Phil Hester, the writer who last year re-launched Top Cow’s “The Darkness” to much critical and commercial success, has teamed with superstar Michael Avon Oeming on a new Darkness one-shot called “Lodbrok’s Hand.” An artist himself, Hester tailors his scripts to the strengths of the illustrator he’s working with, and with that in mind, “Lodbrok’s Hand” does not follow the present Darkness wielder, Jackie Estacado, but rather one from a pseudo-historical Viking era. CBR News caught up with Hester to talk about the project.
“The Darkness: Lodbrok’s Hand” tells the story of a sea captain who makes a deal with the Darkness bearer of the time to help him seek out freedom for his enslaved village. The Darkness wielder does in fact free Lodbrok’s village, but he exacts a terrible price of Lodrbok in return. “Mike and I call this a ‘Frazetta Age’ story; it happens in a non-historical Viking setting, it’s really cooler than any real Viking tale ever could be. But it’s an out-and-out fantasy Viking story, with a ton of action and a ton of magic that Mike really just gets to cut loose on, and some actual moments of real horror and real pathos that I think we managed to squeeze out of it. I’m super proud of it, and I think he hit a home run with it.”
Hester and longtime “Witchblade” writer Ron Marz ran into Oeming at last year’s New York Comic-Con, and both were surprised to learn that the much sought after writer/artist of “The Mice Templar” and “Powers” had an opening in his schedule. “With someone as productive as Mike, you sort of assume that their dance card is full,” Hester told CBR. “Between ‘Mice Templar,’ ‘Powers,’ all of the various other writing gigs he has, you never think, ‘Well, what’s Mike Oeming doing, can I get Mike Oeming?’ because you don’t assume he’s on the market. So it was a real pleasant surprise to hear him looking for some gigs in New York.” READ MORE.