You may already be familiar with DC's line of AME-COMI toys where they take their popular DC ladies and with a little inspiration from Manga and Anime, they redesigned them. What we get is a mix of the two styles -- and they usually turn out looking very pretty. DC must have recognized how popular their line of AME-COMI figures was because they decided to launch an AME-COMI digital first comic available every Monday through the DC Comixology app.
We caught up with Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray (ALL-STAR WESTERN) to take about the AME-COMI comic that will be launching this coming Monday, May 28th. We got the full details from the guys writing it as well as an exclusive first look at some of the pages from the first issue.
Comic Vine: First off, I have to say I am really looking forward to reading your AME-COMI series, and the art for the first issue by Amanda Conner is really great. Aside from the obvious costume differences, can you tell us a little about Wonder Woman in this series? How is she different from the character we see in the New 52?
Justin Gray: Thank you, we’ve been keeping quiet about this project for a long time and it hasn’t been easy. This incarnation of Wonder Woman is somewhat rebellious toward her mother and duties as a princess. She is a natural born leader just not as seasoned as we’re accustomed to seeing.
Jimmy Palmiotti: We are big fans of Brian’s take of Wonder Woman, but we are starting the series off from an earlier time period of her life and its more of an introduction of who she is and where her place in the world is going to be. This princess has a lot to learn and we follow her along the way.
CV: We have seen a lot of changes made to Wonder Woman's character in the New 52, and that could be attributed to the creative team having a lot of input on the changes made to her character. Would you say that you have had creative control with the character in this series? If so, how much flexibility have you had on making the AME-COMI Wonder Woman your own?
JG: The beauty of Ame-Comi is that exists separately from the main line so we have no conflict of interest in how she is portrayed. We looked at the history of these characters and cherry picked certain elements we found interesting as well as branching out in different directions. Greek myth isn’t as important as who she is and how she (reluctantly) brings her culture and worldview to America.
JP: The beauty of the series is we were asked to give our take on what we see as a universe featuring these very cool characters, so as Justin said, we looked at what we loved at its core about Wonder Woman and created vision. We think no one will have even a second’s hesitation in identifying her unique voice.== TEASER ==
CV: Sum up her personality in your series in one word.
JG: I have never met any woman of any age that could be summed up in one word, but I’ll go with brave.
CV: Were you able to choose Wonder Woman out of all the other AME-COMI girls? If so, why did you choose her out of the rest?
JG: Wonder Woman was the most obvious choice if we were going to feature a series starring heroines of the DCU.
JP: Start the series with one of the oldest and most respected character in the history of comics, and work from there. That and we knew we were starting off the series featuring the art of Amanda Conner and Paul Mounts, and as everyone knows, Amanda loves to draw Wonder Woman.
CV: What got you guys interested in AME-COMI line, and why did you feel that you could make stories out of characters inspired by DC's collectibles line? What makes these stories so different?
JG: Love of the designs and the open ended creativity we’re allowed to have. We looked at the whole of the DC Universe, the designs and even some of the animated series that offered inspiration for different views of these characters. This branched out further when we looked at Krypton and Earth as sharing a common birth. The idea that Jimmy Olsen is a different person without Superman, the idea that Batgirl and Robin don’t have to be gothic and dark, Green Lantern can be completely different and so on.
JP: For me, it was the freedom D.C. was giving us to go crazy with the concepts and the chance to work with some amazing artists as they model the characters from the highly successful line of Ame-Comi statues. Everything seemed to come together when we all met and discussed the possibilities of this format and working alongside the contagious energy of Jim Fletcher and Jim Chadwick day to day made this a dream job all around. We really get to do some insane stuff in this series that we could never do in the mainstream books.
CV: The series will be launching with Wonder Woman, but will feature other DC ladies as well; how will the story come together in the end? With so many creators on the series (Tony Akins, Sanford Greene, Ted Naifeh and many others) how did you guys come up with a direction for this series? Did you work together as one big creative team, or are you each telling your own stories?
JG: There was a lot of planning involving several men named Jim. Jim Lee, Jim Chadwick, Jim Fletcher and Hank Kanalz were all instrumental in how the series would be published and the look of it. What we all came up with in the end was to feature chapters with specific characters like Wonder Woman, Batgirl and Duela Dent. As we introduced these characters there would be an underlying plot that ultimately brings them together as a team.
JP: The behind the scenes on hos this came together and everyone’s input was a pretty amazing process and I am glad to say with the help of everyone Justin listed above, we have come together to create something I consider very unique in comics. This story works in separate parts and the bigger picture story creates and forms a world with endless possibilities.
CV: The series will be launching digitally on Monday, May 28th. Is there a chance that we will eventually see this series collected in print?
JG: That’s an internal decision at DC. We’d love for Ame-Comi Girls to reach as many people as possible and hope it gathers a large enough digital audience to warrant print publication.
CV: Based on the image you guys provided, it appears that Wonder Woman will have her very own Pegasus! What's the story behind her horse? How much of her story has been inspired by Greek mythos?
JG: There isn’t a heavy reliance on Greek mythology with our interpretation of Wonder Woman, it is part of her life, but it ‘s kind of like her mom’s thing. Kids rebel against their parents and the things their parents consider fundamental to their identities, interests or culture. Diana is a princess and she loves her sisters, but she’d rather be fighting on a battlefield as opposed to attending parties and performing her diplomatic duties. She does have a Pegasus. She uses it to make an impression on the president.
CV: Does that mean a new issue will be released every Monday?
JG: yes and may the gods be with us.
JP: for what you are getting…such amazing artwork, it really is a bargain, and we hope that it becomes a regular part of peoples schedules, to download each chapter, each week.
CV: As far as this new series goes, what are you most excited about?
JG: All of it from top to bottom, there are a lot of crazy ideas being thrown around and a lot of character development. We have a universe spanning canvas to work on so you’ll be reading these epic stories intertwined with smaller more personal tales. Duela Dent’s three-part story is one of our favorites as well as getting the chance to play in a limitless sandbox.
JP: The best part for me is we are getting to work on some of the greatest characters in comics. Wonder Woman is a dream for me…getting to revisit Powergirl was a blast, Duela is just downright Insane and so on…we have so many characters coming…all I have to do is look at my shelve of Ame-Comi characters and the brain is going wild with the possibilities…that and we are able to create some new ideas and put the new characters coming into the series. Its going to be an exciting ride!
So you want to start reading AME-COMI, or any of the other digital first titles from DC Comics, but you don't know where to go to download the book? Just go to read.dccomics.com/comiXology or open up the DC Comics app – which is available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices, download and enjoy. Each episode is 99 cents, ten pages per episode. What do you think of AME-COMI?