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Interview: Ales Kot Talks SUICIDE SQUAD, Amanda Waller and Characters Dying

There's a new writer taking over the series. Find out what it means for the team and if they'll all survive.

SUICIDE SQUAD has always been a series full of the unexpected. When you have a team comprised of incarcerated super-villains, forced to go on black-ops missions, you know things are going to get messy. The fact that team members are disposable doesn't do much for the team morale either.

Adam Glass has been the series writer since the New 52 started but beginning in May, we'll see new team members, a new direction and a new creative team. Ales Kot and Timothy Green II will be taking over as writer and artist. We asked Ales a few questions to find out what we can expect.

Comic Vine: How will your run of SUICIDE SQUAD compare to previous issues? Will you continue the direction or take it in a new one?

Ales Kot: Well the entire team will go on Prozac, clean up their lives and start fostering surrendered capybaras while the local rescue looks for Forever Homes for the fuzzy little critters. So it's a new direction all right.

Alternately, we will build off the original, still magnificent Suicide Squad run by John Ostrander, Luke McDonnell and co. while also remembering what happened in the recent run and playing with the threads in a fashion that will be inviting to new readers and rewarding to those already on board. Simultaneously honoring the old and bringing in the new.

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CV: What can you tell us about the roster? If you can't give names, how many current and how many new members?

AK: Two new members in the first issue. And, in the best SS tradition, someone dies.

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CV: Is Amanda Waller still deeply involved with directing the team?

AK: Amanda Waller is the heart of Suicide Squad. She is a wonderful character with unique potential - she has a high-pressure job that puts her in a very strange place ethically, she is very competent, fiercely intelligent and extraordinarily committed to working for her country. The way John Ostrander built her is something I look up to. She is tough, human and she employs research and strategy where others often use brute power.

Is she involved with directing the team at the beginning of our first issue? Yes. Does she survive to the end? You'll have to read the story to find out.

CV: The idea of the team is to work on a more covert level. Will they ever have run-ins with other heroes? Would the heroes try to apprehend them, mistaking them for regular villains?

AK: When the story asks for it, yes, absolutely. The way superheroes would react would strongly depend on if and what they know about the Squad - for example Batman is usually smart enough to have things figured out so he knows what's what and he won't interfere, but other less-informed heroes might. What if Detective Chimp found out that King Shark's running around eating people, even though the people seem to be mobsters? The mind, it wonders.

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CV: Will your issue be a jumping on point for new readers or will it still address past events?

AK: It will be very new reader friendly. We will address past events in a brief yet complete manner, using them to move somewhere new.

CV: What is it about this title that appeals to you?

AK: Pretty much everything. I love the original series. The premise is smart and inviting - it allows me to go crazy with the stories I want to tell, merge real-world concerns and strange imaginary scenarios, build up complex characters. The team is full of fascinating creatures. It's a perfect platform for done-in-one stories as well as larger epics, both of which I am interested in creating.

CV: What do you plan to add to the title that we haven't seen before?

AK: King Shark will find a new hobby. Deadshot will find a new way to look at life. Brian Eno will be joining the team in #24. One of these things is not true.

SUICIDE SQUAD #20 is Ales Kot's first issue. It's on sale May 8, 2013.