Ryan Lee Mega-Sized Blu-Ray Commentary

Sometimes you just do what you want and the bit writes itself. This all started with me wanting to see what Mike would do with Dr. Strange, which is probably abusing my privilege, but….oh well!  I can do that once in awhile, right?  Please? So Dr. Strange led me to an incantation, which led me to a parlor trick, and if he’s showing off then the payoff has to be somebody taking him down a peg. Well, if the guy is a penny pincher…then the takedown should be administered by the guy who takes in the tips.  (or doesn’t, as it were)  The thing wrote itself.  Wish they were all that easy!

This is my favorite strip we’ve done so far in our brief collaboration.  Dr. Odd is such a delightful goofball, and the bit accidentally gives him a character element we can use later.  If we ever need a cheapskate, I know where to find one.  It also solidifies Stan as kind of an Old School Man’s Man…  he’s kinda Jack in Stan’s clothing?  To me, that’s a fun departure from the loveable sideshow carny we know in real life.

I know I’m running long, here, but one more thing – one of the happy surprises of doing the strip is that it’s really opened my eyes about the artist’s contribution to comic work.  Assessing and appreciating art has always been a weak part of my game.  But now that I’m writing scripts…I know what I put in there, and I know what the finished product looks like, and everything else is by definition Mike’s contribution.  It’s a LOT.

What I’ve learned is that when you read comics, pretty much everything you’re reading off the page in terms of tone, vibe, attitude, emotion, audience connectivity…it’s all the artist.  Or 80-93%, at any rate.  All of the juice in this bit comes from Doc Odd’s goofiness combined with Stan’s perfect super-cool stone face.  If Odd oversells the trick and is too serious and Stan delivers his line with a sloppy grin on his face….I think the skeleton of the joke is there, but it doesn’t work.

So just so you know….when you get done with a comic, and what you enjoyed was the way it made you feel, or the tone, or the depth of the characters? Whether you consciously recognize it or not, you’re mostly responding to the craft of the artist.  And that’s….one to grow on.

Monster Mike Economy-Sized Blu-Ray Commentary

Ugh. I’m writing this on the evening after having Septoplasty – a surgical procedure to redirect my septum. I would wish this on my worst enemy. So, anyway, my comments will be short.

Bottom line is that this is what I would love to make this strip look like all the time. Something really clicked for me with this one. Dr. Odd is going to be a character I all really enjoy drawing over and over. One thing I wanted was for the ‘Eye’ clasp on his cloak to always be “looking around”. I call it “The Googly Eye of Yammamoto”.

Also; Ryan is too kind. The gags he’s coming up with are pretty entertaining and there is a lot in the descriptions and dialogue he supplies that hint to how things should be drawn, wether he is consciously putting it in there or not.