That’s right folks, you can get your mitts on your very own copy of Season One of GONOGO created by yours truly, Jared Davis. Click here for a preview: https://www.blurb.com/b/11276439-gonogo-a-webcomic-by-jared-davis-season-1
We have had some technical difficulties with this weeks cartoon. Please come back next Thursday for the exciting conclusion of season I of GONOGO!
This week’s comic is highly indebted to my armchair philosophy about capitalism. My idea goes like this: Capitalism is largely getting somebody else to pay more than you did for the thing you own. This works out well for things like oil companies because they simply pump black stuff out of the ground, which is about as close to free as it gets, and sell it for huge profit. Similarly, there are real-estate predators (flippers) that are simply trying to do this same thing. I don’t feel bad for them when the deal turns south. The boys are exploiting a loophole in the philosophy that actually goes back to the Magna Carta: One cannot sell what one does not own. The whole “wanna buy a bridge in Brooklyn” con was created by George C Parker around the turn of the twentieth century, sometimes referred to as “the Gilded Age” (which I don’t have to tell you, looks frighteningly like the present day.)
There are only two more episodes to go in this first season of GONOGO, so, once again, I am hoping to solicit feedback about the future of GONOGO. Would a monthly comic slake your thirst for below the bridge humor? Would you actually pay money to receive the comic? Would you prefer I beg for tips on a platform like Patreon? Know anyone who would be interested in mass producing plush dolls of Foggy and Smithson? I am interested in your thoughts. Thanks for reading!
Found this in the news today. I guess the bridge will look shiny and new after its makeover, just in time for the last episode of GONOGO’s first season
You may have noticed that the strip is now in black and white. Don’t worry, the painstaking watercolor will be back soon, we just need to solve the mystery presented by GONOGO’s latest character: Bazooka Remex P.I.
I have always been a fan of Noir comics. Not so much for the plot, but for the use of black and white to create drama and mood. In fact, my favorite Batman anthology is “Batman, Black and White” which is a series of short stories where each artist interprets Batman through the black and white lens. Someone once pointed out that artists do best with limitations (mostly because it gives them rules to break) but I truly appreciate the elegance of the project behind Batman, Black and White. The limitations are set out with elegance and economy: Make a short story just using three ingredients: Black, White and Batman.
While Bazooka Remex P.I. is no Batman, he is a hard-boiled noir detective. My hope is that once this set of episodes is done, that we will have an opportunity for him to come back and struggle to solve more mysteries under the Roosevelt Bridge…in Black and White.
Back again with a brief discussion of last week’s Episode (#2)
This project was many years in the making, which means some of the jokes were first written down a long time ago. Fortunately, bashing Republicans seems to be a perennial punchline, who knew it would be so very true today? Also, because this comic takes a bit of time to make (its drawn and watercolored by hand) the jokes and ideas need to be able to land as far as eight months into the future. The idea of a Troll and Monkey living under the Roosevelt bridge is actually one of the elements that has survived from the very beginning. The first element was, in fact, the bridge. I have worked in Arlington and lived in DC for over twenty years, and I often cross this bridge during my commute. It not only connects Virginia and DC, but it also flies over Roosevelt Island, Federal parkland in the middle of the Potomac. I wanted to speak to characters that were in DC but not an actual part of the DC political scene (that is, I didn’t want to do a straight-up political cartoon, nor did I want something along the lines of Doonesbury) In this “no-mans-land” underneath the Roosevelt bridge give the characters the ability to travel between worlds without going anywhere.
If you have a bridge, you need a Troll. Foggy Bottom is just the Troll for the job. He’s named after the neighborhood just south of the bridge. I think today we encounter Trolls more often than they ever did in ancient times. I like the idea that he is not up to speed with the times, he doesn’t have a computer, and he seems powerless to enforce tolls for crossing his bridge.
Foggy is so bad at being a Troll that he even has a companion (trolls usually being solitary creatures). Smithson is a monkey. He is named after the founder of the Smithsonian, James Smithson. We will get into his past a bit more in the coming episodes, but for now all you need to know is that he is the erudite counterpoint to the brusque and uncouth troll.
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Tune in next week for Episode 3!
Welcome back to GONOGO. On Thursdays between comic postings I am going to feature some commentary about the previous week’s comic.
First, let me introduce myself, I am Jared Davis. I’m an artist, painter, set designer and occasional “Elvis” living in Washington DC. Last year, during the darkest days of Quarantine, I decided that the world needed another webcomic. So, I dusted off some of my old drawings that were rattling around in some pocket sketchbooks, and began to “get serious” about this comic thing. I created some comics back when I was in high school. Of note was Sign of the Times, which was a comic critiquing the draconian sign ordinances in Novi, Michigan that was published in the Novi rotary newsletter….I know, once a cartoonist has reached such great heights, its only downhill from there.
In the intervening decades I did a lot of painting, and a bit of comedy writing (mostly for Elvis’ Birthday Fight Club) and it took a global pandemic to get me to realize that I could “put the chocolate in the peanut butter”, so to speak. The nature of comics has changed in the past few decades. When I was creating Sign of the Times, there were gatekeepers and barriers to entry (like the editor of the Novi Rotary Club newsletter) but those barriers no longer exist in the brave new world of webcomics. Aside from barrier smashing, the actual way comics are made has changed. In the early Nineties, I was drawing with India ink on Bristol board and then sending it out to be photographed. Today, I modestly submit, that I am a Photoshop wizard. The kind of comic I wish to present has been greatly colored by the changes in the technological landscape. To be honest, I have been struggling with these changes, and I hope that you, dear reader, will come on the journey with me. These first few episodes are going to be a bit wobbly (Have you ever gone back and read any of the early Garfield? Those drawings of Garfield represent the Neanderthal state in the evolution of the Garfield strip) so I hope you will indulge me as GONOGO finds its comedic footing over the next season or two.
Now that we have introductions out of the way, I am looking forward to the next blog post (after Episode 2, on April 22) where we can discuss the development of your newest favorite Troll and Monkey duo: Foggy Bottom and Smithson.
I am super exited to announce that the GONOGO launch date has finally arrived! Launching this webcomic thing has been an obsession of mine during the entire pandemic, and it is, frankly, a relief to see it up “in lights”. A webcomic about getting to know these two guys (a Troll and a Monkey) who live under the Roosevelt Bridge (which runs over the Potomac between Virginia and DC) has been idea that I have been kicking around for almost a decade, it simply took a global pandemic to make it happen. It’s going to be the Diet Pepsi of political cartoons…not the high fructose politics of Doonsbury, but more fattening than Garfield (did I mention that strained metaphor is “on brand” for GONOGO?).
The plan for this first season is to post a new comic every other Thursday for the next year. Alternating Thursdays will feature a blog post about the previous week’s comic. Bottom line, check back Thursdays for new stuff. I will be the first to admit that I am not tech savvy, but the web gurus (Jason! Brian!) tell me that you can subscribe to GONOGO via the RSS feed button above, or by following us on Facebook and Instagram.
I want to close this intro by calling out my wife, Kate and my Father, Clark for supporting this project, getting us to today where we get to break the champagne bottle across the GONOGO hull! (insert catchphrase from episode 12 here) — Jared