An exclusive look at Image's Hoax Hunters!
Hi, I'm Michael Moreci, co-creator/writer of Image's Hoax Hunters. I've been asked to write some character introductions for the book, to get people acclimated with the Hoax Hunters universe. But, before I do, I'm going to take a step back in the acclimation process and introduce Hoax Hunters with a (slightly long) elevator pitch. It goes:
The series is best described as X-Files meets Mythbusters; basically, Hoax Hunters is a reality show where the three hosts travel around the globe and dispel various hoaxes--Bigfoot, UFOs, general scientific anomalies, etc. Only the hoaxes aren't hoaxes at all. It's all real, and the true purpose of the Hoax Hunters is to cover these dark corners of the world up, and make them seem fake on their show. There's mystery, sci-fi, horror, everything you've come to expect from this type of book.
And that's pretty much it. One reviewer called it "unlike anything you'll find in comics," a compliment I'm thrilled to associate with the series. It's going to be a weird ride—Steve (Seeley, co-creator and possible clone, though we can't determine which of us is the original) have a lot planned out for the series, and it is certainly going to be a weird ride. But not weird for the sake of weird. More like unusual; our ambition is to take the story in directions you wouldn't expect, month in and month out.
Without further adieu, I'll get to the first character profile. Fitting, I think, that we start at the top and introduce Jack, the leader of the Hoax Hunters.
Power/Ability: None! I was surprised to come across so many readers who thought Jack had "super soldier" abilities. In retrospect, it makes sense; after all, the other Hoax Hunters characters have some sort of power/ability (but even those abilities are limited, a point Steve and I decided upon very early on). Jack is a skilled and trained operative, and that's where his abilities begin and end. He's a former FBI agent, head of his class, extremely intelligent, good with weapons, and quick on his feet. Within the Hoax Hunters team, he's the glue that binds the pieces together, the steadfast rock when the night gets cold and stormy.
Origin: You're actually going to see a lot of Jack's backstory in the first Hoax Hunters arc (titled "Die Off Another Day"). I can't reveal too much here, but let's say Jack has a history that runs deep within the Hoax Hunters organization, past and present—straight to the heart of the operations that take place beyond the television show and its cast/crew. The ramifications of these ties will echo throughout the series and come to the forefront in a major way further down the road.
Inspiration: Steve and I knew we needed a character that, again, would be the anchor for all the highly unusual things that occur, both onscreen and off. And we wanted that character to be without powers as a way to ground the human story we're trying to tell, amidst all the monsters, conspiracies, and strange sci-fi.
Next up is Regan, possibly my favorite character of the group.
Power/Ability: I hate to again be secretive, but there's only so much I can say about Regan's powers. We have a very, very cool arc planned that will focus on her, and it'll tell exactly what she can do. I can say this: she does have electrical powers, as some have said. When she expresses her abilities, yes, a blue light surrounds her hands and emits from her eyes. But it isn't an electrical force—pay close attention to the glyphs that surround that emission. especially, study the scene in issue #0, page 16—why do those guards simply collapse? (It's also proof that, long-term, Steve and I know the story and the characters inside and out!
Origin: Regan is a former child star who, on the set of one of her films, suffered a real possession. The experience left her with her special ability. And, for the record, it is no coincidence that Regan shares the same name of the main character from The Exorcist. That's something inherent to the series—playing with the boundaries of where fiction and reality fold into each other.
Inspiration: To be honest, Regan started as a analog for Kari of Mythbusters. But the more and more Steve and I dug into her backstory, the more compelling, real character she became. We like to play with the idea of her being the eye candy of sorts, and flipping expectations on its head by having her be a strong, smart, layered person. Her story is one I'm eager to tell, both where she's been and where she's headed as the series unfolds.
Come back next time for the origins of Ken Cadaver and Murder!
Written or Contributed by: Michael Moreci