Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Another pull from the Indie pile!

I’d like to talk a bit about a friend of mine, named Rusty Haller.

Rusty is a damn-fine cartoonist with quite an impressive history. His first published work was back in the late ‘80s for a small CT-based publisher named Spotlight Comics. Rusty did work on a Deputy Dog comic and Mighty Mouse Christmas Special as well as Terry Tunes (an assignment he landed though Jim Main at Main Enterprises). Soon after getting published at Spotlight, Rusty was able to score a very gig at Marvel’s line of Star Comics working on such titles as Danger Mouse, Count Duckla, Heathclif, and Alf. Rusty also produced some illustrations for Marvel Age (a title that I myself worked on back in the day). Over at DC he worked on Tiny Tune Adventures, Looney Tunes, and Animaniacks. In addition to this, he worked on various Flintstones and Harvey titles for Archie Comics. As well as book and magazine illustrations.

Not content wit working other people’s products, Rusty went on to create his own characters; Ace and Queenie an anthropomorphic action/adventure spy series that he has been producing for Furrlough Comics for over four years (generating over 150 pages of printed art). About 2 years ago, a little dissatisfied with his own progress on Ace & Queenie, Rusty brought his unique creation to the web, where fans can now not only read the new web adventure, but purchase print editions of Furrlough and other comics containing Rusty’s work. Rusty also posts his art at Deviantart and Furafininity.

Now I like Rusty a whole lot, he is a very knowledgeable and affable fellow, with a huge amount of talent, so I was extremely please when he give me a copy of The Licensable Bear(tm) Big Book of Fun!. This book is a collection of The Licensable Bear’s(tm) comicbook.

To be sure there are other cartoonist's art filling up the pages of the book, and the Bear himself is created and written by Nat Gertler, but I was there for Rusty’s work. To be fair to Nat and his Bear buddy, the book is a long joke, not several jokes, but a single joke. You see, the premise of the book is that Bear wants folks to license his image to put on stuff or promote their pet cause, and every single story is about the same exact thing.

You might wonder how many variations you can do on a single theme, and bless Nat’s dark little heart, he has found them all. Some of the stories are ordinary, and some are quite entertaining. Reading them all in one sitting is probably impossible (it took me a couple of months of going back to it over and over to finish it off), it is worth the endeavor.

In addition to all of the above, Rusty has contributed to CAGDog, the online comic produced for the web by several of the members of that group. He has also contributed to my buddies over at Free Lunch Comics.

Then, as stated, there is Rusty’s work on the very entertaining, and very sexy Ace and Queenie. If you are a fan of action/adventure, anthropomorphic comics, very exotic-looking characters (yes, they are quite attractive), or simply well-drawn, and well-written comics, then you owe it to yourself to run (don’t walk) over to Ace and Queenie and check out what Rusty has in store for you. The while you’re there, you should blow your entire allowance on as many back issues as you can afford.


Nat G said...

Thanks for the kind words about The Big Book of Fun!
I'm glad that you took your time with it and didn't rush through. There was a reason why the issues were released a year apart - well, there were several reasons, but not wanting to overwhelm people with the single theme was a large part of it. It was designed to be a good comic book, unlike so many comics which are designed to be a good signature in a trade paperback. So the TPB is a bit of a compromise, but given the prices that issue 4 are now bringing, a reasonable compromise (particularly for those who want the stories that appeared outside the series.)

Robert J. Sodaro said...

Nat, I can appreciate that you wanted to space out issues, and yep, I did enjoy many of the stories int he graphic album. It was really a fun read (I especially enjoyed the text pieces, as I was never quite sure if you were being entirely serious on not, which (I presumed) was part of the fun of it all).

Tommy said...

WOAH! I'd read some stuff from a Star Comics Mini Digest (if I recall rightly) years ago. And I do have the Alf Annual that had the High Evolutionary. XD

And thank you for stopping by, Mr. Gertler. :)