Yep, I’ve fallen behind again. Life is evil and stuff. You know the drill. Luckily, I know lots of awesome people around the internets who can come in and do some pinch hitting. Today’s column comes to you courtesy of frequent commenter and pal Ian Astheimer. Hit it! (Archive.)
If you’ve ever taken a glance around the comics blog-o-sphere, you’ve probably seen his work. If you’re a fan of redesigns, you certainly have. Who is this tremendously talented artist, and why hasn’t Marvel or DC thrown oodles of cash at him by now? The answer to one of those questions behind the cut.
260. Dean Trippe
In 2006, inspired by Andi Watson’s unused designs, Trippe cooked up his own version (see above). Inspired by Trippe’s ingenuity, more than a thousand other artists joined the club. And, lo, the “Draw [Insert Character Here]” meme was born. And, it was good. Nay, it was excellent.
Hot on the heels of Barbara Gordon’s fashion show came Iron Spider-Man, Aquaman (see Trippe’s above), more Batgirl, Supergirl, and Power Girl memes. Even Green Lantern got in on the action, although I can’t seem to find a working link to that list.
Trippe and Chris Arrant — along with Jessica Plummer, Joel Priddy, and Vito Delsante — parlayed that meme fever into one of sweetest spots in cyberspace, Project Rooftop. The site plays host to dozens of redesigns, including the recent Mike Wieringo tribute, which asked artists to re-imagine Bart Allen (Trippe’s above, ‘natch).
Inspiring the masses and memorializing a lost talent would be more than enough reason to snag a spot on this year-long list, but Trippe took things a step further when he dared to ask: What if…?
What if Robin had a sidekick?
The answer is Butterfly, the story of a precocious kid whose twin loves are ice cream and saving the world. It’s a fantastic send-up to not only the Batman franchise but also to the entire DCU. And, it’s good, clean fun. In fact, it might just be the cleanest fun you can have without soap!
Trippe also started an eerie webcomic, called Wake, at Act-I-Vate, but that series seems to have stalled. It was building up so much suspense, too. Alack.
Maybe he’ll give it another go after The Lion of Rora, the true tale of Joshua Janavel, who fought for religious independence in the French and Italian Alps. Napoleon was a fan. With Christos and Ruth Gage writing, you can bet I will be, too. Plus: dig that duotone!
Also! Trippe was onboard to draw the My Name Is Earl comic (the fruits of his labor above). I’m not sure what happened to the project, but here’s hoping some good karma will bring it back.
Also, also! Trippe colored promo pieces for and at least the first cover of The Middle Man, which was just optioned to become a TV series.
Need more Dean Trippe in your life? Of course, you do! Hit the wiki.