Origin: Mole People

Mole_Men_smHey Everyone!

If you’ve picked up issue #2, the you know who these baddies are.  These mole people live in the caves underneath an unsuspecting Western town and cause all sorts of trouble for Reed and gang.

When writing Reed Gunther, I like the idea of using classic folktales or urban myths as a starting point for as many characters as I can.  With these guys, I knew this story would be taking place underground so I needed some subterranean creatures to play with.  I haven’t spent much time in New York, but I do love the idea of Mole People inhabiting the tunnels beneath the city.

Or maybe I’ve been watching too many movies like this.

So when first writing the Reed Gunther Mole People, but I didn’t want them to be literal or stereotypical mole people like you would instantly think of, so I tried to think of new ways to make them different.

Here’s the description I sent to Chris while he was working on character designs:

“The mole creatures have long arms that can disconnect at the elbow to extend further for climbing and pulling themselves through small tunnels.  When contracted, their elbows look like  pile of scrunched skin, like some sort of snake that can extend or contract itself.

They have short legs, skinny bodies with small pot bellies.  Their heads are flat and used to looking up or forward when crawling on their stomachs, like a lizard.  Their stomachs are rough and calloused.  Their eyes are large to be able to see in the dark but are a milky solid color with no pupils.

They also have sacks or pouches on their neck that holds filtered gas that they breath deep in the mines (one pouch on each side of neck).  They breathe oxygen and can filter the bad gasses into these sacks.  Then, on command, they can release the flammable gas (methane).”

C-c-changes:  After chatting with Chris, we decided to drop the bit about the extending arms for story reasons (I want more pages dagnabit!) although we still liked the scrunched look so we kept that .

Picture 3

I really liked the idea of making them breath fire, cause breathing fire is really dang cool, so I was very happy when I was able to justify fire breathing.  After thinking about how miners used to bring canaries down into mines to test for any dangerous gasses, I figured any oxygen breathing creature would need to evolve somehow so they all wouldn’t die out whenever there was a gas leak.  We lost the gas sacks by the end of the final design, and even though it isn’t really talked about much in the story, I still like knowing the reason behind why they can breath fire.

That’s my rant!  Thanks for reading!

-  Shane

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Discussion (7)¬

  1. BD says:

    The character design sheet says it all…they’re too cute.

  2. *In a nerdy voice while wearing horn-rim glasses:

    Correction: The mole-men do not breath FIRE but rather breath methane gas which is highly FLAMMABLE.

    Thank you.

  3. Shane says:

    Hey I wear horn-rimmed glasses!

  4. Nico says:

    I would like to adopt a mole person.

    If unavailable, I will accept a mole person plushie, but he/she/it must be highly detailed and include a methane gas disposer. Thank you.

  5. BD says:

    Nico, you already have a methane gas dispenser…

  6. JoeFoo says:

    10 points for using the word “dagnabit”!

  7. Lauren says:

    I second Nico’s request. One plushie mole person please! No methane gas required. A nintendo Mario mustache sticker would be nice though.