The Inflexible MAKE ME! #50
Another CARTON CARTOONS Production
Based on the character created by Billy Carton, drawn by Rick Carton and personified by Steve Tolin.
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Combustible Curmudgeons

I haven't told Make Me! yet that it's all over, that his 52-week run of original adventures has ended. I haven't told him it's time to clean up the mess he made and move along. How could I? After a year of witnessing his one-note reaction to everything he encountered, you already know what his response would be.


Make Me! Comix was produced as an experiment, with only a few rules and one big question: could I come up with a joke so wonderfully dumb that I could hammer myself over the head with it every week for a year and still find it funny? I'm happy to report that Make Me! is as ridiculous to me today as he was then. I still click that little Make Me! Flash widget in the top-right corner of this page with glee, just to hear Make Me! bark his catchphrases at me.

[NOTE: I acknowledge that usage of the name "Make Me!" can be visually confusing. To help clarify things, keep in mind that "Make Me!" in italics refers to the title of the series, "Make Me!" in regular ol' roman refers to the character himself, and the "!" is an official part of the name either way.]

Thankfully, I didn't have to come up with the dumb joke all by myself. The character of Make Me! was originally created by my brother Billy as a super-villain applicant to The Evil League of Evil (from Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-Long Blog—it's really embarrassing how big a Joss Whedon fan Billy is). With the help of some friends and students from Chicago's Tribeca Flashpoint Academy, Billy created a video submission that was notable for two things: a really kick-ass theme song, and my buddy Steve's performance as Make Me!. Steve was pitch-perfect casting, since not only is he the most curmudgeonly person I know, but he actually already owned the bomb-hat featured atop Make Me!'s head. You can watch the original Make Me! application video by clicking the button to the right.

My experiment had just three rules. First, I had to post a new Make Me! one-page comic every week for a year. Second, Make Me! himself would never change; he'd always appear with same expression, fighting the same inane internal arguments he always fights against opponents that can't possibly argue back, until he explodes (potentially both figuratively and literally). Third, every comic would end the same way, with an empty white panel, leaving the ultimate resolution up to the reader. That's it.

The end result is a collection of comix that runs the gamut from stupid to more stupid, and includes a few issues that I can look back on with pride. Wherever possible, I credit image sources. To experience the entire story in print, download The Inflexible Make Me!: The Complete Series PDF via the button to the left; if you own your own bookbinding machine, it makes an excellent coffee table edition.

To everyone who has taken the time to say to me, "I don't get it," I don't know what to tell you.

Yours in bombasticity*,
Rick Carton signature
Rick Carton
Chicago, Illinois
January, 2012

*Yes, I know "bombasticity" is not a word, but it should be.

Make Me! Application Video
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