August 21, 2013

SDCC 2013 Part 4! Interview: Christopher Hastings!

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Written by: Dr. Bustos
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Hello! Welcome back to another interview from San Diego Comic-Con 2013! This time around we have the creator of Dr. McNinja, Christopher Hastings! Lots of exclamation points cause I’m a big fan of the series. So what kind of things do you talk about with someone who has ninjas, dinosaurs, giant robots, wizards, ghosts, and the like? Some of those very things, of course! Enough of this, let’s get to the interview!

Comic Attack: You currently have a giant robot currently in the storyline of Dr. McNinja, with Pacific Rim being something being talked about, what is your favorite giant robot?

Christopher Hastings: Yes! The giant robot made out of the city of Cumberland! I really, really loved my MegaZord toy as a kid. I remember my grandma bought it for me for my birthday a month in advance. So I waited anxiously to get it and then played with it way too long. Much longer than a growing person should play with Power Ranger toys.

CA: Dr. McNinja seems to be a great character for team-ups, what would be your dream team-up?

CH: A lot of people ask if Dr. McNinja can team-up with Deadpool. I think that’d be great but I doubt we’ll ever get to do it, legally. I think the next time I write Deadpool I’m going to ask the artist to sneak in a ninja doctor into the background.

CA: Speaking of Deadpool, I noticed in your A+X story, Deadpool uses Hulk Hands a toy we have here. Isn’t it messed up for the Marvel Universe to have toy hands of that guy?

CH: Yeah, I know right? I noticed that too, people in that world wear things like Spider-Man shirts, those are obviously unlicensed. Spidey and Hulk don’t get money from those things. Yeah, Hulk is known for devastation, he’s a monster, so it seems like making Hitler Hands in our world.

CA: You’ve had vampires, ghosts, and zombies in the series, which is the best undead and which is the worst?

CH: How should I quantify that? Personal taste? Or which would be the best or worst to run into?

CA: Let’s go with personal taste and then to run into.

CH: My favorite are ghosts, I just think ghosts are fun. I used to really love vampires as a teenager. I worked really hard to make a vampire lord for Dungeons and Dragons. I made him really overpowered and my friends hated me for using him. I used to play as his assistant during the day and at night, I’d play as him, it was goofy. But I just really like ghosts right now. The ghost wizard I had in the comic is inspired by my wife’s grandmother’s house. We went over there for Halloween and she had these little ghost wizards and witches hanging from trees. I was like “What is this? A ghost wizard?” I just loved it so they went into the comic. I’m just so sick of zombies, also they seem like they’d be the worst thing to run into, because they are obviously devastating. At least vampires want to kiss you first.

CA: You have the Ghostbusters as the mantra needed for McNinja to punch ghosts. What would you say is the most influential piece of pop culture in your life?

CH: 80s action movies, definitely. Arnold Schwarzenegger movies. Commando has the biggest influence. I have a French Commando poster in my home.

CA: You have really intricate story lines going on, do you have a wall that you use to keep reference for to keep all the details?

CH: No, I just remember all of it. I did have to make a little chart to keep all the alternate time lines to make sure how they worked. I figured that if I needed this then the audience could use it too. I was able to avoid a terrible time travel mistake because I wrote that down, I was going to have a future Dr. McNinja come in but that doesn’t work with how it happens.

CA: If you could get a Dr. McNinja toy or toyline what would you want for it?

CH: Oh man! I would love for there to be a NASA space shuttle, just a normal one that you could put a little Chuck Goodrich and Dr. McNinja in there.

CA: Can you give us any glimpses for future stuff in the series?

CH: I finally introduced the president in the Dr. McNinja universe. We will be seeing a lot more of her. My plans were to focus on what the presidency is like in that universe and I realized we should introduce her before that story so she doesn’t come out of nowhere. She was an old submarine commander, is it a captain? Whatever the title is, she piloted the submarine. She’s a war hero.

CA: There has been a Dr. McNinja video game, can you tell us about that? Also, what would be your dream video game for the series?

CH: Yeah, Fat Cat Studios, I licensed Dr. McNinja to them and I think we’re trying to do a Castlevania/Metroid game is what we’re going for. I think an RPG could be fun cause you could have all the fun dialogue.

CA: Alright, you’re going to ride off and save the day, what dinosaur do you ride in on?

CH: Pterodactyl, they can fly, but they are jerks. I’m glad they are all dead.

I enjoy talking ghosts, robots, and dinosaurs with people so interviews are a great way to get to talk with cool people about cool things. Hope you had fun reading that interview because I enjoyed interviewing Chris Hastings. I want to thank him and the folks at Dark Horse for letting me talk about all that goofy stuff. See you all next time for the final interview!

Alexander Bustos



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