The Dark Tower: Treachery #1

Interview with Robin Furth and Peter David
Posted: September 9th 2008

Gilead has seen the return of Roland, Alain and Cuthbert but their voyage continues. The Dark Tower series has been met with much applause and there’s no stopping now. New York Times Best-Seller Peter David, Stephen King Expert Robin Furth and the superstar art team of Jae Lee and Richard Isanove continue the story in Dark Tower: Treachery (issue #1 on sale at midnight 9/10/08). David and Furth sit down with us and share their thoughts on the next chapter of their epic run of the King adaptation. Roland has become obsessed with the evil Maerlyn’s Grapefruit and is having lasting affects on the young gunslinger. The ka-tet has come a long way since we first met them, are they finally going to get a chance to rest? Not if John Farson and the Big Coffin Hunters have anything to say about it. Luckily, Stephen Deschain and his posse are out to claim their heads. So many questions to be answered, many scores to be settled and in Dark Tower: Treachery fans are in for a real treat.

By now, Dark Tower has become a recognizable name in comics. With the success of The Gunslinger Born(TGB) and Long Road Home(LRH), how does it feel going into the third chapter with Treachery?

PETER: The amount of support and enthusiasm we've received from the fans--plus the multiple award nominations--has been extremely gratifying. It's just fantastic to see this level of support, especially for a non-superhero title. Plus it means that I continue to have the chance to work with the best creative team in the industry.

ROBIN: As Peter says, the response from fans has been amazing and the award nominations have been incredible. I’m pretty new to the comic book world (I entered via Mid-World!) so when I first started working on this project I was pretty nervous. Soon enough though the nervousness was replaced by wonder as the story, art, and scripts came together. I feel extremely lucky to work with so many talented people. As Peter can attest, we’ve all put our hearts and souls into this project, so it means a tremendous amount to all of us that the comics have been well-received. And best of all, we get to continue our journey through Mid-World. (Hey, there are ka-tets in our world too!)

In LRH we’ve seen a lot more of the “sci-fi” aspect of Dark Tower. Are we going to see some more technology bits in Treachery?

PETER: Ultimately it is technology that is the downfall of the gunslingers of Gilead, so yes.

ROBIN: We’ll see some more technology, but I think that the importance of magic can’t be underestimated. In Mid-World, magic and technology always vie for ascendancy whether they’re being used for good or for evil. Unfortunately for our friends, in TREACHERY the Crimson King’s followers are very good at using both forces, and always for evil.

So with two chapters said and done, we’ve seen the Ka-Tet grow closer and closer as their world attempts to tear them apart. What kind of new dangers can we expect this band of brothers to get themselves into?

PETER: Ask Robin.

ROBIN: Ah! I don’t want to give away too much, but here it goes! As the title of this chapter states, our friends Roland, Cuthbert, and Alain are about to discover that home ISN’T what they thought it was, and that their old enemy Marten Broadcloak was/is not the only traitor living in Gilead. In fact, the poison that will eventually destroy the world is already seeping into the very heart of the court. And though our tet-mates have returned home as glorious heroes, at least some of their peers are going to be less than pleased about it. And to top it off, Roland still has the evil seeing sphere known as Maerlyn’s Grapefruit, so the Crimson King has access to his mind . . . and to his nightmares. Enough said!

Focusing more on Roland for a bit, Roland at the end of LRH is obviously not the Roland we met at the beginning of TGB. What lies ahead for the young gunslinger?

PETER: Doom, really. There's no delicate way to put it. Roland's path leads inevitably toward darkness, destruction, death, and many other nouns beginning with "d." In the original series, we knew that sooner or later Roland's destiny would take him to his ultimate confrontation with the Dark Tower. In this series, the events in which Roland is entwined are carrying him, slowly but inevitably, to the battle of Jericho Hill, the last stand for his Ka-Tet and the final events that forge him into the man, or shadow of a man, we encounter at the beginning of "Gunslinger."

ROBIN: Peter summed it up really well. And to the list of d-words that Roland will have to face (if not succumb to!) I would like to add damnation! Suffice it to say there are many challenges ahead, and perhaps a few mistakes that some might call crimes. But as longtime readers of the Dark Tower novels know, sometimes our actions are manipulated by our magical enemies, namely the Crimson King and his cohorts. The red king is master of illusion and can fool us into seeing things that do not exist, or into seeing things incorrectly. Glammer ,or the magic of apparent transformation, has many evil uses . . .

Robin mentioned Maerlyn’s Grapefruit, can we expect a return trip inside or was LRH the last of End-World?

PETER: If Roland knows what's good for him, it is. But he doesn't seem to, does he.

ROBIN: Like the Dark Tower itself, End-World is always there waiting. It calls to Roland and it is his ka (or destiny) to respond. And unfortunately he still has that nasty Grapefruit in his possession, and that’s one of the portals into the land of shadow. So we will see what we will see. (And so will Roland . . .)

While in End-World, Roland had his back to the wall until Sheemie came to save the day except only Roland made it out. With Sheemie stuck in the Grapefruit, does he have what it takes to go up against the Crimson King and is it something we’ll see more of in Treachery?

PETER: I don't think anyone has what it takes to go up against the Crimson King. As for Sheemie, time will tell.

ROBIN: Sheemie definitely returns to our tale, though the storyline of TREACHERY focuses on the intrigues of Gilead and its dangers. Sheemie has his own path, but we will reunite with him soon. We always think of ka-tets as being composed of allies, but these destiny-bound groups also include enemies. If we think of ka-tets this way, then I’d say that Roland and Sheemie are BOTH part of the Red King’s ka-tet!

Since returning, Roland’s memory is a bit fuzzy. Does he remember Susan Delgado at all and does she still have an important role in his life?

PETER: I think every moment of his time with Susan is burned into him. Her fate is one of the shaping events of his life. So much so that, even though it had been covered in "Wizard and Glass," we had to include it in the comic series because no detailing of Roland's early life could be done without it.

ROBIN: Roland’s love for Susan Delgado remains strong. Without giving too much away, I’ll say that there is someone in Gilead who would very much like to take Susan’s place in Roland’s heart, but that is going to be no easy task.

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