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Indie Comic Corner

Interview with ‘Man vs. Rock’ creators about indie comics, breaking in…and heroin

Funny comics are few and far between, and the titles usually begin with Dead and end with Pool. Problem is, there a lot of comics out there that are funny (for all different tastes too!), but they’re hard to find. We stumbled across a funny comic a few months back called Man vs. Rock and have reviewed it ever since. Hell, we even included an ad they are running in Dynamite Entertainment comics this month in an edition of PiPT a few weeks back.

We sat down to talk comics with the hooligans behind Man vs. Rock. This is what happened…

AiPT: Some might say the entire plot is right there in the title, but let’s pretend you got stuck in an elevator with the director you most envision shooting the Man vs. Rock feature film. What is your pitch and who is the director?

Kevin Bieber: Obviously, Josh Hutcherson would be the perfect director for Man vs. Rock. He’s the only person in the world with the charm, body, and sass to give MvR true justice. My pitch to J-Hutch is that if he gave up those silly Hungry Games movies, and joined a true franchise like Man vs. Rock, maybe Hollywood would take him seriously for a change.

Bill Belichick would be a strong no. 2, since I imagine he would watch illegal footage of movies before they came out, and steal the best parts for himself.

Victor Detroy: Imagine Romeo and Juliet on the a ship. A giant ship called the “Titanic.” Imagine we have a young Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet playing the leads. Now imagine when that ship sinks… all those tears pouring from the faces of those innocent young girls. What will you tell them when they turn their tear-stained faces towards you and ask “Why?”; Why did Leo have to die? Well I’ll tell you why… because the ROCKS wanted him to die! The ROCKS destroyed that ship! Then when the director says “uhhh actually it was an iceberg”, I punch him in the face, plant a sticky bomb in the elevator, and jump out as it explodes.

And who was the director? Osama Bin Laden. That’s right. We’re the ones that really took him out.

The cover of volume 1.

AiPT: Man vs. Rock is comedy filled with sarcasm and snark. What would you say motivates you to write what you do? And don’t say money because we all know you are true artists.

Bieber: The smoking-hot women that throw themselves at independent comic book writers like myself. Also, money … we got into the indie comic book scene purely because we wanted to be rich. Is it working? You’ll have to ask my creditors, and my neighbors at the homeless shelter I’m currently breaking into. We’re also motivated by seeing the amazing art that Jared Lamp continually puts out there.

Detroy: The smiling children. I’m motivated by the smiling children… because those smiles infuriate me! It is my mission to wipe those smug self-righteous smiles off every single last one of their faces!

AiPT: I don’t know if you’d want to call Man vs. Rock indie, because so many folks hate indie comics and only love Marvel and DC, but would you consider Man vs. Rock ‘indie?’

Bieber: South Park is one of the top rated shows on cable, and I think it’s one of the most “indie” shows on TV. Would Man vs. Rock be less “indie” if it were published by Marvel or DC? I don’t think so. I think “indie” has more to do with the concept than it does the publisher, and we embrace having a concept we think is out of the mainstream. Also, we stole all our jokes from Carlos Mencia, and that’s about as indie as it gets if you ask me.

Detroy: Yes.

Exclusive spread from Volume 4 out in May.

AiPT: What comics are you reading now?

Bieber: As many as an illiterate guy who tips cows for a living can. Really into Holy F*ck by former Miami Dolphins QB Nick Marino. I can’t believe he was able to write that after all the concussions and turf toe he must have had. Really like a Fanboy Comics title called Penguins vs. Possums by Sebastian Kadlecik, John Bring, and Lindsay Bring. It’s a ton of fun, and really sheds light on the prejudice that possums face on a daily basis. Declan and Chang by Matt and John Yuan is a really cool, really different read with some sick one-liners. I like a new book called Grace by Chris Thayer, which always begins and ends with blood … and some mainstream s--t, but who wants to talk about that (I hope Marvel does a big cross-over sometime soon! Maybe the heroes can act like villains!)

Detroy: I want Axe Cop to have my babies! Ethan Nicolle fills my insides with warm goodness. When I want a bunch of comics at once, I go for the bargain bin. I’m a cheap man. Some say cheaper than a dick joke in a room full of teenagers, or a Spygate joke in a room full of Jets fans. There is a local comic book store in Portland, Maine that sells a giant grab bag of mystery comics for eight bucks (shout out to Casablanca Comics). So when I’m strapped for cash, I roll up in there and get my comic on. They have the most bizarre mix. From failed Avenger knock offs from the 1980s to incredibly sexist Superman comics from the 1960s, it’s always the best way to move my bowels.

AiPT: I ran into you at Boston Comic Con last year and I could tell you were loving the ability to talk to fans. Do you have any advice for folks wanting to get their book out there, be it printing, attending cons and the like?

Bieber: Comics are a 100% full-proof way of making millions, so don’t be afraid to spend all your life savings or sell your parents’ house to do it.

Seriously, the best advice I can give is to just do it if you’re really interested in it. There are tons of reasons people can think of not to do something, and if I had listened to those people, I wouldn’t have seven illegitimate kids right now.

Seriously (again), there are really positive things about comics, including the fact that comics are an industry with tons of passionate fans and lots of conventions to get your product out there. There are also super helpful people along the way, like David Brooke at Adventures in Poor Taste — I hear his penis is huge!

Detroy: Huge? It’s a behemoth!

The Man vs. Rock protagonist.

AiPT: How about any Boston Comic Con dirt? Got any stories?

Detroy: Oh lordy lord! I always get some bizarre propositions at the cons. Most are sexual in nature. The most ridiculous story I had at Boston involved a guy who claimed his name was Donnie … Hitler. Donnie (or Hitler, if you prefer to call him by his last name) was a Wolverine cosplayer that said he wrote hardcore quadruple X erotica stories. The scatological tales were so intense they were vomit inducing. Donnie would walk around the con with his stories pre-recorded on a device that read them out loud in a robotic British female voice. He would march up to my booth and blare that perverted British voice at full volume. Terrified parents would usher their children away as Donnie stared at them like Hannibal Lecter. And that’s when Man vs. Rock was asked not to return to Boston Comic Con …

Exclusive spread from Volume 4 out in May.

AiPT: What’s your favorite method of procrastination? Temptation? Vice?

Bieber: Procrastination: Crack. Temptation: Heroin. Vice: my weekly Bible study.

Detroy: Procrastination: Charity. I formed a charity called “Diapers for Lawyers.” Our mission is to provide financial support to wealthy lawyers with children. We don’t want those high priced lawyers wasting their money on diapers and baby formula. They need to be spending money on important things like a down payment for their summer beach house or hysterectomies for their mistresses.

Temptation: Big butts. I cannot lie.

Vice? Well, I’m not sure this is a “vice” in my book, but I like to go to the local elementary school and hide in the bushes. When an unsuspecting child wanders close to me, I jump out of the bushes and yell “you just got served!” Then I hand them some forged legal documents and tell them to show up in court. I think it’s important for our children to understand the legal system.

AiPT: What are you obsessed with now?

Bieber: It’s hard to think of obsessions when you’re addicted to heroin. However, if you’re an NFL fan (like so many comics fans are since most of them are former jocks), then the twitter @pftcommenter is by far the best twitter out there. If you don’t like it, there’s the door.

Detroy: Still big butts.

AiPT: What’s next for Man vs. Rock?

Bieber: Besides getting hit by cars to collect the insurance money, we’ve got Volume 4 coming out on May 15th. It will not disappoint you like my stepdad Craig disappointed me. We’ve also got some ridiculous videos, short stories, and new merch coming out, so stay tuned.

AiPT: Where can we get our fix today, tomorrow and, for those readers out there with time travel, the past?

Detroy: If you’ve got time travel, please stop season 6 of Lost from ever happening. For everyone else, you can pick up MvR at:

We’ll also be at Wondercon and Amazing Las Vegas this year, so stop by and say hi.

AiPT: Thanks for taking the time guys…I think. It’s been real…y weird. And funny.

Bieber and Detroy: We do it for the children.


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