Archive for ‘manta-man’
This installment of Manta-Man may be a bit baffling, but trust me: these strips will directly tie into our titular protagonist’s story next week. How so? Hint: why is there so much %&$#’ing water on the floor?
This week’s Manta-Man update features the return of two (or…three?) of my longest-lived (and bizarre) characters.
Dixie (on the right) spontaneously flung herself into existence during my early teens and has kept popping up in my scattered comic projects throughout the years.
Foolgirl (below) is an even older character, dating back to my surprisingly joyous years of middle school. Back then, however, she wasn’t nearly so perverse or profane. And for anyone who cares, the full name of her monkey is Jimmy Honeybunch.
This week concludes Manta-Man‘s first bizarre, jumbled story arc. Hopefully it gives you an idea of what to expect from this eccentric little escapade: profane characters, obscene scenarios, and the inevitable humiliation of our titular protagonist. Fun, right?
Sure, the cast is already too big, and I just had to introduce yet another character this week. Well, get used to it! I’ve approached Manta-Man as a fun opportunity to play around with all my insane little characters and make all the juvenile dick jokes I want. My other comic projects (see here) tend to be overly ambitious, obsessively edited, and aimed toward kids. Obviously, Manta-Man is very different: an adult playground for all my strange, sexy, improvisational comic doodles. So what I’m saying is: this is gonna get sloppy, people!
And, uh, bring a mop.
There will be drunken hijinks, sexy costumes, and dirty encounters in dark alleys.
It’ll be glorious, don’t ya think?
This week, we’re introduced to Ethan, a regular at Man-to-Man, the gay bar where Manta-Man works. This installment also kicks off a crazy new storyline featuring Manta-Man’s debut as a crimefighter, many cases of mistaken identity, and innumerable drunken disasters.
With this week’s strips, I finally feel like the art has hit its stride, the story is going at a good pace, and we’re all going to have lots and lots of fun with this. Thanks for reading!
Ever since I began Manta-Man, I’ve been eagerly waiting to pull out the silly gag you see in the first strip of this week’s installment. So I hope you liked it.
In fact, this week’s Manta-Man has a number of moments that I really love, and I’m hoping to incorporate more scenes of transcendent silliness into future strips, even though the “plot” of Manta-Man is taking off for this second story arc, Man-to-Man.
It’s clear from this week’s cliffhanger ending that Manta-Man’s first crime-fighting expedition has gotten off to an unexpected start, so stay tuned for the truly outrageous twists and turns this story will take!
Okay! So, first of all, if you’re new to Manta-Man, this week’s installment directly carries over from last week, so you should go read it.
These strips set up the long series of mistakes and misunderstandings that propel the current storyline forward–and although it’ll be lots of fun, it gets a little complicated. I’ve been thinking a lot about webcomics and whether they should be used to provide a sustained narrative versus a bite-sized, self-contained story each week. For better or worse, this story arc, “Man-to-Man,” is my attempt to tell a quirky tale of mistaken identity and clumsy heroism over the course of several weeks.
Following the current storyline, I’ll be trying more self-contained installments to see how that goes, too.
Also, in case you missed it: This week, I contributed a guest strip to my friend Denver Brubaker’s great webcomic Tales of a Checkered Man! Denver has proven to be my greatest source of guidance and support in creating Manta-Man, and it was a ton of fun to play with the characters in his world.
Aaaaand Friday the 18th, I’ll be contributing some art and writing to my friend Lisa Hsia’s art blog– My discussion will be about the artistic process and experimentation behind my graphic novella Shadow Play!
Wow, look at this! So much going on! (Too much?) Yes, things really start moving ahead with this installment–if you’re a new reader, you might want to start at the beginning (which isn’t tooooo long ago), because clearly, I’m getting all kindsa complicated. For better or worse.
There’s been a lot going on in my life this week, too! The most exciting new development is that I’ve self-published my graphic novel Shadow Play and have made it available to buy right here! And my essay about the long process behind that book was featured on my friend Lisa Hsia’s art blog.
I also posted a few more faaaabulous drag queen drawings, which everyone should go check out!
Fear not, the best is yet to come!
I know, right? Although I’ve expressed my regret about jumping into such a complicated storyline so quickly with this webcomic, I do have to admit that I loooove such convoluted, rambunctious plots.
I haven’t yet discussed the origins of Manta-Man at length, but it’s fair to say that two of my biggest influences at the start were the comics Scott Pilgrim and Love & Rockets. I wanted to create something of a mash-up between them, capturing the zany hilarity of Scott Pilgrim and the uber-queer slice-of-life feel of Love & Rockets.
But I feel like Manta-Man has gone off in a different direction from there. I think it now has more in common with something like the TV show Archer, where the characters bicker and fight amongst each other while crazy stuff happens in the background. I’m still figuring out just how much action/fighting/superheroics there will be as the strip develops–part of my initial intent in creating Manta-Man was to (kind of) make it up as I go along, as opposed to all my other book projects, where I endlessly revise and outline the fun out of them. (I’m currently in the bazillionth overhaul of my kids’ graphic novel The Cardboard Kingdom, for example)
So I definitely have plans for a lot of the characters, but I’m excitedly discovering all sorts of new directions for them every week–in fact, I had a major breakthrough with Sachiko, the part-time ninja, though you’ll have to wait a while to see some of the crazy things she and Manta-Man get involved with.
Thanks for reading! Tell all your friends about this raunchy, convoluted, irreverent little comic!
Although I may disparage this comic regularly, I do have to admit that the panel to the right is one of my favorites ever to have drawn. Ever since coming up with the idea for a Mantis-Man, I’ve loved his insane costume and have had a hard time NOT posting pics of him.
Is he Manta-Man’s new nemesis? Who is he, and what does he have against our quirky ensemble cast? ALL will be revealed in the coming weeks! Yeehaw!