Hello! Welcome to the next part of our series with the Pop Creators interviewing members of the PHB team. As you may have seen on Poptropica’s blog, this turn goes to Purple Paw. Let’s get started!
1. How were you first introduced to Poptropica?
Surprise surprise, Funbrain! I’d been playing through our long lost friend, the Arcade, and had seen an ad for Pop on the side of the screen. My sister already knew a bit about it, and we set up a shared account. We continued playing together for a few years after that.
2. Who do you think is the most underrated character? Overrated?
It’s near impossible to talk about overrated characters without mentioning Dr. Hare — 24 Carrot was but the beginning of his career. Personally, I also think Amelia gets a little more attention than she’s worth.
As for most underrated, I’d have to go with Captain Ziggs from Steamworks Island. He’s already gone by the start of the island, but we later learn that he raised the drawbridge to keep the plant monsters at bay before presumably being cornered in his apartment. It’s largely thanks to him the citizens of Steamworks made it to their cryotubes in time. Quite the unsung hero!
3. What are your favorite scenes, aesthetically and to play through?
It’s definitely difficult to choose, but in my eyes nothing beats Binary Bard’s dream from Super Villain Island. That galaxy artwork is spectacular, and the whole concept of the dream itself is so inventive! The Sacred Tree Hollow from Twisted Thicket, with its mystical forest aesthetic, ranks high on the list for me as well.
4. From your perspective, how have you seen the Poptropica Help Blog (PHB) and community change over time?
It’s always shifting and changing alongside Pop itself. People will come and go often according to those changes; the end of Flash in 2020 brought both a resurgence of new fans excited for the future of the game, as well as those who became less active in the community after the loss of the classic islands. It’s amazing to see how long the PHB’s lasted and how many different people have come here over the years, whether they plant roots or just stop by briefly.
5. How has your PHB career surprised you?
I’d say I’m most surprised by the sheer amount of ideas, endeavors, and incredible creations that have graced the PHB, during my time as a staff writer and before! Artwork, fanfic, crossovers, animations, fan islands, even fan-made games—there’s so much creativity in the Pop fandom and the PHB holds a good chunk of it.
I didn’t quite know what to expect when joining the staff team, but it’s been a great experience thus far. The support and interactivity that can come from posting my own ideas is really gratifying. I’m thankful to be a part of it!
6. What inspires you?
As an artist myself, I’ve always been inspired first and foremost by other people’s artwork. I love viewing all the unique styles and methods of creating art and learning about how they’ve evolved throughout history. Getting outside and enjoying nature—whether by hiking, gardening, or finding a nice place to sit and enjoy the view—is a source of peace and inspiration for me as well.
7. What does the Pop community mean to you?
A lot. It’s become a significant part of my life—alongside meeting a fair amount of my good online friends here, the community’s become an outlet through which to channel my creativity and to view other peoples’ creations as well. Poptropica’s highly nostalgic for me, and it’s really nice to know and interact with other people who relate to that.
8. How have your experiences with the community and Poptropica influenced you IRL?
Plenty of writings, ideas, and pieces of art from my earlier childhood and the present have been heavily inspired by Pop. I remember writing stories based on the events of Astro-Knights and Twisted Thicket, and I even attempted to write a whole play revolving around Night Watch (attempted being the keyword there… ahem). Its myriad of characters even helped me overcome my avoidance of drawing people!
Even now, I still find joy and comfort in the many amazing islands of Pop. It remains special to me, and I can say with certainty it’s made a huge impact on my life.
9. Outside of Poptropica and your PHB involvement, what are you passionate about?
My ungodly amount of art and writing projects. Even though I abandon them frequently, I still care about them equally and do my best to continue them whenever life (and my overactive brain) permits.
- Island: Cryptids
- Backstory/Lore: Myron Van Buren’s family tree on his cabin wall
- Character: Princess Elyana
- Villain: Black Widow
- Costume: Daphne Dreadnaught’s steampunk design
Thanks, Poptropica, for being such a big source of inspiration for so many! Hope you all enjoyed getting to know me a little more in this Q&A, and if you like, you can check out more of my writing and art here on the PHB. You can also read this interview on the Pop Creators’ Blog. Pop on!