Comics

Kelly Thompson & Paulina Ganucheau take on THE POWERPUFF GIRLS

Dynamite has been concocting a new comic series featuring everyone’s favorite super-powered Kindergarteners, The Powerpuff Girls. Launching on July 17, the series is written by Kelly Thompson and illustrated by Paulina Ganucheau. 

 

The Beat chatted with the powerhouse creative team to discuss their take on Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup, and the gals’ infamous rogues’ gallery.

 

Powerpuff Girls

 

DEANNA DESTITO: Why did you want to do a Powerpuff Girls comic?

KELLY THOMPSON: I’m a really big fan going all the way back. I find the show incredibly creative and engaging for people of all ages, and I’ve long been in love with the UPA styling of the show – the sort of mid-century vibes. I even, briefly, worked on a Powerpuff Girls storyboard when I was just out of art school, nothing official, but I was considering trying out to get on the show and so I was storyboarding my own script. So this feels like everything finally coming together in a way!

PAULINA GANUCHEAU: The Powerpuff Girls is something that has always meant a lot to me. I grew up with it. I loved it. I’m a fan! I think being a part of their history, however small, feels like an amazing childhood dream realized. I couldn’t say no!

DESTITO: How did you make such a popular set of characters your own?

THOMPSON: Hmmm. That’s a great question that I don’t necessarily have a great answer for. I think any time you take on iconic characters like this, the first thing you want to do is get the voices right so that the characters feel correct. And then you try your best to add something excellent to those characters or mythos or world. In an ideal world what you add is not only fantastic but something that only you could have added. But that’s a lot to ask for any project. But that’s what I aim for.

Powerpuff GirlsPowerpuff Girls

DESTITO: Their look is so specific. Paulina, how did you keep to their style while also making it yours?

GANUCHEAU: As I said previously, I’m very much a fan so the girls are kind of imprinted into my being forever. When I was a kid sketching The Powerpuff Girls was one of my first experiences really getting into drawing. I used to mock the style and make up my very own Powerpuff characters. They come very naturally to me, so it feels easy to stay true to their style while also injecting a tiny bit of myself.

DESTITO: How is it working with Dynamite and the whole creative team?

GANUCHEAU: It’s been wonderful! I’ve done a lot of really cool covers with Dynamite in the past, but finally doing some interior work with them is a lot of fun. And Kelly, duh, she’s a superstar, one of the best comic writers out there and the most kind collaborator. It’s an honor!

THOMPSON: I love working with editor Nate Cosby. He really gets what I’m into and the kind of stories I like to tell, and he’s a great advocate for the book and creative team. And Paulina Ganucheau is an absolute delight. Paulina and I have somehow circled one another a lot in this industry but have never gotten to work together directly yet, so this has been a treat for me.

DESTITO: Can both young and old fans get into this book?

THOMPSON: Yes! I think the best all-ages comics in the world are super accessible and easy to understand for children but have a separate layer that you maybe don’t even know is there when you’re younger but that exists for adult readers. I’m always looking for something extra like that. In most of these stories, I’d say there are narrative and graphic elements that give more adult readers a way to appreciate the beauty of comics while also laughing at jokes for kids.

GANUCHEAU: I think the appeal of The Powerpuff Girls since the beginning of its release is that it’s for everyone. I’ve been rewatching a lot of the old show for this project and I’m continuously shocked how smart and complex so much of the writing and comedy is. The comic definitely lends itself to that same idea.

DESTITO: What can fans from the original animated show look forward to?

GANUCHEAU: The comic definitely has the same spirit and fun the original show provides! The girls are a blast, and all your favorite eccentric villains are there. Kelly does a great job with finding their voices and making it feel like a natural progression of the TV show’s vibe. I also made points to accurately honor a lot of the locations and even background characters in this issue, so that’ll be fun for fans to see as well, I think.

THOMPSON: Expect to see a bunch of your old faves. Mojo Jojo and HIM both get their own stories, but we, of course, are focused mostly on the girls. Although they do make some unexpected new friends here and there. I hope we’re playing with narrative in fun and creative ways that feel really true to the show.

DESTITO: Who is your favorite villain from their rogues’ gallery and why?

THOMPSON: Oh boy. I think it’s gotta be Mojo Jojo. He’s genuinely hilarious, I think, both for kids and adults. That said, if you would want legitimately threatening I feel like HIM has that on lock. The Rowdy Ruff Boys are also terrific, but you really have to have the exact right story for them, I think.

GANUCHEAU: HIM is definitely my favorite. He’s so weird and legitimately scary! I just always found him really fascinating. But I will admit, I also really like Sedusa. Her design is so fun!

DESTITO: Teasers?

THOMPSON: Oooh. I think the first three issues all have some really fun narrative structure and/or different styles for the artists to lean into to really show off the creativity of the Powerpuff Girls and their world. That’s probably my favorite little thing. And we do also debut an all-new villain in one of the issues. Will they go the distance and join the Puff’s Rogues’ Gallery? I certainly hope so!

 

GANUCHEAU: TBD

 


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