Home Comics Hip Hop and Comics Artist DMC: “Be True To Who You Are & Just Don’t Give A Damn”

Hip Hop and Comics Artist DMC: “Be True To Who You Are & Just Don’t Give A Damn”

written by Quinzel Lee May 2, 2017
DMC holding comic book in front of pop vinyls

Run DMC dominated the music scene in the 80’s and early 90’s. Darryl McDaniels, also known as the DMC half of Run DMC, is now dominating the comic scene. He took his passion for comics and created his own independent publishing house called Darryl Runs Comics. From that, he has also created his own comic book series called DMC.

DMC the comic takes place in 1985 in New York City. I gotta say, the plot of the comic sounds amazing. If you love a good story about the underdog saving the day, this is definitely a comic for you. Here is a description from his website:

 “…graffiti covers subway cars as b-boys break and spin in playgrounds and on street corners. Drugs and crime rule the streets. The city’s brand new guardian angels wear spandex and capes, wielding their gadgets and their superpowers to “clean up” the City for the benefit of a select few. The rest whisper a different name: DMC, who dons his tracksuit and Adidas sneakers to defend the city’s marginalized citizens against super villain and super hero alike.”

I was able to meet DMC when he attended Planet ComicCon in Kansas City. He was excited to sit down and talk to me about his love for comics and how he dove headfirst into the geeky world. Before I give you the scoop on what he told me, I gotta tell you, if you ever get a chance to meet him at a con, DO IT!!! You will not regret it.

DMC holding comic arms crossed

Quinzel Lee: So tell me how you first got into comics?

Darryl “DMC” McDaniels: “I’ve been into comics since I was in kindergarten…as a little kid all I used to do was draw and collect comics. And, you know, I would read the comic book and then I would want to draw all the characters that was in it and I started with stick figures, and then I graduated to tracing paper. And then by second or third grade I realized I didn’t need the tracing paper anymore. I could just draw Batman and Superman and Spiderman… So comics was part of my foundation which prepared me to be such a dominate force in music because of all the imagination and creativity I was getting from the comic books.”

QL: “Can you talk a little bit about being into comics and being in the black community? Did you have a hard time growing up and being into all of this nerd stuff?”

DMC: “Yeah, I mean, typically, in any generation when you’re the nerdy/geeky kid who wears glasses and goes to Catholic School and now you’re reading comics too…your life is kind of miserable in this universe. When I wasn’t in school and when I wasn’t reading comic books, I didn’t feel powerful. I was a kid that loved the first day of school but hated the last day of school…I got bullied, teased and picked on. …When I was reading a comic book I was in a perfect world, but when I had to leave my house to walk to school, it was like walking through the jungle. So I was a kid that had four eyes until I rhymed on my record ‘I’m DMC/ in the place to be/ and I wear my glasses/ so I can see.’  Before I said that rhyme with dominance and authority, I got ‘hey binoculars!’ ‘hey four eyes!’ ‘hey spectacles’ so every aspect of my existence was considered not cool. But that all changed when I was given the vehicle of hip hop to express myself and my feelings. So, like any other typical geeky nerd brainiac smart kid that just would enjoy life, I went through the hardships of bullying and teasing.

QL: What advice would you give to someone who is really into the geek and comic scene but they are afraid to express and embrace their geeky side, especially someone of color?

DMC:First of all, who you are is the thing that’s going to make the world a better place. In a world that is really abnormal, we seem like the outsiders. But when we tell the truth about who we are, what we like,… when you are not afraid to talk about the thing that separates you from everyone else, you find yourself embraced by a whole nation of people who are just like you. So we may be alone in this so called ‘normal world’…but when we are confident enough among all the fire and the hurt and the bricks that’s gonna be thrown at us, we will realize that we have powers above and beyond our abilities…”

DMC concluded the interview with this profound and truthful statement “In a short way, be true to who you are, and just don’t give a damn!”

Feel the need to check out his comic? You know you want to. Start from the beginning and run to your local comic book store, or check it out here.

Have any of you read DMC? What did you guys think? If you haven’t, do you think you will go out and read it? Let me know in the comments below!

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