Writer and illustrator Ed Piskor blew the comics community away with his comprehensive remix of X-Men history in the first two volumes of X-Men: Grand Design. Now, the auteur is ready to wrap up his mutant saga with X-Men: Grand Design – X-Tinction #1 and 2. The two issues promise Piskor’s take on classic X-Men stories like “Mutant Massacre” and “X-Tinction Agenda,” as well as a conclusion you’ll never see in Marvel’s ongoing X-Men comics.
As AiPT! spoke to Piskor ahead of the release of X-Men: Grand Design #1, now felt like the perfect time to have a follow-up chat about the work that went into the final volume of this very unique X-series, as well as what’s next for the creator.
AiPT!: First, congratulations on finishing all of X-Men: Grand Design. In a Twitter post you said it took a little over 1,000 days of work. How does it feel to be finished with it all?
Ed Piskor: Pretty good. I was itching to get back to my own stuff, so after putting the final nail in the X-Men work I immediately got to work on my next book. I thank Marvel for financing these next few years of independent comix making.
A little more than 1,000 days of work. Just that logo took a whole day, to provide some context for the stack. pic.twitter.com/tku0ygAMdA
— Ed Piskor (@EdPiskor) March 25, 2019
AiPT!: On average, how long did it take to complete a single page of Grand Design?
Piskor: Probably three days.
AiPT!: Which X-Men character did you have the most fun drawing?
Piskor: There aren’t many standouts. I can tell you that Cameron Hodge was the guy I was least looking forward to drawing.
AiPT!: The final installments of X-Men: Grand Design – X-Tinction focus on the later stories of Chris Claremont’s first X-Men run. When re-reading those comics, was there anything in them you came to appreciate more as an older reader?
Piskor: Hmmmm. I think they’re the best Marc Silvestri and Jim Lee comics money can buy. The stories are just dumb fun, though. “Pulp” in the most joyous sense of the word.
AiPT!: And as an X-Men fan, is there a character you came to appreciate a lot more after working on X-Men: Grand Design?
Piskor: I think I identified with Cyclops more than I thought I would have. I think this might mean I’m becoming older and more of a nerdy square.
AiPT!: You’ve said before that X-Men: Grand Design pretty much just covers about 280 issues of X-Men. How did you approach crafting a conclusion to your X-Men story knowing that these characters’ adventures obviously continued beyond Claremont’s run?
Piskor: You’ll have to see how I finished things off in X-Tinction. The ending was something I had in mind almost the whole time.
AiPT!: Of the three X-eras you covered, which was the most fun to work on?
Piskor: The last two for different reasons. Second Genesis because it’s the best material from any X-Men comic. X-Tinction because it was my X-Men, the era where I was pulling those books off the spinner rack each month at the local drug store.
AiPT!: Will the eventual X-Tinction collection feature a re-colored comic like the previous two Treasury Editions?
Piskor: Yep. Uncanny X-Men #268. The issue with Captain America and Black Widow. It’s the closest to a standalone comic from that late period.
AiPT!: Would you be open to working with Marvel again on another project?
Piskor: Sure. Why not. I don’t know what it would be though.
AiPT!: After completing a project as massive as X-Men: Grand Design, do you like to take some time off or do you jump right into your next project?
Piskor: Grinding away on my next comic as I type this. I’m built to make comics and wouldn’t know what else to do with my time.
AiPT!: We wouldn’t have it any other way! Thanks for taking the time to chat, Ed!
X-Men: Grand Design – X-Tinction #1 goes on sale May 29 and X-Tinction #2 will be available June 19.