This week, let’s swing by the local bakery of Sunnyville for a visit with yet another family. When you’re in Sunnyville, the best place (in fact, the only place) to go is to the Asgard Bake Shop. You can get fresh bread, cakes, pastries, and cookies. They also carry ice cream, a fine selection of imported coffees, and some finely baked Scandinavian treats you can’t get anywhere else. Yes, I said “Scandinavian” because that’s where the local bakers come from. The family running the bakery are mice known as the Eftirmaturs. Gather round and I’ll introduce you to them.
This is Lars Eftirmatur, patriarch of the family. This tall, lanky mouse is from Iceland. Originally apprenticed by his cousins in the art of baking, he left his native Iceland for Denmark as a journeyman baker. It was there that he met his future wife, Helga – the two met at a Punch and Judy show. This tall mouse is quite friendly and is happy to chat with anyone who stops by his bakery. Unfortunately, it’s hard to understand him at times since he still retains a thick Icelandic accent.
Here is a picture of his wife, Helga Eftirmatur. Hailing from the Nordic country of Denmark, she too came from a family of bakers. Helga is just as sociable as her husband and you’ll find her chatting with the town’s women as they stop in to buy bread and cakes.
Besides running the bakery, Lars and Helga have their hands full taking care of their three children. Yes, like other adults in Sunnyville, they are parents too. Lemme see if I can get the kids in here…ah, there we go. Introductions are in order now.
These two teens are Ragnar (left), aged 14, and Olaf (right), aged 13. These two brothers are inseparable and can be found hamming it up with jokes. Both brothers are big fans of Monty Python’s Flying Circus and have a number of the routines and lines memorized. Ragnar is more slender, much like his father, while Olaf is thicker, due to his sampling of his parents’ baked goods. At times, it can be hard to comprehend Olaf’s penchant for sweets – I saw him wolf down a whole tray of cheese danishes!
Christina Eftirmatur is five years old and the baby of the family. She’s best friends with Bethany Talbot and the two can be found playing together frequently. Whereas Bethany is more precocious, Christina is more prone to being scared or crying. It’s not unusual for this little girl to run to her parents or her older brothers for reassurance.
Early notes for this family had a fourth child, a daughter aged 12, but I phased her out since there wasn’t much I could do with her in my scripts. I should also add that a pun is at work here too like with the Tanuki and Loutron family. The family surname, Eftirmatur, is the Icelandic word for “dessert”!
Developing characters for Sunnyville was a bit of a challenge. I had to not only put in much variety, but at the same time, I had to make them all interconnected. Not only do the Eftirmaturs provide a necessary function in Sunnyville (hey, you need somewhere to buy fresh bread and tasty sweet treats), but Rusty becomes good friends with Rangar and Olaf. In fact, I have a few ideas planned for them. I pictured the trio of Rusty Duncan, Ragnar Eftirmatur, and Olaf Eftirmatur as being similar to the Three Stooges – Rusty takes on Moe’s role as the leader, Ragnar is essentially Larry (there to provide reaction), and Olaf is the Curly of the group, providing comic relief. I’ll show more of that in the coming months.
Well, that’s it for this week. Tune in for more blog posts on Saturday and next Wednesday! Oh, don’t forget to buy the Sunnyville Sketchbook at Lulu.com and contact me with comments on my work. Until then, so long.