DC All Access may bring you the latest announcements from the world of DC comics, TV, movies and games, but the series made quite an announcement of its own yesterday when it introduced its brand new co-host, Jason Inman.
Discovered during last year’s open host search, Jason was one of the many applicants who submitted an entry video and was one of the few selected to guest host an episode of the show last year. With years of YouTube experience and an impressive awareness of the DC Universe derived from a lifetime of comic book reading, Jason is perfectly suited to host All Access alongside Tiffany Smith when the webseries returns for a new season next week.
But don’t take our word for it. Like many of you, we were curious to learn more about Jason, so we sat down with him last week to ask him about his fandom, how he feels about his new gig, and what he’s most excited about.
Tell us a bit about yourself, Jason. You’ve been on YouTube for a little while now. What sort of work were you doing prior to landing at DC All Access?
I’ve mainly been working in the YouTube world since moving out to LA. I worked for Mahalo.com, and I worked from the beginning on Good Mythical Morning, which is this show for Rhett & Link. I wrote and edited a lot of their episodes.
Outside of that, I have my own channel. From the start, I always wanted to do comic book stuff [on it], just because I felt at the time I did it, four years ago, that there wasn’t a good, strong comic book channel out there. I had some early success when I did this video called “S#*t Comic Book Nerds Say” that got featured on a lot of comic book websites. Four years of doing videos like that got me to a place where I was okay with entering [the host search].
Now when I’m not doing DC All Access, I’m working on the Screen Junkies channel which does stuff like “The Screen Junkies Show,” the “Movie Fights” podcast and the “Honest Trailers” series.
So how long have you been a comic book fan?
Since I was like a little kid. Probably around five or six.
Okay, then going back to when you were five or six, what’s your earliest DC memory?
The earliest memory I have is seeing Michael Keaton’s Batman in theaters. I was five years old and my parents took me to go see that movie as one of my birthday presents. After that, I bought BATMAN #466. It has this cover where Batman’s tied to the bottom of a rocket, and it’s one of Tim Drake’s first issues. I remember reading that and just thinking how cool that cover was.
You have to understand, the area I grew up in didn’t have a lot of comic book shops so I found my comic books in all sorts of weird locations. My comics came from department stores and gas stations. That’s where I found my comic books. So I found the “Death of Superman” trade paperback at this gas station, and I was all over that.
Another really big one that I remember is walking into a department store and seeing GREEN LANTERN #51, which was Kyle Rayner’s first issue. It said something like, “The all new Green Lantern!” I didn’t know who Green Lantern was, so I thought that if he’s all new, this would tell me who he is, so I picked it up. That’s where my love for Green Lantern started.
So you’re a big Green Lantern fan?
Is he your favorite DC super hero? And if not, who is?
My favorite DC hero is Nightwing. It’s Dick Grayson. And I could make the argument for why he is the greatest super hero of all time.
You mentioned growing up far away from any comic book stores. Where was that?
I grew up in the country, about two miles outside of this small town called Stark, Kansas. I grew up on a farm. That’s why I identify with Superman a lot.
Stark, just so you know, in the most recent census had a population of less than 73 people. I’ve never met a person who knows where Stark, Kansas is, so a lot of times I’ll just tell them that I’m from Smallville. Then people always say, “Oh yeah, I know where that is!”
As of this moment, you’ve guest hosted the show and recorded an intro video, but you haven’t yet shot your first official full episode. How do you feel going into it right now? Are you excited? Nervous?
I’m pretty excited. I just hope that I don’t irk Tiffany. She’s a seasoned pro and has been doing this for a while, and so I’m a little worried. I’m like, “Oh, I hope I don’t step on her toes!”
I’m also very excited for the possibility to meet a lot of the people who work on DC properties, whether it’s writing, drawing or even starring in the shows, and getting a chance to put a face to their names. That’s pretty exciting to me.
You’ve met Tiffany! She’s the sweetest person ever. There’s no way you’re going to upset her!
She’s really cool! It’s more like a subconscious thing. I mean, she may have a specific method as to how she wants to do an episode, and that may not be my method, and she might be like, “Aaah! I’m angry!!!” [laughs]
I don’t suspect that’ll happen, though I suppose a lot of great super hero friendships start with a big fight between the two heroes, so maybe it should! Okay, you touched on this a bit, but what are you most looking forward to over the season ahead as our new co-host?
Definitely meeting and interviewing all of the DC talent, but I’ll share a bit of a secret. There’s kind of one above the rest.
You’ve got me curious…
Getting the chance to meet Stephen Amell is pretty awesome to me. I’ve been a Green Arrow fan since Kevin Smith brought him back with “Quiver.” I loved that storyline, and I loved the Jeff Lemire stuff. I was a big fan of Arrow from the start. I also got my 14-year-old little brother into watching it. So a big thing for me is to just get the chance to meet Green Arrow, but also to see if he’ll sign something for my little brother!
Well, he’s already introduced you as our new host. How was that?
It was pretty awesome!
So what upcoming DC projects are you most looking forward to?
Definitely Batman v Superman. It’s Superman and Batman meeting on film for the first time. That’s amazing, and it has me more jazzed than anything else right now because that’s something that as a little kid I never thought I’d see. The fact that we’ll see it next year is just mind blowing to me.
I’m also excited for Convergence. I think it’ll be neat to see some of the comic books that I grew up with coming back. Like Azrael Batman. His costume’s kind of silly, but I love it! And seeing Parallax and Kyle Rayner come back in their classic costumes… When I started reading Green Lantern, Hal Jordan was the villain, so to see a new comic book cover where he’s Parallax is just really cool to me.
Also, just for the record, I would totally be down for an Atom show starring Brandon Routh. Sign me up!
One last question, which current DC comic books would you personally recommend to people? Which are the ones that you’re really enjoying right now?
I think one that I’d love to see get more attention from fans is Action Comics by Greg Pak and Aaron Kuder. I think Aaron Kuder is going to be a superstar, but for some reason, a lot of people haven’t found him yet. To me, that’s mind-boggling because he’s such a great artist. And Greg Pak writes the most humble Superman I’ve read in a long time. He’s super powerful, but he channels this sort of humbleness and hope.
I love how big of a character they’ve made Lana Lang.
Yeah! Also, I hope bearded Superman is here to stay. I think it’s a really good look.
Another one that I think is great is Batman and Robin by Peter J. Tomasi, Patrick Gleason and Mick Gray. That title has been consistently solid since the New 52 started. I don’t think there’s been a single bad issue in the entire 38-issue run so far.
Finally, I know it’s ending, but Charles Soule’s Swamp Thing is just a very strong horror book. Ever since the New 52, I think Swamp Thing has been really great and also really accessible. Even if you don’t know anything about Swamp Thing, I think you can pick up that book and jump right into it. It’s just a great horror ride.
Look for Jason Inman’s first episode when DC All Access returns on Tuesday, February 3rd!