Artist Robbi Rodriguez has been making a name for himself as of late. Aside from independent hits such as Tek Jansen, Moon Lake, and the upcoming Polly and the Pirates 2, he’s also joining Rick Remender on Uncanny X-Force and Vertigo title, The Unexpected. Rodriguez has been promoting the sequel to his creator-owned Frankie Get Your Gun. Blog@ talked to Rodriguez and discussed “FGYG2″ and his influences behind his storytelling process.
Blog@: Robbi, you’ve been promoting Frankie for a while now. The first part came out last year or so, for those unfamiliar with Frankie and why she has to get her gun, can you fill us in?
Robbi Rodriguez: Yeah FGYG is an acid western. It’s about the subject of revenge and just what are the ramifications from those actions. Its follows the typical hit list formula at the very beginning, but I start it out at the end of the list. It follows Frankie Kansas, a child born with the soul purpose to seek retribution of a gang of land grabbers from years past. The thing is Frankie is autistic and that handicap has been used to her advance on her campaign over the years by her trainer, Jericho Topo, a ex-war vet. And it will be needed as her last target , Bastin Window, an immortal space god trying to make out of town as he’s doubled-crossed one to many folks. But at its heart it’s also about some Mother-Daughter relations. I grew up in a house of women and seeing first hand a woman finding her identity with a mother’s preset obligations. I found it could be the foundation hell of a story. Especially one with basically two female leads.
Blog@: Interesting that you’d make Frankie autisic, any reason on why?
RR: That’s an aspect I took from the 70′s Hong Kong and Japanese films. The protagonist in those films always have a handicap. The one-armed boxer for example that actually serves as an advantage. And with all the films in the revenge genre they always have this one-tracked mind or presented as a thoughtless killing machine. While she is not thoughtless at all, she is presented to her world as one.
Blog@: Like “The Blind Swordsman: Zatoichi“?
Blog@: The art style is very kinetic here. What are some influences on your style and the visuals you used?
RR: This is basically the voice that has been trying to get out for a while. “Polly 2″ was the hill I needed to climb to find it. I alway wanted to do something like this because this was something I was not seeing out there while I was originally working on it. I am a huge Jamie Hewlett fan, and as you can see by the work, a huge Tank Girl fan, too. Thus the nod with Frankie’s look. I wanted to see comics like that again. I mean you see it in most indie books, but I wanted to bring it back to genre comics. Not just a slice of life about nerd pop culture. And I also wanted to bring that energy of the 70′s low budget genre pics. I guess what they call “Grindhouse”. I grew up on that stuff. Dawn of the Dead is the point I wanted to hit. Its so over the top, but at the same time it’s so down to earth. I wanted to bring the attitude of a Hewlett and [Katsuhiro] Otomo with character interaction of a [Alex] Toth and [Dave] Mazzucchelli.
Blog@: So where are you taking Frankie and company in Part 2?
RR: Issue two recounts the story of the train ride out of town. It’s the beginning of the race for Window. All the parties are showcased and what they have to lose. My wife was looking over the end of the issue and she was shocked by a direction I took. I knew I was on to something here. It’s an issue to show that there are no black and white hats here. They are grey in their own way.
Blog@: And you’re planning on making this a web series, correct?
RR: This was always planned as a digital comic from the start. Back in ’05 when I just heard the rumors of an Apple tablet reader. It will be online for free at Frankiegetyourgun.com every Wednesday, 2-5 pages a week. But also a magazine-sized version of the issues as well. Then down the line, a hard cover collection with an EP from this great band called Married with Sea Monsters.I wanna use the Radiohead/NIN model. Value for value. Support it in a way you see fit. If you want to chip a buck or buy a book, rad. If you just wanna just read the book, hey just spread the word. It will also be on Four Studio’s Double Feature with 50 pages at 99 cents.
[Blog@ notes: Robbi even made a "trailer" for FGYG2: click here]