Q&A with Pat Shand + Issue #3 Cover

Thanks to everyone for submitting questions for CharmedComicFan10's Q&A with Pat Shand. Below you can read Pat's answers and a have an exclusive first look at the stunning new cover for issue #3.


CCF: Are you planning to make Season 10 new reader friendly?
  • PS: We’re kind of jumping right into the story. However, what I always think about is this: “My family supports me in my writing – will they be able to read and understand this without prior knowledge?” So I always strive to have some kind of in for the uninitiated, even if it isn’t all explained in the first few pages of #1. The reality of the situation is that this is the tenth season of a story with a huge fanbase, so I have to re-introduce a lot of characters that have already been established without making the longtime fans feel like we’re spending too much time retreading what they already know.
CCF: How is it working with Paul Ruditis? What is the process you follow to finalize the script for an issue?
  • PS: Paul is awesome. He knows more about Charmed than anyone on the planet. He’s walked the line between letting me go crazy with the ideas of what I want the season to be while helping me keep it consistent with the Charmed voice. Paul is a rarity, in that he both cares passionately and approaches editorial with tact, which I think is helping me deliver the best story possible.
  • My process differs every time. Sometimes, I pop the outline for the issue into a document and break it down page by page. Sometimes, I begin writing the dialogue for a conversation in the middle of an issue. Sometimes I write the end first. Each beast is different. After it’s written, I submit it to Paul. He gives me notes, I apply ‘em. Paul sends it to CBS, and they either give notes or approve. And then, Paul and I get the art team working on it.
CCF: Fans have a very positive response to the art previews from Elisa Feliz and Valentina Cuomo. Assuming the interior art for the first issue is now complete can you share your thoughts about it and how it translates your writing?
  • PS: The first issue is done, yeah. We’re well into the second. Elisa and Valentina are balancing likeness and their own styles in a way that makes me all warm inside. I was Valentina’s editor when she colored the 2014 annual for Grimm Fairy Tales, and from then, I knew her pastel, warm, bright colors would be ideal for Charmed. Elisa’s my favorite penciller who has worked on the title so far, so I’m just really digging it. The intention is to keep them on as the main art team for the season. Naturally, since an uninterrupted 24 issue run is so, so rare in modern comics, I’m structuring the season to have some one-off stories that still play into what I’m doing with the overall arc but are independent enough that a different art team can tackle those while Valentina and Elisa cover the main story. That’ll be probably #6 and #7, respectively titled “Will o’ the Witch” and “The Reason.”
CCF: What is the time gap between the events of Season 9 #24 and Season 10 #1?
  • PS: A year, give or take. The first issue takes place over a three-month period, so I’ll noncommittally say “about a year.”
CCF: If you could sum up what you are going to explore with each sister this season, using one word or one sentence each, what would they be?
  • PS: Let’s do a close interview after the season is done. I don’t want to spoil this now. I feel like maybe I already said too much on Tumblr. Each sister is going through something important to me, something emblematic of things I believe beyond the confines of Charmed and these characters.
CCF: I’m sure you’ve realized by now that everyone is curious to find out more about Prue. “Is she dead, alive or immortal?”“ Can she use her past powers?” “What are her new powers?” I know you can’t answer most questions about Prue but what can you tell us about her new role and how she deals with it? Has she accepted it or will she struggle?
  • PS: Even when you embrace power, there is weight to it. She’s struggling with find out who she is, what she is, and how that works in context of her being a Halliwell.
CCF: Is Cole’s return complicating Phoebe’s life and will he be a big part of her storyline this season? Knowing their history, will Coop feel threatened by Cole and his love for Phoebe?
  • PS: Does Coop feel threatened? Probably not, no. Does he love that Cole is hanging around? Probably not, no. However, Coop’s feelings about Cole as Phoebe’s ex and Cole as a “person” are complicated and conflicting things, and a lot of Coop’s arc this season will be in response to something that Cole does.
  • As far as complicating Phoebe’s life… I think, of all the sisters, she’s never had an easily charted love life. Or, really, life life.
CCF: You’ve mentioned the season will focus on the 4 sisters. How do you plan to evolve their bond and more specifically how is the relationship between Prue and Paige progressing?
  • PS: “Evolve” is a word with specific connotations that I don’t want to commit to yet. Prue’s relationship with her sisters is a huge part of not only all four of their character arcs, but of the season’s storyline.
CCF: You’ve also mentioned Season 10 will focus on demons. Last season Paul expanded the mythos behind witches. Are you planning to do the same for demons?
  • PS: No, not exactly. There will be some new aspects introduced. For instance, you guys know that the first issue focuses on the Old Ones… but I think there might even be an expectation that they’re going to be THE story this season, which just isn’t the case. We will delve into aspects of demonology that we haven’t seen explored in Charmed, but it’s all a catalyst for character and theme. I’ll develop mythology when I can and where it feels organic, but I do think there is something to be said for a mysterious villain whose origin is only seen through dark, inky clouds.
CCF: The summary for issue #1 reveals the introduction of the Old Ones. Can you tease what your take on them will be? Did you decide to introduce the Old Ones for The Charmed Ones to be against an enemy that could potentially be more dangerous than The Source or Neena?
  • PS: No comment. That answer will be answered on October 8th, pretty definitively.
CCF: Fans were excited to know that you plan to make season 10 darker. How are you approaching this direction? Will it be through the relationships between the characters or through the magical problems and enemies they will have to face?
  • PS: Both. The darkness of my favorite seasons of Charmed was pervasive, both in character arc and the demonic threats they faced. However, we’ve got leprechauns in the second issue, so it’s still going to be a fun thing with comedic elements. For me, dark doesn’t necessarily mean gritty and serious and humorless. It’s more in the approach to the story, the stuff that dwells under the surface. To me, the scariest and most potent storytelling is the villain we can care for, the villain that makes us question our choices, either in morality or how to deal with them. Gideon is a captivating villain. Cole, during his time(s) as a moustache-twirler, as a captivating villain. Those were dark stories, and I’m aiming for that kind of mood. I want to scare you one minute, make you laugh the next, and the move you by the time the story is done.
CCF: Which secondary character (as in character who isn't a Halliwell sister) have you enjoyed writing most?
  • PS: Cole.
CCF: Are there any plans for a special themed issue (Christmas themed for example) or for a holiday or trip the sisters plan to make? Also, will One-Shot issues be back this season?
  • PS: There are currently no definitive plans, but we talk about things. Who knows? Honestly, not me.