Supernatural hero, sword-wielding man of action, mechanical inventor, Defender and Avenger, Dane Whitman is one of Marvel’s more heroes in the same vein as Ant-Man and Star Lord were… so keep watch. He’s also rather obscure, and for good reason. There are a few iterations of the Black Knight and each one is different. But the Black Knight is a cult hit who is about to get a new lease on stardom in a slick All-New Marvel ongoing series. He’s also one of my son’s favorite characters, so I’m biased.
This fall, Marvel is launching a new Black Knight ongoing series featuring the longtime swordsman Dane Whitman in a drastic different world with a dark shadow looming over him. Set in a post-Secret Wars Weirdworld, this “All-New All-Different Marvel” title is written by Frank Tieri and illustrated by Luca Pizzari.
Tieri, who has written the Black Knight on several occasions in the past, describes this new Black Knight series as a long time coming and a cross between the dark, addictive tones of Breaking Bad and the modern medieval landscape of Game of Thrones.
Newsarama: Frank, what do you have planned in the new Black Knight series? And how long has this new series been in the works?
Frank Tieri: Really, we’re trying to do a book that’s unlike any that’s out there. And definitely not something you’d really expect from a Black Knight series. Sure there’ll be sword and sorcery and all that stuff but it’s really more than that. At it’s heart, Black Knight will be about one man’s struggle with what I call a “necessary addiction”. I guess the best description is something that’s sort of like a cross between Game of Thrones and Breaking Bad.
Call it Breaking Blade, if you will.
As for how long this has been in the works? Let me put it to you this way… remember back when I was doing all that Black Knight stuff in New Excalibur? We were talking about me doing a series with him even then. So this was a long time coming. But I strongly believe it’s a book that’ll be worth the wait… for both me and Dane’s fans.
Nrama: About that… yes, this new series features Dane in a post-Secret Wars Weirdworld. Up til now, I thought “All-New All-Different Marvel” meant the end of Secret Wars and everything Battleworld. What can you say about Weirdworld here?
Tieri: Well, what I can say is that let Secret Wars play out and then we’ll see what ends up where. What I can say from my standpoint for my series is Weirdworld will absolutely be our setting… and what a great setting it is. It’s really become as much a character as Dane or anybody else in the book.
There’s all these crazy different parts to it, which is incredibly fun to write. The part where Dane finds himself is kind of like the Middle Ages on acid. Fire breathing trolls, Lightning dragons, warring barbarians, mysterious serpent men… a lot of crazy shit with Dane plopped down in the middle of it all.
Dane came into Weirdworld? That’s one of the big mysteries we’ll be unveiling as we go along—the how and the why Dane wound up in Weirdworld. What I will say is this… it involves the Avengers.
Nrama: Big picture, you’ve been given the keys to a ongoing Black Knight series. What are your goals, big picture with the character and his place in the Marvel line?
Tieri: I think Dane is an underappreciated character and has been for a long time and hopefully this series fixes that. I mean, think about it… with Merlin, Camelot, the sword and sorcery angle that’s so popular now…
We’ve got a lot of cool shit and twists and turns planned here and our goal is to open some eyes and tell a kick ass story in the process. Braveheart style battles, strange creatures we’ve never seen before, centuries old mysteries, betrayals, the Avengers, who and what the serpent men really are (really cool reveal there)… and then there’s questions to answer like:
What if the Ebony Blade was not the only object of its kind? What if there were other artifacts that came from that meteor that Merlin carved the Blade from? And for that matter…where the hell did that damned meteor come from in the first place?
All stuff we aim to address with this series. It’ll be a wild ride, kids, I can promise you that—and not one I’d want to miss out on, that’s for sure.