Transcript of the Brian Lynch Podcast.
I also wanted to apologize for any spelling/grammar errors. I copied/pasted some of the questions directly from BL's Myspace, and in some cases I was too tired to change the mistakes.
Hey, everyone! This is Brian Lynch. I am the co-plotter and scripter of Angel: After the Fall, um, currently two issues in at the comic stores. Issue three comes out next week. I hope you guys are enjoying it. And, about a week ago, I asked people on my Myspace blog to send in any questions they had about the series or about, you know, life in general or other comics I'm working on or projects or about Alvin and the Chipmunks specifically so I have a lot to say so now is my chance to answer them. And I'm gonna do it via this little podcast so it'll be like we're in the room together and we're best friends except I will be ignoring you if you say anything and that's not because I'm a jerk, it's just because I can't hear you- this is pre-recorded. So if we ever met, I swear I'd listen to you and respond to things you said but as for now it's going to just be about me and I apologize.
Let's get going with the questions! This is going to be very exciting!
Peter "userpjx" Wilson, who is asleep at his desk on his avatar, his little Myspace picture. I hope he's okay, Peter. He asks, "Will After the Fall give the Angel franchise a sense of closure or will it be a jumping off point for other new Angel stories?"
I will say that this story, this specific story, does have a definite conclusion, and it's going to change the characters. Will it END the characters? I can't say that because all sense of drama would be gone because you'll know. You'll be like, "Oh, in the Podcast, he said that Angel dies and now I don't want to read it." or "Why can't you just kill him if you're going to? Why does he do this to us? He told us back in January that Angel was going to die and now we have to read for a full half-year, year 'til it happens." So will I will say Angel dies, no. He might be fine. He might not. All the characters it's up in the air because this is a comic book. A sense of drama is necessary, so maybe they'll be fine. It's possible... not likely. They're in hell. Think about it. So, Peter, I hope that answers your question. Yes, a definite ending to the story line is coming. Is it the end of Angel? I'm not saying.
Next question is from Josswhedonaddict. And they ask... I'm not sure if it's a he or a she. I can't tell if Josswhedonaddict is a boy or a girl. Oh! Actually, they signed it "Jen," so I'm going to say she's a girl. She asks, "I don't have much, so would you be willing to accept a whole dollar and a smile on a depressed woman's face in exchange for giving Gunn a soul?"
Jen, I would love to able to accept this dollar to change the storyline, but Gunn does not have a soul. He's a vampire, and there already two vampires running around with souls, so one more... I mean, two is awesome, three is just silly. So while I would love that dollar, believe me, I cannot give Gunn a soul. Will he get one? Maybe, and then you'll owe me a dollar 'cause I'll tell you I did it just because you asked... but that's it. Sorry, Jen. And she adds, "P.S. How's that for desperation?" Yeah, it wasn't real' desperate. I understand your plight.
We'reDoomed asks, "What is your position on the whole "caveman vs. astronauts" debate?"
If I had a dime for every time I was asked this, I would now have a dime. And I would have to go with cavemen because they clearly want it more. Thank you, We'reDoomed.
Fender asks, "This is a question about Spike: Asylum that my friends and I have been pondering- Roughly how old is Beck in Asylum/Shadow Puppets? Weird question, I know, but it helps with fanart and fanfiction."
Well, this is interesting. When I first wrote Asylum, the first issue she was in was issue two, she was- I planned her to be 8 or 9, and then Franco sent in his character sheet and there were pictures of an older girl and we went with that one, so I rewrote it because I kinda liked the- there were kind of a callback to Spike hanging out with teenage girls be it Dawn or Buffy, so we made it a little older. I would say she was anywhere from 16 to 18. I'm gonna go with the 18 because I know fanfiction can get naughty and if I make it 18 she's at least legal, is that what you guys are asking? You naughty people with your fanfiction. So if there's a lot of Speck fanfiction, is that what you would call it? You see? I'm getting it- I'm getting down with how you guys work. 18. Beck is 18.
And then she asks, "Regarding After the Fall, would Weezer's "Beverly Hills" be a good anthem for Spike since he is now Lord of Beverly Hills and he is sorta rolling like a celebrity?"
Sure, yeah, you can totally play that whenever Spike's on page. I think for the first two issues, yeah, that's great. He is in fact Lord of Beverly Hills. And don't worry about Spike, everyone that is showing concern. This is not the end of Spike's story, obviously. And he's got some growing to do and he's going in a different direction very soon because of recent events kinda snap him back into realizing what he is there for. I think you guys are going to dig it. So thank you, Fender, and thank you- Fender actually sent in a bunch of artwork- a couple of Spike Christmas cards that feature Betta George and she just did one of Beck, Betta George and Spike that was awesome too. So thank you, Fender, and thank you- Fender actually sent in a bunch of artwork- a couple of Spike Christmas cards that feature Betta George and she just did one of Beck, Betta George and Spike that was awesome too, so you guys check her out. Fender, if you could post under this, and show everyone your Myspace profile, then they could check it out for themselves and be as into it as I am.
Next up is Reaper, who is a boy with a mohawk. Man with a mohawk! I shouldn't call him a boy. I don't know how old he is. And he has chosen the name of Reaper be it from the Grim Reaper or the TV show. And he asks, "Are there any plans to bring Lorne back? I was always surprised to see him in non cannon comics after how season five ended."
Yeah, he's coming back. He's got his own story in the First Night series within the series starting in Issue 6, and it is drawn by John Burne who is one of the best artists and writers, actually, in the business. So I'm psyched that he's making my little words all the better. I just say little words, I just demean my words, but that's okay. Yeah, and also he's coming back into the Modern Day Angel story and interacting with the characters we're introduced in After the Fall, not gonna say when, but if you like Lorne, you'll like what's coming up.
And then he asks, "What do you like writing better Angel or Spike?"
Um, they definitely have their- they both are great in their own way. Angel is great in the sense that on the show it was always so much fun to see him be forced to interact with people when he's not a real' social creature, so it's really fun to put him in situation where he has to reach out and deal with people. For instance, in issue two, when he talks to Connor- Connor is more willing to accept him and talk to him and just wants to know where he's been whereas Angel kinda pulls away. That was the point of that scene- Connor forgives him and accepts him, and Angel hasn't forgiven or accepted himself, so that's great to write. It's really fun. Also, the fact that he has narration in captions lets us really get into Angel's head whereas you can't do that on the show 'cause he didn't narrate. I guess he did a little bit, especially in the first issue, first episode he narrated a little bit at the beginning, but that's what makes the comics, gives the comics an advantage over tv shows is that we can really get into Angel's head. And Spike is just a lot of fun to write. He's just such a multi-layered character. He's been through so much. He's been one of the, this is true for Angel too, one of the best villians on the show AND one of the best heros. And he goes- the actual arc of villian to hero and Angel for hero to villian was so believable because it was so well done that they are just so rich and there's so much opportunity for drama and so they're both equal. I love writing Spike and I love writing Angel, so I couldn't be happier. I was actually very intimidated to write Angel, but I think I found a groove, and you guys are great. So thank you, Reaper. And good luck with the show, if you were named after the show. I hope that it will come back and the writers' strike doesn't kill it.
Rusty asks, "I guess my question is a more of a technical question on after the fall. Just wondering on how things work between you and Joss. Like how much free-room you have in the writing, do you have to get his approval on major things, does he have specific guidelines you have to follow?"
Joss and I planned the whole arc of the series early on so I know where everybody's going. I know the character specifics. I got the beats down, filling in blanks and connecting from A to B is left up to me. For instance, we knew early on we wanted to establish what Gunn's- where his head is and he didn't, he didn't spell out how to do it obviously, so I put it in the scene with Betta George where, in the second one, he's trying desperately to convince this, this fish that he's kidnapped that he's actually a good guy. So, like the specifics are left up to me; the characters, storyline, arc, future, destiny that was left up to Joss and myself and stuff he planned with the writers, so yeah, he- I mean, if there was a big thing that suddenly popped in my head that I wanted him to sign off on, yeah, I would email him and see what he thought, but stuff like that is totally fine, like it's up to me and I appreciate that. That's really cool to have him trust me like that; it's okay.
And Rusty says, "I just finished season 5 last weekend, so I've just ordered one and two online. Anything I should know jumping in?"
Yes, Rusty, I'm glad you brought this up. The comic book does not have sound and the pictures do not move, so you'll notice immediately that it's different than the TV show in that sense. Sometimes, I like to move the comic back and forth so it's more like a TV show. I move the comic closer to me very quickly if I want a dramatic zoom. So, you can try that. Just don't do it too fast ecause, for one thing, you might not be able to read the words. Another thing, you might get eye strain having to adjust that quickly so that's all you really need to know. Also, the comic may be a bit smaller than your TV unless you have a little TV. Maybe you watch them on iPods, in which case, it works out fine. You're not going to notice much of a difference at all... except for those word balloons. That's really all you gotta know. Thank you, Rusty.
Denita asks, "I was wondering what attracted you to writing comics and how do you feel it differs from writing television/movie scripts or a novel? Is it more limiting, more challanging or more freeing?"
...[he talks about editing being limiting in the fact that you cut for time on television shows, but you have more breathing room to do so than in comics] For instance, if Chris Ryall hadn't given me the extra five pages at the end of Angel: After the Fall issue one, we were going to have to cut Connor's enterance and move him completely to issue two. And it's really good that we- we didn't have to do that 'cause Chris is just so concerned with making it as good as it can be. He saw that the opening, putting Connor's story in the first issue definitely opens up the world and we just don't stay with Angel and Wesley the whole time... and Gunn a little bit, but putting Connor in really gives you a sense of all the different things that are going on in hell.
Allycat has a lot of questions. You guys ready? This is a lot. This is going to be a while. He or she asks, "any real Buffyverse-fan has only two things on his mind right now; the absolutely brilliant series you're working on, but there's also some other series by some other publisher. My question to you... do you read/like said other series?
[He talks a bit about Spiderman] If you mean Buffy, I love the Buffy series. I think it's great. I love it, and on Friday when it came out, I went to the comic store and I read it in the car. I'm a big fan. First and foremost, I am a fan of Joss so it's my favourite book currently so it's what I get the most excited about... with the exception of Angel: After the Fall, which you guys should read. I'm assuming that you read it; that was stupid 'cause you're here. Why else would you be listening to this if in fact... I'm such a boob. Joss wouldn't come off like a boob if he had a podcast. All right, moving on.
"2) Killing off your most beloved main characters is about as Whedon as it gets. So, if there were one character you could kill off in a most gruesome manner, who would it be?"
Uh, I don't know. I would only kill off characters and will only kill off characters if it's vital to the story or that's the direction that we're going in. I don't know. There's nobody I really look forward to killing. I mean, villians are kinda fun to kill every now and then, but I don't know. No one I'm really looking forward to. Believe me, death is coming, but I'm not looking forward to it. Even when we killed Betta George in Asylum, he comes back obviously, but when we killed him originally, it was hard to write. I actually really like that character, and Franco had a really hard time drawing it 'cause we kinda bonded with the character so it's cool we get to bring him back.
Allycat's third question is, "I know we're not supposed to ask anything spoilerish, so I hope you won't think this next question is. Will Angel: After the Fall see any romantic subplots? Old lovers reunited or new love blossoming maybe?"
I would say that love plays into the series quite a bit. I'm not going to say if there is romantic relationships, but yeah there's be it father and son or... other things... Now fans are getting excited because the fans think maybe I mean Angel and Spike, and I totally do and they totally hook up in issue three. You guys should buy 18 copies... but don't look at it in the store! Assume that they definitely hook up and then when you get home, read it and then don't return it if I'm lying. But Angel and Spike hook up. It was almost on the cover but then Chris was all like, "No." And I was like, "What's with that?" And he's all like, "'Cause it doesn't happen." And I'm like, "Yeah, but you don't gotta know that." And then he just stared. It was awkward.
Allycat's fourth question is "By all means skip this question if you think it's too difficult. What's more fun, challenging, and/or rewarding to write: After the Fall or Everybody's Dead?"
They are definitely as equally rewarding for different reasons. Angel because I get to continue my favourite series of all time and work with one of my heroes. Everybody's Dead because it's my own world that I've created and worked on for over a decade now so it's a whole different... They're both so much fun and a lot of work. I gotta go equal. Don't make me choose, please. It's like choosing your favourite baby. Who could do that? I mean, unless one baby is way more attractive than the other... 'Cause there are ugly babies! I'd have to go with a pretty baby, so that is the most challenging and rewarding to write- the pretty baby.
"5) Obviously most of the characters from Buffy are busy at the moment in their own series, but if there were one you could use and bring onto After the Fall, who would it be?"
Uh, originally, I said Xander. I always thought Xander would work well in the Angel series just because it would be a good sense of drama between him and Angel 'cause they never were big fans of each other, so it'd be fun to see his reaction to hell, but honestly, I'd love to bring Buffy in. I don't think it's happening, so... But Buffy, Buffy, you throw her in and see her react not only to Angel and Spike, but to Angel's son. That kind of stuff would be really fun to do. Is it happening? No. Would it be fun? Yeah. Maybe I could write it as fanfiction. Or maybe one of you could write it as fanfiction and send me the link. I think you should.
J asks... "I don't know if this is spoilery or not, but it is something in ATF that makes me a little uncomfortable. So, is Angel, through his actions in "Not Fade Away", more or less directly responsible for the death and suffering of perhaps millions of people? That seems like an awfully harsh thing to put on the character's head."
You know what? Even if Angel isn't responsible for it directly because there was no way going into the final battle with Wolfram and Hart at the end of the show he could know that they had sending all of L.A. down into hell up their sleeve, he still feels responsible for it. And a lot of the series is him dealing with that, dealing with his guilt, overcoming the stuff that he puts on himself, and that's a lot of fun to play with. Even, again, Connor forgave him clearly in issue two with a question of Angel forgiving himself. So that's a really good question, and I'm glad you picked up on that. So, no, I don't think he's responsible. I mean, it wouldn't have happened if he hadn't challenged Wolfram and Hart, but at the same time how was he supposed to know that that would happen? They're evil people those Wolfram and Harts, let me tell you. So thanks, J!
James asks, oh this is a long one. Bear with me, I haven't read these yet. "I am the greatest fan of Angel." Okay, that's bold. I'm sure some people would disagree with you but okay. "I've read both issues of After the Fall many many times." [Brian is pleased with this and hopes that James bought a new issue every time he read it because he wore them out]. "I have to ask you something. What is the deal with Angel? Is he vampire or a super human, because A- We have yet to see Angel morph into the vampire like both Gunn and Spike have and B- Wesley was looking to heal Angel with anything he could get his hands on in Wolfram & Heart. If Angel was a vampire, then he would heal on his own."
All right, actually I can explain this right now. Angel is using the Wolfram and Hart healing potions and insects and other assorted methods of getting healed quicker because he's taking on too much. I don't know. I had hoped that was evident in the fact that he feels responsible and is going out every night way more than he should and he's getting hurt, and instead of healing rapidly which he would as a vampire, he's doing it even quicker so he can get back out there. And Wesley actually expresses concern about that, I think, in issue four. So that explains that part. As for why he didn't vamp out, he didn't in the first issue because he didn't really have to except maybe in the first fight but that was because he didn't want to scare away the people he was saving. And he didn't with the Connor fight because it's Connor, and I kinda thought he would want to, after a long time, a reunion, he didn't want to be "The Beast" in front of Connor. So I hope that explains it. I hope that explains it, James. I want to please the greatest fan of Angel. I hope I did.
Next question! Bovril... ask, "First off" [Brian pauses to laugh because I think he read part of the post at this point. He claims that Joss would be able to pronounce 'off' correctly.] "First off, After the Fall is the dogs, hands down." I hope that's good, Bovril. I don't... I hope that's a positive thing. I hope "it's the dogs." "I'm loving Betta George." Thank you very much. "And Spike the pimp." Thank you. He's not a pimp, but thank you. "Secondly, I have a question... Who do you think has the better hair, Spike or Angel?"
Um, I don't know. I think if I were to answer it would start some kind of internet fight, so I'm gonna say I like both their hair. What do you think of that? I like Gunn's hair! I like Gunn's lack of hair! That's my answer. And Betta George, I like his crown.
Chris asks, [the first question was about writing Marvel/DC characters. Brian says he wants to write Booster Gold. XD] Second question, "2)Which would you consider a favorite episode from each of the five seasons of Angel?Pick one for each season."
I really can't. I have a ton of episodes that I love. Season Three, love the whole arc with the baby. The whole thing, you know, where Darla comes back, Darla gives birth, Angel gets overprotective of the baby, baby gets stolen, that stuff was just heartbreaking and so epic that that was my favourite run. I love episodes like "Waiting in the Wings." I love "Smile Time." "Hole in the World" was amazing. I love the series finale. It was great. So I don't know. That was really, that was all over the place, but those are the ones that pop out in my head right now.
"4)From purely a fan perspective,what are your thoughts on Buffy season 8 so far and the developments in them in these first nine issues that have come out?Anything that has surprised you?"
Yeah, uh, I loved the first series a lot. Brian K. Vaughn and Joss wrote insanely great issues. I really liked the revealation that Buffy was funding the Slayers by stealing. I thought there was a lot of you could do with that. It wasn't a clean answer. It could have been so easy to just suggest that this rich man or woman was funding it. And I love it 'cause it's not a black and white answer. It's not the right thing that she's doing, but it's not a terrible thing that's she's doing, and seeing how that plays out is gonna be cool. I like it that she's flawed, that she could go in that direction.
"A favourite new character?"
I like a lot of the the new Slayers. I like the Minder from the last issue, not even knowing that it's based on someone and how much it helped that person, I think that's great. I also just really like the character.
"Anything you're looking forward to,that has been announced?"
I just, I want to see where it's going. I think every issue is a lot of fun. I think he should keep doing it until, until I die 'cause then I don't care what happens- I won't read it.
"Finally as the writer of the canon continuation of Angel,does Joss give you any hints about upcoming events [in the Buffy S8 comics]?"
No, he doesn't. I think he would if he read something in the original outline that interfered with Buffy stuff, but it doesn't and I don't really want to know. I don't like to be spoiled.
"5)If Joss approached you,would you consider doing an arc in Buffy season 8 or season 9?"
I really love the Angel stuff, and I think that takes up enough of my time. I don't know if I could do a Buffy arc. I don't think Joss is running to my house and knocking on my door anyway to do a Buffy arc. And if is, that is cool. I don't know how he found out where I lived but Buffy is great and yeah, would I love to write Buffy? Yeah, someday, if he wanted me to, but I'm happy with Angel.
"6)What other universe(non Buffy/Whedonverse) would you cross Angel over if you could?For example Angel/Batman,Angel/Hellboy"
I think Angel/Batman you could do some fun stuff with. Angel/Everybody's Dead would be sweet. I don't know if you guys know about Everybody's Dead, but five issue limited series from IDW starting in March, horror/comedy/romance. Sounds good. I like it. You guys can preorder it now, and you should. Angel/Everybody's Dead, that's my answer. Is that good? I don't want to see Angel vs. Freddy vs. Jason. That'd be boring. No. Angel vs. Marvel Zombies is not something I want to see. How about Angel vs. Astonishing X-Men? Then you could have Joss write it and Cassaday draw it? That'd be fun! Joss can do it. He has time, right? Okay, thank you, Chris!
Finally, last question, from Jean. "Are you able to give a bit more background on the demon lords that have appeared in HelL.A?"
Yeah, not really. I mean, the demon lords are there. We find a little about them as time goes on. There's a lot more coming in issue three. Um, but we don't really learn about their origins. We don't have time because we can't take time away from the characters that we know from the show and we want to spend time with them, so no. It would be really cool to do like a source book and have all the new demons that we're learning about, but I can't write it 'cause that is a daunting task, so you guys should write it! And post a link. I would love to read about those characters and learn all about them.
And last question from Jean, "Also any chance we might see David the Billionaire getting to role play for real?"
[b]I believe Jean is referring to the guy from Office Space, is he not? That guest starred, was in early seasons of Angel? It's a really great idea. I would love to see more of that character but I don't think that person is going to pop up in hell. Again, I would love to see that character continue; I just don't think it's going to be in After the Fall.[/b]
All right, guys, that's about it. Those are the questions and they were- I hope I answered them okay. They were a lot of fun to read. Thank you, guys, for being so interested in this series, and thank you for your support on it. Issue three comes out next week. I hope you guys dig it. Maybe we'll do another one of these after it if you guys like this. That's it. Remember, preorder Everybody's Dead if you want and check back on the blog and check back at IDWPublishing.com and the forums there and Whedonesque.com, and let us know how we're doing there. And have a good day, right? Right. Take care.