Interview: Cullen Bunn on Dynamite’s Masks 2

Masks 2 #1 Butch Guice cover

Masks 2 #1 Butch Guice cover


Cullen Bunn is the writer of The Sixth Gun, Magneto, Sinestro, and many other comics. Now he turns his attention to some of the greatest pulp heroes in Dynamite’s Masks 2! Westfield’s Roger Ash contacted Bunn to learn more about this upcoming project.

Masks 2 #1 Jae Lee cover

Masks 2 #1 Jae Lee cover


Westfield: How did you become involved with Masks 2?

Cullen Bunn: Nick Barrucci and I have been talking about working together for a while now, but we needed to find the right projects. One of the first things I did for Dynamite was The Shadow #0, and I stressed in no uncertain terms how much I liked working with the character. I met with the Dynamite team at a convention last year where we discussed a number of possible projects, and Masks 2 came up. I couldn’t pass up the chance to work with so many iconic characters.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 1. Art by Eman Cassalos.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 1. Art by Eman Cassalos.


Westfield: Are you a fan of the classic pulp heroes?

Bunn: I am. The Shadow was a character my dad, who listened to The Shadow radio show, used to tell me about. He would recreate tales of the Shadow from memory and even bellow The Shadow’s laugh to my delight. Later, I stumbled onto reprints of Shadow stories and some of the recordings. Doc Savage and the Avenger were other favorites of mine. I still collect Doc Savage novels.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 2. Art by Eman Cassalos.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 2. Art by Eman Cassalos.


Westfield: You’re introducing a new villain, Red Death. What qualities were you looking for in a villain for the series?

Bunn: This story involves characters from three different eras, so I needed a villain whose threat could be felt by heroes in the 30s, 70s, and today. I also wanted her to play to the “masks” theme, so I gave her connections to Poe’s “Masque of the Red Death” and set up these masquerade balls that are taking place in several different eras. What happened, though, was that I created such a strange and alluring back story for her that she kind of got away from me. She took the story in some very exciting and unexpected directions. Good villains have a habit of doing just that.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 3. Art by Eman Cassalos.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 3. Art by Eman Cassalos.


Westfield: What can you tell us about the story of Masks 2 and who are some of the characters we’ll meet?

Bunn: As I mentioned, we’ll be seeing heroes from several different eras.

From the 30s, we have the Shadow, Green Hornet and Kato, Black Terror, Black Sparrow, Miss Fury, the Spider, Green Lama, and Lady Satan.

From the 70s, we have new iterations of Miss Fury and Black Sparrow.

And from the modern era we have Peter Cannon (aka Thunderbolt), Green Hornet and Kato, and Black Bat.

At first, these characters are all embarking on their own adventures, all connected in some way to the menace of the Red Death. By the midpoint in the series, though, we’ll actually see these characters interacting and facing the Red Death together. From here, we go down some wild paths. I don’t think readers will be expecting this kind of story!

Masks 2 #1 preview page 4. Art by Eman Cassalos.

Masks 2 #1 preview page 4. Art by Eman Cassalos.


Westfield: You’re working with artist Eman Cassalos on the book. What can you say about your collaboration?

Bunn: Eman’s work on this series is so full of energy. Every page that shows up in my inbox is such a treat. It looks like nothing else out there, and there is so much going on in every panel!

Masks 2 #1 Gabriel Hardman Subscription Cover

Masks 2 #1 Gabriel Hardman Subscription Cover


Westfield: Any closing comments?

Bunn: This is a story that will put these characters in a situation the likes of which they couldn’t imagine, and the interaction between these masked heroes of different eras will open up new facets of their histories.

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Masks 2 #1

 

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