Now that the first chapter has officially wrapped up, we felt it was time to answer some Questions from th’ Readers! If you, yourself, have a query or two for us, go ahead and shoot ’em at us on our Formspring.

We’ll start this off with the perfect question to introduce the sporadic BUCKO letter column!

Why are the comments closed? from MLHay

JP: Yes, why are we eschewing the intimacy that webcomics so often have where we invite the readers to get to know our street addresses and favorite dishes? Let’s let Erika field that one…

EM: As a creator having comments is pretty distracting, and more influential than the writers may realize. Parker and I wanted to focus all our energies onto the comic itself without that kinda distraction. People can still contact us on Twitter and the Formspring, so you know…  they’re not completely cut out, but just not featured underneath every single comic!

Is Bucko sexually attracted to men? Or is it all about the ladies? (or, alternatively, is there going to be a solid romance thread in the story?)- Anon

EM: Parker is the Master Driver of the comic so I’m watching the characters unfold at the same pace as the audience. I get the feeling that he’s straight-identified but I could see him enjoying himself should he find himself in the right situation.

JP: Those are excellent questions, but it’s best to let the strip itself answer them. We like to let the characters’ actions speak for themselves.

Will Bucko deal with Portland conceptions of what proper BBQ is? -David M.

JP: No, but food does figure in later. Like our beloved food carts that the rest of the world believes we eat from exclusively.

EM: Ooooh my god, I have to give a shout out to the Russel Street BBQ place here in Portland. It was HEAVENLY and the staff was pretty hot too. TWO THUMBS UP.

Two questions! (1) What was the genesis of the story? (2) Do you know where it’s going, or are you making it up as you go along? — Matthew

EM: I like to make suggestions to Parker to include little elements that he can turn into ACTUAL plot elements. Oh and I want to say that I don’t actually know where the script is going, Jeff only gives me one page of script at a time which make it very exciting for me to follow along the adventure in the same pace as our audience.

JP: The ethical dilemma of finding a body in the bathroom when you obviously went in there for a good reason, that is the little spark that started the engine. And Erika saying ‘let’s make it about 20-somethings. And farts.” We have goalposts of things that need to happen in the story, but with lots of room for improvising along the way.

Does existence precede essence or what?- Anon

JP n EM: We know, right?

why aren’t there more boobs? there aren’t enough boobs. the readers demand more boobs! -Anon

EM: Get ready for chapter 2!

what’s up with bucko’s shirt? :

EM: Go back to the first couple of pages and it should become clear!

Why is the fact that Rich’s name is Rich such a huge plot point? Whenever you meet someone named Rich, you don’t usually ask for money, so why does this happen in Bucko?

JP: What’s more a plot point is that Gyp decides his new identity. Just because the strip is named for him doesn’t necessarily make him the protagonist.

Mark from Seattle asks: How much collaboration goes into the story and the characters? There are a lot of Moenesque quirks and details in the finished product, so I was wondering how much Jeff scripts out and how much Erika fills in herself with her art.

JP: A shit-tonne. I’m pretty vague in descriptions and Erika breathes a lot of life into everyone. I also enjoy basing a lot of it on Erika to thwart her attempt to do a comic that’s not about her.

EM: God damn it Jeff! The whole point of ending Dar was to stop doing comics about my life!