Gary and His Demons Is One Hell Of A Workplace Comedy

What to Expect when Horror Meets Comedy

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Gary and His Demons is the latest addition to the world of adult animation on Prime Video. The show follows Gary, a middle-aged demon hunter who has been in the business for decades. Gary is a gruff, sarcastic character who seems to have seen it all, but the show is not afraid to explore his vulnerabilities and flaws. Standing out from the crowd of adult animation with a unique blend of horror and humour, the show brings a fun take on workplace comedy.

This is a show that is not afraid to take you to some seriously dark places, but it also has plenty of gross-out gags and witty one-liners to keep you entertained. These aren’t your typical cartoonish demons either —they’re genuinely creepy and unsettling—giving Gary and His Demons a unique look and feel, unlike many other shows in the genre. With an animation style that feels a mix of modern and retro 80s and 90s animation, Gary and His Demons manages to build a world that you can’t help but be sucked into. 

With the series finally getting a second season on Prime Video, CGMagazine took time to talk to the creators about the series and what fans can expect. Season two goes into some new and humorous directions, and series creator Mark Little and animation director Steve Sloan walk us through the choices and what fans can expect when they dive into this new chapter of Gary and His Demons.

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Gary and His Demons

Could we start by discussing the best way to dive into the show for people new to the world of Gary and His Demons?

Mark Little: Amazon released both seasons of Gary and His Demons at the same time, so I think that was the main way. The main way for people, at least in Canada and Australia and New Zealand, to see it. I think that is the main thing for a lot of people who never saw it on Verve. They now have a chance to start at the beginning and watch it all.

With Gary and His Demons now on Prime Video, was there as much freedom to bring the story you envisioned to the screen?

Mark Little: I don’t think there were any main cuts, Steve. Correct me if I’m wrong.

Steve Sloan: It was pretty creatively free. I mean, they are obviously fans of what we did with the first season, and there was a little bit of a transition to a new studio as far as the animation stuff goes. But like all the writing, all the key characters, all the key creatives behind the scenes, it was all the same people. So yeah, I don’t think there were any roadblocks at any point where we were asked to cut anything. I think we were the ones who were cutting things mainly because we had so much we wanted to do and just not enough time to get it on screen.

Mark Little: Yeah, they just had a note, and we were happy to do it. We just had to create a character named Jeff Bezos, who’s really cool and good at everything and flawless. So we did that. He’s flawless. So that’s just one small concession, and we were happy to make it.

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Gary and His Demons

You mentioned a new studio, could you go into that a bit and how it changed going into Gary and His Demons season two?

Steve Sloan: Yeah, it’s mostly just animation services. So the first season of Gary and His Demons was handled, developed and animated by Solis Animation, who did an amazing job, and they have an incredibly unique style. And part of my big challenge was to honour that as much as possible. Fortunately, I was an animator on the first season. 

I’m friends with Solis, so I helped out on the first season of Gary and His Demons, so I had a little bit of an inside track on how to achieve that style. So just trying to marry those two things together so the audience doesn’t feel weird about the transition. Obviously, there are differences, but I think we stuck pretty close to the flavour of the first season. I’ve talked to the Solis since then, and they seem pretty happy with it. I was and am mostly concerned with impressing them. So that worked.

Mark Little: I think the only weird comment I’ve had online is someone asking why Leslie is different in season two. I don’t know why, because out of all the changes we’ve made, she’s the same.

Steve Sloan: Yeah. No, just eagle-eyed viewers, and you know how Reddit gets. So it’s just looking for a little change, and there were little adjustments made to each character. It’s just things change over time, look at The Simpsons, from season one to now, it got refined, and things get changed, and that is just part of the process.

Mark Little: And I’m one of the only Simpsons fans who refuses to watch anything past season one. I miss that old Simpsons look. I liked it when they looked like nightmare blobs from beyond.

Just to touch on season two of Gary and His Demons, it is a bit more epic—especially near the end of the season—than the first season, was that intentional? 

Mark Little: Yeah, we definitely wanted to make things more epic. We wanted to tell a serialized story in season two, and we wanted to dig deeper into Gary’s emotions and find a new way to examine the most cynical, saddest man in the world. Those were our main goals for the season. 

It was hard, though, because we wanted to go epic without creating as much as we wanted. We didn’t want to go so big that it overwhelmed the storytelling because when you’re telling 11-minute stories, you can only do so much. So we had an episode where it was all this lore about how the Chosen Ones came to be and how demons and humans used to coexist, and to tell that in 11 minutes was crazy. So we had to cut that episode.

I think we put little nods to it in the dialogue, and hopefully, if people are interested in that, they can start to piece together the puzzle that we worked out behind the scenes. But hitting people with 11 minutes of hard exposition turned out not to be as entertaining as we thought it would be.

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Gary and His Demons

You mentioned the 11-minute format. Since you are on a streaming platform, did you ever think about going beyond 11 minutes? 

Mark Little: Steve might know more about that than I do, but I feel like we never really had a choice. I think we decided on 11 in the very early days when we first pitched the first season, and our storytelling tastes have gotten longer form. We also both worked on this animated show called Doom Lands, and we went from 11 to 22 for the second season. So I think that’s what we’re interested in. But for some reason, it never felt like an option for Gary. But maybe it would be. We never talked about it, as far as I know.

Steve Sloan: Yeah, I think we just kind of kept the ball rolling in the direction that we were comfortable with. We want to stick to the pacing and the storytelling that we’ve kind of done before, and it’s worked for us before, so we just kept going with that. I think there was some talk about, you know, there’s 11 minutes, but it’s really like five two-parters, so then you’d have your 22-minute stories, but honestly, I kind of like the breakneck pace of the stories, and we get a lot in there.

They don’t feel like 11 minutes. You’re watching it. You feel like there’s no fat to cut. It’s all like good content. It’s either jokes or lore or, you know, interesting stuff going on. So, yeah, we’re experimenting with 22 right now, and that might be a direction we go in. But honestly, I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.

On that note, what are your thoughts on the fact that streaming services can have unlimited length, and a creator can take advantage of that when needed?

Mark Little: I love it. I love it. And maybe I’m just thinking about it through the prism of I think you should go. I think it makes so much sense for a sketch show to just like I love that some episodes of this show are 20 minutes, some are 12, and some are 15. I feel like It’s an old-school way of thinking to be like we have to fit in a certain amount of time, and we have to make room for the commercials within that with the commercial breaks based on the expectations of our advertisers. 

I think shaping your show around the content you have is so smart. I think it’s especially helpful in Canada where our budgets aren’t that big, and sometimes you make a show in the movie world, like, my sketch troupe made a movie 12 years ago called Roller Town, and we showed it at a festival. And I’m going to put this, in general, to say generously. It got a mixed response, and we were lucky enough to cut it down from about 80 minutes to 70 minutes. 

It feels like how many believe a movie needs to be at least 90 minutes. But I feel like there’s an appetite for shorter films. There was more room for that in the film world back then than there is in television. So I think sometimes, yeah, if you look at what you’ve done and you’re like, ‘this could be better if I could cut 5 to 10 minutes out of it,’ it’s nice to have that option.

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Gary and His Demons

How can people watch Gary and His Demons, and what should they expect when they dive in?

Mark Little: They can watch Gary and His Demons in Canada, Australia and New Zealand on Prime Video. It’s a comedy. So if people want comedy, it’s heavy comedy. And I think some of the premises that we have are big crazy swings. I want to spoil season two so badly because In season one, Gary has a nemesis, and we do something very exciting with that idea in season two, and I think people will like it. So people should expect big ideas, wild comedy and Sadness.

Brendan Frye
Brendan Frye

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