Randall Christopher Bailey lives in Chicago. He likes ugliness in people, so he draws creepy, unattractive things such as a character I don't understand named Chili Franjelico. He did a comic zine for a while called the Christopher Worm but then he decided to stop. You can't really find his drawings anywhere now, which is a damn shame. Here's an interview with him.
Vice: Hi Randall. I’m sitting on a fucking stoop freezing my ass off talking to you.
Randall Christopher Bailey: That’s good.
Those images you sent me. What are they?
What do you mean?
What do you mean, what do I mean?
Of what? Who are those freaks?
One is a detail of a big drawing.
OK, what’s the big picture?
Just a guy.
Who is he?
He’s a guy who does things.
Come on, really.
He’s a character. How do I respond to this?
I'm screaming at you, sorry. What have you been thinking about lately when you draw?
God-like creatures made out of different entities, ideas, events, and actions. Binding things. They’re composites unifying everything.
Like String Theory?
No, they’re intelligent beyond human beings.
You’re really good at being specific.
You’re driving me crazy.
Sorry. Chili Franjelico is a funny name. He’s someone who can definitely transcend space and time. He’s a semi-charismatic character. I like characters that can become more than one people. In their godlike form they’re actually three or four people and everything they do forms larger more complex entities, and then they can break down again. I feel like I sound like a retard. They’re surreal and bleak.
Are you sitting outside?
Yeah, I’m outside a show and I’m not going home anytime soon. Is Chili Franjelico you in thin disguise?
I guess he’s an alter-ego. With lots of little squirming things. And he’s sort of like Ganesh.
The Hindu elephant?
Yeah, and he has a rat that helps him go through space.
And he uses it to travel. He’s a little lumpy guy, a sidekick. He’s always petting his head. It’s a routine in this universe they live in.
What’s Chili looking for?
Nothing. He’s just doing things, things he’s supposed to do.
What’s he supposed to do?
Weird menial meaningless tasks. I like characters who do that kind of stuff.
What’s the point of that?
He’s just doing this.
Is that how you feel, you’re just doing this?
Why bother? What the fuck, Randall?
This is a really good interview.
Ha! Shut up.
You keep trying to relate it back to me. They’re stock characters.
But is it just they’re going through space, The End?
It sounds like that show "The Prisoner," where the plot is set up to seem really juicy but nothing ever, ever happens.
It’s kind of like that, but it’s deeper. I don’t know—
Are you stoned?
Right now, yeah.
Are you maintaining a weird little universe?
Sort of, yeah.
What’s it like?
I’m like a cat.
I got a kitten for my birthday.
It’s a calico too.
Those are the best. What else have you been working on?
Story-telling music and chaotic performance. With Club Sashay, we alternate scenarios of the absurd and grotesque. One show we did started out as a bad stand-up routine of a Gilbert Godfrey yelling, “Dog dick, dog balls, fingering the dog balls. Tremendous mountains of cum and shit!” And then it turned into a magic routine with a lumpy magician. And these girls wore really gross masks and rubbed chili dogs on their boobs to lots of beats and farts and a sample of “Jack and Diane” with just the words “chili dog” on a loop over and over in different pitches. Then the girls acted like they were trees and another one did a bad interpretive dance. Then two people dressed like Gallagher came out and had sex with watermelons filled with gravy and hot dogs.
Wow, splosh noise.
It’s slapstick comedy. I really do like the irrelevance of everyone’s actions. When I watch what people do, the majority of jobs they have, it feels pointless. There’s something comical about that, like a guy working in advertising or when I saw graphic designers making packaging for deodorant. That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever seen—these people were so full of themselves and they were doing nothing, just making a stupid unhealthy product and taking pride in it.
Why revel in it?
I’m not reveling. It’s just understanding a system that maintains itself. I’m finding some way I can deal with it.
Why is so hard to find anything you’ve done?
I haven’t made any effort to get it to anyone. It’s not reasonable.
Well, now it’s on the internet.