The Ones That Got Away – Shrek

Shrek-sidekick-Donkey

Shrek and Donkey © 2001 DreamWorks LLC

Several years ago following on from my stint as the writer on the CARS comics I was asked by a new publisher to pitch some story ideas for a planned series of SHREK comics.

After rewatching all four films I decided to play up the pop-culture parody aspect and pitched several story ideas. The publishers and license holders liked three of them enough to commission full scripts and they were scheduled for issues 4, 5, and 6 of the new series.

I won’t go into details but working on those scripts very quickly went from being a fun experience to being a chore that sucked any enjoyment of working on some of the most enjoyable of movie characters. After over six months of constant, and contradictory, notes and revisions,  the publisher decided to “go in a different direction” with the tone and style of the book and basically threw out the work of several writers (myself included) who had been expecting to chart Shrek and friend’s adventures through the first year of the series. The publisher and license holder had every right to do that, it’s their property after all, and we were just the hired guns, but it could have been handled better – a lot better.

I will say that it may have been the hardest I ever worked on a set of licensed property comics scripts, but I learned a lot.

Anyway here’s the brief solicitation copy for the three issues that never saw the light of day – the Shrek that might have been.

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#4 – Donkey’s Tale
Trying to calm his kids down Donkey decides to tell them the story of his adventures just before he met Shrek. Of course, the way that Donkey tells the tale may be a little different from what actually happened.

#5 – Elementary My Dear Shrek
When the Gingerbread Man goes missing from his cottage Shrek and Donkey set out to solve the mystery of their friend’s disappearance. Following a trail of clues across town they soon start to realize that they shouldn’t jump to conclusions.

#6 – A Locket Full of Secrets
When Pinocchio discovers that the Fairy Godmother has a locket that contains a secret that could threaten the Kingdom of Far Far Away, he decides to put together a team to recover it. With the help of the Three Blind Mice, and the Gingerbread Man he sets out on a seemingly impossible mission to retrieve the locket and save the kingdom.

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