What happens when a pleasantly buzzed space cop and a throwback android that can’t get along are forced to become partners in a war on crime? Buddy Cops.That’s the name of the three-part story that writer Nate Cosby and artist Evan “Doc” Shaner did last year in the pages of Dark Horse Presents, and later this month those stories – plus new material – is being collected into a new one-shot by Dark Horse.
This unadulterated tale of hijinx and hyperbole centers around the oddest of odd couples, Uranus and T.A.Z.E.R. as they fight crime on Earth and beyond against all manner of law-breakers, be they animal, vegetable, or mineral – or all three. It was all born of an obscure social media joke, and became a story all of its own. Newsarama cornered Shaner and Cosby to find out more about the Buddy Cops one-shot leading up to its March 13th release.
Newsarama: We spoke with you two almost two years ago when Buddy Cops was initially announced as a series of shorts inside Dark Horse Presents, so what’s it like to now see Buddy Cops in its own little book?
Evan Shaner: It's very exciting. Up until this point, all my work has been just part of an anthology or part of a story, so I'm really looking forward to having one book that I can throw to people that's drawn completely by me.Nate Cosby: I’m still very confused as to why Dark Horse is letting us do this. First they let us be in Dark Horse Presents; now they’re letting us have a one-shot? Is Dark Horse drunk? Pretty sure Dark Horse is drunk.
Nrama: In addition to the reprints of the shorts from Dark Horse Presents, will there be any extras in this standalone book?
Shaner: We've put together a few extra pages just for the one-shot to bookend the stories and introduce the characters. It had been a few months since I'd drawn anything with these characters so it was fun to get back to it, even if it was only briefly.
Cosby: We promise that the new pages will be really, really, really, really stupid. Consistency is our virtue.Nrama: Ok, Uranus and T.A.Z.E.R. … we get that they’re both cops, but they don’t seem that much of buddies. How does their partnership work?
Cosby: They’re basically like The Odd Couple. But with Wu-Tang references. And god-fearing monk monsters. And glowy space swords and anal androids and nuclear slingshots and asexual alien impregnation and inept police bears and drunken jet-pack flying. (they’re nothing like The Odd Couple).
Nrama: For those who didn’t read Dark Horse Presents, what kind of crime do these two hope to stamp out?
Cosby: They fight monsters. Normal cops tend to die when they try to fight monsters? So the police commissioner just sends the Buddy Cops to fight the monsters… ’cause if the Buddy Cops die from monster-related injuries, no one’ll be too sad.
Nrama: In our previous interview, Nate described Uranus as a younger version of himself in a way. Does that make Evan here T.A.Z.E.R.?Shaner: I suppose you could make a case for that. Like if each of us had to be one of them I'd probably be T.A.Z.E.R. I'll admit to being a little uptight but certainly not to T.A.Z.E.R.'s extent. To echo Nate, freshman-year-of-college Evan and T.A.Z.E.R. probably would have seen eye to eye.
Cosby: Evan and I didn’t know each other that well when Buddy Cops started. Now that we live together and sleep in the same bed and wear each other’s clothes on the regular, it’s been interesting to see how similar we are to the characters. I cuss lots, and Evan’s skin is orange. Who knew?
Nrama: Seeing these stories being collected seems to tell me Dark Horse and readers like what they saw in those original stories. Could we be seeing more Buddy Cops in future Dark Horse Presents issues or on its own?Shaner: That would be great! Of course it'll have a lot to do with how the one-shot does. I got a lot of positive feedback when the stories were coming out in Dark Horse Presents so hopefully we'll get a chance to do more with these two.
Cosby: Please don’t buy this book. Please. ‘Cause if you buy it, Jim Gibbons (our editor) will make me write MORE stupid stuff about a PBR-enhanced space cop and a break-apart robot beating the crap out of fire-breathing cow beasts. In the name of JUSTICE.
(Seriously…is there an open bar in the Dark Horse offices? What’s going ON over there?)
Nrama: Last question, speaking of sequels and buddy cops in general – what is the best “buddy cop” movie sequel ever made?
Shaner: My gut answer is Die Hard with a Vengeance, even though Samuel L. Jackson's not a cop in the movie. I can't think of another buddy cop sequel I like as much as that one.
Cosby: Agreed. Die Hard With A Vengeance is the answer. Samuel L. Jackson threatens to shoot a lightning bolt up Bruce Willis’ ass, for God’s sake. Gold.