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Archive for June, 2007

About

Monday, June 18th, 2007

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About The Creators

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

Jeremy Donelson

jeremy@division18.com

Jeremy Donelson is the artist and co-creator of Division 18: The Union of Novelty Costumed Performers. He studied illustration at Washington University in St. Louis and has worked as a graphic designer and illustrator. He was one of the contributors to the criminally under appreciated comic anthology Comedy Round-Up, and his time as the Internet comic critic “The Pickytarian” was legendary among his dozens of fans. He currently spends his days working as a user interface designer and his nights and weekends drawing comics. In the tiny little spaces between those tasks, he enjoys spending time with his wife, Amy (a considerably more talented artist than him) and their cat, Buddy (a considerably less talented artist than either one of them).


Matt Bergin matt@division18.com Real Name: Matt Bergin (honest!)
Group Affiliations: Division 18 creative team; Bank of America (checking); Midtown Comics frequent shoppers club; Netflix
First Appearance: Mother’s womb, 1976
Base of Operations: Bronx, New York
Origin: Mr. and Mrs. Bergin made sweet, sweet love one fateful night, and biology did the rest.
History: Matt has been making comics all his life… but mostly in crayon on construction paper, and later in school notebooks when he should’ve been studying. Eventually, Matt started working as an editor in the healthcare communications industry (fun!), but managed to squeeze in time during the 9 to 5 grind to goof off, make more-talented and “connected” friends, and ultimately, make comics with those more-talented people. He was even able to fit in contributing to the comics website PopCultureShock.com, where he hooked up with the Silent Devil crew. Thus, through blatant professional misconduct, Division 18 and a comics career were born. Ex-friggin-celsior!

For more about these two creative titans, be sure to check out their 2-part interview with each other.

Do-it-yourself Snake costume

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

What better way to celebrate the awesomeness that is Division 18 than to dress up as your favorite novelty costumed performer? Take Snake, for instance.

First, get yourself an expensive “snake” mascot costume.

snake1.jpg

Then shave your head and smoke a lot. Also, if you’re a chick, grow a pair.

Be creative. 

 Results may vary.

FAQ: What is the union’s stance on clowns?

Thursday, June 21st, 2007

Clowns. Hrm.

Those bastards are the scabs of the novelty costume industry. Clown College? Ha! They’re a bunch of elitists in face paint. Where’s the character? It’s all rainbow wigs and rubber noses. They expect your applause, but the only thing a clown really deserves is a kick in the teeth.

Button up!

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

Did you get your Division 18 buttons from the Silent Devil booth at the New York Comic Con this past February? If you’re lucky, maybe we’ll make some more.

Buttons, buttons, who got the buttons?

Division 18 loves the indies, weekly at PopCultureShock

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

If you’re itching for some union action, but can’t wait for the book to hit stores in October, you can get your D18 fix every Friday (give or take) at PopCultureShock.com’s “I Love the Indies” blog. In-character commentary on the latest comic and pop-culture nonsense from the union’s own Snake & Lou.

Snake loves the indies!

If you enjoy the philosophical brain droppings from fictional characters about The Sopranos finale, Vince McMahon, schoolgirl panties, and everything in between (the topics, not the panties), then check out the “I Love the Indies” perma-link in the sidebar.

It’s Official

Friday, June 22nd, 2007

Los Angeles—Silent Devil Productions announced today the addition of Division 18: The Union of Novelty Costumed Performers to its release schedule. The black-and-white comedy by newcomers Matt Bergin and Jeremy Donelson is set to run 3 issues starting in October 2007.

(Read the full Press Release on Comic Book Resources)


OK, so the news is three months old… but we just re-launched our site and we wanted to lead with something exciting!

So start savin’ those pennies and, more importantly, start bugging your local comic store owner today!

With friends like these…

Saturday, June 23rd, 2007

Trendiness is next to godliness — that’s why Division 18 is on MySpace! Add us as a friend at myspace.com/division18

Your pals and ours, Snake and Lou

History of da union

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007

snake sandwhich

The Union of Novelty Costumed Performers as you know it today, a genuine comic book published by Silent Devil Inc and soon to be available wherever funny books are sold, has two parents – me and Jerm. This comic is our baby. Jerm, on art, has been living and breathing these characters for what seems to be an eternity… so I guess that makes him the mother. I’m more of the deadbeat dad who sends a card a week late for the kid’s birthday. But there was a third, oft unmentioned contributor to our epic of costumed proportions. To continue this uncomfortable birthing analogy, he was like the midwife reminding us to breath during labor, or the smooth Barry White sounds that put us in the mood to conceive, or… actually, you know what, I’m gonna stop. He was Peat. Still is Peat. Just Peat.

The three of us had been working together in different departments of a small medical publishing company for about a year. Bored from spending his days checking production specs, Peat was eager to bring in his unemployed friends when the opportunity arose. It arose twice in 6 months. I was first, landing a job in editorial, while Jerm came on a few months later on the IT side. It was only a matter of time before goofing off took precedence over actual work. During a lull in writing his novel (more on that later) and plotting out Dungeons & Dragons campaigns (us = huge nerds), Peat suggested that we start a jam comic (see previous comment re: nerds). We didn’t call it a jam comic, though. In fact, we still refuse to label our masterpiece anything but THE COMIC (I guess we also label it “our masterpiece” though).

Since most of the hits on this site until the comic hits stores will be from our families and co-workers, let me explain what is meant by a jam comic: Basically, it is a comic created by passing it person to person, one panel at a time, with no plan or discussion in between. It encourages spontaneity (and also plenty of dick and fart jokes). This was something Peat and Jeremy practiced with glee back in high school, and having known me for almost as long – since we worked together in a comic shop years earlier – Peat knew I’d be up for it too. I definitely was. In fact, I probably deserved to be fired over it, as I spent more time on it than I did on actual work. (Did I mention I’m writing this at the office?)

Anyway. Peat and Jerm were fairly responsible employees, always making sure their desks were clear before doing a panel, and sometimes even bringing the comic home lest they neglect their professional duties. But not me, man. I would drop everything as soon as the comic hit my in-box. At the time, my job was essentially proofreading junk mail for doctors, so you can’t blame me for jumping on a creative escape. I was forever setting up gags, only to have Peat and Jerm, refusing to deliver my punchlines, do complete non-sequitur panels just to shut me up. (If I had had my way at one point, a machine-gun-toting Gumby and his vengeance-starved sidekick Pokey would have been the stars of the comic!) It was in one of those moments of serendipitous frustration, when the book was veering off in a dozen new and more ridiculous direction with every panel, that Peat and Jerm gave me the perfect setup. Snake, Lou, Tony, and “The Novelty Costume Performers Union” were born.

The union is born!

From there, we went on for another two years, 60+ pages, and an unacceptable number of hours “on the clock” cranking out some of the most juvenile, offensive, and poo-flingingly ridiculous comic book action you could imagine. And no matter how far off the original thread we went, I made sure Snake and the rest of Division 18 found their way back into the story. Apparently, my muse is a guy in an 8-foot-tall snake suit. Since our adventures in insubordination, Jerm and I decided to REALLY do a comic, hooked up with Silent Devil, and here we are. Peat had bigger fish to fry, and decided to focus on fantasy writing. Apparently the kid’s got talent, because he just recently scored a 3 book deal with one of the biggest Fantasy/Sci-fi publishers around, Del Rey. Jerm and I like to think he couldn’t have done it without honing his craft on angry drunken Scotsman and diaper-wearing cyborg chimps.

But where we were, where we are, and where we’re going aren’t important. Our goal with the comic has always been to help each other laugh our way through another otherwise mind-numbing dull day of work, and it was a blast. Peat has moved on to biggers and betters, but Jerm and I haven’t changed that goal. We’re just expanding the audience. Hope you enjoy it!

Issue #1 Pencils: Al E. Gator

Saturday, June 30th, 2007

Every mug in a costume doesn’t join the Union, as you’ll see in these pencils from Issue #1. Meet Al E. Gator, costume rip-off artist and scab extraordinaire.

You can also get a peek at how much unnecessary labor I put into my pencils. I’m inking them myself! What’s the point?! I don’t know. To make things even more time-consuming, I do my pencils on drawing paper, then tape them down on a light-box and ink on a separate, clean piece of that bleed-proof pen & ink paper (I like the surface better than bristol board).

I’m basically a glutton for punishment. But believe me, I’ve got nothing on Al E. Gator, cruising around River City in that get-up without a Union Card…

(click to enlarge)
Issue #1, Page 22, pencils