C2E2 Interview: Peter David On The End Of ‘X-Factor’

This September, “X-Factor” is finished. During C2E2 over the weekend, Marvel announced that issue #262 under writer Peter David would be the last of the long-running title. Of all of the publisher’s mutant books in the wake of M-Day (has it been that long?) David’s “X-Factor” has survived and thrived under the weight of major events, a rotating stable of artists, and more importantly, the fickleness of a comic market that not be keen to support a series that was essentially an evolving, long-form mystery.

The road to the end begins this summer, and while Mr. David didn’t promise that all secrets would be revealed or anything as grand as all that, he does hint that there will be some finality to his run–and as a reader, I can only hope that mutant sometimes detective Jamie Madrox and mystery girl Lyla Miller will arrive at the end of all of their enigmas.

After the jump, Mr. David offered us a few words on his time with the book, and bringing it to this seemingly sudden finale.

MTV Geek: First, if you don’t mind my asking for the fans and for myself, how is your recovery coming along? Is there anything we can do to help?

Peter David: Buy my books. It’s really that simple. Right now my major issue is paying medical bills, and fans can help with that by buying my books. Particularly those published by Crazy 8 Press (www.crazy8press.com). Buying those books would be of tremendous help and you’ll have fun, too!

Geek: So why bring “X-Factor” to an end after all these years?

PD: It seemed time. The “Hell On Earth” war was such a major storyline that somehow it seemed to be a logical concluding point because everything preceding had basically built up to it.

Geek: Set the scene for us–eight years ago, you were thinking about what would happen next with Jamie Madrox and then dot dot dot, “X-Factor” happened?

PD: I wasn’t thinking about Madrox at all. Editor Andy Schmidt was thinking about him and contacted me about the prospect of writing a comic series about Madrox becoming a private detective. It all just kind of built from there.

Geek: Jamie’s been the heart and the head of the series, and we’ve seen him battered, bruised, tossed through time, and fall in and out of love. Layla, that odd, is kind of its soul. Could you talk a little about this dynamic? Am I off-target here?

PD: It’s very much been Jamie and Layla’s story. It just kind of developed that way. It wasn’t anything I really expected; it just sort of happened.

Geek: You’ve enjoyed what’s arguably one of the most stable corners of the Marvel U–events aside, “X-Factor” usually got to be “X-Factor.” How does a book survive the tumultuous upheavals of the Marvel U?

PD: I honestly don’t know. I suppose it was because we had a solid band of readers sticking with us all this time.

Geek: Is “X-Factor” a book that could even support an ending? One of the great virtues of the series is that it’s always pushing forward towards the next question, the next reveal. It seems like the end of “X-Factor” would be the end of all the questions.

PD: You’d think that, wouldn’t you. But I think it can. At least that’s what I’m trying to accomplish.

Geek: As a fan, there’s a special kind of pang to seeing one of your favorite books, written by one of your favorite writers end. As a writer, what’s going on in your head?<

PD: Finishing the stories on deadline.

Geek: Which of the characters are you going to miss the most?

PD: I hope it doesn’t sound lame to say that I’d miss them all. During the run of the series, whoever I was writing at the time was my favorite.

Geek: Care to talk about what you’re working on next?

David: Love to tell you; not allowed.

“X-Factor” #262 will be available in September.