The Muppet Show Comic Book #3: Roger Langridge Q&A

Published: June 14, 2009
Categories: Interviews

Another month has gone by, another issue of The Muppet Show Comic Book has come out, and we’ve got another Q&A with Roger Langridge!

Read our review of this issue by clicking here!

Remember, if you’ve got questions for Roger Langridge, feel free to e-mail them to me and I’ll include them in next month’s Q&A. Enough about me, let’s get to the good stuff!

ToughPigs: I love the two-page spreads at the beginning of each issue (as well as the gag of the Electric Mayhem dressed in different costumes for each one). Is this something you?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢ll be continuing after this first 4-issue arc?

Roger Langridge: In The Treasure of Peg-Leg Wilson I’ll continue with the spreads, but they’ll be backstage instead of onstage. And in the arc after that one… well, you’ll just have to wait and see! But yes, I like to establish a bit of chaos nice and early, and those spreads seem as good a way as any.

TP: We’ve been seeing some minor background characters popping up in the background — some of which are familiar (the Fazoobs, Koozebanians, etc), and some of whom appear to be your original designs. Are you keeping a character bible for the new creations and are you naming them? Do you plan on being consistent with individuals re-appearing in multiple issues, or are they just abstract background filler?

RL: I’m winging it! Really, I’m working at such a rate on these things that I don’t have a whole lot of time to be precious about character sheets, as useful as they are. One of the nice things about drawing a comic is that I don’t have to set aside time and money to make new Muppets – I can just make them on the fly!

TP: You?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢ve had original or whatnot characters sing songs in the comic. Will you have any of the Muppet bands (The Electric Mayhem, the Jug Band, the Country Trio, etc) sing in future issues?

RL: There’s an appearance by a hillbilly character from the show in TOPLW #2 who gets to sing at both the front and back ends of that issue. And TOPLW #1 has a closing number which prominently features the Electric Mayhem, although Miss Piggy ends up doing the vocal honours there. I’m glad you mentioned the Jug Band – I’ll make a note of that…

TP: Did you use a cryptogram-like language for the alien in the Pigs in Space sketch, or are they just random symbols?

RL: Oh, completely random. I hope I didn’t send anybody scurrying off to decode it!

TP: In the latest comic, you addressed the issue of Gonzo?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s species. Did you hear any comments regarding fact that Muppets From Space tried to claim that he is an alien? (By the way, the fans are very pleased to find that Gonzo?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s alien heritage is not canon.)

RL: I haven’t seen that one – to my shame, as my friend Paul Peart-Smith designed Space Gonzo for that movie. Anyway, nobody mentioned that to me, either at Disney or through less formal channels, until about a week ago when a friend brought it up. Too late to do anything about it by then!

On whether or not it’s canon, I imagine you could reconcile both stories if you wanted to – by putting Muppet Show #3 earlier in the chronology than Muppets in Space. But it’s probably best not to worry too much about these things as long as the story is good.

TP: In Peg-Leg Wilson, will the Animal subplot continue through all four issues, or is it just in the first one? If it?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s the latter, then what can we expect to see in the other three?

RL: The Animal subplot runs through all four issues, being resolved by the end of issue #4. As do a couple of other subplots. This arc is an attempt to keep a lot of plates spinning in the air for four issues while at the same time making each issue as satisfying on its own terms as possible. It’s turning out to be tougher than I expected! But I’m writing the final issue at the moment and I think it’ll all hang together by the end. Just about.

TP: Are there any Muppet characters you aren?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢t allowed to use? Either via Disney mandate or your own personal censorship.

RL: I’m not allowed to use the Sesame Street Muppets, alas. I keep trying to sneak Ernie and Bert in there and they keep taking them out again!

TP: Will you have Lips play with the Electric Mayhem, or do you consider him not to be an official member of the band?

RL: It’s not so much that he’s not an official member as that I don’t really know what to do with him. He seems not to have a clearly defined personality, and is kind of surplus to requirements in the stories I’ve written so far — though if I can find a way to work him in that seems natural, I’m all for it.

TP: Now that we know what Gonzo is, what is Scooter?

RL: He’s a gofer. I thought everybody knew that. (Seriously, his uncle is human, so I guess he’s just got a good suntan.)

TP: How far into Peg-Leg Wilson are you? Are you already preparing for the third arc?

RL: I’ve got rough plots worked out for the next arc, yes, but they need another going-over before they’ll be ready to go. Partly to address some concerns from Disney, partly to streamline it a bit for my own benefit after seeing how little breathing room I had in the Peg-Leg Wilson arc. I’m learning every issue!

Thanks again to Roger for taking the time to chat with us!
Click here to deduce Scooter’s species on the ToughPigs forum!

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Written by Joe Hennes

Co-owner and Editor-in-Chief.
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