Dynamite Comics is set to release a new comic starring Green Hornet, which also coincides with the 10th anniversary of the Golden Age character’s time with the publisher. With Scott Lobdell on writing duties, artist Anthony Marques and letterer Taylor Esposito have been tasked with finding a new look and feel for a character that has been fighting crime since the ‘40s.
Marques and Esposito chatted with The Beat about their approach to the series and what they’ve been doing to keep busy in quarantine. You can also check out some uncolored artwork by Marques from the first issue of the series.
Deanna Destito: How did you approach this fresh look for a character with so much history?
Anthony Marques: I’ve always enjoyed the look of the Green Hornet and Kato from the television series. Not just when in costume but also when in their civilian attire. I’m trying to bring some of that style and mix it in with a timeless quality. Much like what was done with Batman the Animated Series where they utilized a variety of styles and design to create a richly unique world for the characters to be in, we are all trying to do the same here with the Green Hornet.
Taylor Esposito: Luckily, when Anthony pitched me the series and asked if I wanted to join him, he put forth this concept of the timelessness of the characters I loved so much, and knew we had something special to show everyone here, both from our love for the characters, but also something a little different than everything else on the shelves.
Destito: Why did you choose the simple yet unique three-color palette?
Marques: I’ve always wanted to try this. Very simple coloring, leaving the narrative line art to do the heavy lifting and carry the story forward. It’s been an interesting process so far and one that I am extremely proud of with the way it’s coming along.
Esposito: Again, when I was given the idea, I saw it as a challenge. I’m going to be taking my cues for the lettering from the mood Anthony is setting for us. Making things harder makes us rise to the occasion.
Destito: You guys have history working together in comics and elsewhere. What makes you a good team?
Marques: Taylor and I have been working together in some shape or form since 2012. We’ve worked together as editor/letterer, artist/letterer, or even now at The Kubert School as instructors, pretty much since the day we met. Taylor is fantastic to work with because he is a collaborator. Nobody has big egos here. We’re all just trying to work together to create something cool that, not only the public will enjoy, but what we would enjoy. We’re having fun!
Esposito: I think it’s our history. We basically started at DC at the same time. I’d say a week apart, and we worked together I think the entire time. I don’t think there wasn’t a single week I didn’t have an assignment with Anthony. I think I just grew on him. Haha! Anthony has always been one of my favorite editors who’s pushed me to do the best I can do. He brought me into Dynamite, and now as a teacher at the Kubert School. At this point, we just know what we need from each other and just pair well together. The peanut butter and Nutella of comics!
Destito: What has been your favorite part about working on this book?
Marques: I just love drawing! Scott writes a really fun script that gives me a lot of freedom to make some really strong choices in regard to the story-telling. It can be a bit challenging and pushes you to work harder but I like that. Also, right now I’m working on a double-page spread where Britt and Kato are fighting about 12 swat team members outside of his mansion. Hopefully, it will look as cool as that sounds.
Esposito: I haven’t gotten to my favorite part yet. It’s that moment when I figure out the style I’ll be using for the book. That moment when I have all the art and the script and I just read through and let the story tell me what we are doing. I can’t wait for it.
Destito: How has the pandemic affected you and your work, and what have you done to entertain yourselves (if you have any downtime, that is!)?
Marques: The pandemic has made it a bit harder with causing me to not be able to sit and work as much as possible. My kids are home now, my comic shop is closed at the moment, and the students at The Kubert School are all working remotely, but I can’t complain. There are people out there dealing with serious issues and I think this has given me time to reflect on just how lucky I am. Those of us working in this industry are all living out a dream doing the things we do, the things we’ve thought about doing since we were little kids and picked up a crayon or a pencil for the first time, and hopefully this industry can help to ease the burden of stress that a lot of folks are dealing with. We’re doing our best to create something really special with Green Hornet and I hope that you all will enjoy it.
Esposito: Frankly, and I don’t know how or how long it’ll last, but I haven’t slowed down one bit. Still working on a crazy full schedule, still teaching the students twice a week, and as of this morning, doing the first of the online education classes. I don’t think I’ve had a night of sleep in weeks! As I’ve been saying lately, comics don’t need to stop while the world is on pause. In fact, it’s our time to entertain everyone.
Green Hornet #1 is slated for a June release and will also be available digitally on Comixology, Kindle, iBooks, Google Play, Dynamite Digital, ComicsPlus, and more. Check out a sneak peek of a few more inked pages below.
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