Saturday, 5 January 2013

CARTOON NETWORK DUMMY...



Back around 1996, EGMONT/FLEETWAY editor PETE
KEMPSHALL got in touch with me to see if I was up for lettering a
four-page strip for a try-out magazine for the foreign market.  "Sure!"
I said, and he promptly sent me a FLINTSTONES strip, along with a
script in Danish, I think - can't quite remember.  (Or Swedish, Finnish,
or Norwegian.  Best to cover all the options.)  I had lettered comics
translated from Spanish or Italian into English before, so this was
just the same thing in reverse.

Above is the cover of the 'finished' product.  As it isn't priced I
assume it's a dummy, and I received it as a folded sheet which I then
trimmed and stapled into comic form.  I don't think it ever progressed
to a regular periodical which was on sale anywhere, so this is quite a
rare product.  So, here it is, you lucky peeps, just for your perusal.

(Incidentally, I wasn't responsible for the rather lacklustre and
badly-positioned 'GAME TIME' logo, so don't blame me.)




20 comments:

TwoHeadedBoy said...

Looks good, never seen so many expressions on Fred and Barney's faces before - in particular the first panel of the second page, and their reactions to the freezing water.

If I was Norwegian, I'd've been into this, certainly.

Kid said...

Danish, Finnish, Swedish or Norwegian - it all sounds Greek to me.

The strip comes from a comic published by DC Comics in America, if I'm not very much mistaken, THB. (And I very well could be.)

Christopher Sobieniak said...

Probably was, I recall CD publishing a "Cartoon Network" comic over here for years.
http://themagicwhistle.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-twiddle-method.html

Kid said...

Thanks, Chris. I think I've actually got a couple of them. Must dig 'em out for a look.

Pete Kempshall said...

Wow, haven't seen that in a while.

That particular comic was commissioned by Cartoon Network as a promo they could hand out at launches and fairs to drum up business for the satellite TV channel. We did a couple of them, and there was talk of doing more, but I moved to Australia before I got the chance to see the project through.

The other issue we created promoted the new wave of cartoons they were introducing at the time, shows for which no reprint existed. That meant we had to create our own strips from scratch, and I'm reasonably sure that made us the first to generate strip material for Dexter's Laboratory and Two Stupid Dogs.

Kid said...

Ah, Pete - how the devil are you? Hard to believe it was so long ago I last spoke with you. Thanks for clearing up what happened - but why didn't I get to letter the second one? I'm hurt, man - hurt I tell ya! (Feeling guilty yet?) All the best to you, sir.

Pete Kempshall said...

I'm well, thanks - still in Australia, still editing, but making progress with writing too now. And yes, it's been a loooong time.

As I remember, the page rates for all the Cartoon Network jobs were a bit higher than the usual (they were paid for by someone with a bigger budget than Fleetway...) and we tried to make sure as many regular contributors as possible got to take advantage of the better rate. That'll be why you didn't get a go at the second issue -we were sharing the love!

Kid said...

I don't remember it being higher than normal, but I'll still have the invoice that came with the cheque. No doubt I'll stumble across it one day. I'm writing a stern letter to Mr Maxwell if it isn't serious wonga.

Glad to hear you're doing well. Ever miss Britain?

Arfon Jones said...

I unsuccessfully peddled my portfolio to Cartoon Network's comic around 99- 2000 (It seemed only right as I had the channel playing in the background 24/7 as I worked) shame I didn't get in, I really wanted to have them on my CV... ah well.

Kid said...

I don't think your 'rejection' was a reflection on the standard of your work, AJ. As you can see from editor Pete's comment above, the work was given to regular Fleetway contributors.

Arfon Jones said...

You are very kind, I was rather disappointed with them though, having had a nice ‘rejection’ letter from the Beano (and a telephone conversation) followed by the promise of work from Smut (over the phone) and an apology from Zit (via the post) having waited several weeks I eventually called Cartoon Network comic up and ask “yes or no”? They apologised and explained that they had all their art/strips sent over from Warner Bros. I wish I had kept the artwork I sent them (they never did return the examples I sent them) 3 pages of Hanna Barbera characters- a real shame as I would have been so proud to say that I drew HB characters for a living… Should I give up on the dream? Its been over 15 years…

Kid said...

Except for the second ish, as Pete explains, which was stuff that Fleetway commissioned. I appeared on TV once, and The Beano and Dandy editors were on the same programme. When they found out what I did for a living, they invited me to submit some samples (of lettering, not art). I wasn't really looking for more work at the time, but, flattered at being asked, I eventually sent in some samples of my lettering. I got a reply from them saying that they weren't looking for any letterers as it was done 'in-house', and an apology of sorts for giving me the impression that they were. That was back in the late '90s. Which proves that some editors often talk sh*te and waste contributors' time. The answer to your last question - never give up on the dream, AJ.

Arfon Jones said...

Nah, I’m not even sure why I posed that as a question sir- I’ll never give up on the dream!
What happened to you was awful though, when I contacted the Beano it was purely on the off chance and although I was rejected an official letter from the Beano complete with letterhead and a personal chat with the editor himself put my ego at ease! Its funny I still have it at the back of my mind to this day that I need examples of the company’s own brand characters in order to get work, a notion that Marvel would not employ someone if they only had Superman in their portfolio!

Kid said...

I once volunteered to send a Glasgow artist's sample pages to some editors at IPC and Marvel U.K., but they didn't seem too impressed by them. Later, the artist showed the same pages to the same editors at a Glasgow comic convention and got some work. Which shows that some editors, unless they've got on their 'talent scout' heads on a particular day (which they have at conventions, but not in 'the office' for some reason), can't see what's in front of them.

Arfon Jones said...

Always the way! Is the portfolio 'sent' out these days or is it all websites these days?

Kid said...

Not sure, AJ, but I'd say that showing the actual full-size pages to an editor would probably make more of an initial impression. I suppose if one is an artistic genius 'though, a website may suffice.

Arfon Jones said...

I remember when I was on my graphic design course (1997-98) everyone was predicting that interactive CD ROM’s would be the way forward. I didn’t and felt that a website would be far better, so much so for my final course project I made a website… I was convinced that one of the big editors would find my site and hire me that day! Ah to be young an optimistic again… sigh!

Kid said...

A lot of editors are either lazy or loyal (not that the two are mutually exclusive) and tend to use those with whom they're already familiar, AJ. However, I'm sure there must be artists who've picked up work through their websites. Certainly wish I was young again.

Arfon Jones said...

You mean, *gulp* its not WHAT you know but Who you know?! Shock horror!

Kid said...

Sometimes, sadly, yes. Although it can occasionally be a combination of the two.