Author Brad Meltzer, has written thriller novels, comic books and even co-created a TV show, “Jack & Bobby.”
These days, he’s emerged from behind the keyboard to standing in front of a camera for his new History Channel series, “Brad Meltzer’s Decoded.”
In the series, Meltzer and his crew investigate some of the biggest mysteries and secrets in history, from the location of the lost Confederate Treasury to secret presidential codes.
amNewYork spoke with Meltzer, 40, about the show.
How does “Decoded” differ from other investigation shows?
The first day we started, one of the producers came up to me and said, “Go watch the other shows that do this. The less facts they have, the more scary music they play.” Our philosophy has really been to try to avoid the scary music and be more fact driven.
What is the first code you investigate?
The first piece of the White House is put down in 1792 in this elaborate ceremony and then 24 hours later it supposedly goes missing. Everyone goes looking for it from Harry Truman to supposedly Barbara Bush. The first piece of the White House is still missing to this day — let’s try to find it.
What kind of codes and symbols are there in New York?
If you go down to Wall Street, there are symbols on all the buildings. But without question, the best one in New York is the Statue of Liberty. When she was built … she was built to only be seen from the outside. You know what that means?
You want to see inside.
It means I want to see [the statue] from the inside. I want to see what the story is. You’ll see that the Statue of Liberty, … when she was completed, was 151 feet and one inch. Why is that extra inch there? You’ll see the reason and … even why the torch is in the air.
How many of the codes deal with the Freemasons?
If you want to ... you can trace everything to the Freemasons. Because that’s what you want to see. The reason they make such a good bad guy in so many novels is because they just have a great, beautiful history. But it doesn’t mean they’re all trying to eat our babies.
Have you been asked to join?
You think they didn’t? [laughs].
Were you excited to go in front of the camera?
Terrified. The whole reason I became a writer is so I could not wear pants. And suddenly here I was with a makeup crew.
On TV: “Brad Meltzer’s Decoded” premieres on the History Channel Thursday at 10 p.m.
Meltzer's new book
Brad Meltzer’s next thriller novel, “The Inner Circle,” comes out in January on 01/11/11 because, the author joked, “I have to do everything in code.”
History for sale
The History Channel is going into the retail business, opening up its first pop-up store in Times Square on Monday at noon. Stop by and meet some of the stars of “American Pickers” and “Pawn Stars” from 1-3 p.m.