Wolverine has explored plenty of territory in his 43-year history at Marvel — from comics to computer games, big screen to small — but come 2018, he’ll venture into a whole new frontier: his own podcast.
Mashable can exclusively reveal that the beloved X-Men character will headline Marvel’s first-ever scripted podcast, Wolverine: The Long Night, a 10-episode serialized story that will debut exclusively on podcast network Stitcher Premium in Spring 2018 as part of a partnership between Marvel and Stitcher, before rolling out across all other podcast platforms in the fall.
“Podcasting is an incredible, intimate medium that’s perfect for telling stories, and I can’t think of a better partner with whom to push the boundaries of scripted podcasts than Marvel,” says Erik Diehn, CEO of Midroll Media, Stitcher’s parent company, in a statement.
“They make every translation of their rich universe of characters into new media fresh and interesting while still retaining the feel and spirit of the original comics, and, as a Marvel fan, I’m proud that we’ve helped them do it again in podcasting. The arrival of Wolverine and his many fans to podcasts and Stitcher is truly a signal that this medium is a major part of the American media landscape.”
The Hobbit and Hannibal star Richard Armitage will lend his voice to Logan for the podcast, which writer Ben Percy says will blend the mystery aspects of true crime podcasts like Serial and S-Town with the narrative tricks of True Detective — plus a dash of Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven.
“If you look at the success of Serial and S-Town, it has everything to do I think with their investigative formats, the way the listeners become complicit in the narrative,” Percy tells Mashable. “They’re co-authors, they’re literary detectives, because they’re piecing together the clues alongside the reporters, and I wanted to take a similar approach to that.”
The story begins with two agents, Sally Pierce (Celia Keenan-Bolger) and Tad Marshall (Ato Essandoh), who arrive in the fictional town of Burns, Alaska, to investigate a series of murders. The duo team up with deputy Bobby Reid (Andrew Keenan-Bolger) to investigate their main suspect, Logan (Armitage), but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
“There are all these broken pieces that are being fitted together, and a shifting set of suspects, and every episode, you learn more and at the same time, recognize that you’ve been mistaken all along. It functions like a turnstile of mysteries,” Percy hints.
The cast also includes Scott Adsit (30 Rock), Bob Balaban (Moonrise Kingdom), Brian Stokes Mitchell and a cameo from Chris Gethard, host of the popular Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People podcast.
This iteration of Logan is purposefully seeking the isolation that Alaska provides, according to Percy: “Because he’s been mind-wiped again and again, he doesn’t know the whole terrible truth about his life. Part of the series is him recovering those memories and despite his attempts to separate himself from society, getting drawn into a situation where frontier justice is called for.”
The Long Night will also weave in heightened elements that comic book fans would expect from Marvel, in part because Alaska is such an extreme environment.