New Comics Ideas – 2002

Rummaging around my hard disk, I came upon these notes from a brainstorming session circa 2002. Reading them cracked me up, so I thought you folks might get a snicker, chortle, or possibly even a muffled guffaw out of them, too.

Mise en scène: The ex and I were probably sitting either in a coffee shop at the Suncoast Hotel in the middle of the night, or under the spritzers at the Starbucks next to the Borders on Rainbow Blvd., on a scorching Vegas afternoon. I would have been blathering non-stop. She would have been typing like a madwoman on the fold-up keyboard of her Palm Pilot and, when the spirit moved her, tossing ideas of her own into the mix. (She was highly creative and very witty in her own right. I can’t pinpoint her contributions to this session, but the “tuna” line and the one about the rock band sound a lot like her.)

The material is, of course, both unstructured and uncensored. That’s the point of a brainstorming session, to let ideas flow free and unrestrained. Critique comes later.

One other thing you need to know before you read further: At the time, I had just finished up the *Howard the Duck* Limited Series for Marvel Max, and Marvel had offered me another assignment — scripting the book that would eventually be published as *Marville*. I turned it down because I wasn’t prepared to participate in the character assassination of someone I’d known for thirty years and whom I value as a personal friend.

Unsurprisingly, I’ve yet to be offered another assignment by Marvel.

That said, here are the notes:

  • “The High Life” — about lowlifes. Alt. title: “High Rollers”. Haunted money. Haunted casinos, gambling tables, etc.
  • Soul-eating whorehouse on wheels called the Suck-You Bus.
  • “upwardly mobile vampires”
  • Sexual terrorists — something to do with kidnapping fundamentalists and corrupting them? bumper sticker: Jesus Is Coming. Subversive Muslim rock band —
    Quran Quran, “Girls on Camels”
  • S&M aliens
  • Allah does not forbid tuna.
  • Miniseries or GN titled “Smallpond”. Story about 2 captains of a dead industry fighting for the last microgram of the industry’s market share. Blood feud. Franchise blacksmith shops, last two manufacturers of 8-track tapes. 2 companies are both subsidiaries of much larger companies that don’t realize the small companies still exist. They service a market that consists of 11 specialty stores, all serviced by one distributor. Distributor has just discovered CDs. Problem with these two companies is that they are staffed entirely by strange little fat boys with beards who only understand 8-track technology and think CDs and cassettes are a passing fad. Not only that, there’s recently been 70’s retro movie released that made $114 million its first weekend and both companies believe that this is a sign that the public is really interested in 8-tracks — they just need to get the word out. One manufacturer, the young upstart, has recently withdrawn from the RIAA and decided to pursue his own standard of recording. The other manufacturer perceives this as a potentially lethal threat to its catalog of Journey and Air Supply and Kansas 8-tracks. In an effort to wipe out the competition once and for all, the young upstart manufacturer decides to unleash a hot new album, available only on 8-track, entitled “MyCompetitorSucksville”. The more established company lashes back with a new album called “Our Second Oldest Act Strikes Back (If It Isn’t Dead).” To the horror of the young upstart, the OSOA album outsells every new release that month. So the upstart decides there’s only one thing left to do — kill the older captain. Meanwhile, 99.9% of the population of the universe doesn’t care.
  • Alternative ideas, also called Smallpond: Two gangs of bloodthirsty guppies locked in a life or death battle over a small swatch of plankton on the surface of Farmer Brown’s fish pond. Knife fights, chain fights, swim-by shootings. The pond is awash in blood. Which side will triumph? Ending: Farmer Brown paves over the pond and puts up a strip mall.
  • New romance series: Israeli/Palestinian Heartthrobs. Hamas discovers to its horror that Palestinian boys are blowing themselves up over failed romances with nice Jewish girls.
  • Dick the Dead Horse — keeps appearing in inappropriate places, and people try uselessly to get rid of him by beating him.
  • Rose Hips, Health Food Hooker — hangs around outside health food stores and exchanges blowjobs for vitamins. For a bottle of essential amino acids, she’ll go around the world.

And you thought all the fun this week was in San Diego.

[‘New Comics Ideas – 2002’ is Copyright © 2006 Steve Gerber. All rights reserved. Because you just never know…]

12 Responses to “New Comics Ideas – 2002”

  1. Stephen Payne Says:

    Uh-oh, better watch out. “Dick the Dead Horse” sounds like the plot to the next 20 Adam Sandler films…

  2. Micah Says:

    There’s something nice about stream of conscience ideas like that just as they are. Reminds me a bit of HTD 10 or 16. Introduce an idea, play a bit, and then move on.

    Could all 11 ideas be used in one story?

  3. Micah Says:

    I meant stream of consciousness. I knew that.

  4. Charles Bryan Says:

    I was going to make a sleazy remark about the Rose Hips story. However, I’d just like to say that I wish there was still a magazine like Creepy or Eerie where some of these ideas could be used.

  5. Richard Bensam Says:

    The second part of the introduction wasn’t really necessary — “Smallpond” speaks for itself without having to explain the joke. But the idea of you being offered Marville is also funny in an extremely sad way.

  6. badMike Says:

    You should still do something with Quran Quran. That’s really funny. Quran Quran fights who? The Jesus Freak, maybe?

  7. A.L. Baroza Says:

    I’d definitely buy Smallpond. And you know, the Palestinian/Israeli romance book would probably start a few riots, but it’s an inspired little concept.

    I like the idea of Quran Quran existing. It’s probably a one-note joke, but still.

  8. Matt Maxwell Says:

    Any of these sound more interesting than most of what I’ve seen at the convention this weekend. I wish I was joking, but I’m not.

  9. Brian Spence Says:

    I never read it, so who was Marville attacking? From wikipedia, it says that it was criticized for attacking DC and letting Marvel off scot-free, but it doesn’t mention anyone being attacked directly. I’m very surprised that they wanted you to attack someone in particular, as well. How juvenile. It must have been Jemas, since he was the one who finally wrote the book and he was in charge of Marvel at the time.

  10. Brian Spence Says:

    Ok, a little more digging, and it appears that Marville had a running joke about Paul Levitz. Yeah, let me run out to the store to buy that one. I’ve also seen a couple of reviews that said it’s awful, so it looks like you dodged a bullet, Steve.

  11. Micah Says:

    Although, some of Mr. Gerber’s best writing is when he has a chip on his shoulder. Just the idea of the “spineless wonders” from Destroyer Duck still make me laugh.

    Of course you want a target deserving of literary assassination, but…well…isn’t anybody pissing you off?

  12. Nat Gertler Says:

    Rose Hips reminds me of my plans for Yule Lovett, who would celebrate the holidays by offering her services in exchange for Hostess snack cakes. She was the famed Ho-Ho ho. Merry Christmas!