May 11, 2005 - Matriculated contest answer #1

For those of you that entered the Matriculated contest, if you guessed that strip number 27 in the arc "Dinner and a Movie" was the strip the entire arc was planned around, congratulations! Even if you didn't enter the Matriculated contest, here's a little insight on strip number 27 from Joe and Phil.

Matriculated #27: Cuddle

Phil:This is one of those strips that I had in my head since we started Matriculated. It just took me a half a year to get there. I like this strip not only because of the joke, but because it also subtly hints at the relationships between Steve, Janette and Rebecca through the decisions they make in the strip.

When I created the Matriculated characters, I created such an involved backstory for the characters. At this point in the story, Steve, Janette and Rebecca have known each other for a couple of years and Steve and Janette went out for some time and broke up (for reasons unknown at this point). They still have feelings for each other, but I don't know if it's pride or something else that keeps them from telling each other (which is why Janette lies about what she was doing in the first place).

But as long as Steve has been friends with Rebecca and Janette, he's still not above a little lesbian fantasy.

Joe: God this was so long ago. Steve's jacket looks like a bath robe. At the time you can tell I was still searching for the way to depict these characters. They've changed so much. I mean, look at Steve's nose in panel two. Looks nothing like that now. I'm really digging Janette's jacket though. Can't wait for next winter so I can break it out again.

This was a Time that I stated becoming very aware of backgrounds. I feel they're REALLY important. I want the comic to have a sense of space. Sometimes it can be a complicated crowd of people. Sometimes it can be a simple window frame. It may not seem like a big deal but it makes a difference. Giving them environment and setting gives you a stronger sense of reality. it's obviously not real but you want the reader to feel and understand the space. it creates a stronger connection.

Check back next week for more insight on the Matriculated strips from Joe and Phil!

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