8FOLD/ACRA: Jolt City # 4, The Green Knight-Darkhorse Team!

Tom Russell milos_parker at yahoo.com
Wed Dec 6 21:51:02 PST 2006

Martin Phipps wrote:

> Did they know the Acrabat was black?  I mean, these are dots that can
> be connected.

I'm not sure, actually-- I'd have to go back and re-read the Green
Knight miniseries, see what I wrote there.

The big thing is that, again, no one knew the race of the Green Knight
in the first place.  So it could be that he's just decided to come out
as black _now_.

At any rate, with Martin Rock's public stock falling drastically after
this issue, he's about the second-least-liked man in Jolt City, after
Samson Snapp.  Only conspiracy theorists are going to try and connect
him to the Green Knight.

> > I never created a character called Afro Lad.  Even I wouldn't have done
> > that.
> Eh?  Wasn't there an Afro Lad and Manga Girl mini a while back?  I
> think they both died in Journey into Irrelevancy.

Manga Girl and Fuzzboy-- and while Fuzzboy did have an afro, he wasn't
black-- or white for that matter.  Just a cartoon midget with a 'fro,
like a clown.

His evil alternate counterpart-- whose name escapes me, can anyone help
me out here?-- possessed the Afro of Darnation.

But no-- unless you count WikiBoy, who was black for about six lines in
a back-up story for LNH vol. 2 # 12, I don't think I've created any
black characters for the LNH since that damnable Ebonics Lad.

Oh, and Eugene Grimmer in the original NHOP run, but he was retconned

In the Eightfold Universe, the original Darkhorse and the second Green
Knight are, of course, both black men.  But I don't mention this unless
it's pertinent to the story.

For example, it's not until the sixth issue of the Green Knight mini
(IIRC) that any mention is made of Martin's race-- and that's because
the issue of race is relevant to his origin story.  It's been mentioned
more frequently in Jolt City and the Annual because his race is an
important part of his image, and the message he's trying to send.

With Darkhorse, it wasn't mentioned in his original appearance (in
SPEAK!), but rather in the ... third (?) issue of the Green Knight and
this most recent Jolt City.  And, again, that's only because it's
relevant in those places-- in the Green Knight, it recounts his origin,
and how he recieved his powers after converting to Black Islam.  This
was the same spot that introduced the mask statement.

In Jolt City # 4, of course, its relevance is more overt.  I don't
think I mentioned it in Journey Into... # 3, though a not-too-close
look at that issue will more-or-less reveal who the new Darkhorse is.

Speaking of Journey Into..., I think Fahrenheit Man (from # 2, the
Human Zeppelin story) is also African-American.  But it wasn't really
relevant there, and I'm not sure when it ever will be if there's any
future H.Z.&F.M. stories-- after all, the tone is too light to
accomodate any heavy themes.

The important thing for me is to only use the details that are relevant
to telling the story.  Some of my stories might be a little on the long
side, but I don't think there's any real fat to them.  I think they're
fairly tight, and when my plotting is slack, I think I make up for it
thematically and character-wise.

But I don't think I'm perfect by a long-shot, and I'm sure it will
please Martin to hear that the next two or three issues of Jolt City,
as a change of pace, will be much shorter than the last three.
Hopefully, I can accomplish something on par with issues 2-4.

I certainly don't want three new companions to the terrible first


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