Garfield is More Horrifying Than You Could Ever Imagine
- Follow the trail of horror from artist to artist.
- All artist links included below.
If you want some context before watching the video above, which I highly recommend, please do read on first. Last October, as part of the Inktober challenge, an artist named William Burke illustrated four pictures that took inspiration from both the beloved American cartoon Garfield, and the body horror stylings of manga artist Junji Ito. The resulting union of such starkly dissimilar sources produced these beautiful abominations.
These original works then caught the eye of pixel artist, animator, and game developer LumpyTouch, who produced five teaser videos (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) for a Game Boy styled horror game based on Burke’s aesthetic. All this took place roughly six months ago, with no significant updates made public until just recently with the video above. Now LumpyTouch has released thirteen minutes of cutscenes from what he calls “an alternate reality Garfield horror game on an alternate reality Gameboy.”
I’m sure I speak for fans of horror everywhere when I point out how disappointing the ‘alternate’ in ‘alternate reality’ is in this case. To what end LumpyTouch pours all this time and effort into such an agonizing tease of a video is uncertain. Could he possibly be serious about trying to make a playable game around this? At over 800,000 views, it could be argued that projects like this bring attention and support to his artistry as a whole. Or maybe this was just the only way he could dig out the images that Burke’s pictures injected into his mind last year. Whatever the case, I have reached out to LumpyTouch for further comment on this project, and will amend this article to include his response when I get it.
In the meantime, you can follow LumpyTouch more closely through his Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and support him through his Patreon. As for the man that inspired this many-legged iteration of Garfield, you can find more of William Burke through his Twitch, where he streams both games and art, his Discord server, his Instagram, official website, and Patreon. Junji Ito is a little harder to follow, but he does have an official Twitter, as well as two largely populated Facebook accounts run by fans (1, 2) that function as collections of his work.
Enjoy all the leads I’ve just provided you, fellow horror fans, and be sure to bookmark this article to check back later for LumpyTouch’s response.
[UPDATE] LumpyTouch very quickly replied to my inquiry. As promised, here is the additional info he provided:
Garfield Gameboy’d is a passion project that combines some of my favorite things, pixelart, horror, and weird reinterpretations of pop culture/videogame icons. I do all kinds of drawings/animations that cater to my own sense of humor. Some might be thought of as testing the waters for interest in me developing certain types of games, but mostly it’s about me having a laugh. I’ve made fun of Movie Sonic’s uncomfortable appearance, drawn the Mario Bros as Larva.
This isn’t the first time I’ve drawn horror re-interpretations of Garfield before, and there is in fact a large online community that shares this same niche interest. Something about re-imagining a mundane low effort newspaper comic cat as a terrifying monstrous entity seems to resonate with a lot of people! Here’s the subbreddit dedicated to horror Garfield: https://www.reddit.com/r/imsorryjon/
I would love to turn the concept into a game someday, but it would have to change substantially from what the animation depicts, as a large scale long term fan project is a pretty big risk for an artist to undertake. It could be taken down at any time. I’d hate to pour my heart and soul into something for a year and have it vanish overnight.
Thanks for doing a write up, Jack! I hope you find this information useful.
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