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Vieux 14/11/2002, 16h50
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john ney rieber

voici une interview de john ney rieber(book of magic,captain america)
je l ai trouve sur le star spangled site
un site consacre a cap america, le meilleur site lui etant consacre meme
vous pourrez y trouver toutes les reponses aux questions que vous vous posez sur les differents cap(que ce soit les cap du marvel universe,d ultimate ,what if ..)
allez y jetez un coup d oeil

Interview - John Ney Rieber


John Ney Rieber is the scribe on the Marvel Knights series (Volume Four), and we are currently in part five of his six-part first story arc (which will be collected in a trade paperback around the December timeframe). Mr. Rieber graciously took time from his hectic, overbooked schedule to answer some questions regarding Captain America, his Marvel Knights series!


SSS: How did you come to be offered the assignment to write Captain America?

accidentally. i was talking with stuart moore--the original marvel knights editor for the project--and he just happened to bring it up. he said, you know, you're not someone anyone would think of for this, but...

and he was right.

it's my understanding that marvel was looking for a heavy hitter to revive the character. someone with serious superhero credentials, like frank miller or greg rucka. and i'd only written a single (and not particularly memorable) story in that genre. but stuart liked the sample scenes i generated, my take on the character...

SSS: Have you been a Captain America fan for long?

i loved cap when i was young. (which i no longer am.) the classic lee & kirby, lee & steranko, lee & colan. the material that's reprinted in the essential captain america trade paperbacks, basically.

and he was always my favorite avenger.

but i missed quite a few years of him. a few decades, actually. i missed some good stories. sigh.

SSS: Captain America is one of the longest-running Marvel heroes, with 50-plus years of continuity (with the Marvel mandate that all the modern history has happened in the last ten years); how much does his continuity baggage affect what you plan to do with Captain America?

heh. that mandate puts an interesting twist in cap's continuity, doesn't it? all the cold war stories, particularly...

marvel wanted to revitalize the character. and i'm a gardener. i approached cap's existing continuity with the intention of taking the character back to his roots.

one of the problems you run into with a character like cap is: when everyone knows who a character is, what a character stands for--there's a tendency to take the character for granted. not to dig into their psyche or their emotions or their motivation. and while it's nice to be able to tap into that familiarity, that iconic quality--there's a concommitant risk that the character will become a cardboard cutout. flat. going through predictable motions, well...just because that's what that character does, right?

i don't know whether or not that will make sense to anyone.

i wanted to refresh readers' awareness of who cap was. and why he fights. i wanted to put readers inside him, and let them feel--

he's a soldier.

and in general terms--getting back to your question--i'm not a fan of retconning. i think it's more effective (and more liberating) to simply ignore the aspects of continuity that could distract you from the heart of a character, and focus on the ones that seem resonant to you.

and if you want to be subversive, do it respectfully. look for spaces--holes--in the original continuity that you can do something with. look for thrownaway moments that you can flesh out in ways that illuminate the history we think we've understood...

but everything you do has to be rooted in the heart of the character. the character comes first. cap was cap before we came along. and we have a responsiblity to treat him with respect. we want him to still be cap after we're gone.

SSS: Among some of the more-known continuity problems - feel free to comment on any of them, or igmore them all... I don't mean to turn this into a 'make John answer CA history problems HE didn't create' session, but I solicited questions from the CA message board and a couple of Avengers/Captain America mailing lists, and these were fiercely debated):

(A) Captain America has died circa CA Vol. 1 #113, Fighting Chance Storyline, Onslaught, CA Vol.3 #46 - does anyone seriously think a Captain America funeral is real anymore?

does anyone seriously think that any funerals in comic books are real anymore?

they can be real today, yeah.

but that's about all you can say.
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Vieux 14/11/2002, 16h52
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Date d'inscription: août 2002
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B) The government has denied that the original CA died in WWII, and that CA II and III were different men. However, they publicly restored Captain America's costume and shield to him in Vol. 1 #351 - at the same time faking the assassination of John Walker. Since CA has been known to be Steve Rogers, and that has now been re-affirmed, does Joe Average think that Steve Rogers is the original CA, or just the latest in a series?


i wouldn't presume to speak for Joe or Jane Average.

i can only say that so far as i've always been concerned, it doesn't matter who's wearing the uniform or carrying the shield, or borrowing the name.

there's only been one captain america. steve rogers.

that's just my personal opinion, though. and that carries about as much weight in this arena as my preference in, well...i don't know. t-shirts.

(C) Is Captain America super-human, or just optimal human?


(there's one for the message boards...)

SSS: In the most recent issue, Captain America unmasked before cameras, but didn't actually reveal his name as Steve Rogers. Are you planning on having a full disclosure, essentially doing away with the secret identity? During Dan Jurgen's run, he made the distinction that while Captain America must shie away from the political process, Steve Rogers has the right - almist a duty - to participate as a citizen. If Steve Rogers is known to be Captain America, will he no longer participate?

i can't imagine cap campaigning for a political candidate--but i can't imagine him sitting at home on election day, either. cap votes.

my personal view is that he's politically aware enough to realize that politics are politics, and politicians are politicians--and that while they can serve the ends of truth and liberty and justice, they don't always.

i believe that cap's primary loyalty is to the american dream. and i believe that his view of america is based firmly on the constitution and the bill of rights--tempered by a very accurate perception of the world around him. i believe that he considers the history of the nation as a struggle between the american dream and the american reality.

SSS: In Captain America #3 (Vol. 4), Captain America kills Faysal Al-Tariq, much as he has killed during WWII (documented in several issues of the Invaders) and the Ultimatum terrorist (Vol. 1 #321); is Captain America using lethal force going to be a more frequent occurance in the Marvel Knights series?

this is a thorny question, on one level. maybe two levels.

on a more practical level, it's a simple one. and the answer is no. absolutely not.

SSS: Recently there has been a tendency to retcon the Captain America origin (the recent Protocide from Dan Jurgens, the forthcoming "Truth" LS, and the upcoming ICE story arc). Some of the fans are dismayed by what they see as the "corruption" of Captain America's origin, and wonder at the necessity?


i'll be really interested in seeing how people feel about 'ice' when it finally comes out.

honestly, i'll be surprised if many readers feel that the word 'corruption' applies.

SSS: How closely are you going to be using the WWII-era (for example, Dan Jurgens made much of the fact that Steve Rogers had a 1940's mindset and tastes - music, radio shows, etc.). Any WWII/Golden Age guest stars planned?

i think it's fine for cap to retain an appreciation for the fixtures of his past. but i don't really see him as being wrapped up in nostalgia. i certainly don't see him as a man lost in time, or out of place in time.

i feel like adaptibility has always been a great strength of the american people. and considering cap almost an embodiment or incarnation of the strengths of the people--has anyone noticed how often he thinks 'we' instead of 'i'?--i believe he lives in 'now'.

it's good survival behavior on the battlefield, too--that kind of fierce undistracted focus on the present. on the way things are changing. which is not to undervalue memory--cap's experience is one of the things that makes him such a formidable warrior--or an awareness of the vitality and significane of history, universal or personal.

SSS: There are three questions regarding Captain America which ALWAYS seem to re-occur every couple of months in fan discussion venues:

(A) Captain America VS Batman - who wins, and why?

tell me why they're fighting, and i might take a shot at answering that.

i can only contemplate the question in terms of, well, if i were writing that...

i think it would be difficult to create a situation that would place them in that kind of conflict with each other. they're both good men. and they're both thinkers, cap and batman are. i think they'd realize long before one or the other of them went down that they weren't really interested in fighting each other.

(B) Captain America - virgin or not?

if he is now, well--he won't be for long. (editors note: !!!)

in terms of his continuity, though? cap and sharon carter could have dated for years without shedding much clothing. and bernie rosenthal? maybe. i can see that.

but diamondback? mmm...

if she never slept with cap, it certainly wasn't because she wasn't interested.

then again, i never really felt like cap was as into her as she was into him.

(C) Should Captain America have a girlfriend, and if so - who?


of course he should. and not just a girlfriend, either. a great girlfriend.

SSS: The Ultimates version of Captain America seems to be a darker, less idealistic than the MU Captain America. Is the MU Captain America going to become more like the Ultimate Cap than, say, the Gruenwald-era Captain America?


can i say 'neither' again?

there's a lot of territory between those two poles, you know.

millar knows right where the shock buttons are, on the circuits that connect you with the traditional versions of the ultimates character. and i've never seen him work, but if i were a betting person, i'd bet you that he grins every time he presses those buttons. and i'd go double or nothing that he grins a lot...

so far as the other end of the spectrum goes...

this era's cap is a reflection of this era's america. know what i mean?

SSS: There is an impression that the Marvel Knights Captain America will focus more on 'real-world' threats, like the recent arc against the terrorism of Faysal Al-Tariq instead of spandex-clad villains. What do you have planned, and how far out have you roughly plotted CA?


that will shift to some degree depending on the story--and the artist i'm working with.

but you're more likely to see kevlar and leather and denim and steel here than spandex.

SSS: Some have argued that HYDRA, AIM, the Serpent Society, the various organizations known to have been funded/guided by the Red Skull (Watchdogs, Scourge, Ultimatium), Madame Viper, the murder-and-mayhem-for-hire of the Serpent Society, et cetera, ARE terrorist and spandex at the same time - why not have CA take another run at them?


i actually would like to do something with madame viper. as a dominatrix-cult leader. don't know if i'll ever get around to it. but there was an interesting subtext to those early HYDRA stories she was in. the lee-steranko ones, especially. you always expected her to demand that her HYDRA lackeys kiss her boots before she sent them off to be defeated. and you always wondered what they were getting out of the deal, really.

but so far as the question goes, i don't know--it's a matter of the flavor and the texture of the words, more than their definitions. but it seems to me that 'spandex' and 'terrorists' seem to belong together like, umm...

peanut butter and anchovies.

SSS: Will CA be having any guest-stars of note in the forseeable future? Will you be establishing a supporting cast (particularly love-life - and eight people asked specifically about Sharon Carter...)? the flashback sequences in ice, yes.

otherwise...nick fury seems to be the only marvel universe character who turns up in the book with any kind of regularity.

SSS: How difficult is it to reconcile Captain America's ongoing appearances in the Avengers with your title? Do you and Kurt/Geoff co-ordinate or communicate plans?

mmm...if there's any reconciliation going on, it happens at the editorial level.

kurt and geoff and i just go our merry separate ways. so far.

SSS: How important is realism to Captain America storytelling? In the past we've seen things which are obviously wrong - CA throwing his shield faster than a speeding rocket, and with enough force AFTER velocity-matching to break chains, Cap walking through an energy blast which pretty much shredded his chainmail but left him unscratched, etc.

i think that we have to maintain a severe level of realism in the stories, or they just break down. we want a real-world feel and texture in the series.

otherwise, you don't really feel that cap is doing something extraordinary when he does something extraordinary. you don't hold your breath. you don't get that little jolt at the base of your spine.

i'd rather cap came across as being a hero than a superhero, if that makes any sense.

SSS: One of the complaints in the method of storytelling in the new series has been the 'cinematic' style of using a minimum of words and a maximum of artistic expression (which some say is more suitable for collections in GN format). Is this more a result of working with Casaday as a creator, or will it become the 'standard' style for the series in the future?


i understand that the terseness of the first arc has inspired some criticism. like, i'm a lazy hack.

excerpt from Captain America 5 script follows

NOTE: It's possible that the fireworks display is continuing throughout this scene. The
fireworks are being launched a fair distance away from the park and the river--in D.C. itself.

We can use them in the background or not. John's call.



Reprising the conclusion of issue 4 from the people's points of view.

Distant fireworks light the sky. A searing burst of red--

Beyond the crowd of celebrants who've gathered in this riverside part to celebrate the Fourth of

But something's wrong with this picture.

These people aren't facing the fireworks. Aren't watching them.

Their faces are touched by shock, concern, anger, fear...

And hope.

But however different their individual emotions may be at this moment--

They're all holding their breath.

The Great Falls of the Potomac.

Riverside Park.


The Fourth of July.


Focusing on a tighter group of the spectators in the park.

Some are still frozen in disbelief and horror.

This pretty blonde woman, for one.

But some of them are reacting.

This determined-looking man who's flipping open his cell phone.

He made it. But--
What's happening?
Is he running away?

Lady, that's Captain America.
He's going after them.


The man has dialed 911 on his cellphone.

And he's not going alone.



People in the crowd. All different. All doing the same thing.

Watching Cap--

And doing their damnedest to get some backup here for him.


A Korean-American guy in his late twenties. With a high-tech cell phone.

--Fired from the east bank
of the river, that's right--


A hipster with a pop-culture-style cell phone. Frantic. Almost crying.

--I don't know how many of the
dirtbags are out there!
Just get on it, man, get somebody
out here--


A police officer radioing in on a shoulder set.

--Approach with extreme
Terrorists are armed with
Class 4 weapons. Rocket




Firing the missiles that will set the flag ablaze and blast Cap into the river.

Blind fanatical hate in their eyes. A total contrast to the concern we've seen in the eyes of the
Americans who're witnessing Cap's struggle.

Ugly triumphant snarls on their lips.




Some of them have broken away from the mass. Run a few steps toward us. And now, as they look
past us--

They're devastated by what they see--

Too stunned to speak.



Picking up where page 22 of last issue left off:

Some weight we can't see is dragging the flag into the depths.



They believe they've just seen Cap die.

You know how they feel.

Devastated, heartsick--

Powerless. Defenseless.



Echoing Cap's last issue's theme of holding to the Dream, the flag...


Fingers dead-limp, slack--

Cap's gloved hand releases its hold on the flag.

And the dark current drags the flag away.

PAGE 3 4 panels



Near us: we see ONE--the commander of the team that's brought Cap down.

He's standing on a boulder near the river's edge. Armed with a serious machine gun--one that
mounts a grenade launcher. Scanning the swiftly-moving rocky river for Cap's body--

Comming orders to his team.

Below and beyond him:

The river is rocky, here. An athletic man could cross seventy percent of it without getting
wet--climbing or leaping from boulder to boulder, or running across shoals of river stones and

The terrorists under ONE's command--fourteen or fifteen of them--are fanning out to search the
area for Cap's body. They're very organized--quickly moving to their assigned positions.

And like their commander, they're all wearing CATtags.

The American's dog's carcass--
Find it.



From above. Looking down through the dark currents of the river.

Cap has just plummeted into the river.

He's still sinking into the depths. Receding away from us.

Battered and burned. Apparently unconscious--

Or dead.



We see it in ONE's eyes...

The same blind hate we've seen in the eyes of terrorists thoughout this arc.

We return to Alamut with
his head and his shield.



Tight close-up.

Cap opens his eyes.
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Vieux 14/11/2002, 16h53
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Cap smiles grimly.

His eyes are fierce. Focused.

The eyes of a man with a purpose--

Who isn't going to allow himself to be diverted from that purpose by any kind of pain.

It's only pain.


It'll go away.


With one powerful stroke and kick, Cap orients himself in the water.

He looks upward.

It always does.



Cap needs air.

He strokes powerfully upward.

Above him, the shapes of trees and boulders are dimly visible through the dark swirling water.

You've achieved your
primary tactical objective.


Drawn the enemy
away from the people.


Cap is a stroke and kick away from breaking the surface--

And his lungs are about to burst--

When he sees, standing on a shelf of rock just above him, the shape of another terrorist. NINE.

NINE holds a submachine gun--something shortbarreled, like an Uzi--at the ready. Pointing down.

And you're still alive.



Near us: we see a slice of a human silhouette. A body sprawled across a stone. One arm dangling
off the ledge. The flow of river water lending animation to its slack nerveless hand.

Past that: ONE, SIX, and TWELVE are clambering over half-submerged boulders and shoals of river
gravel together.

TWELVE's on point. Moving toward the left border of the panel.

But SIX has caught a glimpse of the silhouette. He sweeps the beam of his flashlight across the
intervening whitewater--toward us.

ONE turns, tracking the sweep of the beam.


He has the shield?



The flashlight's beam illuminates the silhouette.

It's not Cap. Nope. It's NINE.

Cap's crouching beside the unconscious terrorist, though.

He's burnt and battered and drenched.

The look he turns toward us is chilling.

I've got the shield.

but hey--it's not easy being a lazy hack...

the terseness of the captioning and dialogue in 'enemy' and 'warlords' is deliberate. some of it comes from the tone of the story itself--which is stark. some of it comes from the fact that john cassaday is drawing the story--and what he can communicate visually, i don't feel i need to spell out. but most of it comes from the way i see cap as a character. he's very focused. zen level focused. he does what has to be done, and says what he has to say--and no more. he doesn't waste time or energy. he doesn't waste anything.

and the things that he does say, the things that he does think--i want them to weigh something. i want them to resonate. and -- this may be a flaw in me as a writer -- i believe that the spaces between the words are as important, if not more important, than the things that are said.

that said, the next two story arcs aren't as lean in terms of words on the page as the first has been.

but cap will never be what you'd call talkative while i'm scripting him.

however long that is...

cette intw etait longue donc en 3 parties
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