Daniel Gorman

What is “Turkey Day?”

Dan Gorman: Turkey Day is a tale of what happens when an All American Holiday gets overrun by blood-thirsty alien invaders whose only means of mobility are using the carcasses of thousands of turkeys to carry out their plans. It’s a cross between a Norman Rockwell painting and a War of The Worlds type nightmare scenario.

Brian Dunphy: Turkey Day is one of the many disturbing brainchildren of David C. Hayes as he continues his mission to warp our most beloved holidays. Turkey Day tells the story of the annual Thanksgiving pageant in Pilgrim Point, IL. It’s a town highlight every year, telling the absolutely 100% true story of how benevolent European settlers brought peace, civilization, and home-cooked meals to the natives. This year the pageant is forced into an unexpected intermission when a mob of turkeys infected by alien parasites kicks in the doors. Much like the early settlers, these invaders are just here to spread love, exude joy, and share recipes, right? They certainly don’t want to wipe humankind off the face of the earth, right? RIGHT? Wink. Wink. Nudge. Nudge.

Brian Dunphy

What inspired “Turkey Day?”

Brian Dunphy: Well, David already ruined Christmas and Easter for everyone with his twisted horror/comedy books Kringle and Rottentail, so I guess it was just Thanksgiving’s turn. David had this idea that an entire town could be so righteously delusional about the facts surrounding the colonization of the United States that they wouldn’t be able to see the same thing happening to them. And, of course, what could be funnier or more poetic than all of this taking place during the town’s annual Thanksgiving Day pageant? Of course, there is one character, a high school history teacher, who immediately recognizes what’s going on and tries to warn everyone. I can’t say for sure whether or not he survives the story, but I really don’t remember drawing him after about page 26, so…

Dan Gorman: David Hayes is hell-bent on trying desperately to ruin every major and Hallmark Holiday with his twisted ideas. Rottentail, Kringle, and now Turkey Day all leave their mark on our beloved days off work. I think he may have even eviscerated Valentine’s Day in another format.

How did the creative team come together for this project?

Dan Gorman: David and I had been working together on projects for several years and after I contributed artwork to a backup story in Kringle, we started talking about doing something similar to Thanksgiving. Brian Dunphy, who I also had been working with for a few years and who would partner with me on pilgrimages to C2E2 became part of our collective creative team in 2018 and his style was perfect for Turkey Day. At the same time, I started work on a mini-series written by David for Source Point Press. I was not the original colorist on the book but due to a scheduling conflict, the book found itself in need of a colorist. After seeing Brian’s pages coming back on Turkey Day I knew I had to color it.

Brian Dunphy: Dan Gorman and I work together a lot. We’re like a two-man comedy troupe to the extent that when I get too silly at home my wife says, “why don’t you call Dan and pester him.” And I usually do. We’ve done art and writing for comics together for about six years. Beyond that, Dan has always been a mentor to me with regard to my art. So I’m a big fan of his and I’m a big fan of David’s writing. Dan has done a bunch of work for David and I did a few anthology stories for him that, unbeknownst to me, were my Turkey Day audition. The three of us collaborating on this project seemed very natural.

Who is this book for?

Dan Gorman: Anybody who enjoys a non-traditional Thanksgiving Dinner.

Brian Dunphy: Despite the warning about cartoon violence, I really think this story is for everyone. It’s loaded with slapstick, situational comedy, and one-liners. I really hope readers can all look at this, not take it too seriously and have a good laugh. Listen, we all know some of our own character flaws, but we certainly aren’t aware of them all. This book will appeal to people who can take a look in the mirror and occasionally chuckle. I want to be clear though, Turkey Day is not meant to downplay or marginalize the meaning behind what’s going on in the story. Certainly, we all can acknowledge the abhorrent treatment of Native Americans in this country throughout its history. To the contrary, hopefully, the laughs come at the expense of the folks in this small town who so absurdly believe their sparkly and safe version of American history is the right or the only one.

What’s next?

Dan Gorman: We will see. Right now I’m working on a six-issue mini for Source Point Press written by David Hayes called “Six from the Abyss.” Hopefully, you will see that late next year or early 2023. Brian and I are working on a couple of things as well. We will just have to see how things go. But there are talks about ruining other holidays. Stay tuned!

Brian Dunphy: Dan and I are plugging away at a super-secret project that we hope to have ready to publish early next year. It’s a parody book that pokes fun at reality tv and our obsession with it. That’s all I can say for now. And of course, if David wants to destroy another holiday we’re on board for that too.

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What is 'Turkey Day?' Dan Gorman: Turkey Day is a tale of what happens when an All American Holiday gets overrun by blood-thirsty alien invaders whose only means of mobility are using the carcasses of thousands of turkeys to carry out their plans. It's a cross between a Norman...