Minority Characters

We’ve been asked a few times why there aren’t more minority characters in Scooter and Ferret. This is a great insight into creating a strip: I was asked that recently and it really took me by surprise. The reason is the strip actually stars two minority characters. Here’s the background. When Scooter and Ferret were first worked out, they were intended for an animation series pitch. I’m a Flash artist by trade and the Scooter cartoon was an experiment to see how the characters would look animated. While we worked on that first cartoon we went ahead and recorded voice actors for Scooter and Ferret; I still have the recordings and might put them up for fun some time. The actors we recorded were really just friends of ours, and both of them were exceptionally good.

At the time we only had rough ideas of what the characters personalities would be like, and these initial voice sessions are still the basis for how Scooter and Ferret behave. The interesting part about that is both of the actors are African-American, and so I always think of Scooter and Ferret as minority characters. Of course, without the benefit of vocal inflection it’s impossible to read that from the strip. Neither of those two guys have any stereotypical traits, so I’m sure none of that ever comes across. However, until I put up some of the longer recordings, you can hear snippets of their voices in their Flash game, and if you manage to win the game their names are in the credits.

There is a black character in the works, but some other story segments have to be carried through before we can introduce him. At the moment he’s nameless, but his personality is already solidly worked out, and I hope he’ll be worth the wait.

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