In our continuing effort to keep the Barney & Clyde Juggernaut surging ahead (the latest victim is Little Orphan Annie, which has fallen beneath the relentless drubbing administered by B&C), we bring you another exclusive interview with one of the creative team members. Today, it's Dan Weingarten, who offhandedly came up with the idea for the strip.
Dan, a few questions about the strip, Barney & Clyde.
Q: How cool is it being personally acquainted with Dave Barry?
Q: Which of Dave Barry's books is your favorite?
Q: Don't you just love Dave Barry's latest book, "I'll Mature When I'm Dead?"
A: Results hazy.
Q: On a scale of one to ten, how much funnier is Dave Barry than Gene?
A: b) Geometrically. Specifically a circle.
Q: What's with the ampersand? Plain old Latin "et" isn't good enough for you?
A: We let the two fight it out. Ampersand won. What can I say, he's got better reach.
Q: Do you see Barney & Clyde as:
1) A classic Hegelian dialectical struggle between the forces of Capital and the forces of the Proletariat to control the resources of Society and to form a State in which one or the other dominates, or,
2) A Gnostic struggle between the forces of Light and Dark, the dynamic tension between which opposites results in the creative energy of the World as we know it, or,
3.14159) A struggle to sneak a really good fart joke past the editors?
A: 22/7) I'd say a combo of manichæism and fart jokes. Actually, "Manichæism & Fart Jokes" was our working title for a while.
Q: How pathetic is it that Gene can only fulfill his lifelong dream of having a comic strip by stealing an idea from his son? Isn't that worse than Earl Woods living vicariously through his son's sports exploits?
A: He wanted a second girl, I gotta make up for it somehow.
Q: Are you basically OK with Gene using incidents from your childhood to get cheap laughs in the strip, or is this an issue that will resurface with ugly repercussions when it comes time for you and Molly to put Dad in a nursing home?
A: Intimate moments of my past have been used for cheap laughs since before I was able to walk thanks to Dave Barry. As a result I am practically impervious to embarrassment (my father's public dancing helped too).
Q: Where do you see the strip going in terms of the developing story? Will there be vampires and werewolves, metaphorical representations of teen angst and hormonal explosions? Or CGI robots battling to decide the fate of Humankind in the Universe, representing the inevitable obsolescence of humanity before its own technology? Poop jokes, representing desperation and a loss of bowel control with advancing age?
A: This I am afraid to say is a trade secret. Although I will be stealing all of those ideas.
Q: The picture we have of Gene from his own account is that he is essentially helpless with real life matters. Can you tell us an anecdote that will pointedly illustrate his complete ineptitude?
A: There are certainly many. The challenge is thinking of one that hasn't been written about. Ask again in a week.
Q: What's your opinion of this new paint that combines primer and finish coat in one?
A: It seems unnatural. It's like birth control meds that remove a woman's period. Bleeding once a month is what makes them know men are superior. I fear the coming age.
Q: According to Gene, you have recently returned to college. Does being in constant contact with the world's biggest Bob Dylan fan make you the coolest guy on campus, or what?
A: No, it's his knowledge of clock repair that does.
You're supremely welcome,
Tune in next episode for possibly another Q&A with artist David Clark. Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel.