First, I want to announce that starting on October 30, I’ll start posting up individual pages on Saturdays from the first episode of Sunnyville with some added commentary, like some of the videos I post up to my YouTube account. Unlike those videos, I can give more in-depth commentary and can even take questions.
Today, I have a short comic to share with you. I did this as a final project for an art class. It starts the Talbot family, whom I introduced in the previous entry. I call this short story Tea Time.
Here’s an opening shot of the Sunnyville General Store, or as it’s called in the story, the Squirrels’ Store. I based that alternate name on the name for Maple Town’s general store, operated by Bobby Bear’s family. It was just called “the Bears Store”. I had showed this to comic book pro Nelson DeCastro (known for his work on Spiderman and Green Lantern) – not only did he praise my very fluid and smooth storytelling, but got a kick out of the name too. (“The perfect place for all your squirrely needs,” he said.)
I establish the Talbots not only as being the owners of the general store, but also as being from Britain. That sets up the scene for them having afternoon tea. BTW, check out the manufacturer of Matthew’s pocket watch on the second page.
Now we come to the payoff of the joke. This gag here is a recurring one I use in the Sunnyville comics – it came from the Three Stooges and involves characters consuming things they shouldn’t. I used a similar device in the first episode of Sunnyville where Rusty accidentally eats wax fruit, thinking that it’s real. Some felt that I should have ended the comic here, but I felt the fifth and final page I added really made it funny…
Frieda’s reaction to Matthew’s actions – as well as his children just cracking up – really makes the whole comic work.