The H-Bitez Collection
Disclaimer: I do not own the Gorillaz or any related characters/songs. Gorillaz are Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett.
These are just a collection of short stories reminiscent of the ever popular G-Bitez series on the Gorillaz YouTube channel. All of these will be post-Plastic Beach and will either be in the time period of hiatus or "in the now" so to speak. I will be working on these between working on my own projects so I do not have a definite answer of how frequent or infrequent these will be, but the idea has been driving me crazy so I gave into it. Enjoy!
"No, no, no!" the demon base player's voice echoed through the room in irritation as he began to pace the room with purpose. "It's still no' right, ya' bloody wanker!" he complained, pausing to glare at the tired looking man who had unknowingly provoked his ire.
"But Murdoc," Jamie emphasized his name with only a slight hint of the accent he'd acquired since living in France over the past several years. "I've taken the picture twelve times now. It's what you look like, man! I swear I haven't done anything to it. I mean, I've taken enough shots. If it's that big of a deal, I can just draw you lot like I normally do," he sighed, trying very hard not to roll his eyes at the other man's petty behavior. He suddenly remembered why he liked to keep these sessions to a minimum.
They were all currently in one of his old art studios doing a photoshoot for the new album. There was nothing particularly new about this set up. He'd done this many times before. Each time he would have them try new outfits and poses before taking the stills in front of a blank backdrop so that he could draw them as the weird zany cartoon characters that the fans knew and loved. But that's not what Murdoc had wanted this time. He had wanted something new and fresh. Something no one had ever seen before, he'd said - actual photographs of themselves.
It seemed like an interesting idea to Jamie, so he'd initially been on board with the idea. He'd dabbled in photography back in the day and even now he liked to post peculiar photographs he'd played with on his Instagram, so why not?
It had gone extremely well at first. He'd started out with Noodle because she'd seemed the least shy about the idea. He loved the sunglasses that she'd already been wearing and found that under the dingy lighting of the studio that if she tilted her head a certain way it would cause an interesting arched shadow affect. She looked so fierce and grown up. He could barely believe that she was still that energetic little girl that used to run around his studio causing chaos and shouting in rapid Japanese dialect anymore with how calm and focused she always seemed now.
After Noodle, it had been Russel's turn. They had looked through the random wardrobe and they'd picked out and tried a couple of different pieces before deciding on a leopard fedora and a tan overcoat. He looked fun, but still had that smooth toughness about him. Jamie had snapped quite a few photos of the large man, but hadn't found one he liked until he caught a candid photo of Russ looking up at them in confusion after 2D had tried rather unsuccessfully to tell Noodle a joke he'd heard the night before.
2D's shoot was where the real trouble with their leader had began. The wardrobe hadn't been hard at all. Surprisingly with 2D's tall awkward frame, he still looked good in almost anything. It also helped that 2D had modeling experience from the time when the band had been split up before the Plastic Beach. 2D barely had to even try as he gazed up at the camera with hooded eyes and his head tilted slightly. It was a well-kept secret of his that he'd only perfected what most knew as the sex eyes due to his poor vision. The lights were always so bright against his already blurry vision that it just came naturally to him. All he had to do was relax his face and wah-la! Perfection!
"Not bad, Toochi," Noodle had complimented as she'd looked over Jamie's shoulder while absently enjoying a sucker she'd found in a candy dish on a nearby counter.
"Yeah, man. Not bad at all," Russ had nodded in approval from the side causing the singer to flash them both a big dopy grin before sliding off the stool.
"Yo' turn, Mudz!" he'd chimed, moving to take a seat with the others to watch, his long legs somehow managing to swing childishly over the edge of the tabletop he sat on. He didn't catch the jealous look his friend shot him before taking his place on the stool.
Murdoc had been fairly confident going in. He chose a simple leather jacket and some blue shades before giving the camera all he had. Be the time he was done, he was smirking so arrogantly that they thought for sure he'd be happy with the results. But as soon as he'd waltzed over to take a look, his smirk had turned into a horrible sneer and he'd started berating Jamie as if it was the artist's fault that his pictures were less than stellar.
"Murdoc-san, perhaps you should just accept that you're getting old…?" Noodle snickered, as she pretended to pick at her nails with interest. She'd finished her sucker long ago and was getting bored from all of the senseless bickering. 2D gasped and looked at her like she was insane, but Russ merely chuckled and opted to stay silent as he watched the older man's eye twitch in annoyance.
"Old!?" he practically frothed at the mouth. "M'not old, you lil' brat! Russ' practically tha' same age as me an' his looks fiiiiine. A bit on the blank side in tha' shot, bu' fine nonetheless," he argued with a snort. She merely arched on of her eyebrows at him as if she was still unimpressed with his excuses. This only caused Murdoc to fish for more insults, though he seemed to wisely keep her name out of it. "An' Faceache ova' here barely even 'ad teh try. Looks li' he's posing fo' a damn pageant or something. It's li' your fuckin' 'em up on purpose! How are tha' fans supposed teh get the full effects of me mojo if you can' even take a proper picture?"
"But there's nothing wrong with any of your pictures!" Jamie pointed out, spinning his laptop around so that Murdoc could see them more clearly. "The whole point was to show that world what the Gorillaz look like, and this," he motioned frantically at the screen, "is what you look like. So what's the real problem here?" he grumbled. He'd never had an issue like this working with them before so he was getting frustrated about it.
"You wanna' know wha' tha' problem is, mate?" Murdoc narrowed his eyes before approaching them. Jamie visibly flinched as the Satanist jerked the laptop away from him roughly. He'd almost thought the other man was just going to break it outright. He shared a concerned look with the rest of the band as they watched him take the machine to the other side of the room and begin to click away muttering things at it like, "Sof'n tha' shit up there," and, "Hmn, yesss. Jus' remove a bi' of that."
Finally after what seemed like forever, he returned to them with a bounce in his step and showed them his handiwork looking pleased at the shocked, disgusted looks on their faces.
"That doesn't even look like you, man," Russ said, his milky gaze fixed on the heavily edited photograph. "I'm not even sure I can tell that yo' nose is still broken in this."
Noodle finally let out a laugh and stood up to slap Murodc on the shoulder just to get on his nerves. "You even removed the wrinkles! Not even a single bag under your eyes," she teased, pinching his cheek. He lightly pushed her away and crossed his arms attempting to hide the slight redness of his cheeks, but refusing to admit he'd gone a bit overboard.
"I fink he looks li' a Ringo-y Elvis," 2D said slowly, looking back and forth between the photo and his friend. At this, Murdoc smacked him upside the head causing him to yelp and the others to glare. "Well, ya' do," he defended with a whine.
Jamie silently noticed that Murdoc had even zoomed the picture in a little just so that his head was slightly bigger than the others… how fitting. He cleared his throat. "Murdoc… you can't be serious…" he trailed off, watching as the older man's smirk lifted into a predatory grin.
"Oh, I'm dead serious," he replied, standing a little taller. "This's the one we'll use. The birds'll love it!"
"I fink they have a name fo' wot yo' doing," 2D said cautiously rubbing his now aching head. "They's gotta' show an' everyfin' onnit."
"Oh, yeah? Then what's it called?" Murdoc challenged, giving him the evil eye.
"Catfish." Jamie interrupted snapping a picture while they hadn't been paying attention. And with a sly smile of his own, a few minutes later a meme was born.
A/N: So one of my favorite Humanz memes is the one where there's a picture of Murdoc from the album cover next to a picture of himself from the live interview he did with 2D that says "Profile pic vs. Real life." If you google Murdoc Humanz Meme it's the very first one that pops up. I can totally see him pitching a fit and photoshopping the fuck out of his picture until it outshined the others.
Anyways, this kind of sets the scene for these shorts. Some of them will be funny. Some of them will be sad, and some of them will be downright weird. Since they're all super short they'll be manageable for me to do between everything else I'm working on (Yay, another project!). I've got at least six more that I know for sursies I'll do, but I'm open to requests as well. I'd probably do those after my planned ones.