Reading creator Robert Feldman’s Cyko KO! is akin to being transported to a myriad of cartoon and comic book universes that have congealed with each other into a tapestry of psychedelic, fourth-wall breaking hilarity, and that’s meant in the best way possible. Since unleashing Cyko KO–who can be described as equal parts Hanna-Barbera boldness, Adult Swim silliness, and Looney Tunes temerity–Feldman’s self-aware super baby has appeared in everywhere from his own Line Webtoons webseries to a coloring book published in conjunction with Alterna Comics.
It’s at Alterna Comics that Cyko KO will make his next appearance, busting out with an all-new three issue series debuting this summer! I caught up with Mr. Feldman recently to talk about what we can expect to see in this new series, how he made sure to make the book new-reader friendly, and some teases of big moments to come in the story.
FreakSugar: For folks considering picking up the book, can you tell us who Cyko KO is and his genesis?
Robert Feldman: Cyko KO is a rebellious stunt motorcyclist who is sent 28 million light years away to protect the colonies of SuperEarth against giant monster attacks and other weirdos along with the help of his gal pal Peachy Keen and their mushy, yet cuddly pet Meemop. It’s a real throwback to Hanna Barbera and Filmation cartoons with some ridiculous comedy, action and bright colors. The stories are all ages, so they’re great for kids and stalled adults alike.
FS: What is the concept of the new miniseries from Alterna Comics?
RF: The miniseries—I mean, I shouldn’t say miniseries because it gives the idea of a continuous plotline and end to the story—but from the word on the street, this may be a continuing series with three issues a year. But I digress. The concept is similar to watching a single, self-contained episode on Saturday morning circa 1975. The plotlines are fun, light and usually center around Cyko KO as he encounters some strange characters. Each story is different and completely standalone: for example, in the first one Cyko has a surf-off with his oldest enemy, Cuda Cano. Hijinks ensue.
In the second, there’s a clone that’s after him and he has to prove a case of double identity. Hijinks ensue.
And in the third—a very emotional Cyko KO—he has to destroy the giant acid-toothed spider that killed his father. Hijinks ensue.
So, you can probably see the consistency here with the plotlines. All of them have Cyko hijinking and ensuing.
FS: We’ve seen Cyko in everything from the series at Line Webtoons to the coloring book you put out with Alterna Comics. I’m sure you’ve made the comic new reader friendly, but do you add any nods to folks who’ve read your previous stories with Cyko?
RF: While the stories have a similar vibe which readers of the animated comic will get, I didn’t rely on any of the previous material. I think it was crucial that readers have a fresh start. But I do tackle some of Cyko’s father which new and old readers will know—you don’t need to know what happened since I address it again, but I definitely think readers will like it. Cyko KO has a lot to live up to his father Mega KO, so we’ll see what happens. Two words: Devil Spider.
Here’s something cool also. When I did the coloring book, I ran a Kickstarter. The high rollers (you know who you are) paid to have their name in the first newsprint issue, so I worked with them to cleverly—and I do mean cleverly—to place their name strategically in that first issue. When you read it, you might notice a few names that stand out—they were the ones that paid the big bucks. Thanks to those people, by the way. If I named them here, I‘d have to charge them again. What—that’s how fame works
FS: Given the format, are you using the opportunity to expand the universe and its cast of characters? Are there things you’ve been able to do with the character and his world that you weren’t able to previously do?
RF: I did expand the universe a bit—every story provides an opportunity to do that. And because of sheer laziness, I manage to do that by making mention of things or people that aren’t in the actual issue, building on assumption and inference. That allows me to go back and maybe put that as a plotline later. But Cyko is Cyko and he’s just living day to day—any new story will allow me to build him up a bit on his journey. Who knows, maybe he’ll finally take off his helmet.
FS: Every Cyko KO installment has had me in stitches. Is one of your mission statements to cram as much laughs into a book as possible? If so, it’s certainly working.
RF: Haha, you’re nice! My head just exploded from my ego. I never did anything comedic prior to Cyko KO—just stupid stuff at parties. But I write what I like, so I’m glad it’s working! I hope you like the upcoming ones—now I’m sweating it out!
FS: Is there anything you can tease about what we can expect to see in the miniseries going forward?
RF: Beyond the three here that I mentioned, I don’t know. I mean, he does finally confront the Devil Spider that destroyed Mega KO in the third one, so that’s kinda big. There is a really big surprise—I mean—not Marvel big—but one that I think fans will love. I’m kind of keeping that one tight until the cover comes out for 3…. I looked at what I drew the other night and laughed bit. Now you’re picturing me laughing at a piece of paper. Great! Some first impression I made! But seriously, I think it’s good.
FS: This makes your second collaboration with Alterna Comics. Do you have anything on the backburner you’d like to do for a third Cyko outing at Alterna?
RF: I have an idea of where it is going but I can say that there will be quirkier villains, possibly a return of one and the idea that perhaps Cyko may get back to Earth; these are just ideas at this point. But the three coming out—the first on July 25th and then the second in September and third in November—they’re designed to get the reader hypnotized into forking over their money on a regular basis. So with any luck, they’ll sign on to whatever I do next year. Maybe a toilet paper series, who knows (patent pending, FYI).
Cyko KO! #1 (of 3) goes on sale Wednesday, July 25th, from Alterna Comics.
From the official issue description:
SuperEarth’s greatest hero is here! Cyko KO is the fourth-wall breakin’, pinball-addicted, motorcycle-ridin’ hero you’ve been waiting for! When Cuda Cano (Cyko’s oldest rival) challenges Cyko to a “friendly” surf off, he just can’t resist. But with a remote control giant squid at his disposal, Cuda’s playing for keeps!