An Interview with Phillip Kennedy Johnson

Through the gracious permission and generosity of the author* and editor,** we are able to share an interview with Phillip Kennedy Johnson, one of the premier writers in the comics world today entrusted with telling Superman’s stories to a contemporary audience…

“To me, Superman is the living antithesis to the adage that absolute power corrupts absolutely”: an interview with Phillip Kennedy Johnson (PDF)

In September 2023, as part of the Superman’s Cleveland: Lineage and Legacy programme honouring Superman’s 85 th anniversary, Phillip Kennedy Johnson was interviewed live at Literary Cleveland’s Inkubator Conference. During the interview, Johnson shared his thoughts on Superman, what it means to shepherd a character with such a legacy and reflected on his run on Action Comics. He shared stories about his break into comics, gave insight into his writing process, and offered advice on working collaboratively in comics and how that process works. Johnson, who is also a trumpet player, spoke about the connection between comics and music. Finally, Johnson answered audience questions about Superman, the character of Clark Kent, and how he thinks about writing the Green Lantern, John Stewart.

The interview appears in the Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics online and in the upcoming print issue.

*Dr. Katharine G. Trostel is the Humanities Division Chair, Associate Professor of English, and co-Director of the Rust Belt Humanities Lab at Ursuline College.

**Dr. Valentino Zullo is American Editor of the Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics as well as the Anisfield-Wolf Postdoctoral Fellow in English and the Public Humanities at Ursuline College.