The news that the Image Comics’ series Deadly Class was being adapted for television was not a huge surprise. Other than being brilliantly paced and filled with fantastic, engaging characters, it has a premise that is ripe for the live action treatment. After all, we have a long tradition of loving entertainment that involves teenagers battling to the death. We are so pumped for this TV series we obviously had to reach out to the writer and co-creator of the series, Rick Remender, to get the inside scoop on all things Deadly Class.
The big news about the television series was the involvement of The Russo Brothers, the guys behind Captain America: The Winter Solider and Captain America: Civil War; the pair actually came onboard midway through this new project, while Remender and crew we’re already working with Sony. “We were developing it at Sony when the Russo’s production company contacted me,” Remender told us. “I went out and met with them and then we all did everything we could to put the team together. I couldn’t respect them more. Their episodes of Arrested Development and Community stand as some of my favorite television of all time, and their Captain America movies are wonderful.”
Now, with Sony pushing the project through and heavyweights like the Russos involved, there could be some concern that the shape of the concept might change a little, especially when it comes to the era. Setting a TV series in ’80s is surely more complicated than setting one nowadays, right? “There’s no changing the era,” Remender assured us. “The book is set when I was in high school because I can authentically capture that. I wouldn’t feel comfortable writing about the teen experience in the modern era. There are universal themes that should be identifiable and authentic to all generations, but the look, music, and climate is specific to when I was a kid.” Rest easy, Deadly Class fans, the series is staying in the late ’80s.
Those authentic and identifiable themes Remender mentions often take form in the shape of alienation. Our core group of characters are struggling to find their place in the world, struggling to be themselves and still find a place to belong. “Certainly finding where you belong is a huge part of the book,” Remender said. “Feelings of alienation run through most of the characters. Marcus is the outsider we all were at least one point in our lives, the new kid in a new school trying to make connections in the vicious world of adolescent cliques.” Of course, for Marcus, many of these cliques are out to kill him. Hopefully that’s a tad different than most of your high school experiences.
One of the most exciting bits of news that came along with the announcement of the series was that Rick Remender would we working as a co-writer and executive producer on the show. Knowing one of the creators is involved is very comforting for us fans. Artist Wes Craig and Remender have crafted such a beautiful and unique world, we’d hate to see that dumbed down for television.
“I plan on continuing to write for it past the pilot and as [executive producer] I’ll be very involved,” Remender told us. “The great team at Sony have been very welcoming and enthusiastic. Frankly, the entire development has been a dream so far. Everyone wants to capture what Wes [Craig] and I did in the book. It’s going to be very true to the source.”
It’s a good time to be a fan of Deadly Class. If you’re not reading the Image Comics series, change that right now. It’s one of the best books out there and the gorgeous Wes Craig art alone makes it worth your time. Don’t just wait for the TV series, read a comic book. You’ll thank us later.
Images: Image Comics