Tuesday, April 15, 2014
2014 The Fire and Water Podcast: Episode 85 audio interview with Dan Jurgens
The bifurcated broadcast of Firestorm Fan and The Aquaman Shrine just featured The New 52: Futures End and Aquaman & The Others author Dan Jurgens on their show. This is relevant here because Jurgens had a hand in the creation of Bloodwynd, who briefly replaced the Martian Manhunter on the Justice League in the mid-90s before the end of their confusing relationship helped J'Onn J'Onzz launch Justice League Task Force. At the 34:47 minute mark, Podcast co-host Shag Matthews randomly asked Jurgens, "What was the deal with Bloodwynd? As a reader, it sort of felt like his story never really finished, or got explained, or maybe got derailed? What was your vision for that character...?"
Poetically, Jurgens' explanation never really finished and got derailed, as he turned his focus more toward the pressures and time constraints his involvement in the death and return of Superman placed on his relatively short stint writing and drawing Justice League America (#61-77) than the particulars of Bloodwynd. "...Ultimately, by virtue of that, I think the time I had to work on Justice League got cut back more and more and I probably should have left the book earlier than I did, but ultimately it meant yes, I had to wind up the Bloodwynd story and kinda get out of that and move on sooner than I had planned to."
Shag tried to steer back into the Bloodwynd skid with, "Had he always intended to be Martian Manhunter?" Jurgens confirmed "Um... there was always the intention that it be Martian Manhunter, but to resolve itself in a different way... Part of that... if you look back at that now, y'know, it does feel, I think, somewhat rushed and shoehorned a little bit... The mystery was actually going to play out longer... which I think would have been cool. I think some of the best mysteries in comics... you play them out as long as you can until the fans are ready to just, like, go after you with knives and forks... We didn't get to do that, in that instance, and... it had everything to do with what was going on in the other book."
Unfortunately, Jurgens didn't really elaborate on Bloodwynd as a character/concept, and the conversation naturally segued further into the phenomenal response to Superman #75. Notably, it came in a black polybag with a poster of the Man of Steel's funeral procession that included both Bloodwynd and Martian Manhunter, with only Lord L'Zoril between them, all drawn by Jurgens. Between that, how the matter played out in Jurgens' stories, and his words here, I expect Bloodwynd was supposed to be a separate entity from the Alien Atlas from the beginning. I doubt that, under the circumstances described, Jurgens would have gone to the trouble of constructing Bloodwynd's rather involved origin story if he could have more quickly and easily just made Bloodwynd an alternate identity of the Sleuth from Outer Space.
Listen to the entire 49 minute episode here!