Creators of gay comic strip release a brand new video.
Bruce the Angry Bear is known and loved by the readers of GayIceland and the new twist on the comic strip, the gay Christmas calendar, has been the delight of many. The creators, Jonathan Duffy and Einar Valur Másson, took the old Christmas song Twelve days of Christmas and recreated it in the spirit of Bruce.
Many people have asked why there is not a song version of their take on the twelve days and, lo and behold, the duo has released a video with all the drawings by Einar and Jonathan’s singing. We asked Jonathan to explain the thoughts behind the calendar and tell us about the video.
“The Christmas calendar was our take on the traditional advent calendar,” Jonathan explains. “We wanted to do something special with the comic for Christmas and we thought it would be fun to re-do the 12 days of Christmas with new lyrics that fit the world of Bruce the Angry Bear.”
Bruce the Angry Bear has gathered almost a cult following, did the creators expect that when they started out?
“When Einar and I first started working on this strip a year ago I had no idea it would take off like it has,” Jonathan says, sounding astonished. “It’s been an incredible journey so far and he and I are both very excited about next year, we’ve got some big things planned and some stuff that’s going to take a lot of work but it will be worth it. One huge compliment for me is that I see that people who don’t normally read comics or even show an interest in gay stuff are reading it and loving it. It’s come so far from a small idea I had way back in 2011 that sat in the back of my head until about a year ago.”
“It’s been an incredible journey so far and he and I are both very excited about next year, we’ve got some big things planned and some stuff that’s going to take a lot of work but it will be worth it.”
But where did this idea of the Christmas calendar come from and what about the video?
“It’s been an incredible year and we wanted to get festive so that’s why we did the 12 days of Christmas. We started with just the images and quite a few people kept asking if there was going to be a recording of it so I have grabbed a crappy karaoke version and given it a go. I’ve put the song together with the amazing images by Einar together in a video so that fans can get a full sense of how the lyrics sounded when I wrote them,” Jonathan explains.
How do you guys choose the gifts for each day? Is there some hidden agenda and do you have a personal favorite among them?
“With the things for each day there isn’t really a hidden agenda behind any of it, it’s all pretty blatant. It’s just me and Einar poking fun at people like we do every week in the comic. I have some favourites in there, the Twinks a Tweaking is one I really love. I also love the queens a slaying because they’re all actual drag queens from Reykjavik.”
Now that the two of you have released the video, will you perform the song life as well?
“I haven’t performed it live but I can tell you if I do it’s a tough song to sing even with the original lyrics so I’m not even sure I could get through it. But it’s a joke song. There’s no autotune, it’s just me murdering a song into the microphone on my desk at home.”
The readers seem to have absolutely loved Bruce the Angry Bear, has there been no negative response?
“I haven’t seen any negative stuff at all, in fact I haven’t seen any negative stuff about the comic ever. It does surprise me a little bit because Bruce in particular is not politically correct at all and has said some controversial things but actually when I think about it he balances that out by having a low tolerance for bullshit which I think actually makes him unknowingly woke.”
Press ‘play’ and watch: