Kindred Spirits: J.T. Krul on CAPTAIN ATOM
One of the very first ideas I had when we started building the new Captain Atom book was to have a team-up of sorts. I've said time and again that the genesis for the tone and theme of this book revolves around Captain Atom's sense of isolation. Given his powers and the very nature of his new form, Captain Atom is virtually an alien on the planet he used to call home. He's the stranger in the strange land. Ironic, since someone like Superman is an actual alien, yet manages to fit into the world. He's got family, friends, and even a normal job. All things that continue to elude Captain Atom.
It's hard for Captain Atom to really connect with anyone else, due to the way he sees the world. It's all broken down before him - a patchwork of molecules and atoms - It's like Neo seeing the Matrix. How can you focus on the physical image before you when you see all the layers underneath - all the bits and pieces making up the whole?
That's where the Flash comes in. Like Captain Atom, he's also detached from those around him due to the very nature of his powers - the speed at which he experiences the world. Sure, he can slow down, take pause and be part of the world - but his tendency is to go faster. Thus placing himself in a world all his own.
After talking with Francis Manapul and Brian Buccellato about their vision of the Flash (a great book, by the way!), Freddie Williams and I set about to bring the Fastest Man Alive into Captain Atom's world. From a visual standpoint, it simply stunning. Freddie's Flash is almost an homage to what Francis is doing in his book, and the colors by Jose Villarrubia make both heroes stand out from the rest of the world around them. They are bright, shining stars; and the blues and purples of Captain Atom create a dichotomy of power and status against the reds and yellows of the Flash. They aren't fighting one another in a physical sense, but the effects of their presence and abilities seem to almost challenge one another. Which one will be the dominant force? This visual component actually highlights a thematic element of the book as the two heroes try to one-up each other while intervening during a violent struggle between rebels and military soldiers in the Middle East.
I'm extremely proud of the way Captain Atom is coming together, and thrilled by the contributions of the entire team. From Freddie and Jose, to Rob Leigh on letters. Our excellent editors - Rachel Gluckstern and Rickey Purdin. And not to mention the continuously killer covers by Stanley Lau.
-- J.T. Krul (CAPTAIN ATOM)