Sam and Fuzzy Q & A: Perfect Storm Edition
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"Did you know that Brandon Sanderson (author of Mistborn, The Stormlight Archive, and more) is a fan? He's wearing one of your t-shirts in this interview!" -Paul
Haha! This video seems to have been taken down for some reason... but yes, I did know! Brandon actually has been reading Sam and Fuzzy since before his first book was published. He actually sent me (and I think some of his other favourite webcartoonists, too) a signed copy of said first book, Elantris, when it first came out, which was very cool of him! (You can also hear me yammer on for an episode of the Writing Excuses podcast he does.)
"Regarding this comic, was Dev wrong? That his empire wouldn't crumble if people knew his claim wasn't legitimate? I mean, it was also because he couldn't pay his troops but... actually, how did that happen? Didn't he have business with half the Underground at one point?" -Lemma
I don't think Dev was wrong, no. It took a whole mess of simultaneous problems to destabalize Sam's empire. A lot of them are explored throughout the Unfixable chapter, which was basically all about this subject! (When it wasn't about mutant produce and secret labs.) But to summarize some of the biggest ingredients in the recipe for disaster:
-A decent chunk of the Committee -- particularly Keller -- was pretty suspicious of Sam and ready to turn on him.
-Many of Sam's allies and business partners on the Committee crossed over to join the suspicious side after he apparently killed Unit 01 in the Megalopolis debacle. Others were just fickle friends who were happy to cut ties as soon as he appeared to be weak or struggling.
-Sam's commitment to staffing the Erasers, which he did to keep Rexford on his side, led to a shortage of resources and manpower within the Ninja Mafia for actual paying work.
-The shortages, combined with strained business relationships with other Committee members, led to revenue shortfalls and employee unrest, which was then exploited by Keller and his recruiters.
-The revelation that Sam was not the real emperor upset some of the more tradition-minded oldhand members, and made Sam look even sketchier and more incompetent to the more mercenary members.
-All of these things weakened Sam to the point of his Committee status being revoked, which allowed the Committee to occupy Mafia HQ in order to take control of the Status-Quo violating Buddy Bots.
Losing Mafia HQ was the last straw most of the remaining troops. And that's how an empire crumbles, I guess! Death by a billion tiny cuts.
"Many of the characters in Sam & Fuzzy have gone through design changes over the years, be it for narrative reasons (hiding identity, losing arms, merging with unstable tar cores), passage of time, stylistic necessity (goodbye noodle arms!) or simply the subtle changes in your art style as the comic has progressed. Are there any instances where you prefer a character’s prior design to their current one?" -Dawson
No! Well, that one was easy. Ha!
Seriously though, in general the newest designs are the ones that are a product of my current tastes and art needs, so they tend to be my favs! (And if they aren't, I'll just make up some reason to change them again.) The only major exception I can think of right now is Brain... I think his more monstrous form right now is fun and creepy, but it's strictly for narrative reasons and I think his original form is more iconic. Otherwise, I'm pretty happy with how everyone looks currently! (Although it's fun to revisit the old designs sometimes for flashbacks or Patreon bonus drawings.)
That's a wrap for this week. Come back on Monday for a new comic!