“Live blogging” the 24-Hour Comic

Darlene blogging here for Mr. Paul Horn, creator and mastermind behind Cool Jerk.

Start of 24-Hour Comic Day for Paul

[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24-Hour Comics — 8 a.m. The Beginning

Building the book

For the next 24 hours, Mr. Horn will be participating in 24-Hour Comics in the privacy of his home. The idea behind 24-Hour Comic Day is to create 24 pages of a comic in 24 straight hours of work. It’s an annual event recognized around the world with the original idea from Scott McCloud this year on October 20.

Paul’s idea for his 24 pages? A mini comic based on his alter ego Doc Splatter, and incorporating 11 movies into his comic. I don’t know how its going to play out but here are the movies to be watched during the next few hours.

Movies

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24-Hour Comics — 8:45 a.m.

This segment is sponsored by Lysol brand toilet cleaner.

It’s going to be a regular Saturday for me while Mr. Horn will be involved in this project. Last time I checked, he was creating the panels to be used for his comic, scanning it in, making copies and planning out the imposition for the book.

As I’m cleaning the bathrooms, I hear the familiar sounds of John Carpenter’s “Halloween.” It’s the only VHS tape in the stack and Paul has chosen to get it out of the way first.

"Halloween"

For those of you unfamiliar to “Halloween,” it stars a young Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode going against Michael Myers. One of Paul’s favorite movies and might I dare say, a defining movie in his appreciation of horror classics.

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24 Hour Comics – 9:55 a.m.

Lightboxing "Halloween"

Paul is finally eating breakfast. I predict during the day while I’m running errands and he’s trapped in the condo that I’ll be picking up some Red Bull or Rockstar for him. Man cannot live on a Spam frittata alone.

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24 Hour Comics – 10 a.m.

“The last time I saw “Halloween” was probably the first time you saw it. It’s a classic. It’s never not scary. I’ve seen it at least a dozen times.”- Mr. Horn

The first hour of “Halloween” was spent writing out the script. Much like Paul does with his weekly strip, Cool Jerk, he writes out the script in a FreeHand template, prints it out and draws on it. The project for 24-Hour Comics will be much like that process.

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24-Hour Comics – 10:45 a.m.

“I’m using Sharpie markers — that’s how desperate I am. Good thing these panels will have a lot of black. Maybe I should have six pages of dark panels.” – Mr. Horn

Second page

Nearly three hours down and only one page is complete.

It’s too soon to say whether Paul’s strategy of 11 movies devoted to two pages in 24 hours will work out. Twenty three pages to go…

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24 Hour Comics – 11:10 a.m.

“Still my favorite splatter movie. It’s the best splatter movie ever made.” – Mr. Horn

"The Evil Dead"

Next up for viewing: “The Evil Dead” by Sam Raimi, starring Bruce Campbell. Both Michiganders, a state which Paul spent the first few years of his life before moving to Nevada followed by California.

As for the book progress, Paul has somehow managed to finish a second page — minus a blank panel — under my radar.

He blames the slowdown to “Halloween” being on VHS.

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24 Hour Comics – 12:16 p.m.

In a strategy that might define the look of the entire book, Paul has switched from watching the movies on TV to his computer. This allows him to take screenshots of specific scenes in “The Evil Dead.”

Lightboxing "The Evil Dead"

Paul then lays the screenshots on a panel, prints them out and redraws the shape to his style. It has been done on two panels to help emphasize the story. It’s one tool of many in his toolbox he plans to use during the next few hours.

This is definitely not a new thing in the comic industry. One example is Greg Land, a talented artist in his own right. His work has appeared both Marvel and DC books, cues some his work from screenshots.

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24 Hour Comics – 5:29 p.m.

“It’s like when Godzilla meets King Kong but with more blood.” – Mr. Horn

Darlene here again. Took some time off to be with a friend in need.

During that time, Paul completed 8 pages and viewed James Cameron’s “Aliens” starring Sigourney Weaver as the main lead. The pages featuring “Aliens” are still uncompleted and according to Paul, the script didn’t come as easily. I’m starting to hear fear and doubt that he can finish 24 pages in the allotted time.

Paul quickly changes the pace with “Freddy vs. Jason” back on the TV. It may be the most-recent of the splatter films that he decided to view and comment on in his comic. It’s also been viewed the least amount of times compared to the rest of the movies in his queue.

Paul is hoping that this movie will reignite his creative spark.

"Freddy vs Jason"

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[20 Oct 2007 | Saturday]
24-Hour Comics — 8 p.m.

“It’s the halfway mark. I seriously need to consider using more silhouettes and cut down on drawing the details. I’m just surprised my hand hasn’t cramped up yet from all the drawing.” – Mr. Horn

Twelve pages down and 12 more pages to finish. Paul is looking hopeful after meeting the 12th hour with 12 completed pages. He’s on mark. Already one black Sharpie has been put to rest and another one is on the way to the garbage can.

Up next in the movie lineup is the 1986 version of “The Fly” — a movie I haven’t seen. Paul assures me that this movie will want to make me throw up the nice dinner of potatoes and prime rib we just had. Frankly, I think just the sight of Jeff Goldblum will work just as well.

It’s also one of four movies not owned by Mr. Horn. It was obtained at one of two video stores in our neighborhood last night in a frenzy to complete his viewing queue.

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[21 Oct 2007 | Sunday]
24 Hour Comics – 24 hours later

“There were moments last night around 2 a.m. that I didn’t know what I was doing. Time seemed to come together.” – Mr. Horn

ZOMG insane-o

Rewind back several hours. I woke up several times during the night, what seemed like increments of two hours, to check up on Paul. Each time he was either at his drawing board or on his computer drafting up a script.

At 7:00 this morning, he was on his last two pages, sketching up the last few scenes (primarily the introduction to his book). Paul was in good spirits, his voice a bit hoarse and looking forward to getting some rest. Most of all happy that it was over and that he has something to show for his effort.

The casualties during the 24 hours were:
2 two-liter bottles of Dr. Pepper and ginger ale
5 cups of coffee
6 Sharpie markers
Over 100 sheets of paper
And his sanity but only temporarily(?)

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[22 Oct 2007 | Monday]
Doc Splatter’s “Splatterday” aka “24-Hour Comic Bloodbath” Aftermath

Finale

Horn here again. I did it — I survived Doctober Splatterday!

It’s the next day.

I got a few hours of mid-day sleep yesterday (Sunday) but that kinda fucked me up for the rest of the day (I was wandering around with a bad case of bed head and “drowsybrain”). But after a regular-night’s sleep I’m back in tip-top form. Just in time to watch San Diego County burn. Again.

The comic itself is embedded in Cool Jerk continuity. It literally takes place inbetween two panels from a strip I did in 1999. And if I do another 24-hour comic next year, I know what to do, what NOT to do and might survive THAT one, too!

Thanks to Darlene for the support and blog updates. Thanks to Ryan, Josep, Nathan and Erin (and ‘Fro, fo sho’) for the cheerleading. Thanks to Sam Raimi, John Carpenter, Tobe Hooper, David Cronenberg, James Cameron, Francis Ford Coppola, Lucio Fulci, Wes Craven, Sean Cunningham, Dan O’Bannon and the asshat who directed “Species.” Without you, my 24 pages of Doc Splatter wouldn’t have been possible.

I went ahead and made a .pdf of my comic. I’m wondering if I should make it available to people for download, or if I should keep it under wraps so’s I can sell mini-comics of them at comic-cons.

Maybe both?

What do YOU think? Let me know!


  1. Bob Adams says:

    Holy Mackerel, Paul..You’re amazing!!! It takes me at least three weeks to pencil,ink and letter 24 pages!! I wish I was a schizoid MadMan like you! You’ve totally inspired me,dude!!!
    Yar!

  2. Bob Adams says:

    Oh,Yeah..You should print up some mini ashcans of this mighty epic and give’em away by hand only to your most loyal subjects!

  3. Our Man Horn says:

    @Bob: Totally did, but for $2 a pop. Gotta pay for that toner cartridge somehow! (all sold out right now, but will likely fire up a batch for Comic-Con)

    Thanks for chiming in! You should totally do a 24-hour comic. I remember tales of you & your cousin pulling all-nighters eating Little Caesar’s, watching “Action Jackson” and filling sketchbooks.

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