If you’re a fan of Bart Simpson, Cam’ron, and/or the internet, it’s nearly impossible that you missed the Killa Bart image that has made its rounds on social media, Tumblr, and wherever you get your form of immediate satisfaction from boredom. The image’s existence only made sense–combine two iconic figures into one. Bart’s rebellious attitude is complimented by the confident swag of Killa Cam, giving you a reason to write to the artists at The Simpsons for the inclusion of this new character variation. It’s gotten to the point that people are buying custom chains, getting tattoos, and painting it everywhere. Was this another ploy put in motion by Cam to low key demonstrate his clout in new forms on the internet or did Matt Groening have a closet fascination with Dipset that is only now being discovered? We found the original creator of the image, Chas Truslow (who also did Cam’Stanza), and asked him how he came up with the perfect marriage of two forms of cool.
Read our interview with him below and you can purchase the Killa Bart t-shirt along with other Bart Simpson related gear HERE.
You worked at YoBeat, which boasts that it’s made fun of snowboarding since 1997. What did you do over there?
Growing up I always loved YoBeat, so to be able to say I’ve worked there is a real dream come true. My day to day role at YoBeat consisted of finding/posting new content, which normally consisted of the latest snowboard videos as well as kooky snowboard related news articles. I ran managed the site’s different social media accounts as well as contributed weekly editorial pieces. I also got to work with my co-worker Justin Leveille with writing and directing a few of YoBeat’s original video content. It was a great experience and wouldn’t change working there for the world.
Were you always drawing or coming up with your own art? Has anything else you’ve done become as popular as the Killa Bart piece?
For as long as I can remember drawing/art have been my primary creative outlet, and led me to major in graphic design in college. I don’t think anything has had as much of a reach culturally as the Killa Bart piece but one of my other drawings on Tumblr got like 20K notes on it which was pretty cool.
What made you come up with the idea of styling Bart as Cam’ron?
Once the winter had wrapped up in Vermont last year, I moved in to my girl’s apartment in Green Point while I was between jobs. While she was at work, I would spend the day drinking coffee and coming up with funny ideas for projects. One week I had a bunch of Dipset related ideas one of which happened to be Killa Bart. I think the match made sense to me because the two of them have similar attitudes, really independent, flamboyant, just real “fuck you” attitudes. It just made sense to me.
What do you think it is about Cam’ron that makes him so legendary? (even George Castanza has been photoshopped to be styled as Cam’ron)
Hahaha that’s funny you mention Cam’Stanza, because I also made that. I actually made that the day before the Killa Bart piece. But to answer your question, I think Cam’ron is so legendary because he has always been himself and done whatever he wants. From the pink mink to the “You Mad” quote, to making fun of Jay-Z for wearing sandals with jeans, to making countless hit records, it’s near impossible not to like him. Now more than ever I feel he has solidified himself as a legend with countless companies making clothes with him on them. It seems to really have revitalized his career.
Where/when did you first upload the Bart/cam’ron picture and then notice that it was spreading like crazy over social media?
It has been surreal to see Killa Bart spread online, and it always seems to happen in waves too, which I always find interesting. The first place I posted it was on my Instagram, then later that day I decided I would share it to my Tumblr too. The next day when I check my Tumblr was when I realized it had gone “viral” and I had almost 10K notes on it in under 24 hours. Then for the next few days, friends kept tagging me in people’s posts about it on Instagram, which led me to start checking the hashtags for Bart Simpson, Cam’ron, Dipset, pretty much anything I would think someone could relate to the image, and it was everywhere.
It really started to spread once Cam shared it on his IG. Then Tommy Hilfiger’s son, Ricky, got a tattoo of it. Then I found people claiming to have made it on their portfolio sites, Then a clothing designer in the U.K. was making shirts of it and selling them for $125. Then more people got tattoos of it. Then more bootleg shirts popped up. It has been crazy just trying to keep a track of it all.
Simpsons or Family Guy? Why?
No contest, The Simpsons. Family Guy has a predictable formula with episodes comprised of nothing more than nonsensical situations, cutaway gags and obscure pop culture references. It just gets stale after a while. The Simpsons on the other hand is more refined and subtle with their jokes, making it so you find new jokes the more you watch them. Also I feel like the humor spans a wide range of demographics, which is why it has become such a cultural phenomenon for so long.
Have you always been a Dipset fan? If so, what are your favorite songs to listen to while you ride?
I will always be a fan of Dipset, they were what got me into rap/hip-hop. Whenever I ride I always like to listen to Diplomatic Immunity, not just one song, but the whole album skits and all. Hopefully DI3 will happen one of these days.
Any future plans to create some art with Hip-Hop references?
Nothing is set in stone but I don’t see why I wouldn’t. Hip-Hop is such an inspiration for me, I don’t see why it wouldn’t come out of my work again. Will I ever make something as popular or well received as Killa Bart again? Probably not, but then again the Internet is an unpredictable place, maybe lightning will strike twice…
Bryan Hahn has both Diplomatic Immunity 1 & 2 on repeat today at work. He’s on Twitter (@notupstate).