Yet another cartoonist has gone showbiz on us. Doonesbury’s Garry Trudeau has a new, uh, filmed entertainment series about four senators living in a single house call Alpha House. It’s also Amazon Prime’s first web series, or whatever they call these. (you can watch the first few episodes for free.) Slate has an interview about ther series:
GT: With both the strip and the show, I generally fill in the backgrounds of characters on an as-need basis. I’ve always been reluctant to get locked into anything that might limit where I take a character in the future. The simplest backstory decision can have a profound impact down the road. For instance, I made Louis a Mormon, which has all sorts of implications for how I write him. His strong identification with his faith group informs much of his behavior. Alpha House has no show bible, no inventory of established story and character points, but it probably should. Doonesbury is notorious among close readers for its inconsistencies.
This isn’t Trudeau’s first TV show—he was also involved with Tanner ’88 back in the day. He’s been on an extended leave from Doonesbury while he worked on the series, but new strips began this week.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.