Chad Diez is a name synonymous with quality black-and-white, action-packed artwork and absolutely enormous word balloons. Seriously, the Goodyear blimp is jealous of some of these monstrosities.
Bulbous dialogue carriers aside, Chad’s name can be found plastered on such strips as The Pet Professional (PP), Sophisticated Pig (SP), and the now defunct, Today: The Comic, a take on the day’s (or week’s) news that combined editorial storytelling with classic satire. Between skewering the biggest and brightest (I never said best) minds the world has to offer and pulse-pounding, teeth-gritting action, he has seen and done it all.
So obviously the next step is to focus on one specific aspect of subject matter A and dissect it down to the nth molecule. And that’s exactly what Chad has done with his newest project, Hedlinerz. As we found out yesterday, he’s vying for a piece of that sweet, celebrity news pie the Internets have been in love with for oh so long now. Britney, Lindsey, Paris, and all other nutjobs, you’re on notice!
When we left the conversation yesterday, Chad was talking up Hedlinerz and his goals for the seemingly simple little news and comic strip site. He had also just been informed about a certain webcomics enthusiast site and their desire to open talks about bringing him on as artist for their seminal but currently hiatused comic. Let’s jump in there, already in progress…
The Midnight Cartooner: We’ve talked briefly about other artists for the job and your take on satire seemed a perfect fit for webcomics satire and news. Would you disagree?
Chad Diez: No, I agree, that’d be pretty cool
M: Well if you want, we can make it happen.
C: Does that mean I get my own head up on the top? Get this mug up there!
M: Actually, we’ll be doing away with those soon, but we will have some sort of avatar and yeah, you’d have one.
C: That’d be cool. I think I’d be down for that. Would it be like a multi-panel like you guys have been doing or would I do a comic in Hedlinerz format to one of your articles?
M: (Sorry, holding things for my wife in Super Mario Galaxy) Whatever you want, either way sounds good with me.
C: Heh, right on. I dig it.
M: I think one format would be good but just having you on the strip would be awesome enough. You know, for a time.
C: I don’t mind talking to the other guys about it, maybe we can hash it out.
M: We’d have to put some reins on you eventually, but I think you could run free for a while.
C: Be free,
M: Soar above your dreams! That could be your catchphrase!
C: The one I like to use is, “Dare to dream.”
M: It’s very… optimistic.
C: Ain’t it?
M: Alright, back on track for a moment, let me jump back…
C: Ok. (straightening my tie and sitting up right) Back to business.
M: With Hedlinerz, you seem to focus more on the news and gossip than the actual strips themselves. Is this an attempt to gain that celeb following, ala TMZ?
C: Right now, I’m still in a testing phase with Hedlinerz. I’m working out a schedule for it. My goal is to draw 5 strips Monday through Friday and show the pencils versus the inks on Sat and Sun. Getting a routine down is the key right now and I’m working on it.
As far as gaining a celeb following like TMZ…yes, yes, yes. It’s the whole purpose of putting up articles from sites like TMZ and x17 Online. It’s a place where you can find articles from all those various sites. One more thing with the testing or beta phase of all this is how the website looks and functionality. I want it to be easy to use. Like a hooker.
…Strike that from the record please. Ah, screw it. Keep it. I’m sure in a couple weeks or so I can go with the Monday through Friday schedule.
M: I greatly look forward to that, as the current schedule has been lacking, and thus, woefully inadequate. And yes, that is SO on the record.
M: As far as look, I think you got “celeb gossip and rumor blog” down pretty quickly.
C: Thanks. There was a lot of versions before that. I had to find the gay man in me to design that. I’ve found that the guys in the whole celeb gossip game are all gay [Midnight: Not that there’s anything wrong with that]. This won’t be a coming out article at all, I’m just saying that I’m reaching for my estrogen side on some of this. Like “Should I care that Ashley Tisdale is walking with her puppy?”
M: I don’t know that that’s a women’s issue… And the answer to the Ashley Tisdale question is no, you should never care.
C: Yeah, I know. I passed on it. Everytime I have to think about something like that a pubic hair from my balls falls off. Then I immediately watch porn to get my head straight.
M: But ACTING like you care is the name of the game in the gossip biz. And now I see why you had to take so much time off.
C: Lol, yuuup.
M: And maybe some more would be a good idea… ?
C: Nah, I think I can withstand it. I have the power of grey skull on my side
M: Dude. We could use that around here. Well it sounds like you, good sir, are off to a rousing start! Would you say that Hedlinerz spells out the future for Chad Diez?
C: Yes. One of the reasons it took me so long to get to this point was to be sure I really want to do this. I’ve had time to think and yes, this is what I want to do. Other projects might pop up but I’m not losing sight of this again.
M: It’s great to hear you’ve got your head on straight and are working towards this goal that I see as both ambitious and fascinating.
C: Thanks dude. Thanks for caring what I’ve even been doing. I’ve been a ghost in comics lately…I appreciate the time.
M: With work as good as yours (you know, when it ACTUALLY comes out), I’d say you’re worth keeping an eye on from time to time.
C: You’re putting that fire in me to keep that schedule up with what you’re saying. Oh, I’ll consist, dammit. If it’s the death of me! Me! Me! (Echoing off)
M: And here I thought AIM didn’t have any voice filters or enhancements.
C: Yeah, I went for it.
M: I think that’s probably a good place to end the actual interview, unless you have something you want to throw in?
C: Um yeah, one more thing. Never sell cars. It’s the devil’s work.
M: Noted and appreciated.
C: Very cool.
Very cool, indeed.Â Make sure to leave a comment so we can work together to keep that fire lit underneath Chad!Â And don’t forget to check out Hedlinerz in it’s bid for web domination and keep an eye on the Digital Strips webcomic for the possibility of more Chad Diez work!