Q. Where do you get your ideas?
A: Ah, its every cartoonists favorite question to which they have no answer
to. Simply put, cartoon ideas just come out of nowhere. When I get an idea, I fiddle with
it until I get something Im satisfied with. I cant stand making comics that
are all nothing but setups and punchlines. I like characters having conversations, doing
things, and having what I call a double punch out (one character makes a joke at the end,
then another tops him with his own joke). Sometimes I think up a storyline or a series of
gags that can run for a week and occasionally even longer. But after youve gotten a
webcomic well developed the characters almost write for yourself.
Q: Is Doug Canadian?
A: No. Even though I probably got the head flapping idea from the Canadians from
"South Park", Doug is a 100% TV babysat, fast food filled, computer junkie
American like all of us.
Q: Hey, I noticed (such and such) in the background, is that right?
A: It probably is. I love background humor. Some comics somehow end up with funnier
stuff going on behind it then in it. My most common background gag tools are the ever
changing pictures in Happy Tacos and on Phil and Dougs walls. The way I see it, if
youre drawing a background with a lot of space in it, why not put something funny
Q: If this comic is in our reality, where does PLT take place?
A: Phil and Doug are in yet another unnamed city generically in the United States.
Its just another one of those things left up to the readers to say for themselves or
not care at all about, like everyones ages (oooh, never thought of that one, did
you?). However, a lot of the locations in the comic are based off of a city I lived in for
a few years when I first started the comic.
Q: Now that you mention it, how old IS everybody?
A: Another question that has no real answer. Whatever you think, teenagers just out of
their parents houses or adults who just cant get anywhere in life, is pretty much
right. I know what they are in my mind, but maybe youd enjoy it more if you thought
Q: Is there really a Happy Tacos fast food place?
A: No, I made up the fast food chain completely. Its strange in a comic that has
everything from this world (the same video games and movies, and Phils a Pepsi
drinker if you look closely). The reason I made up the place Phil works at is because it
gives me absolute control with it. If Phil worked at a Taco Bell instead, I couldnt
put out anything in merchandise that would portray Phil in another companys
Q: So are you going to get PLT into a newspaper?
A: The chances are slim to none, but probably none more then slim. You have to go through
a newspaper syndicate to get a comic printed in the papers, and they only accept about
three out of six thousand new comics a year. Plus my comics is rather limited by some of
the gags and a stick figure like style is probably going to be frowned upon.
Q: Well how about making book collections then?
A: Ive looked into it, even asking some lawyers about it at San-Diego Comic-Con. But
its such an iffy thing at this point Im pretty much saying no. Some of my long
running video game stories tend to use characters from the games, and thats not good
for copyright reasons. Technically I might be able to squeeze by with book collections
seeing as how the unoriginal characters are reoccurring, but really, do I want to take
that chance? Id also hate to have some company see it and get made and make get rid
of those comic and everything. Hey, its happened to Penny-Arcade before! But then
again, theyre actually getting a book deal, so who knows.
Q: What about some PLT merchandise?
A: I tried merchandise once, but I hardly had enough readers to even buy any of the stuff.
However, Im not giving up because I still have a few ideas that could work. I
dont just make a image and slap it across every item they have available in the
store. That seriously cheapens the comic, and I find it unappealing to go into a CafePress
store and see dozens of the same thing. Anybody can toss a few images on a CafePress
store, and most people do. I take time in designing these things to make sure that not
only the fans will enjoy them, but also people who dont know anything about PLT
would enjoy the stuff.
Q: Whats with the strange titles on the top of the page?
A: I never really could settle for a good web title (the long name that appears across the
top bar), so I decided to have it change all the time. Each one would last a few months
dealing with something going on in the entertainment world and such. Theres two
reasons I do this. The first is because it actually gets people to look at the comic
thanks to search engines. To keep it from feeling like a dirty trick, I always make sure
some of the comics deal with what the title is talking about. The other reason I do it? I
think its fun and quite entertaining.