Sunday, September 27, 2009
The birth of "Militant Malik"
I never thought I'd utter these words: I actually like DC. There, I said it.
Yes, my heart is still in New York City, but I must say that living in the District of Columbia has definitely changed my cartoon "Cafe con Leche" for the better. There is something distinctly edgy about the District, not to say that NYC was edgy. But its a bit different here. While in New York, my focus was on writing about the relationship between main characters Trey and Maria and how they got along. Looking back that was probably a bad idea.
Since coming to DC a year ago I've put the focus squarely on Trey and surrounded him with a cast of characters that come straight from my experiences in DC. The biggest success has come from a character that I call "Militant Malik." This character has definitely added some spice into the mix. Malik is dashiki and combat boot wearing self-described pro-black militant and professional street protester. I got the idea of Malik from my very own neighborhood in DC. You see, I live in the Chinatown section of downtown, a hub for tourists and such. I typically make a trek to my gym, which is on the corner of 7th and H st. Nw. I noticed that almost every Friday afternoon a few brotha's dressed in quasi military garb gather and literally get up on soap boxes and yell to the top of their lungs about all-things black to commuters. I found this fascinating, since I've never seen this display in any major city. I almost instantly began to think of creating a character based on this. Malik was born.
I wanted to thank the fellas for giving me the inspiration, but that probably won't go over well.