Jörg Tit­tel

Comic He­roes catches the Hol­ly­wood-bait­ing screen­writer-turned-comics-writer as he un­leashes an armed and dan­ger­ous mouse on an un­sus­pect­ing pub­lic…

Comic Heroes - - Contents - By Rob Power

The Ricky Rouse scribe on why he’s writ­ten a comic about a gun-tot­ing ro­dent

Go to Hol­ly­wood, they said. Be­come a suc­cess­ful screen­writer, they said. And that’s ex­actly what Bel­gian­born writer Jörg Tit­tel set out to do. Be­fore Hol­ly­wood stiffed him, of course, and left him won­der­ing how the hell to get his sto­ries out with­out be­ing com­pletely ripped off in the process.

Hav­ing his fin­gers burned in the US wasn’t enough to stop the ir­re­press­ible Tit­tel, though. Team­ing up with artist John Aggs, he cre­ated Ricky Rouse Has A Gun, a tale of sur­vival, cul­tural sub­ver­sion and gi­ant cartoon mice wield­ing au­to­matic weaponry. Need­less to say, it’s a lot of fun... Comic He­roes: Ricky Rouse Has A Gun is based in a sin­gu­larly strange set­ting: a Chi­nese theme park pop­u­lated by rip-offs of pop­u­lar western char­ac­ters. Where did the idea come from?

Jörg Tit­tel: “I think the early be­gin­nings of it must have been when I was in Los Angeles. I had just fin­ished work­ing for a videogames com­pany, and I was a budding screen­writer. It turned out that a cou­ple of projects that I had come up with – writ­ten and pre­sented and pitched to people – had ac­tu­ally been ripped off by other people. It was quite in­ter­est­ing to see stuff that you’d fully writ­ten, con­ceived, pitched – even down to some of the con­cept artists I’d used – sud­denly end­ing up in movies with big stars in them.”

CH: That must have been an in­cred­i­bly frus­trat­ing ex­pe­ri­ence…

JT: “It hap­pens all the time, sadly. But then the cool thing is that if you are a gen­uinely cre­ative per­son then you have ideas com­ing out of ev­ery ori­fice! Ul­ti­mately, now I’ve taken on a very Je­sus-like at­ti­tude to­wards it, I feel kind of sorry for them! Be­cause if you can’t come up with this kind of shit by yourself, then there’s re­ally some­thing wrong with you and you shouldn’t be in this busi­ness. So I don’t

We have yet to find a su­per­hero who is rel­e­vant to the 21st century

care. We have western cul­ture dom­i­nat­ing the world, or at least we did for a lit­tle while, and now we have big cor­po­ra­tions des­per­ately cling­ing on to old ideas. But in­di­vid­ual cre­ators seem to be left out of the game.

“Ricky con­sciously has ref­er­ences, some sub­tle, some less so, to ex­ist­ing films and fran­chises and other things. Bat­man is a very old char­ac­ter, from a time when Amer­ica played a very dif­fer­ent role in the world, and these char­ac­ters are very stuck in the 20th century. We have yet to find a su­per­hero who is rel­e­vant to the 21st century. And I’m not say­ing Ricky is one, not at all, I just think that we are rid­ing on a lot of old ideas. I hope our syn­er­gies with China and the whole world will cre­ate some­thing new.”

CH: Why did you set the book in China?

JT: “Ob­vi­ously the rise of China has been a ma­jor theme in the world for the last cou­ple of decades at least, and I per­son­ally have been very in­spired by them. They are ob­vi­ously a very rich cul­ture, but in the west we only know them as the people that man­u­fac­ture iPhones and make pi­rated copies of our movies. All that kind of stuff served as in­spi­ra­tion for Ricky Rouse, not to men­tion all the sequels and pre­quels that are com­ing out. In a way, I don’t re­ally see much of a dif­fer­ence be­tween those and the Chi­nese rip-offs.”

born brussels, bel­gium high Be­com­ing a comics writer... now ricky rouse more www.oiffy.com

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.