17
Dec 08

This Charming Lady.

 

Part 27 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Here’s a brief history of Verona Red. The guy chained in Hell is supposed to be Pat Doran of the comic, “The Way Life Should Be,” and I haven’t decided yet whether the other demons will be featured in future comics. Lastly, the title is a reference to The Smiths’ song, “This Charming Man.”

Stay tuned soon: 2008 Holiday Cards. Expect them this Friday.

26
Nov 08

Verona Red.

 

Part 26 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Three new characters in a brand new comic: Failure, Fortune, and Nigel’s occupational replacement to Randy, Verona Red. I figured I should add more angel/demon type characters (especially the latter).

So Verona Red, like the missing Randy, is a devil. She functions the same as Randy in the sense that both are meant to tempt humans and balance the universe between good and evil. Verona Red, however, has some feline-like characteristics to her look (like cat ears and whiskers). In terms of personality, she’s supposed to be sultry and somewhat seductive but, generally, with a good heart. If I can relate her to any celebrity, maybe Angelina Jolie or Madonna (how cliched is that?). And if I can give her a voice, she’d be portrayed by Kathleen Turner or Mary Elizabeth McGlynn (the voice actress of Julia in “Cowboy Bebop” or the lead role in “Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex”) — Verona Red would have a deep, breathy voice, like a porn star or phone sex operator.

Yup, Verona Red, Failure, and Fortune have been in development for a long time. I’ve even made a plushie of Verona Red for Renegade:

31
Oct 08

Normalcy is Scary.

 

Part 25 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Happy Halloween, folks!

As you can see, this comic sort of correlates to the general storyline. Plus, it’s a little homage to the times when Lindsey, Jen, and Chris visit Christian haunted houses.

I’m thinking that next week I’ll post some Presidential Election-based comics, but who knows. It’s going to be a busy weekend.

Be good this weekend!

29
Oct 08

Restoring the Cosmic Balance.

 

Part 24 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Hmm, have you ever realized that the only difference between “cosmic” and “comic” is one, little “s?” That will make you think.

So yes, Nigel gets a new partner. Who will it be…? Stay tuned.

In other news, Jeffro has started a new indie music blog: indierawk.tumblr.com. On a design-standpoint, it’s not yet complete, but if you have a Tumblr be sure to follow him. It seems that lately Jeffro’s been promoting some songs and music videos relating to Halloween.

Speaking of Halloween, tune in tomorrow and Friday for some special Halloween comics.

17
Oct 08

Punny Mummy.

 

Part 22 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Hello all. Greetings from beyond death and obscurity…

So yes, I decided to draw comics again, and let me tell ya the rest of 2008 and the following year are gonna be big: new comics, new web design, and one huge, HUGE surprise regarding the series as a whole. In fact, if you haven’t noticed or are colorblind, this comic is colored — and god willing, the rest of them will no longer be in black and white. Yes, I’m putting in the extra effort to keep the comic interesting both for you and myself. That’s not the real surprise, however; let’s just say I’m tired of certain elements in this series, and there will be some significant changes. Of course, I’m absolutely terrible at keeping a secret, so I’ll be leaving clues to the big surprise within the new material.

I actually drew this comic in May, but if you remember the storyline: 1) Chris is looking for a new job, 2) Jeffro and ZCC are trying to start a new band, so ZCC strikes a deal with Death and Jesus, and 3) Nigel has been depressed ever since the disappearance of his friend/partner Randy. I’m going to continue the storyline “Occupational Hazards” all the way through, because — to be frank — the events happening in this arc are going to shape the way this entire series progresses. Yup, I have some intricate plans for my characters…

This comic marks the debut of SPUD, an enigmatic being a lot like Nigel and Randy — perhaps a little too much. At his initial conception all the way in March, I was thinking of naming him either “Scarf and Bandages” or “Mummy.” However, after talking to my friend Dave Chen, I decided to name him SPUD, an acronym for “Some Peculiar, Unidentified Dood.” What lies underneath his bandages? Perhaps he’s someone you know, perhaps he’s a completely new character. Ah, secrets and plot devices!

So why update now? Well, I have some material I’ve compiled since dealing with real life, and in lieu of Halloween, I think it was the perfect time to introduce SPUD. He looks like a mummy, after all, and if I recall I set the “Occupational Hazards” arc during the autumn season. Now I haven’t figured a specific time table of how I want to release these new comics (one new comic a week, at the very least), so all I can say is check back soon.

Oh yes, I forgot to mention that I did release a new book, The Book of Luv (And Other Ways Not To Die Alone), since I presented at Renegade Craft Fair Chicago. It does contain over 20 new pages of comics (which I will publish online during the Valentine’s Day season), so it’s worth checking out.

Highlight of the Day: Preview.

01
Apr 08

Cheers, Folks.

A special announcement from me to you. Later folks.

15
Feb 08

Deal With The Jesus.

 

Part 21 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Continuing with the “Occupational Hazards” storyline from, oh NOVEMBER, Jeffro smashes his roommate ZCC (reincarnated as a talking toaster) into pieces. You see, after watching their other roommate, Chris, strive so hard in his hopeless job search, it’s Jeffro and ZCC’s intention to start up a band and prove they’re doing something with their lives. Of course, that means ZCC has to bargain with Death so he can be reincarnated into something that can actually play the guitar. In the afterlife, ZCC reunites with Death and tries to persuade her to give him a human body again. She replies she has a plan, but they need to see someone “higher up…”

Up to date? Good.

In this comic, I brought back Jesus’ angelic secretary, Ms. Milligan — a rarely seen, minor character that has popped up in a few comics. Also, the angel with dark hair and a scruffy beard is supposed to represent friend and fellow cartoonist/artist, Shane Pangburn, and NOT a relative to ZCC (although, in retrospect, that could become an interesting yet nonsensical plot device). Of course, my depiction doesn’t give him justice: he does have arms, shins, and a nose, and as far as I can tell, he doesn’t have wings. It’s actually Shane’s date o’ birth today, so if you see him, wish him (and his twin brother, too) proper congratulations for giving his mother what I can imagine was a most prolonged and excruciating labor process.

Another birthday comic next week, though I can’t promise it’ll relate to the storyline in any way.

21
Nov 07

ZCC and the Deathly Deaths.

 

Part 20 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

It’s been a long, long time since I’ve drawn ZCC’s real, human form and Death. Death has always been a fun character to draw, and this time I made her wings more bone-ish rather than just weird-looking spikes. Her character’s design has, in Project Runway speak, been “fashion forward,” and I like drawing her with today’s trends in mind. And don’t expect this to be her last experience; I have big plans for her and nearly all of the main cast in a future, very significant storyline.

As you might know from “The End Of The Road” story arc, ZCC’s body was blown to smithereens. I took notice of the fact that his body doesn’t exist anymore, making it impossible for him to return to his original form. Of course, that’s not going to stop him from being reincarnated.

I’m playing around with the concepts of physical death, the afterlife, and even theology a little, and ZCC’s storyline is just a way to fully express my creative writing skills.

19
Nov 07

The Death of ZCC / Assisted Suicide.

 

Part 19 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

So what have I been doing in my month-long hiatus? Well, like my character Chris (who is very much modeled after myself), I’ve been searching for a job, namely a graphic design/web dev job. So there, I have a perfectly legitimate excuse. I actually drew this comic about a month ago, but I decided not to publish it right away. One of the main reasons was that I wanted to hoard a few polished comics so I can unleash them onto the public in one shot — like a squirrel hoarding nuts for the winter, or Jessica Simpson saving her virginity for that dood.

Now I thought it’d be funny if I put Destroyer — aka Dan Bejar of also New Pornographers and Swan Lake fame — on Indie Rawk Jeffro’s t-shirt. After all, he is destroying his friend/roommate, ZCC. I also thought it’d be nice to put Cloud’s Buster Sword, just because I don’t see a lot of references to Final Fantasy VII in comics nowadays.

To see what transpires next, wait for Wednesday. Another new comic will definitely be up by then.

18
Oct 07

I Can Sing, Too!

 

Part 18 of the “Occupational Hazards” Story Arc.

 

Sorry about the pretty heavy text at the bottom of the comic; poor planning on my part.

So begins side story C of the “Occupational Hazards” arc: Jeffro and ZCC start a band (the other stories, of course, being Chris getting a job and the whole Nigel/Randy affair — and believe me, they’ll all intertwine eventually). So ZCC’s been a toaster for about 2 years already, and I felt it’s time to give him an entirely new body. It’s also been a long time since I’ve drawn his original human form, too, which was more enjoyable to draw than a toaster. Toaster’s are too easy.

And I hate to outright reveal the small, important details of any artistic piece, but do take note of all the black and the crows. They may have “symbolism” later.


Copyright © 2019 Phillip Retuta