An animated affair

Breehn Burns, the director and writer of hit YouTube series Bravest Warriors, talks to Steven Balbirnie about the joys of animation and how he got started in the industry

Bravest Warriors was originally created by Adventure Time’s Pendleton Ward in 2009 as an animated short for the Nicktoons Network. It wasn’t until November 2012, however, that it first appeared as a fully developed web series, helmed by Breehn Burns on Frederator’s Cartoon Hangover YouTube Channel.

Bravest Warriors is set in the year 3085 and follows the adventures of four teenagers, Chris, Beth, Wallow and Danny as they travel the universe solving problems. When asked to explain the show to the uninitiated, Burns explains, “You have to watch it to get it, I think.

“It skews a bit older, maybe 13 and up, than most kids’ shows. It’s about what it’s like to be 16-years-old, in the future, on Mars. With hormone jokes. My favourite thing about it is how I’ve developed a desire to escape into that world. It’s a fantasy I really want to live in, and write more of.”

With the first season proving to be massively popular, a second is on the way and Burns outlines his vision for it. “I want to create a place people want to live in. A rich, romanticized fantasy version of teenage life that somehow fits into five minutes.

“I just try to pack them as full of ideas as I can. [The] second season will take us inside the strange door that appeared, and there will be more episodes about Plum, Danny and Beth. And a Catbug episode.”

Burns was also keen to highlight that “YouTube funded Bravest Warriors season one and two. They came along asking Frederator for content, and we gave them this. It’s probably somewhat unique for this level of production to be internet exclusive.”

The writer has also made considerable progress within the animation industry. “I started writing and directing independent animated shorts and entering them in festivals. A friend and I created a series of films called Dr. Tran that toured around, and did well on YouTube. We made DVDs and sold them through mail order. Those films got me other work.”

Emphasising his love for animation as a creative medium, Burns explains, “Control is why I like it. You can make it feel and look and sound exactly the way you want it. Nothing like I used to be, out there under a freeway overpass with a video camera and my high school buddies, killing ourselves over something that’s going to suck.”

A video posted by the CartoonHangover YouTube channel is indicative of the hype surrounding the release of Bravest Warriors season two, as the video itself has already garnered in excess of 400,000 views and thousands of comments begging for the show to return.

With no definite return date in sight, Otwo can only recommend that you keep your eyes peeled.

You can watch Bravest Warriors at www.youtube.com/user/BravestWarriors

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