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Interview: Howard Porter Looks to the Future in JUSTICE LEAGUE 3000

The artist returns to the Justice League except it's not the League he's used to.

Last summer it was announced we'd be seeing a future take on the Justice League. We talked to writers J.M. DeMatteis and Keith Giffen back then (click HERE for that interview). We recently had the chance to try to find out more from artist Howard Porter, who is making his return to the Justice League. Only it's a different League than what he's used to.

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COMIC VINE: Is it a familiar feeling working on this Justice League book or completely different due to the time period?

HOWARD PORTER: It is a familiar feeling, sort of like a home coming but the school has changed so much you can hardly recognize it anymore. It’s a great feeling. You know how find yourself saying, “I wish I knew then what I know now” when you reflect on the past you? Well, I get to revisit things and I have quite a few more tricks up my sleeve than I did the first go around.

CV: How involved were you with the character designs?

HP: I was very involved, I was fortunate enough to get to design their visuals completely. When I was approached the way the heroes were going to act and interact had been very well defined, but I wasn’t presented with much direction as far as how they wanted them to look. With the exception of Green Lantern’s cloak they were all pretty much blank slates. It was a very enjoyable process, I felt like a fan again, getting to mess around with some of my favorite characters in a sketchbook.

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CV: There's been a mention of the series being a little dark. Can you shed some light on what the tone will be?

HP: The situations our heroes are thrown into are very dark and twisted but their actions and interactions hold the moments that make you chuckle. So, it is dark and serious, but humor also plays a huge part in the book. I really wish I could give some specific examples but I am afraid it would spoil the stories!

CV: Will the team already be formed when we come in with the first issue or will we see how and why they formed?

HP: The Justice League is indeed fully formed and we see them thrown into some pretty intense action by the time you get through the first 6 pages. We are however jumping in relatively close to the beginning of their adventures together, so there are still more than a few kinks to work out. you can rest assured that we will find out the "how and why" not too far down the road. From what I have been told, it's pretty crazy!

CV: Are there any team members that really jump out at you and are a blast to draw?

HP: Honestly, I really enjoy drawing each of them pretty equally. Batman’s “toys” are particularly fun to draw and I really like playing with Green Lanterns cloak quite a bit. Wonder Woman is just plain old savage, which is always fun. At this point I can’t pick a favorite, each one has an element to them that is a blast to draw.

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CV: Do you feel you have more freedom in drawing this series given the time period? I'm assuming the DCU landscape has drastically changed.

HP: Absolutely! Complete freedom. There are no rules or continuity to follow, which is an amazing fuel for creatively. I am encouraged to play around as much as possible as we build this world and I can’t express how much I enjoy it. But I will try anyway. On rainy afternoons as a kid, I would sit on the living room floor drawing on the huge sheets of paper my father would bring home from work. I would get lost drawing one continuous scene that would span across the huge page. Towards the top of the page It would show things things happening up in space, aliens, planets and fighter ships. As you moved farther down there would be cities and armies on the land and even get into deep under water battles as you got toward s the bottom of the page. Forty years later, this is that same kind of fun for me.

CV: Sounds cool! What's your favorite thing about being on board with this series?

HP: The answer to that question is a no brainer: the people I am working with.

You can prepare to journey to the future when JUSTICE LEAGUE 3000 goes on sale December 11, 2013.