Anthony: Hello and welcome to Capes on the Couch where comics get counseling. I’m Anthony Sytko.
Doc Issues: And now I’m Dr. Issues.
Anthony: This is a yet again, creators on the couch episode, and for the fifth.
Five time. Five time. Five time. Are we five time. Five time five
Allen Dunford: Oh man.
Anthony: We have the the esteemed Allen Dunford and Will Radford, creators of POCUS Hocus here to talk about their latest Kickstarter gentlemen. A pleasure as always, to have you once again on the show. Yeah. Thank
Allen Dunford: you. Thank you.
Yo, thank you. Definitely love being here. And I can’t wait to, I, I wanna also lightly touch on Grandma Chainsaw too, because you guys finally had a chance to read the full thing. So I, I do, I do wanna talk about that, just, just to smidge.
Anthony: That’s fine. We can absolutely get into that. You are, the second creators, creator slash creators we’ve had on for five times.
Okay. So a couple months behind. Erica Schultz she just beat you into the five timers club, but she is no longer alone now. Oh,
Allen Dunford: It’s a good club to be a part of. Yes,
Anthony: It is. It is a good club. You don’t get jackets, but you do get charity donations. Yeah. To, to a charity of your choosing.
As selected by Erica, she turned down a starter jacket or Z as pants. I was like, something, something retro. Eighties giants, something. And she’s like, no, no, no. Donate. So, we’ll we’ll find a, a charity that is near and dear to you guys and donate to you as well. But so you’re here to talk pocus Hoku.
the fifth book in the series, which is technically chapter two, book one, correct? Mm-hmm. . Mm-hmm. I guess before we, before we get into the story for, for the folks that may be new to the show and haven’t heard the previous four times you guys were on just to give a, a brief background of yourselves and you know why it is that.
We’ve been fortunate enough to have you on the show for five times now, .
Allen Dunford: Okay, so I’m Allen Dunford. Co-writer, co-creator, grandma chainsaw, and yeah, I, I don’t know how, how did this even happen? Like how did, yeah. How did, well one, how did, will and I even get here in the first place with this comic book stuff, and two, how did we even link up with you guys?
I don’t even know.
Will Radford: Sold, sold Our souls, remember?
Allen Dunford: Oh, yeah, that’s what it was. I forgot Doc Into
Will Radford: some weird tired of having to remind you about that Allen
Anthony: whole, well, that
Allen Dunford: was part of the deal that Doc made was that, I couldn’t remember, but
Anthony: you did. Oh, oh yeah. Oh yeah.
Doc Issues: Yeah. . Yeah, there was some, there was some hypnotism involved in that too.
Allen Dunford: yeah.
Gotcha. Oh, and that’s, that’s Will, by the way. Go ahead, will .
Will Radford: Oh, oh, hey everybody. Yeah, I am. Will Radford, I am the co-writer of Pocus Hocus and Grandma Chainsaw and I. That’s the co-writer, co-creator al a partner in crime. We, we make a lot of fun, fun comic books together. That’s what I do these days and I’m having a great time.
Anthony: and we are lucky to have you guys back. The Kickstarter for POCUS Hocus is live as of January 24th. So we’re gonna get this up in the beginning of February. We just wrapped up our lantern month and then, We’ll rearrange the schedule a little bit to make sure that we give enough promotion time for this episode while the Kickstarter’s still going on.
So we’ll have links in the show notes, obviously, and we will also, obviously, as we have done for the prior four or five times, however many Kickstarters y’all have done at this point, point 30
Allen Dunford: campaigns. We feel like we’ve ran.
Anthony: Yeah, yeah. Well, we’ll be. We’ll be contributing to that total. I don’t think we’ll be needing to buy the full library.
We may not be.
Allen Dunford: I think you, I think you have everything, but
Anthony: we, we have everything I’ve got. Yeah, I have at least two or three copies of the trade at this point for that. Plus Grandma Chainsaw and Horus In Hell and so many, so many fantastic titles. And very much looking forward to seeing this in print, in my hands, in my physical.
It’s more important to me about the physical than Doc. I know he just enjoys the stories. .
Allen Dunford: Oh, do you just read ’em to him at night? , he just said that his bed Doc doesn’t even have a
Will Radford: copy. I’m the same way. I, I won’t even read Kindle if I can avoid it, just because I prefer to have a physical copy. So I, I get you, I get you on that.
Anthony: Yeah, definitely. I, I like having a physical copy. I don’t know that I necessarily need thirtyleven copies of the same book , but then again, I buy all of. variants for Moon Night. Mm-hmm. . And I’ve got like 95% of every variant that’s ever been made for moon night to cross his entire history. So who’s to say I’m not hypocrite?
Yeah. So chapter two, book one is the Kickstarter. So the first four books were sort of chapter one in the overall story. And we are now moving into chapter two. When last we left our intrepid. Heroes. I, I wouldn’t call ’em hero, whatever you wanna call ’em, right? Prota characters. When last we left the, the main characters I’m not trying to spoil too much for the folks that haven’t had an opportunity to read books one through four yet, but the the overall gist of it is that POCUS and and Emily have gone to.
To find the demon whose name has been revealed now. Should I say the name? Should we, should we say the name? Is it still a spoiler?
Allen Dunford: I said this is the bad part. Right? We’re at that point in the story. Now, especially when we have to do previews on Kickstarter for people who are new jumping in, it’s so hard to not spoil too much.
Right? Yeah. So I think the demon’s name’s fair game, just because it’s the chapter of the, of the new one. It’s the chapter title, .
Anthony: That’s true. It’s in the chapter. So the demo’s name is
Will Radford: also, Oh, right before you said it even. Yeah, I have been dying to say this character’s name on in interviews for so, so long.
Anthony: Well then will, I’ll give you the opportunity then I will steal your thunder. Okay.
Will Radford: Hugo’s name is Hugo. There it is. It’s out in the open. I can stop dripping with anxiety every time I do one of these interviews cuz I’ve had to catch myself and bite my tongue. I’ve, almost said it on so many different occasions, you have it. It’s, it’s a big relief. ,
Anthony: physical catharsis. I can see on camera that, that comes over You is palpable. Yeah, no doubt. . So, so our crew has, Entered hell to retrieve pocus soul. Mm-hmm. , which is not exactly where they thought it was. And so they have to go through the menagerie of characters that we discussed last time, and they have they’re now entering a new dimension under the control of a major demon.
Mm-hmm. Name, I’m not gonna, I I’m, again, it’s the kind of thing it was stated in the, the previous volume. So I don’t know if I want to say the name of the, the head of this realm out loud, but it’s, at least for me, it’s a, a major name. Mm-hmm. of, of a demon that at least in some other mythologies or series is, is familiar to me.
But I’ll leave that up to Allen will, if you want. Yeah,
Allen Dunford: I mean, we, we mention it in the thing because it was cool to us that we made this character Lilith and she likes to go by Lily cuz it makes her sound more approachable. Right. , so we liked the idea and when we introduced her, when our Oracle was, was giving her her titles.
One of the most important ones to us was name who has no chains. So it, it doesn’t matter to her if you guess her name, because she’s that powerful and she’s just that removed from, from these laws that we set before.
Anthony: Hmm. Yeah, I’ve come across a couple other situations and stories where the name of, like the major demon is named Lith.
And so seeing that in this story, I was like, oh, okay. That’s what they’re, going for, I think yeah. Spinnerette is one that I don’t know if you guys, yeah.
Allen Dunford: We really wanted to just play around with that too because we feel like Lillith has thrown around so much that. . And that’s why we also wanted to kind of make fun of ourselves a little bit for picking it.
That’s why we just call her Lilly too.
Anthony: So Lilly has seemingly control of pocus soul and I’ve had an opportunity to read at least the first couple of pages of this volume, and I’m very intrigued as to where this is going because as with the first volume, It’s apparent that there are other things at play here that may not be apparent to even some of the characters involved, that their fates are intertwined, shall we say.
Mm-hmm. . And so I’m, I’m very curious to see where this is gonna go moving forward, but I guess my, my question to you is then. I guess first off, how many books is chapter two? Is this gonna be another four book chapter?
Allen Dunford: Yes. Yeah, so we’re, we’re doing another four, or four, or however you wanna say it.
We’re doing another four, four issue run for, for this chapter.
Anthony: Okay. And then how many, how many chapters? Ahead. Have you planned, or how many chapters do you see for this whole story?
Allen Dunford: Well, what, I think we’ve already talked about two more chapters after this one already. Yeah. At
Will Radford: least. I I would say that we’ve, planned pretty
Allen Dunford: far in advance. Yeah. For focus, yeah. Mm-hmm. , just because this we’ll obviously touch on this, this later. But like with Grandma Chainsaw to us it lends itself better in a, smaller vacuum. Just doing like a four issue run of that.
It sounds good because we don’t want a, Jason goes to Manhattan situation on our hands where we don’t know what we’re doing with this, character anymore because we think Hazel will just work better in in smaller. But with the story like POCUS and how big this world is getting, and I, I just think it lends itself really well to a series and we could just do so much with it and all the weird characters that we’re, introducing along the way.
Will Radford: That’s the big thing. I, I think we realized too, especially when we sat down to start two dash one is what I’ll say. One of the things that, that we found that really propelled us forward and got the momentum going again, was our discussion about characters.
Mm-hmm. . And it seems like the new characters were almost one of the first things that we talked about in regards to it, which could be my own selfish thing. I know whenever I sit down to write something, I always start with characters and backstory. Yeah. But when we started thinking about that, and cracking each other up, like, like we always do, and the rhythm came in as familiar as it always does.
Again, I think that’s when we knew, okay, we were really, really confident going forward then because I mean that’s the thing I’m the most excited for in this arc really. Or the, new characters that we’re going to introduce and how those then propel these characters and also the readers deeper into this world and also give them something new.
Anthony: Yeah. Character driven stories for me are always exciting. And I’ve talked about this previously, I think both with, with you guys and, with other creators and just on the show in general. I mean, action is great. Punchy, punchy stuff is cool, makes for awesome splash pages, but if you don’t care about the characters, if you don’t care about what is driving the story, it’s just gonna kind of fall flat.
Mm-hmm. , you know, I know Doc has similar feelings about that as.
Doc Issues: Oh yeah. I mean that’s part of why we have the podcast the way we do. The idea that you could take characters that may or may not be based on real people, but still are unique enough that we can quite literally talk about their psyche.
That’s an amazing experience. And, that’s exactly why creators come on this show because, not that we, we don’t discriminate, but at the same time, we recognize when we see it, people that put that level of effort into it. So yeah, it’s amazing.
Will Radford: Yeah. Thank you. And, one thing that I’ll say about Allen and myself too is like, whenever whenever we’ve had those conversations, whenever we started doing this, working on it, everything the character driven aspect of it was so important. We wanted dimensions to these characters and I think I’ve figured out that a lot of that, looking back on Allen and. You know, friendship. And, you know, ever since college, or excuse me, ever since high school up until this point, I’m still, this is how scrambled my mind is today, guys.
Ever since high school up until this point we’ve, we’ve always sort of talked about. People and characters and, and these sort of scenarios that we will come up with and put people and characters in. And I think that really just stems honestly. I mean, this might kind sound kind of bizarre, but I think it stems from a love of people.
It’s like a love of of people, their mannerisms, their personalities, their diversity, everyth. Yeah. And that’s such a weird, eerie thing, like, not eerie, but weird thing for me to say because, you know, I, I guess something about my mannerisms or personality makes people think that I hate people or that I’m not, a couple person, which I guess in some ways is true on, on so surface social levels.
But I think a lot of that information on how we write these characters comes from. I really do.
Anthony: You got that resting bitch face. Will
Allen Dunford: I do we got’s got RBF bad?
Will Radford: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Mm-hmm. .
Anthony: It’s just, it screams misanthrope and . Yeah. .
Will Radford: Right, right. Yeah, exactly.
Anthony: Is that guy off in the corner at the party?
Just stare at everybody. I hate everybody here.
Will Radford: Right, right. It’s like
Allen Dunford: guys, who the hell do they think they are enjoying the.
Will Radford: I’m more like Tim Burton than I am Thomas La Gotti. I promise. It’s like nice. I’m, I’m much more interested in, genuinely getting to know people and, and that kind of thing.
Anthony: yeah, small gatherings. Small, yes. intimate situations. Yeah. Even more so for Doc.
Doc Issues: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. Even more so for
Will Radford: Doc. Let’s understand. I mean, I, I definitely, I definitely get that. Yeah. I mean, getting the, the work and everything that, yeah. , it’s gotta be that night, which
Anthony: I think comes across actually in. The stories because it, it does ultimately come down to a very small group of characters that you’re dealing with. You’re not talking some large ensemble cast where you have to juggle 20 different characters and all of these various subplots. I mean, when it comes down to it, you’ve got the, the four mains is, is Hugo.
Mm-hmm. , Pocus Emily and to some extent Horas as well. Mm-hmm. . Yeah. That’s really it. Think four main. Yeah. I think when you start getting beyond that, then there’s different dynamics at play, certainly with additional characters, but I think the interplay among those, those four key folks is, is really what drives the story.
And so I think. Idea that you’re not enamored with the large crowds in the large settings. Mm-hmm. that comes across in the story, whether it was intentional or not. I think it
Will Radford: that’s interesting. Yeah. I never thought of that, but No, I think, I think you’re right. I do think you’re right about that.
Anthony: Yeah. Sounds like something Doc would’ve said, probably, you know, oh, I’m gonna psychoanalyze the meaning behind this, and
Will Radford: No, no, I mean, it’s, well, even, even writing in general, I’ve always, preferred to work with a, a smaller group of like primary characters. and I think maybe, maybe that’s what it is, Allen.
It’s, it’s the fun comes in the secondary character writing and, and knowing that some of these, characters are just gonna drop in long enough for them to what they need to do and then they’ll be gone. . Yeah.
Allen Dunford: But there is one character though and I can’t wait to talk to him about you guys in the next episode that we introduce I sent you the artwork for him in your guys’ email.
We, he shows up in the last two pages that are inked that I sent you guys. Let’s just say he’s a very central character to us, getting us to where we need to go to because he knows the ins and outs of where they’re at. And I, I hope it comes across this way, but when we were writing this script, and I never thought it could happen.
When we finished Grandma Chainsaw Issue two, will and I, we were in tears, we’re cracking up at, at how all the, just the wild stuff that happens in it and how it ends is just so, so crazy for issue two. And it, it’s a good lead in for three. But there’s one scene in Hocus Hocus this issue, volume two, number one.
Where will, I think it was the hardest that we’ve ever laughed when writing something and it involves that character.
Will Radford: Yeah,
Allen Dunford: like it, it’s just the, it’s a full page of just absolute nonsense. It’s probably us at our worst , honestly, when I think about it. But we did it anyway, but, but we had so much fun writing the thing and it was just so stupid.
Doc Issues: I appreciate you guys saying that because although I will admit we don’t write on the scale that you guys do, like, we’re not writing comic books yet. We. Right. For our show and we write for a skit. Yeah. And without going into detail I know that feeling that you are expressing Yeah. Directly. Yeah.
Yeah. Because maybe three or four episodes ago I ended up in this zone and I’ll be honest, it was very childish. Mm-hmm. . But my soul was just laughing. Inside so hard, and I said, I don’t care if a single person on this planet enjoys this as much as I am right now. I needed to do this. Yeah.
Yes. And then around that same time, I get a text from Anthony and he says, this is the greatest thing you’ve ever done. So Yeah, yeah, yeah. the idea that you get into that type of flow state of just, yeah. Just, pure enjoyment of the process in addition to the result.
And that’s the thing, even if you don’t think it’s going to hit with everybody, it’s like it doesn’t even matter, but some. Makes it even better cuz you know it will hit with the, with people you need to.
Allen Dunford: And it’s funny cuz it’s such a simple joke how we did it. Like obviously when you guys see it, I, I think you’ll know what we’re talking about.
But it’s such a simple joke and it just goes for a little bit and it’s just, it’s good. It’s honestly just good, fun, clean humor and it just cracked us up. Yeah. Grandma chainsaw. We kinda have to change our minds a little bit because we have to go to a really dark place. . Yeah. We’ve heard some of the stuff that we have to do for that one.
Will Radford: Very different.
Allen Dunford: Yeah. But we still have fun, you know? Hey, we’re here. Oh, sure. Yeah, yeah. .
Yeah. No, it’s fun.
Will Radford: Is the name of the game for me. I mean, like, I, I’ve never had more fun in my life working on anything creatively than I have writing these comics, you know? And I mean, that’s, that’s the honest to God truth and I don’t want to single out comics specifically in, in saying that because I have read some very, very moving comic books.
I’ve read some very, very unsettling, horrifying comic books. They can conjure up all of these emotions. But for me it’s just writing in this medium. I mean, there’s no kind of creative, fun, quite like this. Mm-hmm. . And I hope it’s the same for, the rest of the team, but then I look at their work and the painstaking, precision that went into it.
I’m just like, oh my God. Yep. I hope that they are, they are also, enjoying this and finding that same inspiration.
Anthony: Well, again based on the fact that we’ve had you on now five times. Yeah. I think that passion and that joy comes through in the stories. Yeah. And it’s not just obviously the artwork, but it’s the characterization and the writing, the, the interplay and the dynamics.
You need to have that. And if you are just going through the motions. People pick up on that. Mm-hmm. . Yes, and they may enjoy it. It may still be good, but it can definitely come across. Whereas I will enjoy passion. I love seeing people that are passionate about something, even if it’s not something that I’m necessarily interested in or that I care about or that I share that passion.
If you. All in. If you are balls to the wall on something and it comes through every pore of your being, I will go on that journey with you for at least a little while, just because it’s fun, , because it’s infectious and that passion. Comes through and mm-hmm. , it comes through your writing. And I hope to our listeners, it comes through the show that Yeah.
When we’re, when we’re on something and when we’re not on something, but you know what I mean, that a whole other show, that could be an
Allen Dunford: entirely separate topic. Actually. That’s, that’s how we wrote Grandma Chainsaw, but we’ll talk that
Anthony: way. All right. Hey, listen, I’m, I’m here for it, . No, but when, when you’re on it vibe, when you just, it’s clicking and you’re just, you’re in the pocket.
It really comes across and I find that those episodes, I’m the guy who checks the numbers. I know Doc couldn’t care less, but I’m the guy that checks the numbers like a couple times a week. Those episodes where I feel, yeah, you know what, we really just, we vibed, we clicked whatever they seem to do a little bit better downloads wise than some of the other episodes.
Even if the character that we’re talking about isn’t a huge name, you know, we. , some big name characters, and then we have some characters where people are like, man, I don’t know anything about that one. I’m gonna skip it. Yeah. And that’s fine. Not every episode has to be for every person, but the, the episodes that draw people in that, I think maybe some of like the sleeper hits.
Mm-hmm. are the ones where things are going well, and I find that passion again comes through. With your, your writing and your stories. And we’ve had creators on that. They have good stuff, but it’s just like, okay, this is whatever. And then, not to blow smoke, but you guys, it comes through and that’s why we’ve had you on on as many times as, as we have, and there’s other creators that I would love to have back because it, it bleeds through the page and you’re like, you get it.
Yeah. You just, you’re reading it and. It pulls me in again, even if it’s not a, a subject matter or character that I care a lot about, it pulls me in. And so I appreciate that
Will Radford: well, I’ve noticed that dynamic in just a lot of things just life in general is, is the genuine, like the authenticity will shine through oftentimes even in the most, seemingly inauthentic situations.
But that’s a really good point. And if that is the case, Allen, we really should have a winner on our hands with this new issue because Yeah. It was the most fun I, I’ve had since writing issue three. Yeah. Just in terms of. The humor and just the, the way that it escalates and all that stuff.
Allen Dunford: Yeah. This issue builds a lot. It does. Yeah. and I, I’m so sorry in advance but we are just gonna cut, cut the bottom out. And just right where you guys are standing because we have a very abrupt ending for this issue.
Yes, . We do. And it’s, and it’s very on purpose. Yes. And it’s one of those, we hope it comes through this way. I think this might be the most abrupt ending that we have, and we hope that it, it bleeds through to a, oh my God. I, I need number two now. Alright. So. .
Anthony: Okay. Yeah. I, I, I can appreciate that. Yeah.
Doc Issues: Yeah. I mean, I’ll put it this way Anthony, even more so than me, but I, I did grow up a little bit with the, with Monty Python. Mm-hmm. . If anybody has ever seen an episode of Monty Python’s Flying Circus, the whole point of it is, They knew themselves. They didn’t know how to write endings. I’m not saying you guys don’t, I know you guys have a, clear plan.
Allen Dunford: Yeah. Monty python is just a bunch of inside jokes Yeah. That we just happen to be a part of now.
Will Radford: Right, right. Yeah. That’s, that’s why it’s so endearing. You guys, a hundred percent. I agree with both of those things, . Yeah.
Anthony: Yeah. I, I absolutely did grow up on Monty Python and the show, and the movies and, and everything and,
I’m almost tempted to go off on a tangent about Monty Python and the, the passion I feel for it.
Doc Issues: That’s the, that’s the beauty of having your own show. Go ahead and do it.
Anthony: So the thing about Monty Python is I saw spam alo in theaters. I saw the, the Broadway show, spam alot. And the thing that gets me about stuff like Spam alo and the legacy of Monty Python, and, and they’ve spoken about this themselves.
The whole point of Monty Python was to complet. almost create da da esque humor. This, yes, we are going to do whatever the hell it is that we want. Yes. It’s not gonna make sense. It’s gonna be non-sequitur and it’s gonna be embracing the absurd And the fact that now pythonesque is a term, yeah. An umbrella term that is used for a style of humor is antithetical to the very thing that they were trying to do.
Yeah. And spam a. Is again, I, I appreciated it. I thought there were, there were parts of it that were very funny and I appreciated the technical aspect of it, but it spoonfed the jokes Yeah. To the audience. Yeah. Yeah. And it pissed me off. Yeah. Yeah. So hard. You never, Griffin never came back, for example.
Thank you. In, in the movie, you know that there are those who call. Tim. Tim. Tim, you know, we go through this whole thing with John k with the fire and the, horns on the head and Yep. Yeah. You know, the thick, Scottish accent, everything like that. And he’s Tim the en chanter, right? Right. Yeah.
In the movie. It’s just that some who called me, Tim. Yeah. And they’re just kinda like, okay. And then you just move on. Yeah. In spam, they follow that up with King Arthur turns to the knights and. He is like, well, that’s not a very scary name, is it? I’m like, you ruined the fucking joke That’s
Allen Dunford: you just stood up in your chair and you just walked out. .
Anthony: I was so pissed. I was like, what are you doing? Yes.
Will Radford: Being David Mamet earlier, that would’ve been one of those. One of the one of those moments where he like stood up in the theater, yelled, bullshit, and walked out in the middle of a rehearsal.
Yeah. Theater we’ll do that shit. Theater will. And coming from a background of, theater, it’s not subtle , it is not subtle like ever. And so that’s why I think that certain things work in theater and certain things don’t. Everything has, its.
Appropriate medium. Yeah. Monty Python. On the surface you might think, cuz so, so much of it is outrageous that it would translate really well to theater. But you just illustrated a great way of, of you know, how it ultimately I’ve not seen spam a lot, but how it, it might not, you know, so,
Anthony: yeah. Yeah.
And the fact that, it started off as whatever, we’re just gonna do these insane things. And now like 50, 60 years later, you have people that quote the parrot. Like verbatim, and I know I’m just as guilty. I have done it myself. , I have referenced Monty Python. I could give you the holy grail like line for line cuz I’ve seen it.
I dunno how many times. , right? I will, I will insert in my own life. And now for something completely different, like I will just throw in there. So I’m admittedly as guilty of it as the next person. And, and there was an XKCD comic about this as well, about the notion of trying to make an anti joke and go for the, the humor that subverse the expectations.
Right. And so to tie this all the way back, cuz there was a point of the tangent that my A D H D ass will eventually get back to, is, I appreciate the abrupt ending sometimes because if you think it’s going a certain place and you subvert it, yeah. That is where the humor comes from. And also, This just came to me, but it’s a perfect segue into Grandma Chainsaw and
Allen Dunford: Yes!
Anthony: Yeah, it’s, I do manage to tie things back. I do come up with good shit once in a while.
Allen Dunford: I dunno how you did that. That’s pretty cool. You did it Anthony. You did it. You crazy bastard .
Anthony: Yes. chalk. One up. Chalk one up for me. So Grandma Chainsaw very much ends on a, what TV tropes likes to refer to as a Gainax ending.
Where you just go the fuck, like D A F U Q, the fuck. That’s the kind of ending Grandma Chainsaw one ended on for me because I was like, okay. And I remember when we spoke about Grandma Chainsaw, I think both when we were doing POCUS four and then when we had the mm-hmm , the Grandma Chainsaw specific episode.
It was very much. This ending and this story is gonna start off in one place, and it’s gonna take a hard left turn.
Allen Dunford: We warned you, we warned you down ahead of
Doc Issues: You did. You did. You did warn me.
Allen Dunford: And Doc said over there, I’ll lean back in his chair with that beautiful face of his, with that little grin that I love so much
And, and he was like, nothing really surprises me anymore because I’ve watched a lot of horror.
Doc Issues: Oh my God.
Allen Dunford: And then, and then you pulled your, you pulled your corn. Pipe out. Yeah. And then you took a puff of it and I was like, okay, we’ll see. We’ll see Doc.
Doc Issues: Right, right.
Allen Dunford: Tell me how grandma chainsaw one ends. I dare you.
Doc Issues: No, I can’t complain. I did not sit back. I did. Basically give the reaction that Anthony kind of pointed out like, , fuck. Alright. Ok. Then I come in.
Allen Dunford: Yeah. You’re either on board or you’re not. After I’m
in. Let’s go.
Anthony: There were any number of ways that I saw this issue ending. Mm-hmm.
being rescued. Captain Neck Beard in the Fedora squad. was not on that list. If you’d give me 50 guesses as to how this would’ve ended, I would’ve gone. Oh, for 50.
Allen Dunford: Oh my God. I’m crying
Doc Issues: now. Not even, not even close. Like I’m
Anthony: like, I’m like, they’re being rescued by the Incell Avengers. Like this
Allen Dunford: is okay. All right, let’s, let’s go and talk about the nightmare.
Just got worse, . Let’s go.
Anthony: Ok. So yeah, let’s, let’s just, let’s just do the damn thing then. Let’s talk, let talk Grandma chainsaw. Okay.
Allen Dunford: So we’ll, we’ll probably jump around a little bit with this, but so obviously anyone listening full spoilers ahead and it’s. This is one of those where the spoilers are unavoidable because of how it ends and how we have to even show preview pages for issue two.
Like if you didn’t read issue one, you’re gonna be very confused. Yeah. Whenever you see issue two stuff. So, you know, grandma Chainsaw starts off like your typical slasher. You know, we have four people lost in the woods. They wash up on Hazel’s doorstep because guess what? G p s doesn’t work.
They’re in the middle of nowhere. Right. The original intro for Grandma Chainsaw was something that Will and I tossed around a lot because we’re both big into character. . And with this one, we really had to take a backseat for why they were going where they were going because we needed them to get there because there’s only so many pages that we can tell the story because originally this issue ended because we had more backstory for why they were traveling to where they were traveling, and it actually ended with the hand going over Gabby’s.
And it just cut there. So you didn’t know if it was someone evil rescuing her or if it was someone helpful out in the woods. But Will and I made the decision will, I think you talked me into it, that we needed to
Will Radford: I it the other way around now. Oh, really? Okay. Hey, I can’t
remember. I, I was gonna, I, because I was gonna say, I think maybe you talked me into it, I
Allen Dunford: remember.
Yeah. We’re, we’re just one body at this point, but like, whenever we wrote it, we were like, we, we have to put ’em in here at the end. It’s gonna sell it. Yeah. This is gonna, this is gonna sell the issue. We cut the intro really short. Yeah. Comparatively to what we originally wanted it,
Will Radford: right? Yeah. In my mind it would be like the, the hander that came over the mouth would be just the, abrupt kind of thing you guys were talking about. And it would be the, cliffhanger and it would keep sort of grounded in this horror thing. The problem. And, I’ve realized this since then and, and Allen and I have talked about it, is that I think it would potentially deflate too much of the momentum at the beginning of the second issue.
Yeah. That people would get it and then they would be like, why is this humor here? Yeah. Whereas where it’s at the end of the first issue, it after,
Allen Dunford: after a lot of serious stuff just happened. Not
Will Radford: just, yeah. Not even just serious, but like batshit crazy stuff. We get this completely new batshit crazy thing.
I think people respond, I mean, I think
Allen Dunford: The response that we’ve gotten, and it was so funny because. We, we hope that people would like it. You create something, you want someone to like it, right? But the response was unanimous across the board. How will and I had to sell the comic.
We felt like we maybe undersold it, but we didn’t wanna reveal too much. We didn’t wanna reveal Yeah. That there was something different about Hazel. We sold it.
Doc Issues: Oh, you, you did a great job with that
Allen Dunford: because we sold it as just their stereotypical slasher, grandma chainsaw.
It kind of does what it says on the label. Right. But, but really under the surface, we, we didn’t wanna talk about there’s something different about Hazel and we didn’t wanna talk about the neck beards waiting out in the woods. That are ready to rescue them and or rescue them right, quote unquote loosely rescue them.
So it was one of those things where we had to pitch it that way, but now all the, responses that we got back were, I did not expect any of this, and I loved it. Yeah, it’s been like, that has been everyone’s blanket review. I didn’t expect it to end that way. And we originally will pitched the idea for demon hunters. And then we tossed ’em around. Cause originally it was just gonna be like good old boys from Appalachia, like stuff, stuff like around here, right? Guys that like skin a buck, run a trout line, stuff like that. Right? But then we were tossing round.
It’s like that’s kind of done a lot. Like you see that like deliverance. Yeah. You know, things like that, right? Yeah. Or
Will Radford: what is that, Tucker and Dale versus evil. Evil. Yeah. Versus Tucker Dale versus evil was different, which is hilarious. I’m not knocking it, but, but
yeah. Yeah. You,
Allen Dunford: yeah. But then we, we decided what if we make it like like Neckbeards?
What if we make ’em gamers, like guys that think that they can save people, but they can’t even like file their own taxes, right? Like So then we decided to only use gamer tags for them, for their names, like code words. And then that’s when just the hilarity ensued and we were kinda worried, I think too, right.
Will, we were afraid it was gonna take too much of a left turn whenever they got outta the house.
Will Radford: Yeah. I don’t think there was ever any disagreement on whether or not to do it, but it was like we, we just wanted to be sure. It was done as correctly as it could be. Mm-hmm. and I, I mean,
Allen Dunford: and the humor was, was wild to juggle too.
Yeah. Because, is everyone in the know on this? Right? And, and if they’re not in the know on this, this kind of culture of people, because hell, these are our people. I play magic The gathering. I play D and d I, I’m raised around these guys, right? Yeah. But it’s like, how do we make it funny enough to where we’re not coming off as like, mean spirited?
And then how do we make it funny enough to where people who don’t know this culture or this subgroup, We’ll laugh at this and understand it as well and get what’s
Will Radford: going on. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. And the idea was never really to, single out a specific culture or anything like that. As a whole. We’re just making fun of ourselves, honestly. Well, well, yeah. And, and a personality type. Mm-hmm. Also that,
Allen Dunford: and everyone knows someone like these people,
Will Radford: right. Yeah. . And that will lend itself to, to a character that you might wanna see die in a slash. Yeah. Story.
Allen Dunford: Yeah. And that was saying like, okay, so especially with like Fury Chan, the, the leader of the Dead Squad, right?
How, how do we make someone so deplorable that we, the audience will just love to hate this guy , right? And we feel like we, we kind of captured that with him, but we had these sobering moments like, it really all escalates toward the end of the first issue where we see Haley die, Hayden’s girlfriend, Hailey dies.
We see her strung up to a wall, blood written all over the place that says elbows off the table. Her arm is shoved through her, her elbows are mangled. And then we run downstairs. Liz is taken, her lungs are cut out and thrown at Gabby and it says, smoking kills. And then we go outside. And then I’ll go and let you guys take over now because we can go, we can go ahead and get your reactions to, I guess, the issue as a whole and what you guys
Anthony: thought. It, it was wonderful and, and as somebody that, and I think I even said this, I’m not big on horror, but I am big on stuff that subverts expectations and again, the passion comes through and I was like, okay. The artwork is phenomenal. So that alone, not that the writing was bad, but the artwork was fantastic. So that’s gonna keep me hooked.
Allen Dunford: Oh, we, we know Brian carries us. We
Anthony: we’re fully aware. And then the ending that just, we’re just gonna go over here now. Like what? Yeah. What I was just like, okay, I’m, I’m here for it.
And again, it’s, you know, I think you said it’s gonna be like what, four issues? Whatever the, the total. Yeah. Yeah. So I’m like, we’re just gonna bang, bang, bang through this. Mm-hmm. . Yeah. Bring it on. Just inject this right into my veins. That
Doc Issues: was, yeah, that was the thing for me because and it has nothing to do personally with you two whenever I get something.
No, no. I, I’ll explain my, my thought process here. Whenever I get something. A different product from something I’ve already come to expect. So I already know about pocus, so I’m like, okay, grandma, chainsaw a different thing, therefore change your expectations. And I’m getting horror, horror, continued horror.
I’m like, alright, cool. These guys can do this. This is cool. And that’s why I made the comment I made the last time we, we talked and to just basically, in a great way to say, yeah, this is a middle figure to anybody that actually thinks they know what’s going on. That’s the way I felt about it, and I’m like, all right, all right.
I am not giving these guys enough credit for, for where they put their minds moving forward. And, and that is my favorite thing. I don’t need to get the classics with the Twist. I. Yeah, random stuff. I like that. I really enjoy that. So I do do too. That’s, yeah, that’s really the, the credit that I give to this one.
I really did not even come close to. anticipating or guessing. And that once, once, that’s it. And my mind is, is open like that, I’m like, you know what, I’m, I’m all in. I’m a lemming off a cliff. . Like, I’m, I’m,
Anthony: I’m good. Yeah. Trust and suspension of disbelief is you, you got me hooked.
Will Radford: Yeah. I mean, I read a lot.
Just to, to kinda reinforce that, I read a lot of experimental lit. Not a lot, but sometimes I do. And I, whenever that happens, people will, be like, why, why? Why were you reading that to look intelligent or, you know, pretentious or whatever.
It’s like, no, I’m reading it because it’s completely unlike any mm-hmm. any other thing on the planet, you know? And, and I’m just bored of whatever conventions that are in other books at the time, you know? So I mean, in my mind is like, where can we go that’s new, just new.
And I don’t care that it’s bizarre and off the rails as, and neither does Allen, as long as we earn the right to do that and we’re not, cheating our readers in some way.
Yeah. You know?
Allen Dunford: Yeah. That’s the thing. We’re also trying to create something fresh and new for, for our readers, even when we’re telling a Faustian tale, or even when we’re telling a slasher story.
Yeah. We just want people to have fun. reading this thing.
Will Radford: You mentioned Dr. Faus with Pocus Hocus. It was never like, oh, we’re gonna do this great Faustian thing for comics that’s never been done before.
It wasn’t quite like that. It was just like, oh, okay, this pertains to like our interests and, and what we know and, we want to. Pay tribute to it. We’re always thinking along those lines. ,
Anthony: every story has been told in, in some fashion one way or another.
Right. It’s just about how you tell it. Exactly, yes. So I, I do appreciate that and very much looking forward to whenever it is that grandma chain saw. It’s Kickstarter March. All that drops March. Ready?
Allen Dunford: March, yeah. . Yeah, we’re, we’re going back to back. So once POS finishes and we get that done and we get Grandma chainsaw to wear, we, we feel like a, a good spot to launch.
So we’re looking at end of March, beginning of April.
Anthony: All right. So well, I guess we’ll be reaching out to you for the Six Timers Club then have you back on talking about that. So talk to me about some of these Kickstarter rewards then for pocus. Two dash one, so to speak. Yeah. So we’ve got a number of variant covers, some gorgeous, gorgeous covers here.
I, I do think I will have to get at least one or two of these, these variants. Just because again, I just appreciate they’re so beautiful. Just wanna hold them , just wanna hold ‘ em and cuddle them.
Allen Dunford: So we, we kind of went a little overboard with this one. We have seven covers total. We typically only have four , but this one was more of a celebration thing for us. It’s kind of a milestone that we, we made it to a second arc for this thing within a, what we feel like it’s kind of a short amount of time. Right. And we are just, we’re just so happy. Everything and how everything went. And we just reached out to people who’ve done covers to it for us before and some new people and yeah, we, we just think it turned out great and we, of course, always do our a la carte system.
Where you can buy things as part of a bundle or buy ’em individually or just plug and play and make your own tier. So like for example, you know, you could buy, the regular cover is 10 bucks and then all the variant covers are 12. Or you can get two for 20 or you can get all six of those for 45 bucks.
And then we of course have our seventh cover, which is done by Ryan Kincaid and Jesse Ha. They got together and they made a we wanted like an Emily pinup one of it just like a good classy vintage pinup because that’s what Ryan specializes in is those type, is that type of art. And yeah, we just made it an exclusive.
We have a hollow foil and a metal version of it, and the metal version will be numbered, kind of like the the grandma chainsaw one that you you guys saw the. The metal one. That’s probably one of my favorite covers, honestly. The grandma mal chainsaw one. The glow one that’s numbered the green one.
I love that one.
Will Radford: Yeah. Yep. .
Anthony: Glad, glad to have that one. Yep. Supported. Yeah, like I said, this these varying covers, this summerdale covers absolutely gorgeous. Love that style. As I said to you during pre-roll, very Mark Brooks esque, and then. This Sajad Shaw cover. There’s no colors on it, but you could have this as just a black and white, just pencils and inks, and it would be, oh, goddamn delight,
Allen Dunford: dude. I’ll, I’ll send it to you guys after the show’s done. But Sajad already did a cover for us for Grandma Chainsaw too. Oh.
Anthony: Oh. I need to see that .
Allen Dunford: It’s. It’s wild. Yeah. Okay. Like, okay. So yes, Sadad is someone that we’ll be keeping around . He’s a really good guy to work with. And you’ll see, I’ll show you what a finished his job cover looks like.
Anthony: Oh, man. Inject this into my veins again. I’m just, I’m here for it. This is, this is beautiful. Yeah, it’s it’s good stuff. And so I just happened to pop on Twitter, like live while we’re recording. I said, oh, let me look up Sajak. And I see Matt, who’s one of our patrons, just backed pocus hocus two dash one.
Like it literally, it just popped up on, on the feed. So kudos. Steve. Matt, Hey, what’s up? That’s awesome. Appreciate that. Good stuff. So see, this is all the sweet and so I haven’t been had a chance to like post about it yet in our discord so he, he found y’all that’s entirely you know, on his own.
So that’s awesome. Yeah. So I do appreciate the build your own the, a la carte system. Yeah. I think I’ll be doing that for this one because I, I do not need. Another copy of the trade paperback, . I don’t need, I don’t need another copy of the trade. I don’t need all the prior covers.
Yeah. Of all the, chapter one. I have all of those. So I’ll just be focusing on just book two and chapter two, book one and, and all that stuff. But very much looking forward to this and again, looking forward to checking out the stuff. For, for Grandma Chainsaw.
So to wrap this up, Allen and Will, where can folks find you online?
Allen Dunford: So yeah, you can find me on Twitter at Chapa Fury. Obviously you can find us on Kickstarter. We’re under Allen and Will and we’re the only people dumb enough to name our projects Grandma Chainsaw and Pocus Hocus. So you can search for us on there and then they’ll easily find our stuff so you can follow us.
You, I think the big one right now and will, will probably also touch on it too. We’ve talked to a lot of creators about really how to get, how to get the word out right. And they say social media used to be the way, but how the algorithms and everything are, everything gets so bogged down. So now we actually have a newsletter.
It’s thetophatstudios.substack.com. So that’s kind of a, a good way to keep up with us as our newsletter.
Will Radford: Yeah. Well, just to really quick, my personal handles Instagram will Rad 82 and then Vimeo. If you want to check out any of my film and video work, it’s vimeo.com/will. Rad. W i l l r a d. The Substack is something, that, I’m excited about of course. And I think it’s been really cool I think for us to not just like keep that. Lifeline with our fans like that, connection to our fans, but also just in terms of like our own creativity and writing and that kind of thing. That’s been its own. New, fun thing to explore. I’m very excited about that and I think as far as locating us on online goes and keeping up with us in everything that we’re doing, I would say that’s probably, probably the best way to do that, is like a whole for these, for these comics.
So yeah, Substack is it is growing by the day,
Anthony: so, I’ve seen a lot of creators promote their Substack on various social medias, and they say, Hey, sign up to the newsletter, and you get the free tier. And I guess there’s like paid tiers and subscriptions and stuff that allows you additional content. So we’ll have links to all that in the show notes.
Because as, as Chris from Play Comics, who I know you speak to as well mm-hmm. He always says clicking on stuff is a lot easier than spelling it out or trying to type it into your browser. always, never, not. Absolutely. So we’re gonna shift around the schedule after this a little bit.
So next week is when we will drop the Ted Anderson interview about his, his graphic novel side effects. And then to tie into Antman Quantum Mania. We will be doing Kang the Conquer, and then we will get into animal sidekicks. So we’ve got some good stuff. We just talked about Chris and play comics.
You can check out him. Hopefully you guys end up back on, on that show.
Allen Dunford: We, we always do.
Anthony: Yeah. , I’m sure you do. So you can find Chris, us, and a whole host of other shows at our network page, which is gonnageek.com or gonnageeknetwork.com. We are proud members of the Gonna Geek Network. So check out the other fantastic and amazing shows.
That site. You can find all of our episodes on our website, capes on the couch.com. We are on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok capes on the couch. And you can send us an email to capes on the email@example.com with any questions. And I think just based on the sheer amount of stuff that. We have from you guys, I could probably put together some kind of a giveaway.
Mm-hmm. To promote the Kickstarter here. So stay tuned to the socials and we’ll have some kind of a giveaway where I can. Send somebody maybe the copy of one of the trades for volume one or chapter one to get folks caught up on that. And maybe one or two of the variants.
I don’t know. I’ll figure it out. The stuff will be on the socials, but we’ll, we’ll do some kind of a, a giveaway to spread the gospel and the word of. You guys Allen and Will thank you as always for coming back on the show. And like I said we’ll be talking, I’m sure late March for Grandma Chainsaw will squeeze you in the schedule as we, we always do.
Allen Dunford: Well, thank you guys, and we cannot wait to come back on and like always, we, we wanna say just thank you one for having us on, and thank you to anyone listening and thank you guys for supporting us and giving us your hard earned money. It means more than you’ll. Yes.
Doc Issues: Yeah, and I’m, I’m gonna fanboy just a little bit because it looks like Allen or Will whoever put this up on our link while we’re doing this chat?
I’ve already looked at these images. This is awesome with these, oh my God. Covers, man.
Allen Dunford: Anthony, have you looked at these?
Anthony: I, I was doing a couple other things, but I I am going there right now. Holy smoke.
Allen Dunford: Okay. These are the first three covers we have for Grandma Chainsaw. Yo, you can tell which one.
Huh. Yeah, Uhhuh. You can tell which one. The Sajhad one is, I, I think. Yes.
Anthony: Oh. Yes. It’s Sajhad. Go. Gorgeous Artwork. No, this, this first one.
Doc Issues: Yeah, the very first one. That was the thing. I wasn’t even talking about Saja. I mean, it’s cool, but I’m just saying that very first. I’m like, alright.
Anthony: Okay. I’m, I’m here, I’m here for it.
Allen Dunford: We’ll talk about it in the green room, .
Anthony: Absolutely. Absolutely. Okay. So so thank you again Allen will as always for doc issues, I’m Anthony Sytko. Thanks for listening. We’ll see you next week.