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Bedlam

Almost daily!
I've elected to hold back a few of the earlier strips. As I browsed through here I noticed gaps and I'm fine with that. Some of it was crap. Growing pains you might say. So you won't find exactly 100 strips in this block. Close though!
I need to apologize for this one. Bedlam began as an autobiographical account of my adventures in unemployment and failed romance. There was a lot of drinking going on around that time and... aw hell, there's no excuse. I'm going to burn in hell but for what it's worth, sorry to the ladies.
I always disliked the term "metrosexual." I can deal with "Obsessive compulsive" because it sounds right. "Metrosexual" just sounds like an advertising term to me.
And then came the war in Iraq. How could I attack? Like everybody else! From the couch!
Accuracy alert! I think Connie Chung was gone by this time. So editing would have been done. Luckily(?!) I wasn't syndicated and, as such, I ain't changing a damn thing.
Rumsfeld became one of my favorite guest stars. He's like an old western cowboy and was fun to draw.
I still think it a travesty that Arnett got the shaft. And I'm also proud to say that I wrote this one long before the New York Times scandal. Hooray for me!
How long can I maintain? I wondered. This isn't Doonsbury. Plus I got the attention span of a fruit fly. Everyone expected the war to be over quickly. Remember "Shock and Awe?" I'm glad I got off that ship because it's turned out to be a long voyage.
Primitive as this strip is to the current ones, this is still one of my favorite drawings of Little Zippy.
I've always wanted to do super hero comics. It's what I started doing when I was a kid.
Ernie still hadn't been completely developed by this time and I had him playing antagonist much of the time. Later this role would go to the Raccoon.
I love this fringe science stuff. I'll admit to being a pretty tough skeptic, but I still love mythology and stories of ghosts, aliens, strange creatures and end of the world predictions.
Strange thing is, I do stuff like this.
See? I told you I was a skeptic.
I can't advocate the use of illegal substances, but I was watching UP IN SMOKE when I wrote this, and felt like I had to pay some sort of tribute to one of the greatest comedies ever made.
Well if Chong was in I just had to let Cheech at least walk on.
R.I.P. H.S.T. Your voice will be missed. This was done long before the big bang.
The first appearance of Ethan Muntjac. He used to be so cute back then...
I feel fortunate that I really do have a scant few friends like this.
Paint, like almost all the BEDLAM creatures, was a real pony that I took care of at the zoo. After we got the axe, I heard through the grapevine that he died. This was my little tribute to the ornery bastard.
I remember sitting on the mountain, along the Appalachian trail, practically in my backyard, when I pencilled this one. Thinking about native american horsemanship and the relationship between rider and horse being one of a two horse herd rather than the traditional fear training us bipeds usually inflict on them. I felt as if Paint and I had developed that sort of bond. It didn't start that way and he always was a bastard to most other people. But by the end we had a pretty good understanding.
I didn't like this strip at all. I did it as a lead in to my story with Paint - which I quickly abandoned. For posterity, I've included it.
By this time I was learning much of comic strips and felt as if the Paint story arc would end up as boring as a family holiday slideshow.
Ah, yes. The SARS scare. There's never a shortage of material as long as there's a newspaper nearby.
Back on the mountain. I miss it when I'm gone.
I'm not afraid of heights. I'm just cautious about heights, that's all.
Some say kids are growing up way too fast nowadays. That's what I was getting at. But look closely and you may spot a guest star (or two) in this strip. You can't tell but that guy's hat is yellow (hint).
There will come a day when kids won't even know what books are anymore.
Yeah, I was going to do a short Snow white story arc, but then I got away from the relationship stuff. Also another accuracy alert: If I'm not mistaken Snow White was a creation of the brothers Grimm and is therefore in public domain by now. I had Disney on the brain when I did this one. All I wanted to do was make the character identifiable with Snow White then develop her into one of my creation. You don't mess with the big mouse.
I love it when the creator has to get involved.
Finally. That was milestone. Strip number 100.
This was promotional piece I did for submission mailings. I was proud that I had 100 strips under my belt. I had learned alot since the start, not to mention the evolution of the art and characters.
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John Heatter ||   

Johnny H. has done just about everything under the sun. He's taken the road less traveled and discovered that it also pays less. Which may very well account for the lack of traffic there. ... full profile