Marvel.com: How did Kitty Pryde’s new look come about in ULTIMATE COMICS X-MEN?
Brian Wood: Kitty's new costume was an idea of mine that Jorge Molina kindly made into reality, and it’s entirely about supporting events in the story. It's part of Kitty's new no-hiding, no-label, no-codename philosophy—almost an anti-costume. For her to have anything else would be in opposition to the story. I generally like costumes when they feel real and are practical, that look like human hands made them. I don't have total control over them, of course, these aren't my characters, but whenever possible that's the approach I'll take.
Marvel.com: where does Kitty's leadership ability come from, in terms of your own experiences or research? What makes her a good leader?
Brian Wood: She makes herself a good leader. At first, she decides this is what she wants and then goes out and literally takes it; she aggressively becomes this mutant revolutionary, this freedom fighter. And I'm using those terms in an old school, 20th century way, shades of Che [Guevara] and of Malcolm X—people out to reclaim power from the occupiers, nothing more. And before anyone starts getting alarmed at those references, they’re not meant to be literal.
Marvel.com: What sorts of threat will we be seeing in the months to come in ULTIMATE COMICS X-MEN? And what role will the book play in Divided We Fall?
Brian Wood: The threat is there. Genocide is literally being committed on the mutant population; it doesn't get any [direr] than that. This is the battle Kitty and Co. have to wage, one for literal survival. How that fits in with the [Divided We Fall] events overall, like in ULTIMATE COMICS ULTIMATES, is both books are telling the same narrative. [ULTIMATES writer] Sam [Humphries] has the job describing the epic, world-building struggle and the X-Men are the human face of that, the grounded, emotional angle.
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