I’m not going to get into the history of the real Dumb Guys or really anything about the guys at all, other than to say the Dumb Guys strip is based very loosely on real people. The real Dumb Guys.
The Dumb Guys (2005)
This was the original doodle of the Dumb Guys that started the ball rolling on the Dumb Guys strip. The caricatures above gave rise to the idea that Steve should do an on-going Dumb Guys web comic. Who came up with the idea first, it’s hard to say. It’s one of those key pieces that are lost to time. In 2009, however, Steve and I had a healthy email exchange underway about personalities and motivations and back stories and lots and lots of art that would never be used for anything.
Nonetheless, the idea had come to be.
And, in time, so did the strip.
The real Dumb Guys disappeared from the story, but their images more or less stuck around.
Dumb Guys web comic promo art (2010)
Some of the characters’ appearances changes more than others, and they all received new names. From left to right, we have Scott, Art, Owen, and Tommy. By this point, they had become fully developed individuals in their own right.
I wrote a few comic strip scripts, Steve wrote a few others, and he spent no small amount of time drawing and redrawing the strips.
Steve and I acquired a domain name (www.dumbguysonline.com, which is no longer ours and I take no responsibility for what might find there), and by 2010 we had several strips ready. On January 1, 2011, the Dumb Guys webcomic started being posted on an almost regular schedule.
The first Dumb Guys webcomic (2011)
By early 2012, the Dumb Guys comic was being updated more and more infrequently. The last comic was posted on April 21, 2012. In total, 58 strips were posted.
The last Dumb Guys webcomic (2012)
During this period, a number of the strips that had originally appeared on the website were printed, with permission, in the Ontarion — the University of Guelph’s student newspaper.
By mid-2012, Steve had become unhappy with the design of the entire website and his energies went into learning how to redesign the site, including development of logos and icons and more promo material and all manner of other busyness. A newly redesigned site would occasionally emerge, but no new strips were forthcoming.
Steve being self-aware – Puck and Tommy (2013)
In late 2013, the Dumb Guys project had been reimagined as a full-length graphic novel. A script was completed and work began on the book. Steve put a lot of time into developing locations and deciding on fonts and color palettes and all sorts of other things that he found very exciting.
While puttering away on the Dumb Guys project, Steve continued to work on other creative projects. This meant that the Dumb Guys was sometimes put on the backburner for months at a time, with the odd piece suddenly appearing on his social media feeds or his friends’ emails.
“Dumb Guys Scrapbook” (2017)
In April 2017, Steve completed a 5-page Dumb Guys mini-comic he had written.
A very small version of the mini-comic, entitled “2z a Crowd” (2017). I will post a larger version once I can find it!
To my knowledge, this mini-comic was the last Dumb Guys art Steve completed.