s first comic. Every time I try to write a book I try to keep that in mind. When I was a kid I didn’t start reading a comic at number one. Sometimes the numbers were super high when I started reading. As a kid I was able to pick up what I needed to do and move forward. Part of the challenge is how do you do that? How do you create a comic that feels familiar and allows it to be open to someone coming in. That part wasn’t too intimidating. A book of this size was definitely intimidating. But I think that’s something for creators to do with the title they’re working on no matter the number. You always have to prepare yourself that it might be their very first comic. You have to keep that in mind. With a book this big, we did the same thing.

jl_ssquad_cv1_gfrank_varGP: What about you Jason? People might be coming in from the cinematic or live action worlds. How does that influence what you try to do with the art?

Jason Fabok: I do find that I do draw upon a lot of the looks you see in the films and movies. I like a lot of the designs coming out of Hollywood you see for superheroes. They’re not afraid to tweak things and change things. At the same time I want to always make sure the characters have that classic look and feel to them. This book here I was the least stressed out in that sense thinking about what are people going to think because I had just gone about that for two years with Justice League and I felt like that was the pressure cooker. This was the biggest book I ever worked on, Justice League with Geoff Johns, all eyes are going to be on this. After that I feel like I passed the test so coming on this I was

My philosophy is the same as Josh. Every book is somebody’s first comic. Every book is an opportunity to do your best, put the most time you can into it, work for excellence, not for perfection, and try to put out the best comic you can so when they buy that comic book, no matter how much it costs, they’re going to get their monies worth. That’s something I’ve always tried to do. I always tried to go that extra mile to make sure each story is special and each book has all the detail and epic feel that someone is expecting when they buy a comic called Justice League vs. Suicide Squad. I’m very happ

I’m very happy with how it all turned out. I just got my copies and looking through them. I’m really happy with the colors that Alex Sinclair did on the book. It looks spectacular. I’m pumped for people to read it.

Graphic Policy: There’s obviously implications for other series and characters. With this type of story, how does that differ than doing a comic like The Flash?

JW: I think with Flash, one of the advantages of Flash having, beside the fact I love the Flash, is Barry’s perspective and I really focus everything around it. It comes down to what does this mean to Barry and how is this a Barry story and does it impact Barry? For this it really comes down to how does it impact all of these characters and all of these characters’ perspectives as well as how does it impact the DC Universe going forward. That definitely was a challenge there. But, with The Flash I get to write all of these personal stories with him and that takes precedence over these big budget action stuff. With this event, I didn’t have to worry about the supporting cast or all of these smaller moments. There’s lots of that character stuff in this series but I got to focus on something bigger. I got to focus on this non-stop blockbuster action.

JF: This book is a little unique in the sense that it’s a one-shot. Josh is on there and scoping out this epic story. He’s been in there working on this since the spring or even sooner and he’s now seeing it come to fruition. I’m just the first batter up I guess taking on issue one. For me it was really a unique perspective to be working with other artists. I didn’t work too closely with the other artists but I was seeing other pages come in while I was still working on issue one and they were tying in things I had put in issue one into issue two, issue three. I was just blown away by the art coming in. It made me step up my game. I was seeing what Tony Daniel was doing in issue two which is fantastic. It was a unique project for me to take part in, in that sense. Josh made it very easy to transition into this book. Josh and Geoff Johns’ writing style is very similar. So I felt right at home working on issue one. I’m very proud of this work. Josh should be very proud of what he has written. And I think fans are really going to enjoy the series and the book. There’s going to be lots of twists and turns and surprises. I hope the really dig issue one, especially the last couple of pages.

GP: It’s some great splash pages. Thanks so much and can’t wait to see what comes with the rest of the series!