Sam and Fuzzy Q & A: Demonic Edition
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"Hart is one of the oldest characters in the comic, having existed in one form or another since nearly the very beginning. And yet despite the major impact he’s had on the world and story thus far, he’s never really had a form to himself, existing more often than not as a voice and a presence separate from whatever physical form he inhabited. Has it been a challenge to design a physical form for a character that has already been so well established without one?" -Dawson
This is a really interesting question! I kind of wish I had a more interesting answer. But in the case of the current monstrous form in the comic, it's mainly just meant to look like screwed up version of Brain's form. There are a lot of extra limbs and appendages and eyes to represent the warring factions inside it, but it's still ultimately meant to look like a really screwed up cat. The only real Hart-specific design element is the pointy teeth, as a nod to the pointy teeth that humans would get when Hart possessed them.
We did get to briefly see Hart's (degraded) demon form once, though. It was a rat! I assume that originally, he was a much beefier rat-like creature. But admittedly, I picked the rat form mainly because it felt appropriate to make him a prey animal for cats.
"How did this go from being the lighthearted comic that made me laugh to the dramatic, often depressing horror show that makes me worry about the mental health talking bears today? When did you know you wanted to go this dark? And also I love it and I'm sorry if you answered this already." -Madi
My goal with Sam and Fuzzy hasn't changed much over the last ten years or so. My aim is to tell a character-driven adventure story that's primarily humourous. But ultimately, it is still a character-driven adventure story, so sometimes that means things get exciting, or scary, or sad. And when we get to those parts, my preference is to dig in and really give those emotions their moment, rather than to undercut them too much with jokes just for the sake of jokes.
This has been a particularly climactic and high stakes part of the story, so it's gotten pretty heavy! But I think it was earned, and I'm glad to hear you and others are enjoying it. I've appreciated all the kind words as the story has run through it's course.
(And of course, there will still be lots of humour ahead, rest assured.)
"Are Hart and Candice indivisible from Brain? As in, although the art implies 3 distinct minds it looks like Hart can't 'tear out' because the reality is he only exists as an imprint on Brain, right?" -James
I like to think of them as all being stuck in the same container.
I think I mentioned the other way that I like the supernatural things in S&F to have a kind of physical (if nonsensical) feel to them. In the case of demons like Brain, they're essentially disembodied "spirits" that are contained inside of "vessels" made of tar that slowly degrades. They need to be inside the tar forms to survive -- the outside world burns them without it. Even when Hart appeared to be a formless entity hitching rides in other people's bodies, he still had a tar form... there was just little more than a few specs of it left. (Brain talks about this in a few comics starting here.)
In the past, Brain has devoured the tar forms of other, weaker demons -- killing the demon spirits and absorbing their tar to heal his own form. Brain was strong enough to overpower them. But by the time Hart stopped hitch-hiking inside Hazel and entered Brain's form, Brain was weak and damaged... partly torn up and on the verge of death himself. As a result, no one demon was strong enough to sieze complete control of the vessel.
In the current comics, the vessel has been expanded by absorbing more tar. But it's still one big box. I don't think Brain, Hart, or anyone else are able to break off a chunk just for themselves. They're all stuck with one another!
That's a wrap for this week, team. See you on Monday!