Jeff Lemire knows a thing or two about small town living. He grew up in a tiny farming town in rural Canada, the setting for his phenomenal Top Shelf Productions series, Essex County. He understands that the importance of the story lies not in the action, the muscles, the violence or the explosions, but in the connections between characters and the growth and dynamics of a family. Now, he's bringing that sensibility to Smallville, Kansas for his take on DC Comics' Superboy, which will see its debut issue hit the shelves tomorrow November 3rd!
"He's a cool character," Lemire told us from the MTV Geek skybox at the 2010 New York Comic Con. "What I'm trying to do is sort of focus on small town life and sort of show what it would be like to have superheroes living and working in a rural setting." He continued, "I try to build a sense of family and community around him." Lemire went on to say that he chose to use Conner Kent's lab-created powers as a metaphor for being an awkward teenager. "It's really a book about community, family, and under all that I'm doing this overall story arc that's kind of a secret history of Smallville that's sort of this mysterious horror story."
Speaking of mysterious horror, Lemire is still plugging away at his very successful and very strange, post-apocalyptic series, Sweet Tooth. "It follows a young boy named Gus who has the features of deer antlers." He continued, "It sort of follows him as he goes from complete issolation to this dangerous world." Sweet Tooth is entering a serious climax as its three narrative threads collide at issue 17. "It's this big epic war in this world, building up and that's gonna end in issue 17 and then it'll be this new status quo for the book."
Lemire said that the success of Sweet Tooth is due to in no small part to his relationship with DC Comics, which led to him signing an exclusive deal with the publisher. "They did such a great job of marketing it and getting it out there and making the book a success, so I felt really comfortable with them already." He added, "It just seemed like a logical choice, to stay with them and kind of commit a little bit more with them, because they obviously put a commitment to me."
Check out a preview of Superboy #1!