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Ariana Grande's official comic was fueled by watching "a lot of music videos," says the writer

Terry Blas reveals what it was like working on the comic Ariana Grande vs. Sargeant Shade and the Clonebot Brigade

Ariana Grande
Image credit: Cheyne Gallarde

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You would have to be living under a rock if you don’t know who Ariana Grande is. She began her career as a Nickelodeon actress and has grown into one of the best selling musical artists of all time. She not only experienced commercial success, but also critical success earning two Grammy awards. With such a high profile, it’s not surprising she has many endorsement deals, particularly in the realm of beauty.

Grande has a partnership with Ulta Beauty to sell various products including fragrances, hand cream, and body scrubs. Back in 2020, she unveiled the R.E.M. fragrance, which receives its name from one of her songs and stands for 'rapid eye movement.' Everything about the product screamed luxury with a bottle design from award winning package designer, Joshua English, and a scent developed with Swiss company, Firmenich.

One surprising aspect of the R.E.M. fragrance release was the inclusion of an exclusive comic book entitled Ariana Grande vs. Sargeant Shade and the Clonebot Brigade. The cover was illustrated by Cheyenne Gallarde with interior art by Veronica J. Terry Blas, the writer of the issue, shared his experience working with Grande to create the story.

"I would say it was just a lot of watching a lot of music videos for research because of specific things that they wanted included," Blas said during an ALA Annual panel. "But that was really fun to do. And knowing the tone they wanted was helpful as well. It was sort of like any other project writing the synopsis and waiting to hear back. But, yeah, it was a fun project to work on."

Unfortunately, Blas never really interacted directly with the pop star.

“I don’t know Ariana Grande. I never spoke to Ariana Grande. I did everything through a talent agent. She did have to approve of the synopsis that I wrote.”

Before you ask, no the comic Ariana Grande vs. Sargeant Shade and the Clonebot Brigade is not for sale currently - unless you want to check eBay.

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