Saturday, July 18, 2009

I Was A Stripper for the Syndicate!

...Well, I wrote a newspaper comic strip for the Editors Press Service, the syndicate that distributed Tom & Jerry, which, as I mentioned a while back in my review of a DVD of Chuck Jones Tom & Jerry cartoons I wrote for a bit. I knew the guy doing the strip, Rich Mauruzio, and he asked me to write it. I did about 6, 8 months of Tom & Jerry before the "rules" left me wrung of ideas. What were the rules? Well, no violence, for starters; in the kinder, gentler 1990s, Tom and Jerry did not hurt one another...they were buddies who merely chased each other for fun! And, no puns or language gags of any kind; 90% of the strips market was overseas (largely in Arabic countries, as I recall), rendering English puns et al lost in translation. So I recycled old gags, tried to set up set-pieces that I could return to again and again, and, I see in several these, just went surreal, especially with Screwy the Squirrel.

Anyway, as I pack up the old office for the impending move, I've been uncovering all sorts of stuff, including copies of about 10 or 12 weeks worth of Tom & Jerry proofs (that was the printed sheet they sent out to the newspapers to print the strips; I'll bet those don't exist anymore...), the only copies I have. I do have the scripts, however. I am a pack rat.
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