Lost Sjors (Perry Winkle) plot: The Rap
In the early nineties I helped write a couple of Sjors & Sjimmie comics. Sjors is a Dutch phonetic way of writing George; but the character is a spin-off from Perry Winkle, the adopted Buster Brown-like little brother of Winnie Winkle the Breadwinner.
I am still going through some of my old stuff to determine what can be thrown out and what needs to stay in this packrattian palace, and yesterday I came across the first page of a plot that never fully developed. I believe my co-conspirator here was Paul Hoogma. The guy with the elbow-action in the picture below (click it for the full page) is Sjors; I cannot tell you who the other guy is, because he is not in the legal public domain yet.
The strip was going to have Sjors and his homey become rappers, but it wasn’t much developed beyond that. We were just riffing on a theme we felt might go over well with our audience — I know, art can be brutally commercial when you peel away its thin veneer. The full page contains a number of childish jokes, but I like it that way. It’s half the fun of seeing such a work in progress, and you can tell which panels were going to be replaced in the final version. I remember that I was nervous about the quality of the raps, and that may have been the reason why I could not come up with the ideas to finish the story. Although the more likely reason for that is that we did not have a single idea of the overall story line. In hindsight I don’t think the quality of the rap would have mattered much; ultimately it’s the story that counts.
[…] Disclaimer: I have written for Donald Duck magazine myself. Although they paid significantly less than the competing Sjors en Sjimmie franchise, it was always fun to write stories for them, simply because they pretty much let you decide what to write. As a result, stories for the magazine may have a tone of voice that implies grown-ups talking down to kids, but typically the stories are just fun adventures. Moralistic tales like this copyright story are rare. Indeed, in the next story of this week’s issue Chip ‘n’ Dale try to break into what looks like a military compound in order to steal nuts. Their three attempts fail because the compound is well secured—even underground—indicating the owners’ unambiguous desire to keep out intruders. But in the end the two chipmunks luck out, and end up with a mountain of nuts. Moral of that Disney story: crime pays. […]
Ooh, ooh! Going through even more of my old stuff I discovered that this story wasn’t unfinished, but merely hacked down mercilessly by the Wirojas, the three editors for modern S&S comics. Although most of their criticism focused on parts not shown here, they did have two issues with things you can see on this first page:
“Cool John is a new character. Without him there’s no story. Sorry guys, but in our Bible we explain why this is unacceptable. Perhaps you guys should read it one of these days?”
“Also: why have our friends suddenly become such idiots? They even fail to remember their own names!”