This week Luke sat down with Curt Franklin to address the hate.
Greetings Curt Franklin, writer of the webcomic Let’s Be Friends Again and probably other things. Like you were in the Fugees and 500 Days of Summer weren’t you?
Most of my time was spent in the band Gorillaz, but, yeah, that other stuff happened too.
Now you do a webcomic called Let’s Be Friends Again with Chris Haley. How many pounds can you benchpress?
How much does Chris weigh?
He weighs the same as Imhotep who weighs 5 times less that Gladius who is 3 times heavier than Certep who weighs 10 apples.
Oh, so this is one of those kinds of interviews.
Now Curt, were you aware that Let’s Be Friends Again! was ranked the least favorite webcomic in the poll sent out to writers a few weeks ago? And that we pledged eternal enmity against you and your brother in arms for “war crimes”?
If you’re including yourself in that “writer’s poll” you’ve got a really loose definition of writer.
Heathen! You dare be invited into my house and then fire insults back at me?
Well we’re having this chat inside of a gmail chat box, which is I imagine the approximate size of your actual house, so, yes.
You …. have earned my respect Curt. We may now talk about comics. Wildcat or B’wana Beast?
Wildcat. He’s old, he drinks, he hangs around with Darwyn Cooke Catwoman and Slam Bradley, he’s not afraid to basically dress like a furry. Plus he’d probably be out punching people even if he didn’t have any kind of superpower.
I think Wildcat is honestly the best untapped resource that DC Comics has. They could use him as a stand in for the aging Frank Miller!
He’s an old dude who just says fuck it. I imagine he’d have a more informed opinion than Frank Miller.
He could be Wildcat’s grandfather though. Orrrrr or his son!
As much crap as we give Geoff Johns, his JSA reboot stuff was great because of the untapped guys like Wildcat et al.
Did Wildcat lose his extra lives that he got from a wizard for refusing to throw a fight? Because that is the best thing.
I don’t know. But I hope so. Because that’s a cool sentence.
Now who is this Geoff Johns?
A good writer who sometimes gets stretched too thin.
I think the issue with Johns is that no one man should have all that poooooower.
Yeah, that’s about right. It makes me wonder how much editorial influence there is in all his work, too.
What do you think DC would be like if Grant Morrison was in charge?
Probably not any better off. I obviously like Morrison, but who knows. It’s not like there’d be 52 All-Star Superman’s every month.
Oh no, but I think he might have more tact and intelligence picking creative teams and the whole new 52 thing would make more sense.
Yeah, it might be more thematically coherent. But, they were kind of fucked from the beginning on this new 52 since, from all accounts, it was a really quickly thrown together thing. So it was all bound to seem slap dashed and poorly planned, because, well, it was.
I’d have rather seen something like the Ultimates where there are new origins and new takes for everything. One of my biggest problems is the Green Lanterns not having any changes when the events that transpired recently make no sense.
It’s funny how only really now, over ten years since the launch of the Ultimate stuff, is any of it really trying something different. Spider-Man isn’t Peter Parker, Reed Richards is the bad guy, X-Mainstays like Wolverine and Cyclops are gone. It’s actually interesting now.
Do you think we need more permanent changes to the storyline to keep older readers?
It’s not like making changes is what makes something good. It’s coming up with new spins on stuff, new ideas on old things. Saying “Permanent changes” are necessary implies that anything that’s written or drawn is forever, permanent. That’s a terrible enough idea, because everything’s going to get rebooted, reimagined, changed at one time or another. When we’re all old we’ll probably see something like a Star Wars reboot, something that’d be laughable now, but time marches on and we’ll just be the old fucks complaining about ‘my star wars’ someday.
But allowing characters to change is more of what I mean. I don’t see the Ultimates bringing back those dead dead messed up X-men any time soon. I might say allowing characters to evolve instead of change.
Characters should always be changing. When something stops moving, it dies. LIKE A SHARK.
Or Eugene Ahn.
I can’t be mean to Eugene anymore, he’s officially more popular than us so I have to lick that boot.
Lol. Now you have a sexy line of Let’s Be Friends Again! t-shirts. How long till we get a Spam Ultron/Dick Pills Shirt? Or a Spam Ultron comic?
It could happen right now if you promise me you’ll buy 100 of them. Chris and I are all about money. It’s why we do webcomics.
Wait, so you are doing webcomics to make money? Isn’t that rather presumptuous?
I’m presuming that we’re gonna be millionaires, so, yeah, it is.
But isn’t doing a webcomic about print comics rather limiting to a degree considering that there only about 200,000 American comic readers in the States.
Yeah, I was joking about making lots of money. We’re pretty fucked.
Have you considered getting into the business of printing stories about your own characters and selling them through a major company which would be a two pronged business strategy bringing new readers to your site and giving your readers new media to follow?
Yes, actually. Chris and I have talked about that a lot. And I have a lot written in more of a traditional comic book style, but because of my anxiousness of trying to make it perfect, plus the demands of just doing our regular comic, we haven’t made it happen yet.
But you can’t tell how people will react until you’ve given others the look at it.
Right. Believe me, I know.
Oh Socialfist was the same way – originally it was Super Feudal Communist Russia Team Squad Now! and one of the main characters vomited from his butt. I had to try and do it that way to see that it wouldn’t work.
One of my favorite things about doing Let’s Be Friends Again is that I can go back and see how Chris and I have progressed, or, in some cases, not progressed. It’s literally us learning what to do and how to do it online. Neither of us have any kind of writing or artistic training. We just decided to do it, and it’s all there for everybody to see. All the shit that we probably should’ve thrown away. All the stuff that made us actually go, “hey, we’re not bad.” It’s there.
Would you sell Chris Haley’s freedom for the combined powers of everyone in Justice League Detroit?
No, because with Chris by my side we can create something that’s BETTER than the Justice League Detroit. We aim high.
But that is turning down a lot of people like Aquaman, Zatanna and Martian Manhunter!Well their powers at least.
Who am I selling Chris to?
A group of attractive female gods who were like “I want that and since Curt seems to the dominant male of the duo, we can offer him superpowers for Chris.”
Nahhh. I couldn’t do it.
Man, I’d sell both of you for the powers of Gypsy. Well, before we go is there anything you want to link?
Three things: our website, a link to our Dallas appearance’s site, and a link to Comics Alliance because without Laura Hudson we might not be alive.
Awesome! Well thank you for coming on while I sent people to rob your house.
Your people are dead.