By Andrew Wheeler
If you love X-Factor, if you love Peter David comics, heck, if you love super hero comics at all, you're probably still a little downhearted at saying goodbye to X-FACTOR earlier this year. It's tough to bid farewell to old friends, especially after such a long and triumphant run.
So here's the good news: X-Factor returns in 2014, with a brand new direction, a new artist, and—best of all—the same writer! Peter David launches ALL-NEW X-FACTOR early next year with the amazing talents of Carmine Di Giandomenico on art.
Anyone paying close attention at the end of the previous run will have picked up clues about where this new title kicks off. Polaris has been headhunted by the mysterious Serval Industries to lead a corporate-funded super team. Joining her for this adventure will be her half-brother and former teammate Quicksilver, plus a new face to the X-Factor family, the charming thief Gambit, as well as a few members we can't reveal just yet.
We spoke to Peter and Carmine about this very different X-Factor, the new team dynamics, and the change in ownership. Can Serval Industries be trusted?
Marvel.com: Peter, we're very excited to see you taking on another X-Factor title, but what makes this one different?
Peter David: The background, I'd say. So much of what happens in this country stems from corporate control and involvement. So why not expand that real world philosophy to the world of comics and have it be that a corporation is interested in expanding into super heroes? I mean, if super heroes really existed, that's probably what would happen.
Marvel.com: Carmine, how does it feel to launch the latest incarnation of such a well-loved title?
Carmine Di Giandomenico: “With great power comes great responsibilities!” [That's] how I feel in this moment! Excited and enthusiastic, but scared at the same time!
Marvel.com: Why the corporate approach? Where did the idea come from?
Peter David: It more or less came from my sitting down with [editor] Jordan White and running notions for the new team past him. He just loved the notion of a corporation coming in and trying its hand at putting together a super hero team.
Marvel.com: Do you have a different approach to the look of this team and their costumes?
Carmine Di Giandomenico: The main challenge was to place the corporation's logo, designed by Peter, on the characters’ costumes. We had in mind a sober and elegant style, and something that could [evoke] the first look of the X Men. I think we were able to accomplish the best result.
Marvel.com: The new team includes Polaris, Gambit and Quicksilver, plus a few members who have yet to be revealed. Carmine, who are you most excited to bring to the page?
Carmine Di Giandomenico: All the characters are exciting for me! I think I'll have a lot of fun with them. Especially with a shape-shifting one.
Marvel.com: Intriguing, but I don't think we can give away any more about that! Peter, you've brought one character with you from your previous X-Factor title. Why carry on Polaris's story?
Peter David: She has the most potential. Which isn't to say that others from the previous title might not show up as guest cast.
Marvel.com: What about the rest of the team, Gambit and Quicksilver; what's your approach to them?
Peter David: With Quicksilver, we're left wondering what his motivation is. Is he really motivated by brotherly concern over Polaris? Or is there more going on?
And Gambit as a professional thief is there to be the one who questions everything that's going on; he's largely the reader's voice into the book.
Marvel.com: People can be very skeptical about corporations. What can you tell us about X-Factor's new owners and their agenda?
Peter David: We actually worked on introducing Serval in subtle ways going back a few issues. If you look carefully you can see their logo popping up in unexpected places. That skepticism is what I'm looking forward to playing with; I'm figuring that the readers will be skeptical because they figure that corporation=evil. And Gambit even has that same reaction.
So it's a matter of convincing people that Serval is genuinely interested in helping people; or are they?
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