Interview: Scott Snyder Talks Dark Nights: Metal Aftermath Plus Big Details on Justice League

Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Dark Nights: Metal concluded this week. Batman, the Justice League, and their allies had their hands full in trying to save the world. It was a crazy, action-packed story that pulled out all the stops and also introduced new elements into the DC Universe.

If that wasn’t enough, something pretty big happened at the end. If you still haven’t read Dark Nights: Metal #6, there will be big spoilers below. There may also be some spoilers for what comes next from Snyder–Justice League: No Justice and Justice League.

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GManFromHeck: The end of Dark Nights: Metal #6 and breaking the Source Wall, this is obviously going to be a big focus for the DC Universe?

Scott Snyder: Yes, it is. I mean, it is sort of the starting point for No Justice, and it is sort of the major story engine for Justice League. So, it is a big deal to us.

Okay, so spoilers. When the Source Wall crumbles, we see a hand. Can you say if that’s a hand we may be familiar with? Is it a new hand or..?

Yeah, well it’s meant to be the hand, the Cronus of it essentially is saying, things have gotten bigger. I am welcoming you forward but beware what you might find. It’s meant to say, the mystery ended at the Source Wall, and now it’s saying it’s grander. It’s bigger. Come past the boundaries of your old universe into the new if you dare, and let’s see what we find.

Now, with the end of Dark Nights, with the ninth metal and the tenth, is this something that we’re gonna see throughout the rest of the DC Universe?

Yeah, yeah, Hawkman plays with that a lot. The new series with Robert Venditti and Bryan Hitch, it’s gonna be great. It marries like the cosmic Hawkman and the earthbound Hawkman and it shows why he’s kind of the greatest adventurer and explorer of history in the DC Universe.

It’s also in a bunch of the New Age of Heroes stuff and Sideways or whatever and we’re carrying it forward with Hawkgirl as well in Justice League. So, there’s a lot of the Nth Metal, Eighth Metal, Seventh Metal, all that kind of stuff, the Forge of Worlds who is the Forger? Is he coming back? All of that stuff kind of circulates in the different books.

So, now that you’re gonna be doing Justice League, are you accustomed to focusing on a team now versus just Batman because of Dark Nights since there was such a large cast?

Well, it’s sort of just Batman and his friends and all of that stuff. I feel like Batman is really the main character… No, he’s not. He’s not the main character. Ultimately, it really is something I’ve been building towards forever where I really just wanted to just sort of get away from the solo books. I love writing teams on American Vampire, I’ve done it in different books, I’ve done indie, but, I’ve never had the chance in the superhero world.

So, for me, this is really about showing my love for Martian Manhunter and Flash and Wonder Woman and Metal was sort of the primer where I could show you I know and love these characters too, but let me show you in Justice League how I can expand their mythologies.

So, each arc expands the mythologies, I’m totally spoiling it, of two characters. The first one expands Green Lantern and Flash. The second one, Aquaman and Wonder Woman, the third one is Superman and Batman and the last one is a giant Martian Manhunter kind of explosion of goodness. We’re gonna go out, crazy.

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Is it hard to not make Batman the center because he means so much to you?

Yes and no. He still kind of the center in his own mind, which I think is the best part. Where he’s always like, I’ll handle that and they’re like, no, you won’t. So, there’s kind of like the crazy uncle aspect to him which I love where he’s almost like, he thinks he’s the center of the universe and yet they keep reminding him he’s not. So, I love that.

Can you tell us anything about the threat in No Justice?

Yeah, No Justice is Brainiac based, but it really is bigger. It’s sort of meant to show you that Brainiac is afraid of something that threaten Colu in the past and is almost sort of Kirby-esque in it’s sort of grandeur. We wanna show the universe is now become sort of the ocean.

If the DC Universe as you knew it is a fishbowl, it just got poured into the ocean that is the new DC Universe. So, the threats in No Justice are so big and so nutty, we want you to feel like your heroes are infinitesimal. How are they ever gonna conquer this and that is still just the beginning of what’s coming on the other side. We haven’t even been to the other side of the source wall, so…

And that was a quote from Dark Nights #6.

Yeah.

About the ocean.

Right. That is. I wrote that quote though so I can quote myself. I feel like I can quote myself.

Do you plan on journeying to the other side of the Source Wall anytime soon or is the idea something you don’t want to use right away?

Justice League, brother. Justice League is all about it. Justice League is all about something coming from the other side of the wall that might be the thing that made the wall and made the whole DC Universe and we don’t know what it is and the League and the Legion of Doom are at odds about what it might be and that’s it.

It’s about human nature and it is literally the most personal book I could write. It’s about being a middle aged dude or whatever, being a dad and a husband and getting older and saying, you are a tiny thing you realize as you get older. You’re a small thing that has a very brief moment on this planet. Are you humble and think that your actions are part of a tradition and a generational sort of story that’s being told or are you the Legion of Doom and you say, f*ck that, I’m getting mine. I live for a very short period of time. I want everything. Let me get everything. That’s me and that’s the two poles.

So, it’s a deeply personal story, but it’s also the most bonkers epic carnivalesque kaleidoscopic opus that I’ve ever done, easily. I promise you will read it and be like, Metal was the warm up.

When the source wall crumbled, what happened to all the people that were stuck on the Wall? Are they crumbled?

You know, you’re gonna have to wait and see. They literally show up in issue three so you’ll have to wait and see who they are, what they are. Yeah, no, I’m gonna address all of it, don’t worry.

Okay, I’m not an expert on the Source Wall.

Nobody is an expert on the Source Wall. The Source Wall is like a vague mystery, but we’ve defined it. I have a whole story about why it was created, who’s in it, what the point was and what happened before it and after it. That’s Justice League, you gotta pick it up.

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Okay, now in No Surrender, the Justice League is teaming with a lot of villains and questionable characters that they normally haven’t worked with.

No Justice.

No Justice!

No Surrender is some other company. I have no idea. Whatever.

Ha ha. “No Surrender.” That’s Corey Hart song, I think.

Right. Exactly, that’s what you meant.

Yeah.

In that song…

Sunglasses at Night.”

Exactly.

Okay, so No Justice

It’s still a great Bruce Springsteen song. Yes. In that series, heroes team with other villains, but…

Is that just gonna be for that series? For the mini-series, and how is that gonna be addressed in Justice League?

Yes. Basically, No Justice is about learning you need to fight in new formations because the threats you’re facing are bigger and crazier and different than you ever expected because of what happened in Metal. So, No Justice is the training ground where they realize with repercussions, we need to form new teams and be bigger.

Will any of those villains get a Get-out-of-jail-free card for their time served?

Some and some will get worse. I feel like, Luthor, a couple of them come out of it realizing, I’m meant to be a bad guy. What the hell am I doing being a good guy? Like, this is my life. This is who I am. I’m gonna go worse, be badder, so, you’ll see both.

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Okay, so you’ve pumped up everything a lot. I think more than enough to get everyone to read it, but what’s your last reason why everyone should be excited about your Justice League?

Honestly, I always approach it the same way which is, I try to pretend that none of you out there exist. I try to assume that you guys have liked our stuff because I like the same things you do, meaning I wouldn’t do Justice League if I didn’t love these characters deeply. I’ve done enough at DC that I can basically say, I wanna go to indie stuff or I wanna take two years off or the only reason to do Justice League is because I’ve been dying to get my hands on these characters and the reason I’ve been dying to get my hands on them is because I grew up with them.

So, I try and sort of assume that what I love, you love and from that point forward I pretend you don’t exist and just say, I’m gonna tell the craziest, biggest story and hope you’re along for the ride and you like it.

My reason to pick it up is because I f*cking love this story. I mean it. To me this is my best superhero stuff. I’m really proud of it. I love the art. I love where we’re headed. We’re going crazy space, pirate ship battles, graveyards of gods, spectrums you didn’t know existed, and the emotional stuff like Darkseid’s father, just crazy, crazy, sh*t. This is my love letter to everything I love in comics and it’s a personal story about why that stuff matters as you get older.

And you finally got Jimmy. Jimmy Chung.

I did. I did. I stole him from Marvel. Evil. No, I didn’t. I just went to him and was like, here’s the story and he’s like, just do it and that was it and he’s great. So he’s good.

Dark Nights: Metal #6 is on sale now. Iustice League: No Justice #1 (with art by Francis Manapul) is on sale May 9.

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