Today we’re here with Michael Golden, comic book artist extraordinaire. I had the honor of getting a chance to chat with Michael at Wizard World Atlanta. Golden is responsible for co-creating some of the most beloved comic book characters, chiefly Rogue and Bucky O’Hare. Working with the two largest comic publishing houses, Marvel and DC, Golden became one of the most prolific mainstream comic book artists. For the discerning Star Wars fan, Golden is responsible for one of the most popular and well-known single issues of Marvel Star Wars comics, Star Wars #38: Riders in the Void.
Mandy B: Michael, what led to you working with Marvel to create Star Wars #38?
Michael Golden: Originally, Star Wars #38 was just me walking into Archie Goodwin’s office one day going, “you know I would like to do more science fiction,” because at that point, everything I did at Marvel was science fiction: I did Logan’s Run and was co-creator of the Micronauts. I liked doing science fiction and I was never much into superheroes. So, at that point, when I was in Archie Goodwin's office I said, "I got an idea for a story that I want to do," and we sort of simultaneously said we could attach it to Star Wars as a fill-in issue. I told Archie this story that I wanted to do and he loved it, so I sat down and drew it and Terry Austin inked it. After I had sat down to the drawing it, Archie actually called me and said they were actually going to use the story right away, so I finished up the pencils and it went off to Terry Austin to ink. I was originally supposed to write it as well, but because they needed it right away, Archie sat down and wrote it based on my notes.
MB: It was still your story, right?
MG: Oh, yeah! It was still my story, but he went in and made it work.
MB: I'm fascinated with this issue, Michael. In what’s referred to as the Star Wars Expanded Universe, a host of authors was tasked with creating an exceptionally long series called the New Jedi Order centered around a galactic threat that is seemingly modeled after some aspects* of Star Wars #38. Can you confirm that this was based on some elements of your story?
MG: I'm aware of that and everyone who's brought it up has been of the opinion that it was based loosely around my idea and what I created. And that's really cool! I don't even have a problem with that. I think it's great that the issue is acknowledged as one of the great standalone Star Wars storylines. It was always a science fiction story I wanted to do, so we just decided to make it a Star Wars story because we didn't have any other venue. Archie really liked the story and it ended up being one of the most popular issues from the Marvel round of Star Wars.
MB: I also think that your art was a breath of fresh air in the series. Compared to the previous artists, there is an obvious difference and unique quality to your work.
MG: Thank you, thank you very much!
MB: If Dark Horse, the current publishing house for Star Wars comics, asked you to come onboard and gave you carte blanche with regard to plot and characters, what would you like to do?
MG: I honestly don't have a preference. I like the Star Wars license. If somebody were to drop it in my lap, I would do it in a heartbeat. I think it's a really great property and I'm a hard-core science fiction guy. Though Star Wars is more science fiction adventure, whatever anybody wanted me to do, I would do it.
MB: Michael, thank you so much for your time! It was a pleasure to meet you!
MG: Thank you, and you as well!
*Author’s Note: What I’m referring to is the galactic threat known as the Yuuzhan Vong. Introduced as a force to be reckoned with in Vector Prime, the odd alien race seems similar to the mysterious “organic” aliens that Golden used as a part of his comic.