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Sam Kieth
Selected interviews.
You know what they say about a guy that draws big feet...
A chronological listing of Sam's comic, card, and film work.

Sam speaks about life, The Maxx, and his plans for the future.

Sam Stories available only on the Web.

"Maxx-imum Exposure: Sam Kieth discusses the current and future status of his latest creation"
by Andrew Steven Harris
(Originally printed in The Maxx #1/2, June 1993; reproduced by Chris Caughey)

Sam Kieth is taking his career to The Maxx. The busy artist, who has worked on such characters as Sandman, Wolverine, and The Hulk, has drawn rave reviews for the debut of his latest title. Before The Maxx debuted in Darker Image, Kieth took a few moments to talk about the strange details of his new series with Wizard writer Andrew S. Harris.

WIZARD: Tell us about this dream world that The Maxx lives in.

KIETH: The Other World will be like the Australian outback, but it will be like the Australian outback on acid or some other really weird drug. He has these hallucinations of these strange creatures, called Izzes, that look like lemmings would look if they ate things--they've got these big, nasty-looking teeth. They're just these little guys, though, but when they're all together they're pretty strong, and in this hallucination world in the dreamtime they're just starting to come out. They're sprouting from the ground with these hands that are trying to pull him down, and then eventually we get to see them.

WIZARD: What about the real world? How does he see it?

KIETH: Well, sometimes he sees things normally and sometimes he sees things differently from everyone else. It all has to do with this spiritual connection to the dream world. In the hallucination, the social worker is like a leopard queen--like a pre-historic woman wearing skintight outfits. He's wearing clothes, and she's naked as a jaybird. But in this dream world he's like her spirit animal, which is something that the Indians used to believe in. They believed that a spirit animal is sent to help a person out in their life--a coyote, a wolf, or a bear--and whenever you saw that type of animal (in real life) it would be significant. What animal The Maxx is is a mystery that we find out later on, but he thinks he's her spirit animal. He's afraid because he has these crazy dreams--he knows he's a normal guy under the mask, but he keeps thinking he's going to take off the mask and have the head of this animal.

WIZARD: So that's a mask, and not his real face that we've seen in the previews.

KIETH: Actually, it's not a real mask, either. Maxx's mask in the real world is alive, like a little creature sitting on his face, that's connected to the spirit world. Anytime that someone tries to take off the mask, it bites their fingers off. People think that it's Maxx biting the fingers off, but it's really the mask, and that's one of the reasons people think he's crazy.

WIZARD: What is that spike thing coming out of his hand? Is that a bone?

KIETH: That's his middle finger. It's a claw, so when he makes a fist he has to give you 'the finger' because he can't bend it. Good taste is long behind. Good taste is history (laughter). I'd like for him not to have it, but that's the way he is. He just happens to have a middle finger that's a claw. Hey, it could happen.

WIZARD: Is this book going to cross over with other Image titles?

KIETH: There's talk of involving the Youngblood characters, with them arriving and trying to find out if he should join their group. In his hallucination, he sees them as a tribe, with each one of them having a different animal head. One of the issues will also involve a character from Savage Dragon.

WIZARD: What other plans do you have for The Maxx?

KIETH: Well, there's an Image card series coming out that gives plenty of hints about his origins, and then there's this talent agency that handles characters, that kind of stuff, for Image. It might be making a Savage Dragon cartoon, and they're possibly talking about The Maxx, too. Rob Liefeld has got this Hollywood thing going, so we'll see what happens.

The Maxxis ™ and © Sam Kieth.
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