Drop Dead Vince
A black romantic comedy about an undead lady killer who finds the ghoul of his dreams, and how a newly-dead aspiring fashion model copes with her new afterlife.
Happy Fifth Anniversary to Drop Dead Vince!
My name is Kelsey, and since today is a pretty special day to me here’s a little story about how I first made a comic about two undead teenagers.
Back in 2010 I was going to college at a tech college to learn about graphic design and I was living on my own in a dustbowl farming town. I was working on a webcomic called Johnny Angel Loves Elenore Rigby, about a rockabilly musician living in San Francisco who falls in love with a British girl who worked at a Gothic Lolita fashion store. I was pretty stressed out at the time because I was making a big mistake in making comics, which was starting with a massive 30 chapter epic instead of starting out with something more simple (note to everyone making comics: PLEASE start small). I had a lot of ideas and had the whole story in mind but unfortunately I didn’t plan enough of it ahead of time to start so I was pretty overwhelmed.
Around the same time I was doing research on some of the subcultures that would pop up in the comic’s story. One of Johnny’s friends was Max, named after “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer”, at the time I was into Brian O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim and it inspired one of the themes of this comic which was characters named after songs. Max was also a musician but he played Psychobilly music, which is a mash up of punk, rockabilly, surf, country, and garage rock and most of the common themes in this type of music were the 1950s, horror, monsters (those especially from “B” picture sci-fi and horror movies), death, and sex. While I was learning more about it I fell so in love with the culture and the music and some of the fashion and lifestyles inspired by it.
I came across some stickers from an online store designed by Vince Ray, an illustrator and musician who designed art for his own band as well as advertisements for Fender and Gretsch guitars, as well as album and promotional artwork for other musicians and bands like Brian Setzer (former Stray Cats front man) and Reverend Horton Heat. One of them was a skull with a pompadour-style Mohawk hairstyle (a “psycho wedge”, common among Psychobilly enthusiasts) holding a microphone, and another sticker was a Bettie Page-esque pinup girl in a skeleton costume with green skin.
At the time I was sketching up concepts for the characters and was thinking up of some mascots for Max’s fictional band the Wrekkin’ Krew (named after a well-known song by one of biggest and most influential bands of the scene, the Meteors), and doodled up some practice sketches experimenting with Vince Ray’s style. This led to “Boney Betty”, one of the earliest designs of Vince’s love interest and co-star Betty Baker. While sketching her out I was doodling some little skeletons flirting and ogling at her along the canvas, who later became his own character (and the titular character of the series, Vincent Ray Valiant, named after Vince Ray).
I wound up drawing these two more than the actual characters of JALER, and at the time my friend Halie suggested that I should try making a comic with these two. I was definitely inspired and really fell in love with these two and began to flesh them out more. Betty became a blonde and I gave her a sweeter personality, since I had an idea of what would happen if a perky cheerleader suddenly became one of the undead, and Vince became a former 1950s heartthrob who had died back in the 50s and still hadn’t gotten over the “good ol’ days”, even now as a skeleton. I wrote and sketched out a short one-shot comic for the two of them, about Vince first discovering Betty as a new “unplanned” addition to his cemetery and him trying to woo her as Betty tried to come to terms with her new “afterlife”. Soon a one shot grew to nine more story ideas, and I began making more characters the pair of them would run into along the way. I was having so much fun developing this world and with designing the cast for this series.
I launched Drop Dead Vince on Valentine’s Day, 2011. I celebrated that night by making myself a green cake with pink frosting and the signature pompadour skull from the logo decorated on it.
Vince and Betty are so special and precious to me and so is their story. At the time I really wanted to draw and showcase their adventures and hope that everyone around the world would fall in love with them just like I did while working on it. But this comic has had a rough five years. When the first chapter was starting I had finished school and had to move back home. I had a hard time trying to find work besides part-time seasonal work at department stores for Christmas time. While I had a few freelance projects that I got to work on I had some difficult clients that made work become frustrating, and it definitely wasn’t enough for me to live on. In-between all this I’ve had a hard time trying to update the comic, and since I was the only one drawing and writing it pages took longer than I had planned to draw and upload. I was also having some personal problems with my family, who pressured me about getting a job or going back to school to learn another trade outside of art. Eventually I went back to learn about becoming an optician, and now I’m working at a glasses retailer.
I honestly don’t know what the future for Vince and Betty is at the moment. Right now I’m hoping that once I get adjusted to my fulltime schedule and get enough saved up to move out on my own (and get a new computer) that I can go back to drawing the two of them again. But I promise that their stories will be told, I love these undead kids too much to let them just fade away.
So Happy Birthday to Vince and Betty. And thank you to everyone who stuck with me for five years, it means the world to me and I hope to see you again soon.
Happy 4th Anniversary to Drop Dead Vince
Happy 4th Anniversary to Drop Dead Vince, which has been rottin’ & rollin’ online since 2011!
Hey cats and kittens, it’s been a while hasn’t it? We hope that 2015 is going well for all of you so far!
As for the creator, though, it’s been really rough the last few months. We want to apologize for promising Vince would update again in December last year, when the time came the creator was swamped with her part time seasonal job and just had a lot of personal things on her plate that’s unfortunately still stacking up and sticking around. However, she’s taking this into her own hands and trying to get some help for it, and hopefully she’ll be able to get back on her feet again and get back to work on comics again.
Vince is not going to be a dead project. The creator still loves her undead teenagers and still wants to tell Vince and Betty’s stories, but for the moment the comic is going to have a wait a little while longer until it updates again. The creator’s well being is going to have to come first for the moment, and hopefully once things get settled down we’ll be back to updating again!
Thank you everyone for your patience, support, and for sticking with us for since the beginning. We hope to see you soon!
Drop Dead Vince Will Be on Hitatus Until December!
Hey cats and kittens! It's been a long time, we hope that you're having a nice October and having a ball getting ready for the Halloween season.
Unfortunately we have some not-neccessarily-bad-but-not-great news: Drop Dead Vince will be on an official hiatus until December.
The creator has had a lot on her plate this year and has recently gotten a job that has eaten up a lot of her physical and mental energy, and she's been in a pretty terrible funk that's made art and comic making difficult to do. As much as she loves our favorite undead teenagers she will be taking a bit of a vacation to get some mental R&R, which is what she definitely needs at the moment.
But don't feel too blue! We'll be definitely seeing Vince and Betty again in the future, and in the meantime you can continue supporting the webcomic by:
- Purchase the first chapter of Drop Dead Vince on Gumroad as a digital comic you can read on your phone or tablet for $5! It includes a guest art gallery, notes from the creator and an exclusive comic never before seen online!
- Purchase stickers, glow-in-the-dark pins, art prints, and more on the Drop Dead Shop on Storenvy!/a><
- Tell your friends and everyone you know about Drop Dead Vince!
Thank you everyone for all of your support and for your patience. We'll see you in December, and have a Happy Halloween!
Drop Dead Vince Digital Comic is Now Available! (And a Short Break)
Hey cats and kittens! Big News:
THE DROP DEAD VINCE DIGITAL COMIC IS NOW AVAILABLE ON GUMROAD!
For $5 you can own a copy of the first chapter of Drop Dead Vince to read on your computer or on a digital reader or tablet! There's also exclusive content including notes from the creator, a Guest Gallery of artwork by several talented artists, and a bonus never-before-seen comic created just for the digital comic! Check it out!
And in other news, two other big things: One, I just got a job recently and that will be affecting how frequent I will be able to update in the future, and Two, I will taking a week off to give myself a break from comics and to focus on some unfinished personal and art projects. The next update will be up sometime before mid-June.
Thank you everyone for your support and for being so patient. We'll see you soon with the new update!
Drop Dead Vince Will Be on Hiatus (We'll Be Back in June!)
Hey cats and kittens! The end of May is coming up, which is the deadline for the digital comic version of Drop Dead Vince's first chapter. So the official comic is going to be on a hiatus so that I can get the digital one finished and ready to sell. We'll be back with the next update sometime in early June.
Thank you everyone for your support and for being so patient, we'll see you next time with updates on the digital comic!
Drop Dead Vince on Temporary Break (and a Twitter and a New Blog!)
Hey cats and kittens! I hope that everyone is enjoying the new chapter so far. I wanted to let you know that Vince is going to be on a short break, I'm visiting family and I'll be away from my computer. Vince will be back again sometime later this month with the next update.
In other news, we have an official tumblr for Drop Dead Vince! You can visit it at dropdeadvincecomic.tumblr.com for more updates, as well as additional artwork, works in progress, and cool creations by fans like you! We're also now on Twitter, you can follow us at @DDVComic and read up on updates!
Thank you again for your support and patience, we'll see you next time with the next update!
Drop Dead Vince Chapter Two Coming Soon! (And DDV's Third Anniversary!)
Hey cats and kittens! Happy 2014!
It really has been a while hasn't it? I feel pretty embarrassed since I promised Chapter Two would start last month, but this year was off to a weird start for me. I found out that I was laid off from my seasonal job at the last minute, so I've had to stop working on comics for a while to try to work on some commissions and freelance projects to make ends meet. It's been stressful and emotional for me, 2013 was not my best year and I'm honestly scared that 2014 becoming 2013 Part Two. It's been affecting my work on Vince pages so it's been taking me longer to work on them because I've been really discouraged. I'm really hoping that it's just going to be a rough January and that the rest of the year will go smoother for me, but sadly you can't predict the future (especially not mine lately).
So the new plan for Vince is that I'm trying to aim for Valentine's Day this Friday to launch Chapter Two. It's not going to be set in stone, but that's going to be my goal for this week and hopefully I'll be able to meet it.
Speaking of Valentine's Day, it's not only Vince's birthday but also the Third Anniversary of Drop Dead Vince! It's hard to believe the comic is three years old now, this being one of my first big projects and one of the longest running ones I've had currently. I'd love to do something special for the occasion, but it will depend on if I can get the second chapter prepped in time to launch on Friday.
Thank you everyone for your support and for being so patient with me and my ridiculous schedules. Hopefully next time I'll see you with the next chapter of Betty and Vince's adventures!
Double Update and Drop Dead Vince's First Chapter is Finished!
Hey cats and kittens! The Double Update for Drop Dead Vince is finally up and ready to read! And even bigger news:
CHAPTER ONE IS FINALLY FINISHED!!!
Thank you everyone so much for your support and for sticking around since Vince's very first page. It was a bumpy ride to get to this point but I'm pretty proud of myself for being able to finish a 31 page comic.
As for the next chapter, Chapter Two will officially begin in January 2014! I'll be taking a break from comics in November and will begin work on the second chapter in December. Thank you again so much for all the comments, likes, favorites, and your support. I'll see you in 2014!