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'A Man Among Ye' Interview: It's Pirate's Life For Her!

Interview by Troy-Jeffrey Allen

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High adventure.

High seas.

A legendary treasure!

From the writer of TaarnaHarley Quinn, and Wonder Woman Evolution comes A Man Among Ye (MAR200045), a pirate tale that brings the adventures of Anne Bonny and Mary Read straight out of history and into comic books! Set during a time when women were considered bad luck to sail with, but it turns out that they actually made some of the best pirates!  

In the following interview, writer Stephanie Phillips hoists the skull and crossbones, draws her cutlass, and takes us on a treasure hunt!   

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So, A Man Among Ye, catch us up to speed. What is the story behind it?

The story is based on a true account of two female pirates, Anne Bonny and Mary Read. While the story is based in truth, the accounts about these female pirates are largely unreliable and conflicting, so part of the fun is getting to build a mythology for Anne and Mary in the same way we have so much lore surrounding male pirates, like Blackbeard. Our story is about the reason why these women were drawn to a life of piracy as they get their own crew of female pirates together in order to help thwart the crown’s efforts to capture, kill, and even bribe pirates to give up a life at sea.

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Tell us about Pirate Queen Anne Bonny. Why do we follow her through this story?

There are so many accounts of male pirates and their exploits. I wanted to give that same larger-than-life treatment to female characters and build mythology surrounding female pirates in the same way that we see pirate lore constructed around male figures. 

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What made you want to set this during the last era of piracy?

I think it’s an interesting time period. The golden age of pirates is what we typically see in movies and TV shows, but this era has the crown actually offering a financial incentive to pirates. The deal was to give up a life of piracy and you’d get land and resources to start a new life. Most people were taking the deal, as many pirates were really drawn to piracy out of desperation – needing to make a living wage and most other positions, especially on board a ship, were exploitative of their workforces. I think this last era of piracy really showcases the reasons why people were drawn to that life in the first place, and it highlights even more why a woman would choose to fly under a black flag. This life offered a chance at freedom that was not typically afforded to women. In the waning days of pirates, we see Anne holding desperately to that life she’s created for herself and willing to die to preserve it.

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Do you play with the time elements visually?

While there’s definitely a lot of fiction involved in the stories we are telling about Anne and Mary, the setting and supporting cast are largely real. We do the best we can to create an accurate setting for the characters, and Jack Rackham and Woodes Rogers, as well and their roles and issues, are historically accurate with a dash of drama added, of course.

So, how did you get involved with Josh George and John Kalisz?

I was familiar with both Josh and John prior to working on the series and thought they were both really talented. It just happened to work out that both were available and interested in the project, and I think stylistically it’s been a great fit working with them. 

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Looking forward, what can readers expect from A Man Among Ye?

Issue #8 is the end of the series, so, at least for now, this is the end of the road (seas?) for our pirates. Hopefully, readers enjoy the ending we have given to both Mary and Anne.

In terms of audience, who is A Man Among Ye for?

Anyone with an interest in historical fiction or action comics. The series has plenty of action and a really diverse cast that proved to be lots of fun to write.

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Since it is Women in Comics Month, can you recommend another female creator that readers should follow?

It’s really neat that my first thought with this question is that it’s difficult to choose because there are so many great female artists and writers working at the moment. Kami Garcia is great and I really enjoyed her work on Joker/Harley: Criminal Sanity with artists Mike Mayhew and Mico Suayan. Tina Howard just started a run on Catwoman with artist Nico Leon that has been wonderful so far. And I’m always excited to pick up anything by artists Skylar Partridge, Bilquis Evely, Joelle Jones, and Laura Braga.

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A Man Among Ye (SEP200089) is available at comic shops now. Reserve your copy today using PREVIEWSworld Pullbox!

Keep an eye on PREVIEWSworld.com's TwitterFacebookYouTube, or Instagram for more from BOOM! Studios. 

IMAGE COMICS
A MAN AMONG YE TP VOL 01
(W) Stephanie Phillips (A/CA) Craig Cermak
High adventure on the high seas in the waning days of piracy, when men were men, and the best pirates were...women? Writer STEPHANIE PHILLIPS (Butcher of Paris, Descendent) and artist CRAIG CERMAK (Red Team, Voltron) bring to life the tale of Anne Bonny and Mary Read as they hoist the skull and crossbones, draw cutlasses, and seek a treasure that will make them legends. In an era where sailing with women was thought to be bad luck, Anne and Mary might just be the only women capable of saving the pirates' way of life. Collects A MAN AMONG YE #1-4.
In Shops: Feb 10, 2021
SRP: $14.99
PREVIEWS Page #44

IMAGE COMICS
A MAN AMONG YE TP VOL 02
(W) Stephanie Phillips (A) Josh George, John Kalisz (CA) Craig Cermak
Pirate queen Anne Bonny is back with her crew of lady buccaneers after a harrowing escape from a Caribbean prison! But can they find a safe haven on land or sea after Calico Jack Rackham's betrayal and the governor's promise to hunt down and execute Anne?
A MAN AMONG YE makes a splash as this action-packed second volume from writer STEPHANIE PHILLIPS (Harley Quinn) and artist JOSH GEORGE (2000AD Future Shock, Grimm Tales of Terror) hits the high seas!
Collects A MAN AMONG YE #5-8
In Shops: Mar 16, 2022
SRP: $16.99
PREVIEWS Page #55

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Troy-Jeffrey Allen is the producer and co-host of PREVIEWSworld Weekly. His comics work includes MF DOOM: All Caps, Public Enemy's Apocalpyse '91, Fight of the Century, the Harvey Award-nominated District Comics, and the Ringo Award-nominated Magic Bullet.

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