Denny O'Neil Travels Back, Looks Forward

Denny O'Neil is one of the major writers and editors in American comics. He made Batman dark again after the end of the Adam West tv show, bringing the character back to his moody, gothic-influenced roots.  He created one of the great Batman villains - and DC characters - Ra's Al Ghul. Whether you know Ra's from Batman Begins or from Batman: The Animated Series in the 90s where he was perfectly voiced by David Warner (in an episode based on the character's introduction written by O'Neil and illustrated by the great Neal Adams), then you know he's a little different from the gangsters and grotesque villains Batman usually faces off with. Mr. O'Neil also reinvented The Question and wrote a series with the character in the late eighties and early nineties that is in some ways dated, but in other ways is a unique and brilliant series the likes of which has never been published by DC or Marvel. He was a longtime editor at DC, created Obadiah Stane when he worked on Iron Man, fought for greater social realism in comics and has worked with just about everyone. He's also writing two books for the DC Retroactive initiative this month, Green Lantern/Green Arrow and Wonder Woman. It was a thrill and a pleasure to speak with Mr. O'Neil, something that I think shows in the interview. (I do still own the copy of Azrael #1 which he wrote that I bought when it was new)

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