In 1996, Jussi “Juba” Tuomola was living in Paris he created a black and white newspaper strip using the same characters. He has since made a lot of changes to both Viivi and Wagner.
Juba didn¹t want to base the strip on conventional gag humour but rather let the two characters (there are just the two) find their own way in this crazy world.
In his own unique way, Juba makes fun of the traditional gender roles. The contrast between the two characters reveals all of Wagner’s shortcomings but at the same time occasionally highlights Viivi’s weird logic.
Juba’s illustration style is simple and clean. Despite the fact that he uses a minimum amount of gestures and facial expressions, the style suits this unpretentious strip.
By simple means, he manages to create an interaction that is full of expression between his two characters.
Helsingin Sanomat, the largest newspaper in Finland, started publishing Viivi and Wagner in October 1997 and it soon became a success. The first compilation album was published by Arktinen Banaani in 1998.
Currently, the strip appears in 30 newspapers all over Finland. Ten albums and books have been published, four of them in colour. About 250 000 copies have been sold.
Juba has also written a script for a Viivi and Wagner theatre play, and the opening night was in September 2002.