A couple of gay guys from Canada, Doc and Raider started back in 1987 as a small, single-panel cartoon whose initial appearance was in a LGBT publication in Vancover. Unfortunately, the paper folded after the boys’ first appearance, but they were quickly snapped up by others across Canada — and subsequently in Europe, New Zealand, Japan, and the Middle East… but always viewing things from a distinctly Canadian point of view. Tackling such issues as HIV/AIDS and gay bashing as well as leather contests and life with cats, Doc and Raider has rarely been a strip to shy away from an issue and looks for humour in the all the best places, whether political or pop-cultural or just about anything else.
Like everyone, they have their friends and relations, many of whom show up in here from time to time. In no particular order:
— Elliot, Raider’s best friend of long time standing. A producer of “adult entertainment”, he has now emigrated to Canada to be with Gilles, Doc’s twin brother, a former Catholic priest who now works as a counselor in Québec City. They’ve now adopted a child, Raymond-François.
And then there’s:
— Mik, Raider’s close friend. He was Raider’s sparring partner at the gym where they worked out when the boys lived in the States, and the friendship has continued despite being cross-border. A field construction manager, he’s married (as much as gays can be in that particular state of the country) to Kai, who’s taken over managing Elliot’s business. They’re involved in a polyamory relationship with Al, a former state trooper from Arizona.
And of course there’s:
— Eddie, filthy rich and not one bit embarrassed by it. Prone to rent boys and caustic responses.
— Aiko, a transsexual waiter at Doc and Ray’s favourite restaurant. Also prone to the caustic.
— Didi, a housewife who decided it was time to find herself. And did she ever…
The series also has occasional appearances by prominent figures in the news: President Obama is a regular, as are other politicos. Even Jesus stops by every now and then to share His frustration with organized religion.
The boys have served as goodwill ambassadors for fundraisers for everything from hospices to LGBT film festivals; if you want to bring them or any of their myriad friends on, just drop me a line at sean(at)joey-aristophanes.com, and let’s see what we can do for you.