FanExpo 2016: Joe Quesada Returns!

Joe Quesada is the man. As the former Editor in Chief and the current Chief Creative Officer of Marvel, he has helped to shape both the comic and cinematic Marvel Universes and that makes him a very busy man. Naturally, he does not have much time to travel, but this year he is making a rare appearance at FanExpo Canada in fact it’s his first in years! Of course, with Joe comes his classic Cup O’ Joe panel and tons of great anecdotes right from the Marvel offices; here’s a quick rundown of what happened when Quesada addressed his Canadian fans.

Quesada is not one to mince words, so he when he spent the beginning of the panel discussing his early years in the business, he was just as honest as anyone would expect. Aspiring comic creators, take note! Quesada said he learned by asking questions and when the time came, he collected a portfolio and started to work any connections he could. While he attributes some of his success to luck, his modesty can’t overshadow his hard work and love of comics.

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When discussing his early time at Marvel, he mentioned that some of his all time favourite characters are Punisher, Daredevil, The Inhumans and Black Panther; and those are the exact books he started out with at Marvel Knights. Quesada reminisces about the beginning of the MK imprint and how he recruited his friend Kevin Smith (yes, that Kevin Smith) to write for him. His story about Smith’s instant enthusiasm and then almost immediate writers block got more than a few giggles out of the crowd. But after telling the humorous story of how he and his friend Jimmy Palmiotti bullied the work from Smith, Quesada was quick to point out just how large a contribution to the comic’s industry Smith had made. He declared his friend brave for stepping out of his comfort zone and making the leap from film to comics.

Quesada wrapped up by talking a little about Marvel legend Stan Lee who is making his last Canadian appearance at this year’s FanExpo. He talked about how Stan Lee had a way of writing so that it felt like he was speaking directly to you and claimed that he didn’t have the same skill. In my opinion, Quesada has a way of putting his audience at ease, making the panel feel more like a conversation between friends than an event at a FanExpo.

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