CYANIDE AND HAPPINESS

Rob Denbleyker and Shawn Coss

Rob Denbleyker and Shawn Coss

MASTER OF STICK FIGURES AND PUNCHLINES COMES TO CALGARY EXPO

One of the Internet’s most popular webcomic creators, Rob DenBleyker, is coming to the Calgary Expo this month. We asked DenBleyker a couple of questions to get a better sense of how the webcomic operates and what they have coming down the pipe for fans.

BeatRoute: How do you distribute writing Cyanide & Happiness among the multiple contributors?

Rob DenBleyker: We pretty much just take turns writing and drawing our own comics. There’s a lot of collaboration as well. Sometimes, we have to ask each other, “Is this joke actually funny or am I sleep deprived?” The animated shorts, on the other hand, are 100 per cent collaboration.

BR: Can you tell us of a time when you received negative feedback from your edgier material?

RDB: I got banned from Facebook a few times, but that’s just because of the way their reporting system works. If enough people report an image, it gets shut down before human eyes even see it. This has happened to a few of my comics, especially ones about Jesus, but luckily someone from Facebook noticed and was able to help me get un-flagged. In general, our edgier material gets a good response (I think our audience knows exactly why they’re reading us).

BR: Do you have any subjects you refuse to joke about? How come?

RDB: I never really try to be offensive with the comics. The humour always comes first and, sometimes, humour is offensive (but not always). So, I wouldn’t say there are any built-in boundaries. Usually the “is it funny” factor of writing rules out horrifyingly inappropriate topics by itself.

BR: What’s next for Cyanide & Happiness?

RDB: We’ve got weekly animated shorts underway thanks to a Kickstarter last March and full, 11-minute episodes coming later this year. After that, it’s hard to say. Maybe a spin-off show? A musical?

By Kraig Brachman
Photo: Flickr (User: Gabbot)

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