Develop Some Characters:

Now let's get to the actual characters in your comic. Without fail, they must be composed of the following:

1) "Wacky" male character. This is the principle character that the comic focuses on. He should be off-the-wall, say hilarious things, and get into infinitely amusing situations. Make sure he's not fat or ugly, because nobody wants to read a comic about fat ugly people.
2) "Wacky" male character's male friend. This person should be a good pal, somebody the main character hangs out and makes jokes with. He should also offer sarcastic remarks and suggestions from time to time.
3) Female character. The female, under NO circumstance, should EVER have an interesting personality. The entire purpose of the female character is to make snide comments whenever the "wacky" male characters say or do something stupid. She must have a one-dimensional attitude and exist solely to appear in the last panel, muttering something incredibly sarcastic. This is because in real life, females are never humorous and live just to keep the males from doing intensely stupid things like lighting each other on fire or trying to drink Windex.
4) A cute, non-human character. This can be anything from an alien to a talking dog. The cute character should make a cameo appearance in one of the early strips and then disappear for a while. After you're flooded with numerous requests asking to bring him back, you should begin inserting him into every other panel and making a large line of consumer apparel with the character's likeness printed on them (ie, shirts, hats, mugs, mousepads, stickers, tombstones, etc). The primary purpose of this character is just to sell merchandise, so choose wisely; your income may depend on it!

POSSIBLE EXCEPTION: If you are a female and your comic is about females like, God forbid, "Touche", you can get away with reversing all the roles. The two main characters should be female and the supporting character can be male. In these comics, all men should serve the same essential purpose as a sheet of plywood - they should simply stand around and do absolutely nothing. They are permitted to make sexist / chauvinistic remarks once and a while, but their dialogue should be limited to only that.

Once you've got these characters sketched out, it's time to move on to the secondary characters. You'll want to include (but not limit yourself to) the following:

Clueless boss, annoying couple, foreign guy, idiot next door neighbor, slutty girl.

You can add as many secondary characters as you want, but you must include the aforementioned people. Try not to bring in a whole bunch of secondary characters, as you'll want your audience to be able to remember all their names. Same rule goes with giving the people names like "Xzzyxyaxyxyzz" or making everybody invisible.

Copy, Paste, Copy Paste:

After you've drawn your characters a few times, save them all into separate folders. The wonderful thing about computer comics is the ability to press Control-C (copy) and Control-V (paste). Memorizing these two key combinations will save you countless hours of actually drawing the strips, as you will be able to effortlessly copy and paste your existing characters into zany new situations and backgrounds! If you're a real "effective" artist, you can get away with only drawing each character six times every decade. Learn to maximize your artwork and stretch it out as long as possible!

More Guides

This Week on Something Awful...

Copyright ©2014 Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka & Something Awful LLC.