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David Walker Talks POWER MAN & IRON FIST and the Return of Alex Wilder

The Heroes for Hire have faced a lot of villains recently. Are they ready for the former Runaway?

David Walker has been delivering great Power Man and Iron Fist stories that have a combined feeling of the early days of the characters with the current modern feel. We've seen some older and obscure villains pop up. Now, we're about to see an unexpected foe for the Heroes for Hire--Alex Wilder.

Wilder was a great part of the Runaways...until he revealed his dark intentions. Not even death was enough to stop him as he is coming back to give Luke and Danny trouble. We got the chance to talk to Walker to find out more about what's coming up.

Power Man and Iron Fist #10 cover by Sanford Greene
Power Man and Iron Fist #10 cover by Sanford Greene

Comic Vine: How far back does your love for Luke Cage and Danny Rand go?

David Walker: I was introduced to both characters when I was a kid, back in the 1970s, so this is a long term relationship. Luke and Danny officially became a team in the 50th issue of Power Man, which was retitled Power Man and Iron Fist, back in 1978. I bought. That issue on the newsstand. I was nine or ten at the time.

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Comic Vine: How did you come up with Luke's alternatives to cursing like "fiddle-faddle"?

There were multiple inspirations, the first being that I hate comics where characters are swearing but not really swearing. When someone says "crud" or "frack," we know what they are saying, and to me, even as a kid, it sounded fake. I needed to come up with a way around that gimmick, and the fact that Luke is a dad was the perfect opportunity. All my friends with kids have problems with swearing in front of their kids, and everyone seems to have one of those swear jars, where you have to put money every time you drop a cuss word. I pulled all that together, and came up with the concept of Luke really struggling to not use profanity.

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Was it your idea to bring back Alex Wilder for the story?

Oh, I've been trying to bring Alex Wilder back for a while. I pushed really hard to have him be the villain in Nighthawk. Every time I brought I up, Axel Alonso would give me this emphatic, "No." And I was like a persistent kid. Axel stood firm, and he was right, Wilder was the wrong villain for Nighthawk. But as PMIF started building and growing, I saw an opportunity to bring in Alex Wilder in a much better way.

Will how he returns be immediately revealed or something that plays out over the story?

The how part is going to play out over a while, but the why part is clear -- he's here to take over. We will learn what happened to him between the time he "died" in Runaways, and his "resurrection" in Avengers Undercover. And to give everyone a hint, he was studying in hell, learning from the worst of humanity.

When he first appears, will his new Pride of supervillains already be formed?

The New Pride is like a work in progress for him. He's working to not make the same mistakes his parents made. The fact of that matter that by the time we've really established Alex, he'll be that crime boss everyone either wants to work for, or is terrified of being around. He is equal parts Kingpin and Dr. Doom, in the body of a nerdy black teenager.

Power Man and Iron Fist #11 cover by Sanford Greene
Power Man and Iron Fist #11 cover by Sanford Greene

Will any other members of the Runaways make an appearance?

Maybe. It makes sense, but the Runaways don't work into any of the immediate stories I'm planning. With the way I have things outlined, the earliest we'd see any of the Runaways is around issues 20. This is about Alex, and how much he has changed so much. At some point, Nico will have to show up, because they have some unresolved business, and she makes the most sense if anyone of the Runaways show up before issue 20. But when there finally is a reunion between Alex and the Runaways, it will be ugly.

Power Man and Iron Fist #10 is on sale November 9.