Q&A: Patton Oswalt on His “Serenity” Comic Book

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Besides his career as an actor and comedian, Patton Oswalt has written a handful of comic books. His latest, coming out later this year, will be a Serenity one-shot, drawn by Patric Reynolds, focusing on Alan Tudyk’s character Wash from Joss Whedon’s space western. (The image you’re seeing below is the public debut of Frank Stockton’s cover art.) Oswalt talked to us about the Wash story and his favorite comics right now.

Cover Image for Patton Oswalt's latest comic

So tell us all about the Serenity comic!

It’s kind of an elegy for the character of Wash. It’s three of his friends, who haven’t met before, old friends from before he was piloting the Firefly, and they’ve bought a new boat and they’re christening it Jetwash, and they’re telling stories about him before they christen it and float it out.

How did the comic book come about? Did you talk to Joss about it when you were working on Dollhouse?

Yeah, I mentioned it to him and we talked a little bit about it–I pitched him a few stories and that’s the one he liked.

What’s your connection to Wash? What do you like about him?

I just like the character. I thought he was sort of a connective tissue between the audience and this kind of crazy sci-fi world. He and Kaylee were so much more connected to their emotions as humans. They still kind of saw a lot of the wonder of the world that they worked in. So everyone was really sad when he died.

What do you think about the Buffy and Angel comics?

I haven’t read the Angel comics, but I really like the Buffy comics. They really are mapping out this crazy, epic eighth season, and I like the fact that since it’s comics they can do things on a huge scale.

Would you ever want to write a Dollhouse comic yourself?

Yeah, if I came up with a really good story–a story that I liked, like the Wash story–I would totally do that.

Have you talked to Alan Tudyk at all about Wash?

A little bit. I talked to him when we were working Dollhouse together–I didn’t really get too deep into how he felt about the character, but I imagined he really, really liked him.

Are you still doing stuff for Caprica?

Oh, yeah! We’re not shooting a season [right now], but there’s more stuff coming up. I hope they bring the show back–I think that’d be really fun.

What comics are you reading these days?

Oh, man, so much. Northlanders, The Unwritten, Daytripper, Ex Machina still. All of Warren Ellis’s new stuff–Captain Swing and Supergod. The good stuff! There’s a lot of good stuff out there. Every week there’s a nice stack.

Are there any comics people you’d really like to work with in the future? I saw Ivan Brunetti drew the cover of your album My Weakness Is Strong.

Yeah, I’d love to do more stuff with Ivan Brunetti. I’d love to do stuff with John K. Snyder III, Gabriel Bá, Ben Templesmith. I’d love to do more with the Luna Brothers–I did a little thing with them for Negative Burn. So there’s definitely plenty of artists, if I think of a really good story.

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