One of the worst kept secrets in comics became official today: 3-D Cowboy is out of a job.
Cowboy, who has been narrating “God Hates Astronauts” since its jump to Image Comics, has been part of a feud with “God Hates Astronauts” creator Ryan Browne that has gone public a few times. Rumors of trouble began at New York Comic Con 2014, where Browne was seen shouting “WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING?” to Cowboy, who was signing autographs and talking to fans. “THIS ISN’T ABOUT YOU! I’M THE STAR,” Browne cried, before throwing his hot coffee all over Cowboy, inadvertently burning two small children walking by. Browne muttered “collateral damage” before settling back behind his booth, while Cowboy ran to the bathrooms to tend to his wounds.
One of our insiders at Image reported a visit that Browne and Cowboy took to the California-based publisher in the winter of 2014. After entering the building, Browne insisted that Cowboy wait in the lobby and “read “Chew,” or something,” as he went on a tour of the offices, not returning for many hours. On that same trip, there was an incident in San Francisco International Airport, where Browne was seen telling Cowboy that, though he purchased him a ticket to California, it was up to the ghostly blob to provide his own ticket home. When Cowboy asked Browne how he could do that on his meager salary, Browne just laughed and laughed. Sources saw Browne still laughing long past the security lines, eating a Cinnabon and using a neckpillow in the boarding area.
But it all came to a head at a signing last month at Challengers Comics and Conversation in Chicago. When Cowboy showed up to the signing, he found that his spot at the table was not there, and the sign reading “3-D Cowboy” had been hastily changed to “BED Cowboy.” In his seat, Browne lay a threadbare Woody (from Toy Story) doll and laid a copy of “The Manhattan Projects” over him, like a blanket. When questioned about this, Browne said “Kids love Toy Movie – what don’t you get about that?” Eventually, Cowboy was removed from the premises after Browne claimed he saw him attempt to shoplift a copy of “God Hates Astronauts,” which Browne made a point of saying was on sale for $9.99, repeatedly and at the top of his voice.
In the interest of full disclosure, Browne has been a friend to the site for some time, contributing to our art months, appearing on our podcasts, and co-running contests for “God Hates Astronauts.” When I reached out to Browne for a comment, he said “who are you, exactly?” and after showing him multiple pictures of us together, he said “oh you’re the ugly one. Yeah, I know you,” but then quickly hung up the phone when his doorbell rang. I heard him yell “ooooh cheesy bread” before the call cut off. However, he eventually sent this statement over:
It had become clear to us at Gone Hots Assnauts HQ, that certain personal ‘issues’ in the ‘home’ life of ‘3-D’ Cowboy were impeding his ability to ‘narrate’ clearly and effectively. As a result, Mr. Cowboy is no longer an employee of Gut Hats Crampstronauts Industries Incorporated LLC. We thank him for his below adequate ‘storytelling’ and wish him the ‘best’ in his future narrating ‘endeavors.’
The “personal issues” comment is referring to the now-deleted tweets where Browne claimed that Cowboy has been battling personal demons. References to “nose candy,” “women of the night,” and “many, many injured animals” appeared in a string of tweets early last week. He also tweeted at the producers of The Jinx should look into Cowboy’s past to, and I quote, “find out where he was in early September of 2001. Not the tenth, or the twelfth even…”
3-D Cowboy has taken the high road through all of this, starting a Twitter account to send out this message to his fans:Continued below
My family and I ask for privacy at this time, and wish @RyanBrowneArt all the best in his future endeavors.
— 3-D Cowboy (@3DCowboyyyy) March 24, 2015
The question on all of our minds, of course, is who will be replacing him on the book? Well, we can report exclusively that Charles Soule is the new narrator of the book. Browne also had this to say about Soule:
In happier news, we are pleased to announce that Grammie Award winning writer, Charles Soule, shall now become the regular narrator of GHA! Charles is best know for his run on ‘Death Of She-Swamp-Verines 44’ for Marble Cromics Industries and we feel that his fresh new spin on narrating will enhancing the pages of Gold Hunts Astronomers for years and years to come!”
I reached out to Soule for comment, to which he replied “I’m just happy to have a job.”
Browne also provided us with, “the best pages your mouth-breathing readers will ever read,” which shows off Soule in his new job.
We at Multiversity wish 3-D Cowboy all the best, and look forward to seeing his narrating skills in the future.
“God Hates Astronauts” #7 hits stores on April 1.