- Booster Gold
Monday, September 12, 2022
You know, for someone who says I don't like Tom King's work, I somehow dedicate a lot of space on this blog to him. What can I say? The guy's just kind of hard to ignore, especially when he tweets things like this:
That's the book cover under the dust jacket of the Human Target Volume 1 hardcover coming our way September 27. Yeah, we've seen that art before — it was created by Greg Smallwood for the interior of Human Target #1. But it's still Boosterrific no matter how many times we see it.
While I'm on the topic, this would seem to be a great time to mention that Russ Burlingame has an exclusive interview with Tom King in The Gold Exchange: The Boosterrific Deluxe Edition. With Russ's permission, I'm quoting starting from page 594 here:
Burlingame: You said earlier that you write Booster "wrong." That feels like a healthy way of internalizing audience feedback, just to crack the joke and say "I know 30% of everyone reading this are going to bitch, and that's fine."
King: I mean, I say "right" and "wrong," but I wouldn't change the way that I write. I just wrote Booster for Human Target, and I loved how those pages turned out. Yeah, my Booster's a little goofier and a little sillier, and I know it's not going to please everyone, but it's my job to make the best product I can, and that's the best product I see.
If I'm just trying to write the way everyone wants me to write, then I'll write crappy. I know it's going to turn out worse if I try to do it the other way.
My general opinion is that there are a lot of superheroes who are super-competent and super good in the DC Universe, and it's nice to have one who's not that way. It's what makes him interesting and funny. It's nice to have a guy who can make jokes, and that when you read him, it can make you laugh. That's what I like about Booster; he's not like all the other superheroes.
To me, it's the difference between what Iron Man was up until Robert Downey, Jr. and what he is now. He was just a generic, boring guy, and yeah, he had alcoholism, but that was basically it. And then Robert Downey, Jr. came along, and it was like, "What if we made this guy so arrogant it was funny?" And then we're like, "Oh, yeah. Now he's a [effing] great character."
Burlingame: In Human Target, it isn't just Booster, but the entire Justice League International. Do you approach Booster a little differently as part of that unit?
King: I knew I was taking the Keith Giffen/JLI version as opposed to the Dan Jurgens, more heroic version. I wanted to make sure I had it down, so I talked to Dan about it and he was like, "Well, Booster is a guy who doesn't mind making money off being a superhero," so I wanted to make a thing where he was making money off being a superhero, so I put Booster's Bagels in there.
I just started to put captions back in my writing. I haven't used captions since The Vision, so that's like seven years without captions. The whole point of Human Target is, he goes through each JLI member and kind of cuts to the core of them at some point and says why they're awesome, or what's at their heart. So it gave me a chance, using Chance's voice, to say what I love about the character.
So Booster is Booster. And "Yeah, Booster's a joke, but aren't they all? At least this one's funny" is I think his great Booster line.
We can agree on that, at least. Booster Gold *is* funny.
Thanks for the interview (and the book), Russ!
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