Opening Sequence

I am pleased to present the opening credits for the Crash Sqauad.

Sort of.

This is one version. I am pretty pleased with it. I may post the other version so I can solicit opinions. Then again…I may not.


Enjoy. Much more to come soon.

Crash Squad Opening Sequence from Luke Newman on Vimeo.


Thursday Night Studios

Promo Video

This is the first of a series of Pomotional Videos we have made for the show.  The concept is to run PSAs/Advertisements as they exist in the world of Crash Squad.  Hopefully it will get people in the right mindset, or at least pique their curiosity.  Keep checking back…several more clips to come VERY soon.




Goals, technical difficulties…and the limits of sanity.

So, I’ve set goals for myself in the past.  Often times they are met with little or no complication.  Sometimes I have to work harder than others, but I still meet my goals.  I have set a goal for myself and this project:


(Oh, yeah…Did I mention that the Army is sending me to Korea for a year?  YES…I leave in February.)

That being said…I think I may go crazy trying to accomplish this goal.  As is typical with the Crash Squad Project…technical difficulties are going to drive me crazy.  I had another scare with my External Hard drive.  It’s the one I keep ALL the show stuff on (Animations, character data, models, sound files, scene files, sets, etc…)  It simply stopped working.  I freaked…then took a deep breath and began to work through things.  The Drive was still readable…wich was good.  I couldn’t save any data to it…bad…and, when I tried to access any show data in my animation program, the drive began to ‘flicker’ on and off…meaning that I couldn’t access data thru the program.  I could open the drive…I could see all my files.  They were still there.  That was good.  I tried to transfer the files to my desktop…and held my breath.

2 and a half hours later….success!  The files transferred to the laptop, no problem.  Now the second step.  I had to re-format the drive.  So I did…and…2 and a half hours later….SUCCESS again!  Now, it was just a matter of RE-transferring everything to External Drive so the Animation Program would read the files correctly and back to work, right?

Well….I’m not sure if something got corrupted in all the transferring of files…but as I am opening some of these character files or scene files…parts are missing.  Even some WHOLE characters are just GONE.  So…I have to take time to rebuild them.  I’ve gotten pretty quick about it, but still…that’s time I could be animating.

Another issue is that some of these ‘blank’ files are causing the program to crash.  SO, for example….if I set up a scene to animate….I’ve placed Drake where he needs to be, added the whole set, tweaked the lighting just right…and then need to add another character…if the character file is one of these ‘blank’ files….it crashes the scene and I have to start over.  SOMETIMES saving the file works…other times I can’t find the scene even if I’ve saved it and when the animation program re-opens, it opens to the last successful session I had (Which is NOT the scene that just crashed….)


No matter!  I WILL find a way to get this first episode done before I go….even if it drives me crazy.  Keep checking back…a lot should be happening pretty quickly around here in the near future!


Thursday Night Studios

Shine, Robot…

The role of Gibson is one of my favorites…of ANY character I have ever written. I know exactly what I had in mind as I created him. As we developed him for the series, Bobby and I knew that he was going to have potential to steal the show. A unique personality in a sea of larger than life characters…Gibson was clearly going to be one of the show’s biggest stars.

That said, we knew we had to cast just the right person for the role. I wasn’t exactly sure who that could have been. When Michael told me he had someone in mind I was cautiously optimistic. The actor behind Gibson’s voice had to be JUST right…and I wasn’t willing to “settle” for just anyone that could make it to the studio once a week.

Enter John Shine. I had met John before…when I would stop in at the comic shop and talk to Michael about the show. John worked there too, and was always friendly. I had no idea from those few interactions that he was interested in doing anything like voicing a character for my show. Actually, as John later told me, he thought I was “Just another goober who was talking about his awesome cartoon thing he was going to make” and was “expecting to see stick figure drawings when it came down to it.” Fortunately for me, he was impressed with the first script and volunteered to audition for the role of Gibson.

What he did with the character was unexpected. It was NOT what I had imagined when I was developing Gibson. What is was…was perfect. John brought a level of personality and INDIVIDUALITY to Gibson that I hadn’t even imagined possible with just my written scripts.  He has given Gibson the character that he so desperately needed.

So, who is John Shine? Well, he was born at Holy Cross Hospital in Bethesda, Maryland in 1968. Fast forward to his 8th grade year. John played the lead in the “Clumsy Custer Horror Show.” 27 years later, he continued his passion for theater when he participated the Montgomery Playhouse 1 Act Festival. And now…luckily for me…he shares a slice of his free time as the voice of Gibson, for the Crash Squad. He’s been married for five years to Kate.

Besides his incredible talent at voicing one of my favorite characters, John also happens to be a VERY talented artist. When I asked where his influences come from he answered in true John Shine fashion.

“All the world around me.”

Having been creating artwork for his ‘entire life,’ I asked which of the various mediums he works in is his favorite. He looked absolutely hurt and shocked that I would ask.

“That’s like asking me to choose between my children!” he responded. Then he thought for another moment. “If I had to choose it would be ink.”

A fan of John Steinbeck and Michael Chabon, John also writes and has asked about penning a script for the Crash Squad. I look forward to seeing that, as I find John’s critical opinions of film and TV to be some of the most thoughtfully constructive criticisms I have ever heard. Some of his favorite TV series include “The Wire,” “Battle Star Galactica” (the new one…), “Deadwood,” and the “Andy Griffith Show.”

I am excited to see how far John can take the character of Gibson. He truly has given life to one of the showcase characters of Crash Squad. To see some of John Shine’s Artwork you can check out his Deviant Art site, here.

We wish you a Merry…

Last night was the last Crash Squad recording session of 2009.  In true Thursday Night Studios style, I had several technical difficulties.  The laptop I use for recording broke.  The USB ports are fried…which means the mixer board won’t work.  I had to start using the new LAPTOP for recording last night.  Problem number 1…the audio software I was using isn’t compatible with my OS (Which I will not name at this point to avoid all the cynical hemming and hawwing about how bad it is…).  Solution to problem number 1…quickly download a freeware audio package and pray it works well enough for the night’s session. 

Problem number 2….the freeware audio program crashed several times when trying to save some REALLY good takes that my cast did, thus LOSING those takes and causing them to have to REDO all their lines from ruined scenes.  Solution to Problem number 2…get frustrated, restart audio app…and ‘pray it works this time.’

All in all…it went well, and we got some good stuff done. I am pleased with the progress…all things considered!

I want to thank all of my Cast and Crew for their hard work and dedication to this project.  I know it is slow going…but I PROMISE them and you that it will be worth the wait.  These amazing actors have contributed so much to my vision raising it to levels I had never dreamed possible.  THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH!!!!  Whether you have contributed a single voice in a single scene or you voice one of the main characters, your help has been invaluable to me and I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart!!!

I wish you all and your families a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year.  In the vision of the Crash Squad setting and embracing a melding of all things we know into a hybrid version of reality….I also would like to say:

Happy Christmachanakwanzika to everyone and a Merry Festivus to the rest of us!!!!

Thanks…and see you all next year.

Thursday Night Studios

Whose idea was this anyway!?

OK, so over three years ago the idea for Crash Squad was born.  After some concept refinement and development, the idea for the series came about.  It took well over a year to develop into the series it has become today.  Another year of voice recording and character/visual development brings us to today.  The thing that is killing me now is the technological side of this thing.  I recently lost the hard drive where I store all my animation project files.  I was able to recover most of it….however, I have lost a lot of the work I had done.   The animation files themselves are missing.  This means that I am back to the beginning of the animation process.   On top of that…I am having trouble with my computer actually handling the animation rendering.  It is painfully slow…and when I wait 5 hours for a 30 second clip to render and Drake’s skin is PURPLE…I get frustrated.  Mostly because that is 5 hours wasted.  The result is that my cast and crew only know that I don’t have anything for them to actually see.  We have been in  the studio recording for 14 months.  I don’t have a complete clip to show them…regardless of the countless hours I have spent working on the show.  I worry that they are going to lose interest or patience and walk.  That’s why this week I have taken off work and am doing NOTHING but working on the show.  I need to get SOMETHING done for them to see.  After all the frustrations and complications, I am wondering….Whose idea was this anyway!

Well….Time to get back to work.

Thursday Night Studios


I have always said that I wouldn’t do it.  I have claimed that it is an evil the likes of which I have NO interest in being part of.  I believe in my heart of hearts that it is a tool created by Satan himself to more rapidly bring the downfall of man!!!  And yet…I have caved into the pressures of this modern world and I have done it!

Crash Squad is now on Facebook (again)!!!!  OK, so this won’t be as dramatic an announcement to a few of you out there….who were already fans on the CRASH SQUAD Fan page on Facebook.  To be honest…I had forgotten that such a page existed, as I was not a member of said demonic website until yesterday.  I then promptly created a ******** Studio fan page.  (Note…since this entry was originally posted, the Studio has changed names and as such…will change Studio “Fan” Pages on FB.) So…including the Crash Squad fan page…We are now on FACEBOOK…again…or, still…I don’t know.  Just go check us out…become a fan…share it with a friend.

I have to go to church now and ask for forgiveness…this whole social networking thing makes me feel icky!!


Luke Newman
Thursday Night Studios

P.S. I am putting a Facebook badge here on the blog…I don’t know what that is or what it does, but if you click it and start hearing voices in your house and can send tennis balls through a glowing hole in your bathtub to the living room…don’t blame me. Blame the inter-web demons!!!

  • Previously, on Thrusday Night….

  • The Crash Squad

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