Beginning with issue #2, Simon Oliver, Robbi Rodriguez, and Rico Renzi’s Vertigo Comic “Collider” will get a new title. The crazy physics on the loose series with be called “FBP: Federal Bureau of Physics.” We spoke with Oliver about the decision to change the title, the selling-out of the series excellent first issue, and more.
Plus, get an exclusive look at the covers both issues #2 and #5!
MTV Geek: So why the title change? Were there concerns about the name “Collider,” or is it part of the developing plot of the series?
Simon Oliver: Ah you must mean, the book previously known as “Collider,” that’s now known as “FBP: The Federal Bureau of Physics,” or “FBP”? Yeah these things happen. I think most writers will agree that names are rarely easy, especially with ongoing series, you need to try and sum up the concept not just one story arc, but a whole bunch and put them under the umbrella of some kind of title.
Unfortunately at the eleventh hour someone else seemed to believe they had the name “Collider” staked out and had planted a flag in it before we did. To be honest I haven’t gotten that involved, I don’t know who they are, what their book is about, but I wish them well with it.
Am I 100 % happy about being told to change the name of our book when it’s already been printed and on the trucks? I’d be lying if I said yes. But it’s life, these things happen, you’ve got to learn to take them on the chin and move on.
But on the plus side having to change the name like that, makes you take a look your book, reassess it from a different angle, at a time that maybe you wouldn’t usually be doing that, really get back examine to the nuts and bolts, and kick the tires of what the books really all about.
At the end of the day, it may be a different title, but it’s the same team, and the same book.
Geek: Was “FBP: Federal Bureau of Physics” something you considered before the series came out?
Oliver: Something that happens when you’re working on a project is certain elements start to bob to the surface, things that you didn’t factor in, maybe because you and other people on the team are looking too closely and don’t take that step back.
The concept of the FBP was always there from day one, and I think we took it for granted, but as the book got passed around the editorial team at Vertigo, FBP was something that people latched onto. It really kind of nailed down the fact that this physics stuff was a part of the fabric of our everyday life in the book, that you could pick up the phone dial 911 and get police, fire, ambulance or physics.
So as much as we played around with other names, we always found ourselves coming back to “FBP.”
Geek: Is it something we’ll be seeing change on issues other than #5?
Oliver: We were given a few issues grace period to make the switch, but we figured what the hell, get it done and move on. We’re on a roll with the first issue, and the response to it, and by chance issue 2 happened to have the perfect cover to instigate the change.
“FBP” #2 Cover
That was the plan, but seeing as the first issue sold out and is going back to press, the new #1 cover will feature the new title. It will be kind of ultimate alternate-universe cover. How many other books have an alternate cover with a different name?
Geek: Congrats on the sell-out for #1, by the way. Do you credit this to the legions of crazed, teenage physics fans, or is it due to something else?
Oliver: First off I’m kind of floored by the fact it sold out. I think we all are.
We’ve all been working on the book for some time, and you get to a point where if you’re honest you think it’s good, and you’re excited about it, but you can’t quite see the wood for the trees.
So why did it sell out? As the writer I don’t know, and I’d honestly be afraid to guess in case I got it wrong.
But the art is a standout, I was down at Comic-Con, you see a lot of books, a lot of good and a lot of great art, there’s some stiff competition for the pull boxes out there. But our book, I think really jumps off the shelf. I think the art team of Robbi, Rico, and Nathan really hitting it out the park like they have, and pushing everyone’s idea of what a Vertigo book “should” look like, is a big draw.
“FBP” #5 Cover
Geek: Where is the newly not-named-Collider going in the first arc? What can you tell us about the destruction of the laws of reality, and how it’ll affect our heroes?
Oliver: The first arc deals with the betrayal and bigger story that lies at the heart of our Adam’s transformation from an underachiever into the “hero” of the story.
By the time he crawls from the rubble of the first arc nothing will ever be quite the same again, a fire’s been lit under him to uncover the truth, not only about recent events, but events that took place before he was born.
Geek: Any chance we could see a crossover between your book and Trillium? Time traveling science mysteries, perhaps?
Oliver: Hey it’s not something that’s come up, until you mentioned it, but why not, it would be interesting to see some tangential link between the two universes and let’s face it Jeff Lemire is a pretty huge talent.
“FBP” #2 will be out on 8/28. The reprint of #1 will be out in September.