Ethan Van Sciver Interview
(October 20, 1998)

Other Interviews

Todd Nauck - 1998


Geoff Johns - 1998


Brian Augustyn - 1998


Todd Dezago - 1998


Ethan Van Sciver - 1998


Chuck Dixon - 1999



Craig: For those of us reading the interview, that kinda don't reconize the name, mind giving everyone a run down of your past, currents and maybe future projects that your working on?
Ethan: Okay. When I was 18, I created a little guy named CYBERFROG, and I wrote and drew his adventures at a couple of companies, most notably Harris comics. I spent 4 years doing CYBERFROG, until the industry just got to the point where it became unfeasible to do such a project. At the time, it was ALL about Bad Girls. No matter how big I made CYBERFROG's boobs, it just couldn't keep up with LADY DEATH. It was time to move on.
I've always liked IMPULSE, especially Mark Waid and Humberto Ramos' take on him, and decided to set my sights on a few IMPULSE related projects. I bounced around, doing a couple of IMPULSE inventory and fill in books, as well as a few back up stories in some of the 80 page Giant books that DC has been doing lately. A year or so later, Craig Rousseau decided to move on from his two year tenure on the book, and there I was. I've got some big shoes to fill, no pun intended, since I'm the new regular penciller, starting with IMPULSE #50. And that, of course, is my future work.

Craig:What really made you want to get into the comics industry? Have you accomplished any goals that you set at the begining of your career?
Ethan:I read comics as a kid, just like every other pro working now. Nobody just stumbles into work in comics. You do it because it's a labour of love. It's what you wanted to do as a kid, like a fantasy job. I stopped reading comics when I got to high school, because I started to focus more on girls and things like that, but once I graduated I began to draw Cyberfrog in order to get the practice I needed to make this into a career.
As for goals accomplished, I think I've set up my life like a sort of step ladder. Little steps, all bringing me closer to...something good. I'm not really sure what my end goal is. But, for example, my first goal was just to finish an issue of Cyberfrog for my friends and family to read. From there, another, and from there, to get published. It's a lot more positive to set small goals, and accomplish them one by one. It makes everything seem more possible.

Craig: Your getting ready to jump on as the artist of Impulse as of issue 50, are you looking forward to your run with Todd Dezago? Can you tell us any spoilers, or any kind of hints on changes in the book or story as from the past writers?
Ethan: Yeah, I'm definitely looking forward to working with Todd.

I've never worked well with writers before. I always had a problem, even when I tried to get some writing help with CYBERFROG, I'd try and explain the 'vibe' of the book to a particular writer, and they'd come up with horrible directions for the series that were just off in left field as far as I was concerned. I gave up trying to find a partner, even though I was never comfortable with my own writing abilities.
Todd, on the other hand, is always coming up with ideas that are dead on, perfect, exactly what I want to draw. Often times, I'll call him up with a small idea I had, and he'll either have already thought of it, or latch on to it immediately with improvements. And we're being given so much freedom from DC, that we'll be creating, or bringing back, some of the weirdest, coolest characters each month.

Craig: As most of the AOL message board readers know, your an avid reader of Young Justice.
Craig: A) What is your opinon of the book?
Ethan: I think it's just great.
Craig: B) The character portrayal?
Ethan: Different, but just great.
Craig: C) The writer, Peter David?
Ethan: Looms large in legend, in my opinion. Splendid.
Craig: D) The artwork on the series?
Ethan: Todd Nauck is really good. I've been looking at his stuff since the EXTREME days. He's gotten much better, too.

Craig: E) If you were writing the book what changes would you personally make to add you own touch?
Ethan: I wouldn't be writing YOUNG JUSTICE, since I don't really enjoy writing. If I were drawing it, I'd make Bart skinnier and younger. But Todd Nauck has a really cool looking Impulse.


Craig: Rumor on the grapevine, is that you've written and illistrated an upcoming issue of Impulse. Mind informing the readers if this rumor is true? If so, how about a little bit of info on what issue it will be, maybe a little of the story?
Ethan:The rumor is true, but I don't know where we'll use it now....It doesn't fit in to what Todd Dezago and I have planned, so I'm not sure. Anyhow, I wrote the story, and had my friend Shon Bury script the finished pages for me. I wish I had thought of using my friend Sandy Quick to ink it, because then the credits on the outside cover would read BURY VAN SCIVER QUICK. Which would be good advice. ;)

Craig:What do you consider the best aspect of the Impulse character? The Worst? What is your favorite story?
Ethan: I like Impulse's sheer innocence. He's a good kid, just slightly naive, and very impatient. I like the way he would rather play video games than chase girls, and I enjoy the way he has silly teenage independence battles with Max. I'm not sure of the worst aspect of the character. When he's written correctly, he's a very likable, unique hero. My favorite story, the one that I've read over and over again, would have to be Impulse #13. Perfect story, perfect art.


Craig:If you could have your choice to work on other DC comics title, what would it be? Why? Also, same question, but Marvel title and why?
Ethan: I don't know. Maybe PLASTIC MAN, since I've always loved Jack Cole's work on that character. And Jack Cole was quite an interesting guy too. Somebody should make a movie about him.
Marvel.....I don't know. I considered taking a job revamping POWER PACK, but I'm perfectly happy doing IMPULSE.

Craig:Who are some of your favorite heroes, in the comics universe, what turns you on too there books, characters?
Ethan:Superman will always be my favorite. My mom made me a reversible cape, when I was four. One side was Superman, the other was Batman. Well, I kept the Superman side on all the time. And I'd ride my Big Wheel extra fast. I had a fight with a neighborhood kid around that time about who was more 'like' Superman. He won, he had dark hair. I had a big blonde afro.

Craig: Who are your favorite writers and artists in the business. (And no sucking up to Todd, you already got the job. JUST KIDDING)
Ethan:Oh, besides Todd, huh? Well, Todd Dezago is seriously one of my favorites, but leaving him out it would have to be Mark Waid, Grant Morrison, Alan Moore, Peter David....same old list of guys, really. As for artists, Brian Bolland, Dale Keown, John Byrne, Howard Porter, Humberto Ramos, Art Adams, Gary Frank, Greg Land and Gene Ha are guaranteed to sell me a book. There are soooo many good artists working right now. I'm always amazed.

Craig: What is you view on the industry right now? The competition between DC/Marvel? Your own feelings on titles? Anything, you'd like to express to fans.
Ethan: I try not to think about the state of the industry. It's too sad. When the speculator craze was happening, everybody knew and predicted that it would come to this, but no changes were made. And dammit, I wasn't working yet, so I never got to make a million dollars off of one issue! (J/K)


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