Today I need to write a whole bunch of croc strips.
Must think stupid.
I know what you’re thinking: Not a difficult task for me.
While this is true, I think the croc strips are the hardest for me to write. Rat and Pig come much more naturally to me. Rat’s voice is effectively my voice. If I could, I’d write for Rat every day.
But it’s not the same with the crocs. Their jokes tend to be more visual and physical, so the art matters more. Plus, I can’t just give them any thought I want to, like I can Rat. In the crocs’ case, they’re limited to one basic thought: Eat. Or, “eet.” They’re almost like a strip within a strip.
For all these reasons, when I do the croc strips, I try to do a whole bunch at once.
I’m often asked where the crocs’ accent comes from. Everybody that writes to me has a guess, and most are sure they’re right. I’ve heard hundreds of guesses, the most common being Cajun. But I’ve also heard Russian, Mexican, Asian, Greek, Hungarian, Romanian, Middle Eastern, etc.
The truth is that I was inspired by the Saturday Night Live skit where Frankenstein, Tarzan and Tonto all try to talk with their characteristic broken syntax.
In the croc’s case, they say “me” where they should say “I”; can’t conjugate verbs correctly; change most “i”s to “ee”s (e.g. “heet” instead of “hit”); drop a lot of “L”s and “R”s (e.g. “Peese” instead of “please”; “zeeba” instead of “zebra”) and then toss in a little Valley Girl (“Me is like, ‘Wow’).
The lower case writing was inspired by how Bill Watterson wrote the dialogue for the Calvin and Hobbes’ bully, Moe.
So here I go, off to write for the reptilian terrors. Please wish me luck.
Or better yet:
Peese weeshes me luck.