When I learned there was a Kickstarter for a new graphic novel based on Aircel’s Warlock 5 I got very excited.  The early issues of Warlock 5 by Gordon Derry and Denis Beauvais were just some of the best indie comics put out in the 1980’s and, perhaps, of all time.  The return of Warlock 5 is certainly cause for celebration.  I wrote up the Kickstarter here and this article barely contains my excitement.

Co-writing the new Warlock 5 book with Jimmy Johnston is writer Cullen Bunn.  Bunn is no stranger to the world of comics having written some of the biggest characters of all time including Deadpool, the X-Men, Magneto, Aquaman, Lobo, Green Lantern, and so many more titles.  The fact that Bunn is relaunching/rebooting Warlock 5 is perhaps the best news of the entire year thus far.

With the Kickstarter in its final days I was able to pull Bunn away from the daily grind to answer a few questions on Warlock 5’s past, present, and future.

RYAN MCLELLAND: Were you a (Warlock 5) reader from the early 80’s?

CULLEN BUNN: I was. I bought the first issue off the rack of my local comic book store when it came out. I had gotten into the black and white comics boom of the late 80s, so I was picking up a lot of stuff. So much of it was very forgettable, but Warlock 5 stuck with me.

RM: What first attracted you to the book?

CB: The covers were fantastic, and I loved the moody interior art, especially in the first couple of issues. I also loved the crazy world–with horror, sci-fi, and fantasy elements–they were introducing in the series.

RM: Was it a book that stayed with you just like it stayed with me?

CB: Yes, for sure. I’ve always talked about Warlock 5 when I talk about comics that I loved or that influenced me.

RM: Was there any certain scenes or storylines that really made you say, “WOW!”?  I ask because in just rereading the series a couple months ago I love that shot of Argon leading his robots in the shadows…that panel alone is simply mindblowing.

CB: I definitely agree that the Argon scenes were pretty stunning and evocative. I remember this scene where he sends out this razor-legged spider robot to murder one of Zania’s henchmen, and I really thought that was great.  I also loved that initial transformation that Savasthar makes from humanoid to dragon.

RM: Did you read the entire series as Barry Blair took over the series?

CB: Not as a kid. I fell off the series around the time of the big shake-up. I came back to it later, but I admit I was always much more of a fan of the original run of characters.

RM: The Kickstarter mentions this is a continuation. Is this a reboot? Revamp? Or is it really the same old character continuing the storyline? If so from which point in the story does your book actually continue from? The Derry stuff? The Blair stuff? Both?

CB: This is part reboot, part continuation. We are basically picking up at some point during the Derry material. Some of the characters are getting slight updates, but these are the original five warlocks you would have been reading about when you first picked up the series in the 80s.

RM: I saw you talking about how this is a comic you’ve wanted to write for years. You are a hugely famous writer but in tackling Warlock 5 do you find it the least bit daunting?

CB: Maybe to some degree. There’s always that worry that I won’t do justice to my memory of the series.

RM: How did you actually come to land the project?

CB: It’s been a little bit, but I’m pretty sure I tracked down who had the rights to the series and lobbied for the book.

RM: How is the feeling seeing your words now turned into the art?  Is everything meeting your expectations? Succeeding?

CB: I’m thrilled with how the series is turning out. It’s becoming so much more than a simple homage to the original book. It’s taking on a life of its own and we’re developing so many new angles to the mythology.

RM: I take it that there will be more volumes after this one – do you plan on continuing on if this happens?

CB: Yes, for sure. My co-writer Jimmy Z and I are already plotting future tales.

You can check out the Kickstarter for Warlock 5 here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1124066364/warlock-5-comic-written-by-cullen-bunn-deadpool-x.  I’m sure I’ll be back in the days, weeks, and months to come with all kinds of Warlock 5 goodness.