Hello! We are Wes & Tony and together we have been working together for close to eight years (oh my god), making comics and videos for the internet. Here’s the lowdown of stuff that’s ours:

Also we’ve got tons of stories from boothing at conventions, pitching ideas to networks, and interacting with fans that you might want to hear more about. This friendship and partnership has been a fun, weird adventureship.

We can keep answering questions on here for like, forever. Wes will be answering as “asuperpowers” and Tony as “TonyASP.” Okay here’s actual proof.

And you can always email us at "general (at) amazingsuperpowers (dot) com"

Comments: 132 • Responses: 41  • Date: 

kyun19 karma

Where do you get inspiration for your comics? They are posted so frequently but never drop in quality. I was wondering how you maintain that? Thanks.

asuperpowers13 karma

We used to sit for hours and try to think of funny things, but sometimes that backfired and you just get sad when you can't make yourself laugh. THAT PROCESS WAS NOT IDEAL.

When we switched to three comics a week for a while we had to be more efficient, so we actually stumbled into a process where we have a random word generator spit out a bunch of nouns and we go through a google doc together and build ideas off of each one, finishing punchlines and riffing until we make each other laugh.

In fact, the process is similar to improv, where you get a suggestion and run through scenes with stock characters until you find the joke.

After a comics storming session we'll end up with maybe one good idea and nine other strips that end with a mutant shouting "THE WORLD IS TERRIBLE"

MrDrool1 karma

The Account asking this question was generated just recently and all of its comments (three of them) have been on this specific AMA - is that coincidence or are you some fuck ups who are asking questions to yourself to get some attention and think we don't get it?

asuperpowers5 karma

LOL. This is hilarious.

1) There's plenty of questions. Why create an account for three simple ones covering topics other people have asked?

2) That account was created 8 months ago. That's a pretty generous definition of "just recently."

3) Honestly, there's a chance it could be a friend of ours being nice that we just don't know about.

And frankly, we've been at this for 8 years. If we were using sockpuppets for this AMA we'd hide our tracks much better than that.

As a fun side note, just the other day someone made this accusation. It's incredible how folks on the internet can be so misguided and confident at the same time.

kyun14 karma

I have had an account for a while but never felt the need to post anything. Couldn't miss my chance to ask some questions when I saw ye were doing an AMA. I have been reading your comics since 2009!

asuperpowers4 karma

Awww thanks!! :)

copious_hyperbole6 karma

Besides your own (because you're both narcissistic turds) what is your favorite online comic?

Also thanks for all the free entertainment. I love your faces and butts.

asuperpowers5 karma

Wow that's really tough! We have some friends in comics so I feel pretty attached to everything they do. To give you at least one answer, everything Anthony Clark does is pretty wonderful.

swedishcalypso5 karma

How many drugs do you do (variety and frequency)? I'm betting Hunter S. Thompson levels.

asuperpowers8 karma

One time I had a brownie and then ate seven apples. I don't know if it was the highest or lowest moment in my life.

UnsubstantiatedClaim5 karma

Why do most of your characters have ninja turtle hands? I am curious, not criticizing -- when I see the fingers I know I am looking at comedy.

asuperpowers7 karma

It's funny you describe them as Ninja Turtle hands because Tony always describes them as that too. Much like the turtles they also don't have pupils, noses, or ears, so I guess our characters are 100% turtle power.

TonyASP7 karma

Also both are green and have shells and fight crime.

asuperpowers4 karma

okay whew I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees those

TonyASP7 karma

So many cartoon characters have four fingers instead of five, so I thought it would be funny to strip it down to 3. It's all you really need! Unless you're trying to drawing flipping someone off, but we make do.

UnsubstantiatedClaim2 karma

I'm glad to hear it was a conscious decision to go with three. I agree it provides additional funny or maybe borderline creepy. I think you've flipped people off with three fingers in the strip. I think three is all you need. Thanks for the laughs!

TonyASP4 karma

We have flipped people off! It wasn't easy, but we managed.

asuperpowers5 karma

Proof

Tony does very good work.

partyxday5 karma

What's the story behind the hidden comics? I still remember being blown away finding out that almost all your comics had a bonus to them.

asuperpowers3 karma

Yeah, we get that reaction a lot. And past a certain point, people sometimes get MAD when they find out there were bonus comics, because "OH GOD NOW I HAVE TO GO BACK AND READ 800 COMICS AGAIN." It like watching 6th Sense a second time.

We answer about the origin of the comics here.

napero74 karma

Where is the secret butt on your page?

asuperpowers8 karma

Wow, even I forgot about the secret butt. This took WAAAAY too long to find, so I hope we're all proud of ourselves:

http://www.amazingsuperpowers.com/hc/no-butts-here-officer/

3sums4 karma

What inspired the secret comics?

asuperpowers6 karma

Waaaaay back when we first started, we found out that there was a way in html to make something in a comic clickable, so we decided it was a fun way to have little behind-the-scenes bits when someone clicked on part of a comic, like the pyramid here.

The VERY first time we did it was this comic, where we linked to a dumb online conversation about making something clickable. SO META.

Once we got on wordpress, though, it was beyond my puny coding ability to make each comic have a unique clickable region so we switched to a single button similar to like Zach does for SMBC and the rest is history!

triptease3 karma

Where'd the idea for Waynesaw come from?

asuperpowers4 karma

I was playing a game where your character is using a chainsaw, and I had the thought "wtf the chainsaw is having all the fun! I want to play as THAT."

I ran the idea by Tony and he came up with the name WAYNESAW. The rest seemed to write itself because who could really love a chainsaw?

Sebbe3 karma

Hey. Just wanted to drop by to say that you guys are great. Love your sense of humor!

Who's each of your favorite recurring characters in ASP?

asuperpowers6 karma

Murph and Dobbs are a favorite of mine too, but if I had to pick a second favorite it would be a guy we call Gus. I find him way too relatable.

mywaytillpayday3 karma

Hey guys, love the comic! Has there ever been a comic/comic idea that did not make it to the page because it ended up being too dark or offensive? How does a regular comic writing session proceed? What do you guys like to read and watch that makes you laugh?

Thanks!

asuperpowers9 karma

Sigh:

p1: sophie’s choice “choose which child dies”

p2: “...can i pick both?”

p3: “no, you have to keep one of them”

“wow, the holocaust DOES suck”

DrBathroom3 karma

Hey Wes and Tony! First time long time. What is the craziest thing a fan has ever contacted you about?

asuperpowers8 karma

We had one fan WRITE AN ENTIRE MUSICAL based on one comic. We couldn't believe it, and he periodically sent us videos and snippets before sending us the entire thing on DVD. It's on my desk and I still need to watch it, I should do that right after this AMA.

It was called "Meant to Be" and I'm still blown away he got so much content out of three panels.

goatcoat3 karma

Would you rather fight 1000 duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck?

asuperpowers9 karma

I would like to fight one horse-sized duck because there is no way I would win and I would like my obituary to be a compelling read.

kyun13 karma

Any rejected comic ideas?

asuperpowers8 karma

Ooh! Ooh! This one is my favorite and Tony refuses to do it because 1) he doesn't think it's funny and 2) he doesn't want to draw a shitload of dogs:

p1: guy walking three dogs, walks by a dude on a bench with his own dog, bench dude asks "whoa! are all those dogs yours!"

guy: "haha, no, i have a dog walking service."

p2: dude: "ooh! hrmm, maybe I could use your services."

guy: "sure!

p3: guy has blood on him, walking away from a murder scene, holding a smoking gun, "WHAT DID THIS HAVE TO DO WITH WALKING DOGS"

asuperpowers7 karma

We have so many of these so I'm going to keep posting them:

p1. Dude walking cat on a leash.

"Why is that cat on a leash?"

"Believe me, you don't want this cat to be off a leash."

p2. "Really...?"

"Here, I'll show you."

p3: Takes off collar, cat's head falls off.

"See?"

asuperpowers7 karma

And another:

p1: “I want to donate my body after i’m dead.”

“that’s good of you, a lot of research...”

p2: “no, not to science. why does science get all of the good bodies?! i’m going to donate mine to some other cause.”

p3: at habitat for humanity hq or something, package is slumped against the wall

woman at door: “what is it?”

fedex guy: “sign for it then i will tell you.”

asuperpowers4 karma

I can't stop:

p1: it’s me the paperclip who helps people

p2: hey are you clippy the paperclip from like windows 2001

p3: no my name is aaron.

ekyris3 karma

What happened to the recurring characters? Or at least, the tags identifying them? I always liked to go back and browse old archives of some of my favorites, but realized one day they weren't tagged anymore...

asuperpowers4 karma

If we're being completely honest, the most common reoccurring characters ended up in the Crossbones Adventure Club pitch so every time one of them comes up it's kind of a weird bittersweet moment, at least for me. So maybe I don't try to brainstorm those as often so as to avoid feeling feelings.

And to be even MORE honest, I probably didn't tag the ones we do use because I'm a forgetful doofus with big dumb hands. I'll look back and try to update those!

dgibbons03 karma

Which ASP comic is your favorite?

asuperpowers5 karma

Wow, that's like asking which KID is your favorite! ...which means it's very easy. My personal fave is this one which was on here yesterday. The show TripTank even animated it.

I also like this one which we happened to animate ourselves.

I guess we have a habit of animating things we like!

almightychallenger3 karma

Do u like working in a sperm bank?

asuperpowers3 karma

it's ok

Beauville3 karma

Hey guys, long time reader. Just wondering why one of the Kickstarter incentives wasn't to come to my house and make me a milkshake?

Assholes. I'm parched over here.

asuperpowers7 karma

If you are drinking milkshakes when you are thirsty then I understand why you need people to bring them to you.

datapirate423 karma

So I identify very strongly with the dad in this comic. Should I have kids? Do you have kids, if not do you want them? Can you draw what you think your lovechild would look like?

Edit- See also: This one, and this one. Also perhaps this one

asuperpowers5 karma

We think bad dads are really funny though it has the side effect of making our dads think the comics are about them. WE LOVE YOU, OUR DADS

Our love child is ASP, and it's definitely a monster.

s0nlxaftrsh0ck3 karma

Hey guys, I've been a long time fan of your comics and crazy ass tweets so I'm glad I can finally ask this.

Who was the most face punchable fan and/or heckler you ever met?

asuperpowers6 karma

We have a pretty strict policy of not punching our fans, so I'll tell you about one of the most memorable guys who came by our booth at a convention.

It was a kid in his teens, and he was chatting us up. He was picking at his face while he was talking to us, and he busted something open because all of a sudden his cheek started bleeding. His hand began to get blood all over it as he kept picking while we tried to hide the expression of horror on our faces.

Eventually he looked at his blood-covered hand, and in my mind I feel bad for the guy because I think "Oh no, this is going to be so embarrassing." But he looks at the blood, shrugs, and goes back to picking.

And in end he tried to shake our hands, which initiated the most awkward, "No let's high five with our other hands!" exchange of all time.

G-0ff2 karma

Mister Clown, how come you are sad?

Also, how is it that you can make every week depressing comic week?

asuperpowers3 karma

The nice thing about writing about terrible things is that you never run out of ideas.

RobRobbieRobertson2 karma

Why did my wife leave me?

asuperpowers6 karma

Try asking her on her Facebook wall. I'm sure that will go really well.

nolightspared2 karma

Do you have inspiration for the Dad in the comics?

asuperpowers3 karma

Nice try, Dad.

You're probably talking about Ken for those unfamiliar. I feel like a lot of Dads (and Moms too) clean up their personalities around their children, at least to some degree. Ken is what happens when a guy is 100% honest to his children about who he is as a person.

Tony describes him as "pure id masquerading as a father."

Kamaroyl2 karma

When will we see more shorts?

asuperpowers4 karma

Those were really fun to make but animation takes a REALLY long time. The longer ones take something like 60 hours to complete, and they never really got so much attention as to justify just drawing more comics instead.

BabyAnimalParade2 karma

A lot of your best ASP work seems to have a playfully misanthropic or otherwise cynical tone. Is this at all a reflection of your general demeanor or outlook on life, or are you guys perhaps more cheery and lighthearted than your comics might have us believe?

asuperpowers4 karma

I'd say my sense of humor and general demeanor is "a child constantly startled by the truths that come with adulthood."

WillHundredPercent2 karma

Hey guys, big fan. I was wondering if you are accepting high fives? On account of all the incredible work you both do? I've got a few I'd like to give you, but I'm a little scared of rejection.

Bonus question: I love you?

asuperpowers6 karma

Yes! Please mail us your severed hand. We'll unwrap it, high five it, and ship it back to you. You'll have to cover postage because we're not quite sure if we can deduct that as a business expense.

Bonus answer: I know?

panzerbat2 karma

Hey guys, long time fan here.

  • 1 Why don't you tag characters in the comics like you used to? Was a great way to find all your favorite guys.

  • 2 Will the goldfish ever come back? Please say yes.

  • 3 I named my steam accout Frank White: Karate Revenger, shall I be expecting to hear from your lawyers?

asuperpowers4 karma

1) They are still tagged, but we did away with the little word cloud sidebar. I'll look into adding this feature back in some way since you aren't the first person to ask!

2) Yes, I'm sure Wade will appear again! Though it turns out that a grumpy goldfish in a small bowl is a very restrictive premise. Maybe we'll just flush him again and see where he winds up.

3) !!!!!!!!! That's fantastic. Here's a fun fact for you: We pitched Frank White to some networks as an animated series. The pilot pitch ended with Ernie the ghost possessing an animatronic devil at a kickboxing event while the crowd shouted "Sa-tan! Sa-tan! Sa-tan!" The show was for no one.

offat92 karma

Best convention story?

asuperpowers4 karma

Our very first convention was probably the most memorable. It was Stumptown Comics Fest in Portland, OR, when we were just starting out. We were a fledgling comic with enough readers to feel like we could booth at a convention, but we weren't legit enough to have anything to sell.

So we did the obvious thing: Turn the booth space into a science fair table. We built a big paper mache volcano and covered it with dinosaurs and army men. We even had the tri-fold poster board with the hypothesis "Are volcanoes radical?" with the conclusion "Hell yeah."

But it turns out that paper mache volcanoes and balloons attract a lot of children! And as you may know, our comics are about death, dismemberment, sex, and death by sexy dismemberment. Kids would run up to the volcano, Tony and I would make this face :-| as we awkwardly set off the volcano for them, and inevitably their parents would politely read some of our comics, make this face :-O and usher their kids away as quickly as possible.

It was fun but we learned our lesson. The next year the theme was "BACKYARD BBQ" complete with a grill and a keg.

The volcano in question.

Jmuss092 karma

Who would win in a fight between a taco and a grilled-cheese sandwich?

asuperpowers3 karma

Whoever wins, we lose.

cormaximus1 karma

When you feel stuck, but have a deadline looming, how do you work through it? Does it ever feel forced?

How do you take vacations? Do you front load the work so you can catch some R&R

asuperpowers2 karma

I find being in a partnership makes it much easier to get past creative blocks. Having another person there gets you out of your own head and provides someone to edit and expand with you. Though we're both a little too capable of working deep into the night to finish a project, since I'm sure it ages us like the guy at the end of Last Crusade.

ASP was our full time gig for a couple years but that's not the case anymore, so we take relatively normal vacations. Back when we did it full time we'd have to build up a buffer of comics, which would mean Tony putting in some serious drawing hours up front.

flyinghillbill1 karma

If you made a comic about a sentient banana what would it do? Also on an unrelated note love the work keep it up. High fives all round

asuperpowers4 karma

Thanks! And most bananas' lives end with getting skinned alive so it would probably just be a lot of screaming.

evolsteve1 karma

How ya doin'?

asuperpowers4 karma

Pretty good! I realized my internet was down the moment this AMA started but after a mild panic attack my wife called them and fixed it. I am the worse half of that relationship.

ZJThalen1 karma

Have you ever been inspired to elaborate your short comics into longer, more intricate stories? If so, which comics do you think would be conducive to longer medium?

asuperpowers2 karma

That was the goal with the pilot project above, since all of those characters are ones who appeared in the comics. We've also pitched long form versions of Frank White and Robert Cop!

Otherwise in the context of our comics, I've always thought of our characters as an ensemble cast like reoccurring characters on SNL. And like SNL, I'm sure some would work and some would be some real MacGrubers.

MisterUnneccessary1 karma

I love the work that you guys do, but the minimalist fan rendition of the ghost of collegiate past, with "I wish college!" "WE HERE STILL!" "Yes." just about killed me. Do you think there any other comics you've done that would still be awesome if they were stripped down like that?

asuperpowers3 karma

One of our fans did 5-word summaries of the first 444 comics. They are really fun to read through, albeit hard to navigate. Someone once asked if I could make each one a hyperlink to the respective comic but ain't nobody got time for that.

bullshque1 karma

how do you come up with your ideas? Do you sit down and try and hammer out a comic, or do ideas come to you while just going about your day shopping or talking a shower?

asuperpowers3 karma

We get into that a little bit here but the short version is that it's become a pretty refined process.

Though I still believe all my BEST ideas come from the shower, such as "I should have taken off my clothes for this."