Tuesday, July 17, 2007

My Comcast Commercial is Up and Meet The Crew

Click this to see my latest commercial

I dedicate it to AMID AMIDI
whose book I liberally stole from.

Here's some development art and production art.

The Crew
Goodby Silverstein and Associates:
These are the ad execs that found me on Myspace and asked me to animate the zany commercial they wrote.
Mike Coyne - Art Director
Amy Maloof - Account Management
Kelsie Van Deman- Interactive Producer

Kelly Schutz- Account Management
Ian Hart - Copywriter

The Artists and Cartoon Crew:

Rex designed the characters.
Look how suave he is, girls!


Brian is an illustrator and designer. He inked most of the cartoon and helped figure out the production system we used to get good inks in Flash.


Corbett, also a cartoonist/designer kicked in some much needed help and inked a few scenes himself.



Kali has a multidude of talents, it seems. This time out, she painted a pile of candy like color cards for the backgrounds.

I'm forcing her to learn to animate this summer by copying Bosko and Oswald cartoons. She's gonna kick the asses of all you young animators who don't do the same thing. Want me to put up the scenes that she is studying so you can learn fast too? What'll you give me for it?


Holy crap! I got a top Disney animator to do hand drawn animation for a whole scene in a flash cartoon! Will animated many of the cartoonier characters in your favorite modern Disney 2d pictures!



All you young Flash wannabes, grovel respectfully in the giant shadow of this monument of the Flash animation world.

Pringle learned to animate in Flash on the historical WEEKEND PUSSY HUNT and then quickly clawed his way to the top of the Flash heap! He is now the directing Flash animator on Foster's and has written a book on his masterful Flash techniques.



Kristen is one of my all time favorite artists to work with. She's a wonderful Flash animator and has the patience of a saint. She'll just sit and smile during my infamous screaming tirades as I smash computers and toss handfuls of detoothed kittens at the wall. She can actually figure out what I want in each scene even though I can't put it into words or show her myself. Kristen, you always make me look good!


Greg, when he is not out crushing skulls and piledriving anyone who challenges his wrestling prowess takes breaks to get in touch with his more sensitive side, animating happy children of all races for me.


Leo, the dashing Latin lover is also a top Flash animator and programmer. We would have died without him.


It was a real coup to capture the emperor of Korea and get him to supervise the production on the Comcast Triple Play commercial with free Nintendo DS.

Seriously, King Marc took time away from aiming nuclear warheads at all the major cities in North America just because he loves to dabble with cartoons now and then.

King Marco also has concocted a revolutionary theory of blandness. Look forward to real revelations of animated personalities later this week!

He's heading back to his nuclear arsenal in a couple days, so install your computer in your bomb shelter so you won't miss what makes America so great and bland, before he wipes us off the map.



MMA Badass, don't cross this guy. He's another born killer. (why are so many animators so violent?) Only doing production work on crass cartoon commercials can keep him from mounting you, choking you out and having his way with you.



Steve supervised the recordings. He is an all around cartoon player.



Ye Gods, did we really have the man of 1,000 voices do his famous announcer for us? How the Hell did we swing that? Listen folks, I have PULL.

Ask Eric to do his impression of Filipino girls jazz dancing. You will die.



We also got the other great hero of voice over, the stunningly handsome, talented, funny and charming Gary Owens!

ROGER RAMJET, POWDERED TOASTMAN, SPACE GHOST, BIRDMAN AND LAUGH IN are just a few of his credits. This man is walking Hollywood history!


Deneo is my latest find. He is the sprightly son of my trainer, Irin Harris. He made his screen debut voicing "Timmy". Now we can't talk to him without wading through an army of agents, managers, PR men and his posse.


Aaron Simpson has a nice behind the scenes article at Cold Hard Flash, with interviews and production stuff.



Forbes Browne said...

Great Ad!! Joe Henderson looks just like the mighty Dan 'Hollywood' Henderson (Pride FC middleweight & Light Heavyweight Champ). He's gonna take Rampage's UFC belt ;o)

Clinton said...

Hi John,

Great ad! I'll never see it here in the South on TV since Time Warner runs things over here. I'll have to visit Pringle's blog because I want to learn how implement Flash symbol animation with traditional animation for my portfolio. I have a bunch of questions, but I reckon it's better that I go about and visit your crew's blogs before I fill your comment window with a hundred question marks. Congrats on another job well done. I hope to see a lot more in the near-future.

Clinton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Clinton said...

I found something for all the flash animator wannabes out there like myself. It's an Flash animation demo by Eric Pringle, called 'the Pringle'.

Click here to learn!

Matt said...

Great to see the crew behind that awesome commercial. You have me curious to know more about all of 'em. I may have to hound Eric on his blog for a recording of that impression.

I'd LOVE for you to put up the cartoons you're making Kali copy. (She's super cute!) I'd give you an unspecified sum of earth monies if you did. And some skittles!

I'm really soaking this blog up, John and I'm already seeing my drawings improve. Your post about cartoon construction just clicked something on in my head and I can't stop drawing now. Thankyou!

cableclair said...

ahahah! love it!

ted said...

Is that Eric Bauza saying "FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY!!!" That's genius. Let's hear it for responsible marketing.

PCUnfunny said...

Fan frickin' tastic.I really whish you make toon ads for everything ever made.I'll die laughing they day you make an ad for Preperation H.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely incredible. I am floored.

Adam H said...

Hahah, that was good stuff...really fun, John. "Two, four, five in the morning," cracked me up.

-"Want me to put up the scenes that she is studying so you can learn fast too?"

Of course! Especially if it comes with patented John K direction.

-"What'll you give me for it?"

Animation that's fun & lively after you've helped countless numbers of people improve. Or hard currency. Take your pick.

Peggy said...

Wow. Pringle barely looks like I remember him. And he's writing a book on Flash technique? Cool.

John said...

Great Ad Man It combined two of my all time favorite things Nintendo and cartoons!(particularly your cartoons)But seriously John I can Honestly say your ads are the only ones I actually look forward to seeing!

peldma3 said...

"Christ thats a goofy commercial." It kinda' demands your attention.. great stuff!

Kyle said...

ha ha, I love the line about waking up parents at 2 4 and 5 am, ha ha.
not that you wrote that, I just thought it was funny.

Ryan G. said...

Wow! Congrats guys! This commercial is hilarious!

Allan L. said...

Had fun watching that! You got a nice mention at Drawn.ca:

Anonymous said...

Just so you folks at home know... Marc dresses like that every day. It takes a real man to pull that off, especially in the summer heat of Los Angeles.

Vanoni! said...

God dang that's a sexy bunch of cartoonists.

Just so you folks at home know... Marc dresses like that every day.

It kind of makes my geisha outfit seem bland.

- Corbett

NineInchNachos said...

Although I hate both Nintendo AND especially Comcast with a furious passion, I liked ur little animation. Good Job Team!

Gavin Freitas said...

That was great. Good job to all. Good work in Flash. That cat was funny.....

william wray said...

Was there ever music or sound effects?

Marc Deckter said...

It's not easy being king.

JohnK said...

Yeah Bill, the sfx will be up in a couple days. We are waiting for final approval from Comcast and crew...

I'll post a link again when it goes up.

Kali Fontecchio said...

"It's not easy being king."

I'm going to steal Eddie's laugh AND Mike's laugh for this:




Emmett said...

Mr. K, this ad looks fantastic!

And those production art drawings are so cleanand fluid, it makes me jealous! Also, I was sort of suprised to hear you take ques from the Cartoon Modern book.

And please do post the cartoons you are making Kali copy. I want to learn too.

Anonymous said...

Where did that disney post go? A hand full of others are missing also....

lastangelman said...

Tee hee hee hah!
Best online ad for kids, yet! Congrats all 'round. We don't get Comcast here in Dallas anymore, it's TimeWarner Roadrunner. Love that crazy multi headed hydra suit and the kid and kitten in the bedroom irritating poor red-eyed Mom and Dad.

Vanoni! said...

This project was a hoot to work on (what little I did).

Rex's designs were hilarious and Brian's inks were clean and cartoony (and plentiful!)
I was absolutely amazed at what was done with the finished drawings in such a short amount of time.

It was great insight into what can be done when you surround yourself with people who know what they're doing.

(also, meeting Owens and re-meeting Crippen was a treat beyond treats)

Bravo to all involved.

Stephen Worth said...

That was a LOT of fun! Great job!

your pal

Anonymous said...

What a amazing commercial! The announcer was one of the best parts of it. Rex's designs looked loose and cartoony.

I.D.R.C. said...

A good cartoon should be fun on as many levels as possible, all at the same time. No modern cartoon creator understands this better than John K. I'm still trying to comprehend why he meets with so much resistance for stating the obvious.

For all you Simpsons and Family Guy and Shrek and Rat lovers who hate to have your shows criticized, I'd like to point out some general things that make this Comcast cartoon superior:

fun shapes
fun textures
fun motion
fun colors
fun layouts
fun timing
fun scripting
fun sounds (coming soon)
fun things that can only happen in cartoons
visual insightfulness
visual exaggeration
visual unpredictability

...So the next time your ugly, under-designed, non-fun, stuck-on-model cartoon characters are standing around making hilarious wisecracks or irreverent quips, or relying purely upon the absurdity of a situation to mask the lack of visual acumen that would really sell it, HOLD THEM ACCOUNTABLE FOR ALL THE THINGS THEY ARE NOT GIVING YOU. It's both your right and your duty as a human of Earth.

Nico said...

GREAT job, to all involved. The energy, fun shapes, colors, backgrounds, dialogue... This cartoon is just plain fun.

also, hearing Gary Owens made me crap my pants.

JohnK said...


thanks for the praise, but really, it's just a light hearted commercial...

Vince Gorman said...

Y= the interest in what I'm about to say

MX= my ability to rock your cerebral, multiplied by meningitis


Answer=the slope of the decent of the airplane that will take me to LA.

Now that I've got your attention. I work for a small animation/ad agency where we do flash animations and aspire to your caliber. Of course, Ren and Stimpy was a huge influence, not only for animation but comedy in general. I'm flying to LA, Aug 2-7. Must meet you. How? I'll bring my associates degree of ass kissery and my bachelors of bullshitery. Please verbally assault me on my blog, soon. http://questforanimationglory.blogspot.com/

David Germain said...

One of my co-workers had a Nintendo DS. It's quite a distraction for him too. But he gets his work done so it's all good.

If I didn't have to pay for rent and groceries, I might pick up one of those myself.

I.D.R.C. said...

thanks for the praise, but really, it's just a light hearted commercial...

LOL! Don't undercut me! Now is not the time for modesty!

I think everything I said is true, and it's even truer in your more elaborate work, which provides an even better comparison.

Sean Worsham said...

Great work guys!

I showed this to all of my coworkers at Namco.

Kristen McCabe said...

I love the scene where the kids are annoying the parents in bed. The faces on the parents are especially nice.

also the volcano painting is genius, I love the lava dripping off onto the floor!

Nice work everyone!

Gabriel said...

love the ad! You should abuse REx's talents more often!

Why is the disney post gone? Does that mean we'll never hear of the evil disney homosexual?

rich said...

Hi John, post the scenes please! I want to learn too!

katzenjammer studios said...

Hey John! I'm curious what your budget was on this.

The level of finish looks really nice. Great job on the inks guys.

Ryan said...

Gary Owens! Wow! That was great. I'm surprised Comcast decided to go with something so demented.

illiaster said...

I love the puppeteer in the "triple dragon" suit.

VĂ©ro said...

I love your ad, I love all your stuff really. I'm really glad I found your blog, now I can follow up on your work.

Great job and kudos for the team!

akira said...

AWWWWWSOME crew! any chance in seeing a pencil test of will finn's animation scene?

Anonymous said...

fucking awesome!

Raff said...

I love "2, 4 and 5 in the morning" and the faces that go with it.

Of all the flash stuff, this seems to come closest to classic R&S quality, to me anyway.

The inking looks really good.

william wray said...

Thanks John I was wondering... ;-) I'm guess it will really help the set up because right now I had a little trouble figuring our it was a kids cartoon show type thing. Fantastic art, posing and colors, cleaver little flash moves, cute as hell, but it doesn't have a obvious linear storytelling. Call me old fashioned, but I'd like that to be clear from the get go... I didn't figure it out until the long held shot. I don't like to have to figure out cartoons, I want to be immersed in them immediately.
Maybe with the announcer voice welcoming us to the show at the top? " Hey Kids! It's your favorite cartoon show the Double Headed dragon man with fire at both ends and his friends! (show a kid lighting the bums farts.) Brought to you by Comcast..." I think this obvious approach is essential when an advertisement is stand alone like this. Log in the middle of R and S worked because it felt more like a simple pure advertisement. This one being a kid show parody with an add in it is a different animal, more complex, so it demands simple storytelling with slower cutting. I'm thinking the show opening on the long static shot, then inner cutting all the other bits though our might have a clearer storytelling better pacing.

JohnK said...

I agree with some of your points, Bill but the script was handed to me.

It's meant to advertise their product and I just drew it the best I could in the time we had.

Doug said...

hey John, are you going to make an appearance at the Comic Con in San Diego next week? what if we pay you a large amount of money?

SlashHalen said...

Awesome commercial John. The characters look great and the dragon costume is just so weird how it works, but it works very well. We need more content like this in entertainment.

Any more commercials (or any projects at all) that you're working on to show us? We'd love to see them.

william wray said...

A fine job in that light then, looking foward to the finished cartoon.

Anonymous said...

Deneo is cute!

Stone said...

Holy crap Joe Henderson and Corbett got to work on this. Can you smell the jealousy? I didn't even know Corbett could draw!

Vanoni! said...

Why you.
I'm gonna let that comment go, Stone, because you're so darn handsome and us pretty people gotta stick together.

- Corbett

Psyche Zenobia said...

I thought you had disappeared since the Spumco site went away into archive world. Great to see you still doing it! I've been a fan since the Mighty Mouse days. Coming to Abingdon anytime soon?

Fco. de Borja said...

Very Funny. I like the looser with bored face inside of the dragon costume. I was working time ago in a theatre company and we used to do parades. I had to wear one ugly dragon costume, and that’s exactly the face you have after hours of sweating inside a stupid costume while all the kids spit you and kick your legs.

Shirley said...

John, fyi:


Mitch said...

Nice ad! Great voice!

"Want me to put up the scenes that she is studying so you can learn fast too?"

Hell yeah ;)

Anonymous said...

John, was the kid's poses of pounding on his parent's beds at 2, 4 and 5 inspired by Daffy breakling the phone in "The Great Piggy Bank Robbery?"

GU said...

Hi John,

Long time fan, blog reader, and aspiring animator.

I'm wondering if the color change on the main dino head was a mistake, or to have the little girl read better?

Keep up the great work, and posts.

Jennifer said...

Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! The animation and the script definitely reminds me of classic Ren and Stimpy.

The two dragon puppets with the beaten-down man operating them were hilarious! I also liked the devil-face on the little boy who said that his daddy liked movies.

I think the last line is the funniest - "they'll sign up faster than they can say...irresponsible marketing"!

grantarctica said...

Awesome commercial!

speaking of the DS and drawing, has anybody seen this DS game coming out called "Drawn to Life"?
You draw what your character and some of the environment looks like.

Anonymous said...

Uh...well I don't know about other folks, but this is on my very new computer rather choppy and I would guess a little embarassing for such and over-staffed little ad. The lip sync is off every time I watch it. I went to another computer and had the same problem.
Too many cooks?

Anonymous said...

Awesome work guys!!! some day i hope to count myself among your crew, John. YES!! please put up the bosko & oswald scenes!!! i will give you my everlasting loyalty and always promise not to make bland cartoons. i am also trying to teach myself to animate and it would be a great help. and who doesn't want to learn along with Kali? you'd have to be crazy.

i didn't know Marc was the king of Korea, i will have to kowtow next time i am in his royal presence.

GU said...

Hi John,

Just curious if the main dino head color change was a mistake, or to make the girl read better, or other?

Keep up the great work, and posts!

Mike said...

Holy crap absolutely awesome.

jhbmw007 said...

This commercial is fantastic- really glad comcast hired you to make it! Now convince them to let you do their tv commercials too. Strangely enough Comcast isn't offered in my area (it's Brighthouse here) but we still get the commercials.

Speaking of commercials, check out my Heinz contest entry:
I animated it in a program called Anime Studio- and yes I know it has that horrible computer-tweened look to it, but I don't have anyone to help me out! lol

gabriel valles said...

Hi John,

I really love the ad, the character designs (Rex is great to study for originality and Spontaneity) , backgrounds, colors and animation are all great. The kid pounding on the bed is my favorite part.

I have to agree with William about the storytelling, I don't think you really have to explain that it is a kids show as much as you have establish the guy inside the suit, as it not unusual to have a costumed guy around kids in many different contexts.

My problem was that the first scene was too busy and my eyes were drawn to the talking dragon but I wanted to look around and see what the whole creature and environment was at the same time. So, I ended up not having enough time to take in all the information.

I didn't know the guy was in the suit until he appeared in the bubble so I couldn't tell what the fingers in the dragons mouth were right away. This could just be that I'm slower than your average viewer;).

Even with the current script I think it could have been cut with more clarity. For instance, it could have started with a closer shot of just the Dragon head talking to the kids, then cut to sweaty guy in the suit, then back out to reveal the whole scene. This method might even serve to draw you in as everything is not revealed at once but there is sort of unfolding of the information. Bill Watterson uses this technique to great effect.

I Hope I don't sound like a "know it all". Just some observations.

Take care!

JohnK said...

I'm wondering if the color change on the main dino head was a mistake, or to have the little girl read better?<<


everything I do is a mistake. I can't draw a character the same way twice, let alone remember what colors he is.

Kristen McCabe said...

I have a question about the 3-headed dinosaur suit. What's that about? Is that a Nintento refrence or something? ... just curious

Josel said...

a TV version of this would be pure awesomeness

lastangelman said...

just got round to reading Cold Hard Flash interview. very enlightening and entertaining. That commercial took a month? Wowie-Ka-Zowie!
I was able to figure out how to save the commercial (in the flash player) from the web page, so I could play it back and study it, almost frame by frame. Catch a lot of subtle stuff that whooshes by on first few viewings.

Marlo Meekins said...

the commercial looks pretty cool! kudos to everyone. i bow to the king of korea!

JoJo B. said...

Hey John!

Can you put up those Bosko and Oswald scenes please? I'm with Art on this too. I promise to use my knowledge to not make bland cartoons!


The commercial is amazing and totally inspiring!

Kadoogan said...

Hey, John!

Not sure if you have heard of this software, but I did some experimenting with it over a few days just before Christmas a year or two ago, and produced the following animation...


The software is inexpensive and is called Anime Studio.

The cool thing about it is it uses bones like in 3D animation. Not only does that help certain functions of animation to go a little quicker, but you can also apply physics to the bones, allowing for automatic secondary animation.

The Santa animation I linked to was an experiment using the physics thing to see how it worked...I was not altogether successful, but there are some good results in there - especially given the laziness with which I approached it all.

Just thought that might be of interest to you in shaving some time off the animation process. The software is a bit cheaper than Flash, and some of the samples other companies have produced with it are pretty stunning.

You can find it at the following site:


There are some other really good features there as well, but I'll leave it to you to see if you even want to go there. :)