Is Paul Blart based on Mel Cool: Mall Cop?™

Comic Movies, Comics, FAQS

mel-cool-freeze

Mel Cool: Mall Cop.™ Copy and layouts: Walt Jaschek. Art: Don Secrease.

Is Paul Blart based on Mel Cool: Mall Cop?

The short answer: not as far as we know or can legally prove. In fact, bless that Paul Blart. Somebody had to be “the” Mall Cop in pop culture. He won.

But here’s a longer Q&A with Walt Jaschek about that, originally published in 2009, when the movie was coming out but more than a decade after Mel Cool: Mall Cop was published.

Q: Are you and your collaborators getting a piece of the action from the new movie “Paul Blart: Mall Cop?”

Walt: No.

Q: Why is that?

Walt: Paul Blart: Mall Cop is not (as far as we know or can legally prove) based on Mel Cool: Mall Cop®, the long-running comicbook and web series created by Don Secrease and me in 1995, even though there was both a Mel Cool feature film screenplay and a cartoon series pilot script floating around Hollywood for years.

Q: What is your reaction to that?

Walt: Existential sadness mixed with raging anger.

Q: Really?

Walt: No, I’m just playin’ with you.

Q: What?

Walt: I’m cool with it. Mel Cool with it.  I’m philosophical about the whole thing.

Q: “Philosophical?”

Walt: Yes. In fact, let me put on this toga.  [Rummages through a box of costumes, looking for the toga.]

Q: [While he does so.] But you just said there was a completed screenplay…

A. [Still rummaging.] There was. Cary Anderson and I wrote the story, based on the comic; Cary wrote the screenplay. Paul Fey produced. It’s a funny script. But in Hollywood, you gotta be your own agent and work the thing on a daily basis. I was in St. Louis, Cary is in Baltimore, and Paul has World Wide Wadio to run.

Q: Quit rummaging.

Walt: [Finds toga, puts it on.] Ah, here it is! My philosophy is, “live and learn.”

Q: All that for that?

Walt: “Live and learn.” To the victor, the spoils. That is, to the first one to actually get a star and a deal and Happy Meal tie-ins, the spoils. Have we gleaned nothing from “Entourage”? Next time we bring a comedy concept to Hollywood, we dig in like a pit bulls on amphetamines.

QYou have more movie-worthy comedy concepts?

Walt: What, are you kidding me? I’d tell you, but…

Q: …you’d have to kill me?

Walt: [stares at him from an angle]  No, but what an odd thing to say.

Q: [quickly changes subject] So: you’re not bitter about Paul Blart and you’re not suing?

Walt: No. I really think it’s just great comic minds thinking alike. The movie looks really funny, actually. Kevin James. He knows from funny.

Q: Any sales of your work in the wake of publicity from the movie?

Walt: We’ve sold one comicbook, one t-shirt, and made about 46 cents in AdSense revenue.

Q: So it looks as if you’re raking in some dough from the whole Mall Cop thing, after all.

Walt: Praise the mall gods. There are mall gods, you know.

Q: We believe you. Um, are you going to leave that toga on?

Walt: Yes. I think it’s flattering to my shape.

Q: Thank you, Walt.

Walt: You’re welcome, Q.

Walt Jaschek has created and co-created other comics, such as those Dang Gnats!

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