This week, I had the honor of being able to contribute to Nick Marino's Super Haters web comic. For those of you out there not in the know, think of The Gang from It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia but as super heroes. It's an incredibly clever comic strip that holds nothing sacred. I'm a big fan and being able to offer my take on the characters was a very cool experience.
On today's Destruct-O-Cast, I discussed with Nick the creative process on the strip. At the risk of being redundant, the first thing I did was go on an Archive binge to really get to know the characters and understand them from the inside out. For me, this is very important, because I don't want to just draw the characters on the page. I want to bring them to life. I don't want them to just pose on the page, I want them to perform for the reader. So, the first thing I did was whip up some drawings of the characters that would be featured in the strip so that I could get a full grip on their personalites and what makes them so unique. This was a lot of fun.
Once these were done I sent them off to Nick to show him what I had in mind and get any input he may have had. He was jazzed with the direction I was going in, so the next stage was the script. You can hear all about that in great detail on the podcast.
With the script in hand I went to town in the page breakdowns. Telling a story in six panel installments is actually a bit of a challenge. Not an insurmountable one mind you, but a challenge all the same. Very little changed from the breakdown phase and the finished art work.
In fact, the only REAL change was on panel two of the page below. The script had called for Minds Eye to be wearing a dress made out of live cats. At one point Nick felt the joke wasn't quite all it could be and we put our heads together to really punch it up.
The only other MAJOR change that occurred after the final pages got turned in was the decision to convert the pages to black & white. Nick had the inspired idea to give our strip the feel of the old Mad and Cracked magazine type stories. While I was hesitant at first about the choice, his enthusiasm for it was infectious. Cracked, and to a lesser extent Mad, were a big part of my childhood and their influence on my work today is undeniable. Plus, no Super Haters strip had even been done completely in black & white before! All those factors combined FAR outweighed any trepidation I had felt.
All in all I am SUPER proud of the work Nick and I put in on making this week's strip. I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to read the strip. I sincerely hope you enjoyed it as much as we enjoyed creating it!!