Okay, here’s the full image of the final colors for my SCUD: THE DISPOSABLE ASSASSIN 20th anniversary pinup. SCUD holds a special place in my heart.
The first issue of this comic came out the year after I graduated from high school. I had been into comics my whole life, but really started to explore the untamed landscape of indie comics like TMNT, MAGE, GRENDEL, HAMSTER VICE, XENOZOIC TALES and more. The comic shop I frequented really had no reason to order SCUD #1. It was from a tiny obscure publisher (Fireman Press), featured an unheard of character, and was written and drawn by someone utterly unknown in the comics scene (Rob Schrab). Still, there it sat on the shelf that Friday in all its bright red and yellow glory, calling out to me like a beacon amongst superhero sameness. I picked it up and flipped through it, digging the manic black and white artwork, but what really sold it for me was the bizarre creature Jeff. Jeff is an apocalyptic Frankenstein’s monster made up of odd parts, including a giant squid strapped to her chest. I can’t resist cool squid-based stuff, and this comic just screamed bizarre fun, so I bought it, read it, loved it and stuck with it for the remainder of its run (finally completed in 2008).
The world of Scud is hard to put into words, but it’s a pop-culture masterpiece that careens wildly from offbeat humor to dark satire. Dan Harmon (creator of the sitcom COMMUNITY) also helped steer the series by writing a few of the issues (and perhaps engaging in idea sessions with Rob from time to time).
Getting back to squid, though, my bond with Scud and my link to its brilliant creator, Mr. Schrab, all comes right back to that very same aquatic beastie. Years later, an illustration I created of a giant squid battling a gorilla would somehow catch the attention of Rob through the miracle of the internet. He reached out to me and told me how much he liked the work, and a few years later would reach out again to inquire about using some of my t-shirt creations to be featured on some episodes of COMMUNITY that he was directing (and that totally happened)! SO, if it weren’t for squid, I would not have discovered Scud, and neither would Rob Schrab have discovered me. I’m sure in the grand cosmic scheme of things, this means something and is perhaps part of the solution to some ancient riddle, but I have yet to figure that out. When Rob asked if I would like to contribute a pinup to celebrate Scud’s 20th anniversary, I jumped at the chance to give back a little something to Rob for the joy and marvel that Scud had brought to my life, and for the extra attention my work has gotten because of his interest.
God bless Squids and Scuds and Rob Schrab!