Legendary comic scribe Peter David is just that – a legend, thanks to defining runs on the Incredible Hulk and X-Factor, to name just two. For the past seven years, he’s been writing the Marvel adaptation of Stephen King’s seminal The Dark Tower series of books, alongside noted Dark Tower authority and King colleague Robin Furth. We had the chance to talk to Robin a few years ago, at the time of the release of the first Dark Tower Omnibus, and now, with we’ve got Peter David, who answered five questions about the series The Dark Tower: The Drawing of the Three – The Prisoner, which tells of the early days of future ka-tet member Eddie Dean. The first issue was absolutely stellar for this Dark Tower devotee, full of familiar characters, great storytelling and easter eggs. So take a taste of what awaits you at the Dixie Pig.
Andy Burns: As a big Dark Tower fan, seeing a whole new side of Eddie Dean was a real gift, so thank you for that. Could you talk a little about how this particular series came into being?
Peter David: I’m reasonably sure it came into being because of me. I was in Jacksonville, Florida, a year and a half ago, recovering from a stroke, and Steve was kind enough to come visit me. He drove five hours to come up and spend an hour and a half at the facility with me. And while he was there, I told him–quite honestly–that fans kept asking when we were going to stop adapting book two. That they were anxious to see Eddie Dean and the others and continue Roland’s adventures. And Steve said, “Really?” And I said “Yeah.” And Steve said, “We should do that, then.” A month later I got a call from my former editor Bill Rosemann and he said, “Guess what? We’re back!” So thank God I had a stroke!
Andy Burns: One aspect of the first issue I really enjoyed was that a newcomer could pick up the issue and be immediately engaged, while Dark Tower devotees get to see familiar places or concepts. How different is the approach to this series from previous Dark Tower comics?
Peter David: We have a different POV narrator. Eddie Dean himself is our first person speaker, which only made sense to me. I figured it was absurd to have the MidWorld narrator when we’re on our own world, but a first person narrator had become SOP, so I turned the job over to Eddie. It’s his story, after all.
Andy Burns: Could you give us some details on the method of co-writing you and Robin Furth utilize – what’s collaboration and what’s solo?
Peter David: Robin plots the story out and circulates it to everyone who comments on it. Then I get the art pages and write the script.
Andy Burns: Since you’re giving a more thorough backstory to Eddie Dean than there is in the novels (at least in terms of travelling to his youth), how closely involved is Stephen King when determining Eddie’s history? Did he share ideas with you and Robin, veto anything, etc?
Peter David: Well, if it weren’t for Stephen, we wouldn’t be doing this, so I’d say he’s pretty involved. On an issue by issue basis I would suspect he’s more involved with Robin than me.
Andy Burns: As we know with the Dark Tower, there are other worlds than these – and more characters as well. Who are you looking forward to writing as this journey continues?
Peter David: I’m just happy to have the work.
Thanks to Peter David for taking the time to talk to Biff Bam Pop, and thanks to Chris D’Lando for making it happen! And now, here’s a preview of issue 2 of The Dark Tower: The Drawing of the Three – The Prisoner