The universe of Sunnyville Stories is a vast one with many locations, many events, and many people inhabiting it. It’s my intention through here to discuss the various characters making up this world. We’ve met both of the main characters, Rusty and Sam. How about Rusty’s parents? Now you really have to wonder what kind of parents a charmer like Rusty has. Let’s find out. Rusty’s father is Alasdair Duncan, known as Al for short. His favorite food is salmon and his favorite drink is whiskey. He worked various jobs prior to the start of our story such as working in a warehouse, a bakery (as Rusty mentions to Sam in episode 1), a sporting goods store, and before moving to Sunnyville, he was the assistant manager for a supermarket. He manages to secure a job with the Terrific Furniture Company in Sunnyville, working as the chief supply clerk, and this is what makes the Duncan family leave their old home for Sunnyville.
Al was an interesting character to design. His personality is the opposite of Rusty’s mom (whom I’ll discuss next week). I made him the level-headed one of the two. This was done not only as a counterbalance, but also as a counter to today’s image in popular media of the “smart wife and stupid husband”. There’s way too much of that these days. The physical appearance of Rusty’s father is an interesting one too. When I made him, I had to make it look like that he was related to Rusty – yet I couldn’t make them look like brothers. They had to be father and son – this challenge is one I had with Sam and her own mother.
Anyway, his original form had him wearing glasses, having an elongated head, and actually having him wear more conservative business attire. I didn’t like that for some reason and kept tinkering with the design. I eventually looked to a TV show I used to watch, the Ghost Busters. This was first a live-action TV show made in 1975 by Filmation, and then updated as an animated series in 1986 also done by Filmation. (I should indicate that neither of these shows should be confused with the 1984 Columbia movie or the 1986 cartoon based on it, the Real Ghostbusters.) Anyway, one of the characters in those shows, Jake Kong Sr., had an interesting wardrobe. He wore a porkpie hat and a number jersey. I started thinking more about those clothes and I thought that might make a nice outfit for Rusty’s father. So that’s how that came about.
As you can see in some of above pages, he does what he can to calm down and reassure his son. It’s quite different from what Rusty’s mother would do. Next week, we’ll be talking about her, her major differences in contrast to her husband, and her relationship with Rusty.