Chick Figures in "Mighty Neckbeard"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gn5XEhynJ0c Yeah, it finally happened. What started as a joke has become an actual web-series. So here's what went down:

When creating the last few episodes of Dick Figures Season 5, Ed Skudder and I began discussing a potential gender bending episode. We decided to literally take the entire cast of Dick Figures and invert their genders, except Lord Tourettes who stayed the same. (Lady Tourettes, perhaps?) That episode was super fun to do because Shea Logsdon and Lauren K. Sokolov got to become leading ladies while Ed and I took a back seat. Since we knew the original run of Dick Figures episodes was coming to an end, we just wanted to do something zany and bizarre and dedicated to the female portion of our audience.

Right before the episode aired, Ed and I jokingly said: "I bet this will become a spin-off series."

Lo and behold, not long afterward, Mondo came to us with an opportunity to do exactly that on Fusion, a TV network that would also allow us to air the episodes on YouTube. That is how Chick Figures came to be.

Now, to set the record straight, there is no record. Some people think this series takes places concurrently with Dick Figures. Some that this is an alternate universe. However, I like to believe it's what we set up in Ep511 "Figured Out." In this episode, we learn that, after Dick Figures The Movie, Red and Blue move on with their lives, grow up and have kids. These kids are Scarlet and Lavender who become childhood best friends.

This is their story, and the stick figure circle of life is complete. Plus, it's fun to think that Red and Blue are off being two middle-aged dudes somewhere.

Thank you to everyone who watched Dick Figures, and is now watching Chick Figures. Your support means the world to me.

Scripts Suck

No, seriously. They suck. And I hate them. They're boring. Technical. And do not represent the final experience audiences have while watching a movie. AT. ALL. Sure, I went to film school. I write screenplays for a living. I understand that sluglines show locations, character names are for who's doin' th' talkin', and that the inciting incident happens on Page 10 or the script goes in the trash. And sometimes it's necessary to explain what the camera is doing: "We pull pack to reveal" ... "The camera zooms in on" ... "smash cut to" WTF? How can you smash cut while reading? Do you slam your face into the screen!?!? Personally, I think that's—to drop an SAT-word on y'all—"whack" to read and often confusing to everyone except the writer.

I've seen two types of screenwriters: Technical & Literary. The Technical Writer lays down their words like law, detailing every camera angle, cut and prop/character/location in ALL CAPS. "Our HERO grabs a GUN and SHOOTS the SCREENWRITER." This is exhausting to read, AND it FEELS a bit LIKE a crazy PERSON is alternately YELLING and speaking SOFTLY. Maybe they're just Christopher Walken. Or maybe they just have tourettes.

Literary Writers create scripts as fancy as novels. Beautifully described vistas, seductively thesaurus'd words, and blocks of action that read like Stephen King at his finest. (See, a simile, and previously, a metaphor) These are often a pleasure to read, but don't feel like movies. The opposite problem.

INT. PINK'S APARTMENT - DAY

Pink sits in bed reading. All is quiet, except for some faint boy band music. Suddenly, the door bursts open.

BLUE: PINK I LOVE YOU!

BANG! Pink pulls out a gun and shoots Blue.

That scene got one of the biggest laughs in the show (somehow) but on paper it's boring as F. Because that's really the problem. You drop a script on someone's desk. It's black and white. There are...words... Lots of technical mumbo jumbo. It's slooooowwwwww to read. And you're asking people to laugh. To envision the setting, pace and delivery for a scene.

After writing dozens of scripts in both formats, Ed Skudder and I devised our own way of writing for our show, and then movie, DICK FIGURES that would be just as enjoyable to read as to watch. We started writing scripts that were funny throughout. Like, every line. To an insane degree. This made every part of the screenplay—sluglines, dialogue, camera direction, action—feel like a comedy, not just the funny lines and moments when characters fart.

Well, I've already broken #1 Rule in Writing 101: Show don't tell. So lemme remedy with a few short examples. Here's the preface to the DICK FIGURES THE MOVIE screenplay.

Kickstarter_ThankYou

Ah yes, that University of Southern California Cinematic Arts Production Degree (Phew!) is really being put to good use.

PocketsTalking directly to the reader:

OchoA joke that started in the script action, but makes its way to dialogue. To be honest, this doesn't even make sense unless you read the screenplay AND watch the movie. Definitely Post-Modern.

GhostKnife

My favorite opening to any movie ever:

Space

And to show just how dedicated we were to this method, when I went to type THE END! I accidentally typed THE NED! and we just kept it because it was funnier. For anyone who wants to read the screenplay for DICK FIGURES THE MOVIE in its entirety, here's a link to the PDF. For screenwriters, DF fans, or drunk people, I think you'll enjoy.

And please comment below with your thoughts on this, on writing, or even just about DICK FIGURES. I'm happy to banter about it all.

Dick Figures - "Red Planet"

I'm wayyyyy behind on posting Dick Figures episodes for Season 5 so let's get it back on track with one of my favorites! We always joked that Red was from Outer Space so it only makes sense that he should return to the Red Planet. Unfortunately for our two-tone heroes, their mission is to find the Mars Rover...who turns out to be a real robotic jerk. The song everyone's talking about is "Make It Funky" (which you can buy now) so if you like that and all the music from the series go check out my brother Nick's site: www.nickkellermusic.com.

AND if you just can't wait to see all ten episodes PLUS a special bonus episode PLUS all-new animated intros, you can buy Season 5 right now on Googleplay, Mondo Media and pick up the DFS5 Soundtrack while you're at it!

Wondercon 2014. Sights, sounds...and signing some guy's chest

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I was too busy trying not to fall over from the dizzying array of sights, sounds and smells at Wondercon Anaheim to take many photos, but I did manage these. The newest comics, games and movies were all on display from companies such as IDW, Dark Horse, and DC, plus a snazzy Nintendo booth where you could test out Mario Kart 8 (which I will definitely be buying). I had never been to such a big con before and was blown away by how much there was to do and see. Scroll through the slideshow for just a taste of the awesome.

I hadn't planned on attending Wondercon until Ed Skudder and I were invited to speak on the panel "The New Golden Age of Animation" (for Dick Figures, lol) hosted by Frederator. It was great to chat about Dick Figures and meet some fans in person. As you will see in the photos, one guy was perhaps too excited to meet us. Hope to see you all next year![/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]