Thought Bubble 2019: The Donny Cates Panel Top Ten Takeaways

by Olly MacNamee

Donny Cates and Megan Hutchison

Kicking off the panels at this year’s Thought Bubble was a very friendly and informal panel with, Megan Hutchison interviewing her new husband, Donny Cates, about his career in comics and how he got there. 

  1. Donny once worked as a cook (on and off for a good few years) and then security guard but he claimed he made places “less safe.” Although, the restaurant he worked at was struck by lightning on four separate occasions. 
  2. He opened up a comic book store in Austin, Texas, until a drunk driver drove into his shop front.
  3. Then went to art college, where he was in class with Tradd Moore – his collaborator on Sliver Surfer Black – and Geoff Shaw, but dropped out.
  4. Then moved not an internship with Marvel, but realised he didn’t eat to get into editorials, so left to concentrate on writing.
  5. Joked with Rich Johnson (who was in the audience) about working with Bleeding Cool, but claimed he wrote barely anything in his time there.
  6. Got his break with ‘Hunter Quaid’ at Dark Horse, before moving onto Heavy Metal where he did Inceptor. But, it was God Country that got the eye of Axel Alonso at Marvel who put him onto Thanos with Thanos Wins.
  7. Interceptor came from the name of Mad Max’s car. But, at the time he only had a name and a logo, not even a plot. But, that didn’t stop him from emailing Rich Johnson with the logo knowing it would be on Bleeding Cool within 24 hours. It was, and so he had to come up with an idea and a plot. 
  8. Grant Morrison – then EiC of Heavy Metal – approved the Interceptor pitch on the art alone. He hadn’t even read the script, which he openly admitted on the panel at a comic con they both did together.
  9. Once he drove to Atlanta to interview Jason Aaron – his hero – for a podcast, the writer he’s following not Thor. But, he did have a plan for a ‘fat Thor’ before Avengers Endgame beat him to it. 

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