The Screen Savers Interview - 24 Jan 2005

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Webcam magic!

On January 24, 2005, The Brothers Chaps appeared on the G4techTV television program The Screen Savers over webcam (and two phones). They were joined by Puppet Homestar Runner, and, later in the show, by a never-before seen Puppet Strong Bad, who answered fan questions over the phone.


[edit] Transcript of The Brothers Chaps interview

KEVIN PEREIRA: Did you know that if you put good Flash cartoons on your website that you could actually quit your day job and make a living out of it? Well our next guests — they probably didn't know that either — but that's exactly what Mike and Matt Chapman did when they created Homestar Runner and they join us now via webcam. Gents, welcome to The Screen Savers. How ya doing?

{We see Mike Chapman sitting on a couch with a phone, and puppet Homestar in front of us, to the right.}

MIKE CHAPMAN: Hi, Are we on? Can people see us?

KEVIN: They can see you through the miracle of technology.

HOMESTAR PUPPET: Can you see me? How well can you see me?

KEVIN: Uh, you— you look very nice, Homestar.

HOMESTAR: Thank you very much.

KEVIN: Now, now tell me. Are you guys, uh, too busy or too important now to join us in studio?

MIKE: Uhh. Is that why we're doing this over the internet?

HOMESTAR: Yes. I'm way too busy!

KEVIN: Alright, now tell me, why and exactly how did you create the, uh, Homestar Runner, the original site?

MIKE: Uh, uh, well the— Homestar was created out of boredom in, uh, August of 1996.

HOMESTAR: With our friend Craig.

MIKE: With our friend Craig, um—


MIKE: —and we just made a little children's book. And then the website started in January of 2000, uh, out of boredom as well.

KEVIN: Very nice.

HOMESTAR: Lot of boredom.

KEVIN: Heh, what— now what happened with— with Strong Bad? Why do you think his emails actually became as popular as they did?

MIKE: Uh, I dunno, I think—

HOMESTAR: {interrupting} I don't think they're very popular.

KEVIN: {playing along} Of course, of course, they're really not that good, Homestar.

HOMESTAR: Exactly.

MIKE: Uhm, that was the first thing we did when we started updating the site weekly. So I think that helped, um, uh... make him more popular, knowing that, uh usually on Monday mornings there would be a new cartoon.

KEVIN: And so—

MIKE: Here comes Matt.

{Matt puts down the Homestar puppet and sits up on the couch.}

KEVIN: Whoa. Hey Matt, thanks for— thanks for coming to the party, buddy.

MATT CHAPMAN: Sorry I'm late.

KEVIN: Uh, now tell me, what happened when Strong— did Strong Bad just blow up overnight? Did it— did it take a little while?

MIKE: It took a long while.

KEVIN: Was there more— did you wake up one morning and go, "oh crap, now we gotta make this stuff weekly"?

MIKE: No, it took a while. It took— what? We've been doing Strong Bad emails for, like, two and a half years.

MATT: Yeah, I was living in New York, and we started doing the first seven, I think we did remotely with me recording the voices in New York and then Mike would animate them. And then when I moved home, we figured it was time to step things up a notch, so we decided to start doing it— uhm, was it 2002?

MIKE: 3. 200—.

MATT: Was that— wait, really? In the beginning of 2003 we started doing—

MIKE: Oh maybe it was 2. I don't know.

MATT: I don't remember. We started doing—

KEVIN: You guys should— you guys should really— you should Indian Leg Wrestle right now {Mike and Matt start laughing} and figure out what year it is. I think that'd be great.

MIKE AND MATT: Two three two!

KEVIN: Now you guys really upped the production value, I mean quite a bit over the years. I've seen the cartoons evolved. Now you guys have Teen Girl Squad which is really, I mean, that's a graphic tour-de-force.

{Mike and Matt laugh}

MIKE: Yeah, we spend a lot of time on those, as you can tell.

KEVIN: Now, tell me about the Teen Girl Squad. What is that, for those who don't know?

MIKE: That's a, uh, comic strip that one of our characters created. Strong Bad actually created the, uh, the comic strip.

MATT: He's some type of wrestleman.

MIKE: {laughs} He's a red-masked wrestleman.


MIKE: And so he made the, uh, the Teen Girl Squad — that's the comic strip he draws on notebook paper—

MATT: He sells it, uh, via record stores.

KEVIN: There's the emo girl, and the Cheerleader, right. What's-Her-Face, and—

MATT: Right. Sort of a cross section of what we feel — I dunno we figured we were gonna be way off base cause we don't hang out with so many teen girls anymore.

MIKE: Unfortunately.

MATT: But, uh — {laughs} But, uh, teen girls seem to be big fans of it so I guess we hit the nail on the head. Or in some cases.

KEVIN: Very nice. So what's your work day like? What is it like being, you guys? Do you wake up and you know put on a smoking jacket and then hang out with, like, Playboy models? Or—

MIKE: I've got a brown terry cloth robe.

KEVIN: Nice. That's — that's classy. Classy. You have— you have your own office, right? I mean—

MATT: Yeah, we recently we're, uh, just around the corner about what, 28 feet from our door there's a bowling alley—

MIKE: 18 steps from — the bowling alley.

MATT: 18 steps from our front door, uh, there's a bowling alley. So we're down underground, underneath this strip shopping mall.

KEVIN: And, how have you managed to do that? There's so many dot-coms and so many webtoons and so many multimedia sites on the Interweb of information. What — what do you think has allowed you guys to do this? Cause this—

MIKE: I think it's 'cause we never planned to do — I mean it was always just something we did — you know, we did it out of, you know, our own pocket and in our spare time for three years, and then all of a sudden...

MATT: We never set out to do it as a business. It was just...that was luck; one day our dad was just like, "You know you guys are selling enough T-shirts to quit your job probably." So that's what we did — Plus, we kept it small — I mean our dad didn't have — for —

KEVIN: You know that speaks — that speaks volumes about you know the father that tells you, "Quit your job! Don't worry about it, hang out at home."

MIKE: We were—

MATT: We always feel like our — like we have a dad that is, almost too interested in our creative endeavors. Like the dad that would drive four hours to come and see our crappy band playing college and stuff or in some smoky bar.

KEVIN: Very nice. Well, the internet and the entire web owe your dad a huge thank you and, uh, we owe you one for coming on the show so thank you guys very much — we appreciate it.

MATT: Yes. Thanks a lot for having us on.

{Kevin goes on to mention internet links about Homestar Runner and that later in the show Strong Bad will be answering some questions live.}

[edit] Transcript of Puppet Strong Bad's fan calls

"It's great to be back on Pulse."

KEVIN PEREIRA: I'm back with Strong Bad from We've got him on the line and via netcam. Mr. uh... Bad, how's it going buddy?

STRONG BAD: What's up man, how you doing?

KEVIN: Ah you know, just doing the show. Rocking ones and twos.

STRONG BAD: It's great to be back on Pulse.

KEVIN: Yes. We love you here.

STRONG BAD: Thank you very much.

KEVIN: Now let me ask you, uh, uh, Mr. Strong, are you ready to take a phone call from one of, uh, our loyal viewers here?

STRONG BAD: Oh totally.

KEVIN: Alright, Joe joins us on the phone from Pomona, California. Joe are you there?

JOE: Yeah, I'm here.

KEVIN: Alright, ya—

STRONG BAD: {interrupting} What's up Joe from Pomona?

JOE: Hello.

STRONG BAD: You sound like you're seven years old, man.

JOE: Well no, I'm not seven years old.

STRONG BAD: Cool! Nice work.

KEVIN: He clearly proved you wrong there. {Strong Bad continues to talk incomprehensibly in the background} Wow! You got served Strong Bad.

STRONG BAD: I... uh, a little bit maybe, like a side of fries.

KEVIN: Yes, now... uh, Joe, do you have a question for Strong Bad? You should ask him before he goes off.

JOE: {to Strong Bad} Yeah... uh, why don't we ever get to see your parents?


STRONG BAD: Oh, you mean the worst question that I've ever been asked ever!? {lunging toward the screen}

JOE: Yes.

STRONG BAD: Ok... uh, you know that's such a terrible question, that's a perfect way to bring up how not to get your Strong Bad Email answered.


STRONG BAD: That one goes right into the deleted folder. You know what I'm saying?

KEVIN: Wow, like that's-

STRONG BAD: {Interrupting} Who cares what my parents look like? Who cares what Charlie Brown's parents look like? What Bugsy... Bunny-man looks like?

KEVIN: Wow, that's— that's a sensitive subject there, Strong Bad.

STRONG BAD: Yeah, look... don't talk about my mom.

KEVIN: I... I—I wouldn't touch her. Not that... 'cause I'm sure she's a beautiful lady. I just wouldn't touch the subject of her.

STRONG BAD: Yeah.. yeah, yeah, you try— you touch— you lay a finger on my mom, Mr. Pulse—

KEVIN: {interrupting hastily} Alright, we're going to move right along. We have Ed on the line from Troy, Michigan.


KEVIN: Ed, you have a question for Strong Bad?

STRONG BAD: Another one!?

ED: Yes I do. I'd like to know what operating system you are running on, Strong Bad.

STRONG BAD: Oh, it's... a... two-S point cynics... five... uh, the upgrade. The full upgrade!

ED: {playing along} Oh wow, that's—

STRONG BAD: {interrupting} I've got two DIMMs of RIMMs, and a couple a megachips of hard... time.


STRONG BAD: Yeah, it's a, it's a...

KEVIN: That's nic—

STRONG BAD: {interrupting} I souped it up! I—I got a putty knife at home like that guy.

KEVIN: That's great.

STRONG BAD: Yeah. I can break open any computer you give me.

KEVIN: Strong Bad, is it— now, have you ever been in trouble for hacking? Have you been accused of being a leet hacker?

STRONG BAD: I—I've been in trouble for hacking on the neighbor's flowers and bushes.


STRONG BAD: They've got some hydrangidimuhs over there.

KEVIN: And that's— we don't like those.

ED: Like downloading music.

STRONG BAD: Yeah, that's right.

KEVIN: Alright, well, Strong Bad, thank you so much for your, uh, your s-PC-specs there and for taking our calls. We appreciate it. Big thanks to you and the Chapman Brothers as well.

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