Scooby-Doo Gets Gritty: An Interview With Artist Michael Lunsford
I am a huge Scooby-Doo fan. I’ve loved the show ever since I was little and watched the episodes on Cartoon Network and Boomerang. Hell, I still have my awesome glow-in-the-dark Scooby-Doo figure that I got out of some kid’s meal. So when I was browsing Scooby related art on the website deviantART and found the picture below, I fell in love.
Okay, maybe you can’t really fall in love with a picture but when I laid my eyes upon this piece I was like Scooby with a Scooby snack.
But I decided not to leave it at just that and emailed the artist for a tiny interview. Michael Lunsford was awesome enough to answer some questions for the All Geek To Me crew and myself.
(All Geek To Me = AGTM | Michael Lunsford = ML)
AGTM: On your deviantART page it says that you and your friend Sam Sykes came up with this idea after discussing Scooby-Doo. What came first, the poster or the script? (Read Sam Sykes awesome script here. I really do wish it was a movie.)
ML: Technically I made the poster before he wrote the “trailer script” that he put on his website. But most of the idea did come from his imagination, with a little brainstorming help from myself. We tend to have some pretty weird conversations, and I was particularly sleep deprived that night. It started with him just asking me out of the blue “Why didn’t anyone ever just murder the Scooby-Doo gang?” and the conversation went on until we had the basic idea for this gritty 70′s era detective movie version of the show.
I still couldn’t get any sleep at that point so I got to work on making the poster and finished before finally getting to sleep at about noon. I woke up later in the day to find he had written the trailer script as well!
AGTM: Was Shaggy the natural choice for the bad-ass detective? Since Fred is too pretty.
ML: Yes, it seemed pretty natural. We both like damaged characters that have some problem they need to overcome. So we didn’t even really think about it, we just jumped right on Shaggy and the demons he might have living in his head.
I had the idea of keeping Fred as some kind of image of innocence and goodness as a clean-shaven straight-laced guy. It works in contrast with Shaggy’s character. I like that sort of thing.
AGTM: Any plans on future Scooby-Doo works?
ML: Not really, this was just a one-off thing. I probably wouldn’t have even been thinking about Scooby-Doo if Sam hadn’t brought it up. Though I have done Scooby-Doo related drawings before, and I might again, but no plans at the moment.
AGTM: Your artwork seems to span everything from fun to dark, is there a style you prefer? Or is it whatever the mood strikes kind of deal?
ML: I think I tend to lean towards fun stuff, but it really is a mood kind of thing. It’s good to have that range at the very least.
AGTM: You have your own webcomic called Supernormal Step, can you tell us a little about it?
ML: Supernormal Step is about a girl who gets transported into a strange fantasy world, which mirrors our own. The basic story is that she’s trying to get back to her world while being bombarded by the all the weirdness of the world she’s in. The premise has been heard many times before, but I like to play with the usual tropes of fiction to the point that it could almost be considered a satire. The characters comment on the world around them as a reader might. For instance I once compared the main character Fiona to a critic yelling at a bad movie, but a bad movie she’s being forced to live INSIDE of. The story itself has a bit of mystery and intrigue as well as Fiona dives into the world finding out the hidden reasons behind everything that has been happening to her.