All-New Marvel NOW!

All-New Marvel NOW! Q&A: Cyclops

Greg Rucka uncorks the details on his and Russell Dauterman’s plans to launch Scott Summers into outer space adventure!

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For young Scott Summers—plucked from his own distinct moment in time and ushered to an inconceivable tomorrow—nothing looks quite as appealing as a blank canvas. The outstretched hand of a father thought long-dead presents just such possibility, as Christopher Summers, the pirate known to the galaxy as Corsair of the Starjammers, invites his son to join him out among the stars.

Writer Greg Rucka teams with breakout artist Russell Dauterman to weave a tale of father and son bonding over Badoon booty, as CYCLOPS blasts off from the pages of ALL-NEW X-MEN for an ongoing adventure beginning in May.

Cyclops vs. Cyclops by Jim Cheung

“I guess one of the things that I get the biggest kick out of and certainly, with regards to the book itself, is Cyclops,” says Rucka of the time travel concept introduced by Brian Michael Bendis in ALL-NEW X-MEN. “The continuity still stands. So, 16-year old Scott is interacting in a world where the older version has already been marching along. I think that the chance to take a look at the characters, not only at different stages of their development but then to see how those stages influence and change and how that may reflect, especially how they deal with the legacy of their future selves. That’s a gold mine. I love that.”

“It comes down entirely to their life experiences and that’s the end-all, be-all of it,” he says of the gulf between young Scott and his battle-scarred counterpart of the present. “That’s the only thing that can be a factor there. One has experiences that have brought him to the place he is now and the other is looking and can’t imagine the experiences that took him to that place. I find it real powerful and problematic. I think young Scott and our [adult] Scott would hate to admit that they both absolutely come from the same place and maybe are still pretty much the same person. You know, we are the aggregate of our experiences. That’s where our personality comes from. That’s what influences us; that’s what drives our decisions.

“When we’re 16, we have lots of heavy thoughts. And these are the heavy thoughts where when we’re in our 30’s we look at 16-year olds and sort of scorn it. They’re legitimate. It’s legit. Scott’s got real baggage but he’s also got this blessing of an opportunity. Which is for him, okay, his mom is gone. She’s not coming back. But holy mackerel, here’s my dad! And for Chris, for Corsair, who has reconciled with Scott and with Alex, this is an opportunity to be there for his 16-year old son.”

At this stage in his so-called life, Cyclops remains in desperate search for something, even if he can’t quite articulate it himself. Rucka explains that, far from Kree treasure vaults or the plundered salvage of Skrull derelicts, the unspoken aim in Scott’s quest will be more universal and far more complicated: “What does it mean to be a good man?”

Matters of the heart play heavily into this journey, though Scott initially pines solely for Jean Grey. Like many young sailors, this frustrated teen commits his thoughts to paper.

“Yeah, because that’s what we do when we’re 16 and we’re in love,” chuckles Rucka. “We write these letters and sometimes we actually send them. He’s also 16. That’s where he starts; it’s not where he ends. He’s going to meet some girls. [Editor] Nick Lowe just switched over to the Spider-Man office but he and I were having a lot of discussion about this before I even started writing and one of the things is, when you’re 16 and you don’t know how to talk to girls, even if you think you do, and you think everybody else knows how to do it. Here’s your dad and again, he’s sort of the Dread Pirate Roberts meets Han Solo. He’s got some moves. You can probably pick up a point or two.

“We’re going to have some fun with that. There has to be that sense of romance.

Cyclops and Star-Lord by Dale Keown

There is this build in the Marvel Universe, because it’s established that there’s this great love and this incredible triangle between [Wolverine], Scott, and Jean. It’s been there but that’s what they’ve grown up into and one of the things that Brian [Bendis] has done is sort of knocked that akimbo. It doesn’t invalidate any of it but it [implies] that 16- year old Scott, having gone through everything, including Jean apparently being into Hank [McCoy aka Beast] and not [him], and discovering all of these other things like this is our future and it’s this horrible thing, so on and so forth—the eye wanders. That’s not a crime. It’s almost a biological imperative.”

Rucka considers artist Russell Dauterman an ideal choice to render Scott’s starry-eyed coming-of-age.

“There were two things I was really looking for and Russell really brings both of them,” the writer says. “The first is that he’s got this lovely design sense that I think is going to bring that sense of wonder. I want this to be things that Scott has never seen and is spectacular and I think Russell brings that. Number two: I think Russell can draw teenagers as opposed to slightly out of proportion adults. Scott’s 16. That’s an awkward damn age. You’re halfway between finishing out the puberty run and there are elements about you where you’re still a boy and your limbs are long and you’re bumping into stuff and so on. Yeah, you can fire optic blasts and that’s awesome but you’re still 16.”

“Which is not to say I want him to draw acne,” he laughs.

Given that CYCLOPS represents Greg Rucka’s first-ever series set amongst the stars, what informs his vision for this extended stay? 

“It’s more ‘Star Wars,’ than say, ‘Battlestar Galactica,’ certainly,” he notes. “Space travel is incidental in this; meaning that it is relatively easy in the Marvel Universe. It comes without the perils and baggage one would discover in a movie like ‘Gravity.’ More to the point, we want aliens. We want it to be fabulous. It needs to be wonderful. That’s one of the things we’re working for and one of the things I’m excited to see how Russell depicts it because at its root, this is an adventure story and I want it to be an uplifting one. I want it to be a fun one. There needs to be excitement and drama. There has to be stakes.”

He pauses for a moment.

“I don’t want to ever lose for Scott, ‘I’M IN SPACE! WITH MY DAD! WHO’S A PIRATE! AND IF THAT ISN’T THE COOLEST THING!’”

“I don’t ever want to lose that,” he stresses. “And I think one of the things with Scott is, and one of the reasons why I love the character so much is he and I share a lot of traits. He’s not really good at having a good time. He’s a very serious guy. To be able to have his dad say to him, ‘It’s okay. Lighten up, man. It’s cool.’ They’re going to have fun. That’s exactly it.”

Father to a teenage son himself, Rucka naturally draws from real-life experience. The focus remains on Scott’s journey, but the writer commiserates with the grizzled space pirate’s excitement at the opportunity to show off his son at the office—especially if the office happens to be a cold frigate adrift in the Crab Nebula.

Cyclops #1 cover by Alexander Lozano

“This is an opportunity to be with his son,” says Rucka. “Speaking as a father, there is no rulebook and you don’t know how to do it. You just do the best you can. Absolutely Corsair wants to do right by him. It’s a huge opportunity but it scares the crap out of him because that’s what fatherhood does. There’s no way. He’s not looking to get out of it in any way, shape, or form. There’s no shame at all. There’s a bit in the first issue, there’s an action sequence and there’s a dramatic entrance and Corsair is like, ‘Hi. We’ve just destroyed this thing and this is who I am. I’ll be your pirate today. And this lovely is Hepzibah and you don’t want to move because she’s a really good shot. And this young man is my son, Scott. He just gave your spaceship a sunroof and if any of you guys messes about, he’ll give you a swimming pool, too.’”

Follow Scott and his father through “The Trial of Jean Grey,” currently unfolding in ALL-NEW X-MEN and GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, into CYCLOPS kicking off this May!

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13 comments
CaptainScott01
CaptainScott01

What comic books do I need to have read before this?

SJ_Mitchell
SJ_Mitchell

This was a fantastic interview. I love Rucka's direction and vision for the series. Cyclops doesn't get enough respect in the MU for what he's done and what he's been through. I'm so happy he's getting his own series. Someday I'm sure the O5 will return to their timeline and if this book is still going, who is to say it doesn't follow him? Or switch over to the current day Cyke?


Thank you for making this book happen!

rj155500
rj155500 member

adult Cyclops is the most dynamic character in the Marvel U right now . . . . I was hoping this would be about him.

chaimarvel
chaimarvel

I'm happy for a Cyclops series, but I want modern Cyclops not young Cyclops. Gave me false hope once again. Sorry to say I'm a Cyke fan but I just won't read it at all. 

NMRosario
NMRosario

Seems like some awesome potential to me.  I'm glad they are taking the O5 into new and unexpected directions.  The X-Men have been mostly horrible over the last 20+ years, so this is the first time I've really been interested in anything happening in the X-books.  Plus they might actually make Scott Summers into a likeable character again, which would be a miracle.

autbey
autbey

pass, the O5 need to go home

bold
bold

I'm glad they're doing something with Cyclops. He got the short end of the stick with the X-Men movies and he's always been one of my favorite X-Men, more so than Wolverine especially now. Young Scott needs a break after people giving him crap for things this version of him haven't done

Space_Case
Space_Case

But didn't corsair die during the emperor Vulcan story?

NMRosario
NMRosario

@chaimarvel  Modern Cyclops is really just a violent, extremist bigot these days, so it's really hard to view him as anything resembling an appealing character.  This is chance to tell some fresh and new Cyclops stories without all the baggage of the bad storytelling from the past.

Karashion
Karashion

@Space_Case that's exactly what I was going to say, I have the issue that Vulcan kills him in. but then again this is marvel and characters never truly stay dead its been enough years most people have forgotten that fact or they will say he was revived shortly after.

chaimarvel
chaimarvel

@NMRosario Cyclops is not even that violent when you look at other characters in the universe, he is a fearless and confident leader; he does what he needs to bring good for his kind. Yes, he being dark phoenix ended badly, but I don't think he is the one to blame, maybe he should take some responsibility but definitely not all, ppl can go blame whoever put the force into him. 

And he definitely is and appealing character, look at the last poll on Cyclops, more than half said they are on Cyclops' side and I thin thats nuff said. He on got trashed in AvX and Marvel should really make things right with a MODERN Cyclops series.

autbey
autbey

@NMRosario @chaimarvelFeels too much like a reboot and I'm not interested in reading the re-imagining or a character that has a rich history, no matter how much past writers and editorial have destroyed him, he's still a more interesting character.

NMRosario
NMRosario

@autbey  Well, "interesting" is a matter of personal opinion.  I lost interest in the X-Men back around 1993 and the return of the O5 in All-New X-Men is the first truly exciting new development in the X-universe in the last 20+ years.  In my personal opinion, of course.  I'm not interested in following the story of an arrogant, unrepentant bigot and murderer.  The young, idealistic Scott Summers is a much more interesting and likeable character as far as I'm concerned.