Comics Features

INTERVIEW: Hack! – World’s Worst Super Villain with Chris Stanley

Written by Patrick Smith

First off, I’d like to say that the Kickstarter presentation, along with the preview pages for this fine new venture, certainly brightened my day. Hack!- World’s Worst Super Villain is an invigorating and particularly witty take on the genre. I’m expecting pretentiously clinging costumes, larger than life characters and a supersized barrel of laughs, with each installment.

Writer Chris Stanley has been kind enough to discuss this exciting prospect with us:

AP2HYC: I’d like to start by asking how you developed this concept and what you’re seeking to achieve with it in terms of storytelling?

C.S.: I was in a parking lot talking with my friend Joe about comics and movies. “You know what would be funny? What if there was a guy, who wants to be super villain like Lex Luthor or Norman Osborn. He tries to take over a city but he is an idiot and ends up saving it.”

It was a great idea. Nothing became of it. It stayed on the shelf for a few years. Then one day Arkvindicta wanted a new story. Something different from what is out in the comic world now. That is when I pitched Hack. I told them the first story line and they laughed. They saw how passionate I was. I guess that passion caught on and they gave me a green light to pursue it. I sat down with Joe and we worked out the first six issues.

AP2HYC: How did you assemble your team with Jeramie Worley and Brian O’Neil and what drew you to them?

CS: Jeramie was the one that brought us together. I think I was the last one brought on. We each have our strengths and areas of expertise. He is the main business end. He does the paperwork and task management. He is also a great writer. Brian is the marketing expert. He also does our lettering. I was asked to be a part of the team because of my creativity, writing and my knowledge of comic books.

AP2HYC: So, Trevor Merryweather is Hack!, the world’s worst super-villain. He just can’t avoid doing good deeds? What kind of guy is he and are we likely to find him engaging, entertaining or infuriating?

C.S.: Trevor Maryweather comes from a superhero family. He is the middle child of three and often overlooked. His Mom and Dad are ready to retire from saving the world. His big brother is the leading superhero. His younger sister is a genius. Trevor has no powers. Because he doesn’t fit in he sets out to be a villain. He’s not a bad guy. He doesn’t want to hurt anyone. He wants to be out of the shadow of his family. Hack is born.

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AP2HYC: You mention in your presentation that fun comic books from the ’80’s have been a source of inspiration. It’d be great to hear more about the titles, characters and creators that motivated you.

C.S.: The 80’s had a lot of comics that made me cry with laughter, The Tick, Groo the Wanderer, What The?!. and I can’t forget Cracked and Mad magazines. I am a huge Marvel Fan. I love Spider-man. DC has Batman, one of the coolest super heroes and I recently got into the Walking Dead. What inspires me is a great story idea and creativity. Even if the story wasn’t well done I could love the idea behind it.

AP2HYC: So, moving forward from the content in your Kickstarter presentation, what can readers expect from this comic book?

C.S.: First and foremost I want to tell a great story. Our stories will take the comic book super hero formula and breaking it down. Formulas like; if you are born with powers people are afraid of you; Your parents die, you become a crime fighter. I want to take those concepts and add a funny spin to them. No hero or villain is safe. In the first few issues we will be looking at Superman, The Hulk, Walking Dead, Iron Man, and many others. We want the readers to laugh and have a fun experience with each book.

AP2HYC: Being a Kickstarter launch, would you like to tell folk about the incentives for this project?

C.S.: I love the rewards. I am ordering hats and t-shirts for myself and friends. There are signed copies. My favourite is drawing a backer into book two and then they get the Hack! experience. I don’t want to say too much but, what happens to Hack with the monkeys is nothing compared to what I have in store for them. There are only five slots available ( I wonder why five?). I am laughing just thinking about it.

AP2HYC: I am personally looking forward to the production of this book a great deal. Do you have a likely release date?

The big unveiling is on February 28th. We are at Visioncon in Branson, Missouri. It is a three day event. Ernie Hudson (Winston from Ghostbusters), Aaron Allston (Star Wars novelist) , and Nicci Fett ERROR (cosplay artist) will be there.

AP2HYC: If there’s anything else you’d like to tell us about Hack!, please fire away!

C.S.:
This book is for people who love comics. It is the lighter side. Look for Hack! World’s Worst Super Villain!

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You can see their excellent presentation for yourself and show your support here.

About the author

Patrick Smith