Since I recently posted about my now-defunct webcomic, I thought you might be interested in knowing about others that never made it off the drawing board. I used to be a veritable fount of new ideas, and more importantly I used to be more gung-ho about setting aside time to try developing them instead of just saying "Yeah, if only I could be bothered...", so there are a number of folders lying around here with concept art, character designs, and the occasional actual strip or two from comics that I once thought had promise. Most of them still do, if I were an actual writer. In very rough chronological order:
Podunk, USA / P.S. Zero: This one is cheating a bit since it was technically an idea for a newspaper comic, in the days before the death of newspapers as a medium was known to be inevitable, but it could be adapted to the Web without changing the format. I filled a folder to bulging with actual penciled strips of these, and they're almost all unsalvageable. I'd say it was basically Podunk U in elementary school, but I couldn't stay on-task so there were a lot of strips just involving the adults from the town, very few of whom even had names; a lot of the time it was like B.C. where whatever characters were there were just vehicles for the jokes. Since I was just discovering Bloom County at the time, many of those jokes were satirical in nature despite not being old enough to understand any of the stuff I was satirizing.
The Orange Julians: Another one from the tail end of junior high, this sort of grew out of some earlier strips. Think FoxTrot but with six kids instead of just three. Sadly, none of the material from this one appears to have survived; I don't even remember who all the kids were. There were the twins, Jason and Jenna; the older sister Harriet, and a teenage brother named Zach... and I dunno about the other two. On a related note, how come there have been so many prime-time cartoons about families but every single one of them has topped out at three kids? You'd think somebody would see the inherent comedic potential in a show where the kids are literally too much to handle.
Fired from the Canon: The result of being exposed to the wild world of webcomics for the first time and coming away with the impression that, wow, they're weird. The premise was similar, in hindsight, to Drawn Together: A bunch of characters supposedly rejected from other webcomics — and drawn in appropriately disparate styles — have taken up residence in the world between the worlds. There was an anime girl, a robot, a fairy, a mermaid cat, and a dog person, and plans to add more when I got better acquainted with just how deep the webcomic rabbit hole went. But other things stole my attention, including plans for...
Paws and Effect: I AM THE BEST AT TITLES. This was a straight-up furry comic, but with humans in it. The product of an age when I was still convinced that a furry universe needed some sort of excuse for existing (ha ha), this takes place in a world where roughly half the world's population wakes up to find that they have become animal people overnight. And nobody knows, or ever figures out, how or why. This was before Revolution or Heroes existed but definitely after Left Behind. The hook was that it would actually take a semi-serious approach to answering the question of what might result if that happened, rather than just being an excuse to draw furries. A few characters from this actually wound up in my gallery — Denny Frith the skunk, and Tyler the fox kid and his schoolmate Summer (a different Summer). This one got by far the most development (since Podunk, USA) but was ultimately abandoned because, again, I realized I didn't have the writing chops to pull it off like I wanted.
The Haunted Boarding House: Basically The Munsters meets Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends: A mad scientist and a witch get married, buy a creepy house on the outskirts of town, and rent it out to a collection of Halloweeny characters, including the Skeleton Formerly Known as Ray (or Ex-Ray for short), a little ghost named Boo who couldn't scare a cat, and a vampire who has no game. Playing the role of the perfectly ordinary person stuck living with them is their preteen son Brad, who can't reconcile the inherent coolness of his parents being creepy weirdos who dabble in the paranatural and rent their house out to monsters with the inherent uncoolness of them being his parents. This one could easily be reworked into an animated series if I had the kind of clout to do that; it pretty much reads like the premise of some new Cartoon Network show already (or even a Hasbro toyline turned Discovery Kids cartoon).