Sea Urchins Book One now available for Kindle!
Pungo was made as a webcomic jam. Jason drew something, and Scott added words. The following week, Scott would write something and Jason would add pictures. We alternated this way until the strip was finished.

All content, images, and characters are copyright 2000-2015 Jason Whitley and Scott Eckelaert.

The story

Olie Unrun always wanted to live a life at sea. Instead, he worked at his dad's fish-oil factory and began t life of a family man. One day something in Olie snapped and he built a ship on his land... then he relocated his house to the deck of the ship and christened the whole shebang "The Banana Moon." All Olie had to do was wait for the right storm to lift his house to the sea.

Now adrift, the Unruns piece together each day through a host of uncommon creatures and comic calamities.

The strip

Scott Eckelaert planted the idea for a comic strip by sending me a copy of Tom Heintjes Hogan's Alley Magazine after I'd just begun working at The [Myrtle Beach] Sun News in 1999. He then disappeared for the summer. Sea Urchins bubbled up during that summer.
Part of the landscape between Myrtle Beach and Sumter, SC, was boat-building in people's yards. So sprang the story of Olie and the Unrun Urchins. Between the good graces of the editor, Trisha O'Connor, the work of Features Editor Mike Morgan, and guidance of Denny Brack and Tom Heintjes, we were published first in the Sun News in 2001 and then in Penn State Blue in 2003 thanks to editor Bob Heisse. The first year of strips was collected in 2002 by David Allen's legendary Plan 9 Publishing. Sea Urchins was also featured as an Undiscovered Gem in Heitje's Hogan's Alley magazine in 2003.


  • 128 pages, ten in full color
  • Introduction by Hogan’s Alley editor Tom Heintjes
  • Foreward by Scott Eckelaert
  • Four page illustrated prologue with Rudy the Red
  • Collecting the first Sea Urchins comic strips, including the first Sea Urchins story arc: Carnival, featuring the notorious Oddo Van Price!
  • The Headless Hermit a ten page, full color original story!
  • Colors by James Offredi!


JASON WHITLEY is a cartoonist, an award- winning illustrator and multimedia/ interactive developer. He has been published in Negative Burn, The Book of Dark Wisdom, The Washington Post, and Inhuman. His paintings have been displayed across the Carolinas and in Italy. During the day, he is Creative Lead at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy's Educational Technology Research and Development department.

SCOTT ECKELAERTbrings 20 years of short story and comic writing experience writing for comic books, Knight Ridder services, and Plan Nine Publishing. He wrote the critically acclaimed (and Tom Heintjes also liked it, ‘nuff said!!!) Sea Urchins comic strip for four years. Scott is currently working on developing a graphic novel and a web-based comic with Jason Whitley.