Sync Log: Matt Groening

I'm not out at the San Diego Comic-Con this year, which is fine by me. The last time I went (2004) I was completely exhausted by the middle of the first day. And I must say that last time was sorely lacking in that San Diego magic; those wonderful syncs that used to pop up like mushrooms after a rainstorm at that con. Here's one of my favorites from 1998...

I was flying out with my main man, Kenny K. We'd just published our comic, Rivets & Ruby, and were out to promote it. On the plane, Kenny and I were ranting about The Simpsons, which was then at its peak. I told Kenny the thing I loved most about the show was how they'd pull out all of these obscure, anachronistic phrases from early 20th Century Americana. Though it was usually Mr. Burns who got these lines, the example I gave was Moe saying to Bart, "We hear all about your monkey shines." To make a long story short, we arrive at SD, go up to the hotel room and turn on the TV, and lo and behold, there's that very same episode of The Simpsons!

So, that night they held the Eisner Awards. And who do I run into in the lounge afterwards but Matt Groening. I tell him that story and he gets a big laugh. My old roommate is a director on The Simpsons, and there had been some confusion amongst my friends about a similarly named director, so I was able to settle the controversy with the big boss himself. Then I went off to mingle before I outlasted the man's courtesy.

However, syncs can cut both ways. Kenny and I were promoting Rivets & Ruby, but Matt Groening was promoting Futurama, which was uncomfortably similar to our project. Unintentionally, mind you, but it kind of killed any hope we had of ever selling R&R to an animation studio...


  1. Who was the target audience of "Rivets & Ruby?"

  2. Talking of Animation & Sychronicity I experienced a weird example today As I was getting ready for work Channel 9 (3 x 3)was showing an episode of The Bat Man (spelling break down intentional) Its shown every 3 weeks and split into 3 parts accross the morning This particular episode concerned a team up between 3 villans and was shown on the 26/7 (add them up you get 33) I'm not sure it means anything, but it was weird enough upon refelction to take note of.

  3. fascinating.
    the degrees of seperation between us all continues to dwindle...

  4. Ah yes FUTURAMA... sometime I'll have to show you my series GLITTERING SKYLINE OF MARSPORT from CREATIVE COMPUTING Magazine '76 thru '78... a zine heavily frequented by nascent Computer Games Designers in the years just nefore Space Invaders appeared... except in GSOM the Professor WAS the Robot... but yes frozen protagonist and biker-chick leading lady yada yada yada-- nothin's new in Sci-Fi, just freshly spun.

  5. Rivets & Ruby is a fun all-ages science fiction romp centering around Ruby, a sweet mechanic-gal and her best friend Rivets, a construction robot convinced he's a superheroic crimefighter!

    Will Rivets be able to keep his city safe and more importantly, will Ruby be able to keep him patched up?

  6. Rivets and Ruby sounds like just the kind of thing the anime producers would love.

    I don't know how into anime you are, but I've watched a lot and find it laden with synchs.
    (I also have a number of videogame replay DVDs by a company called Insanity Naked Hunter - every title seems to me to be referring to a very specific series of synchs.)

    I also find that kind of thing happens with every MST3K I watch: I get them in random orders and watch them in random order - but just about every time, the episode I watch will have a line that refers exactly to the previous episode I watched.

  7. Uh oh upon returning caught the typo-- it's 'Groening' isn't it? You're thinking of 'Koenig' i.e. 'King'.

  8. Outtanding. Thanks for the heads-up, Ned.

  9. chris, good for you and not hitting the SD con this year...heres the AP highlight so far.........salvation my ass! misinformation campaign is more like it.

  10. im looking for your gorilla monkey posts

    first one so here we go:

    maybe itll help?!

    obamas lucky charms - so which monkey god is it?

    All I gotta say is that this web was spun a few years back it seems.

    It is like they knew who they were going to get and what type of energy/reflection to send out via visual representations of mirrors so you would see YOUR reflection and think....YES. Which Im guessing takes a while through the muck and think "Yes".

    then again i could be wayyyy off.