“A long, long time ago, there was a kind and beautiful girl named Cinderella. Cinderella was always abused by her stepmother and stepsisters. But on one fateful day, she met a wonderful prince and thus, she lived happily ever after… Yeah, as if! Cinderellas nowadays don't have time to meet princes because of their damned part-time jobs. And on top of that, “princes" nowadays are just huge assholes. They all have Casanova complexes, and are all so damn haughty!”
Get to know Madeleine “Maddy” Flores, a writer on Bee and PuppyCat and she also works as a storyboard revisionist on other series. On top of that, she writes and draws an adorably strange web comic called Help Us! Great Warrior. You can also follow Maddy on Twitter. Read on to learn about the series’ collaborative writing process and why Maddy thinks Bee is a such a relatable leading lady. (Note: The drawing above is by Maddy - it is her working on Bee and PuppyCat)
Did you always want to work in animation?
Yes! I think I realized it was a job when I got The Lion King on VHS and they had behind the scenes footage of artists sketching lions for reference.
So, how’d you make your way to work on Bee and PuppyCat?
Natasha saw my comics online and emailed me one day asking if I wanted to work on a project. I was like “Oh yeah!” thinking it was going to be a comic, but then it turned out to be more Bee and PuppyCat!!! I was so excited!
How does writing work on a storyboard-driven series?
We come up with major plot points that have to be shown to make the story move forward—Natasha was very honest about what she wanted and I think we kept it pretty true to her basic outline.
Is it easier or harder writing for a female versus a male protagonist?
There’s not a big difference. It’s all about the character themselves, what their goals are, and what kind of world they inhabit!
I think many people relate to Bee because she lives paycheck to paycheck and that’s a common situation, for all genders!
How do you get yourself ready to start writing?
I like to have a nice shower before I sit down and work for the day.
Personally, I write down a lot of initial ideas and gags, then I pair them up with whatever story theme we were working on and share them with my writing partners, and through the awesome process of collaboration we come up with a more developed and funnier and interesting structure. (Note: Maddy, Natasha and Frank hard at work above).
Are there any specific comic books or animated series/characters influence your work?
So you and Natasha both love Sailor Moon. Did you talk about anime a lot as writing got underway?
Yes! I think one of the first things she said was, “Make it anime.”
What about Sailor Moon do you think so fascinates Natasha - and why did it lead to the creation of Bee and PuppyCat?
I think she mentioned that she really missed having a magical girl show and wanted to create her own! Which is awesome!
How does Sailor Moon influence your work?
I think the humor and flowy poses and sparkles are big influences that I pull from Sailor Moon.
The story is about a teenage girl who isn’t very good at a lot of things, she’s lazy, likes to read comics, play video games and eat but is also this savior of the universe and I think that kind of character, being flawed but wanting to do the right thing, is something else that’s mirrored in what I like to do.
What’s been the biggest difference working on Bee and PuppyCat compared to other shows you’ve worked on?
I think mainly the size of the crew. We all went out for dinner and fit at a table, versus the crew I’m on at a studio, we’d need a whole restaurant haha!
Is working for Frederator unique?
Frederator is really good about Natasha having say in what she wants it to be, which I think is great since she has so many fans!
In addition to writing you also draw – is that helpful in writing for Bee and PuppyCat?
When writing for Bee and PuppyCat I would draw out gags or ideas and show them to Natasha and she’d pick what she liked, but in meetings we would sketch out things too.
Drawing and writing are both very important to me; they’ve allowed me to start a career in my dream job! It’s preeeeettttyyy cool!
How did you learn to draw?
Just like any other kid - started off doodling when I was young, but then when I got a hold of my first comic books I became more conscious of all the different things that could be drawn.
Make your way to Cartoon Hangover to hang out with Cade, Nicky, Natasha and an array of special guests during the Bee and PuppyCat 24-hour Livestream countdown to launch event, which begins on Wednesday, November 5 at 8 p.m. EST.
And, of course, don’t miss out on the series debut of Bee and PuppyCat on Thursday, November 6 at 8 p.m. EST.
- Gwen, Joe and Lisa