Monday, August 31, 2009

Its Funny until someone makes a deal with the Devil (Then it’s Friggin’ Hillarious!)

By now you’ve all heard about Marvel’s deal with the Devil Disney Company (Yes, Virginia, that’s 4-billion-with-a-B-billion dollars!

Well, the entire industry has been buzzing with the news all day, and well, some folks have been having a bit of fun with the concept of a Disney-owned Marvel by producing some images that mash-up characters from both companies. As can be expected, many are very funny, and I wanted to share them with you here:

I’d thought that I’d share some of that silliness with you. The first two images were sent to me, while the last three are all mine.

(Whups, almost forgot this one.)

Yeah, that last image is an update of something I did earlier today, I added the Daily Bugle that Spidey is holding in his hand.

More as it happens.

***** THIS JUST IN! *****

I just saw more Marvel/Disney images over here that I wanted to share, and Craig Yo posted this Image that Jack Kirby did several years ago for a book that Craig was publishing at the time. I wanted to include Jack’s image, but I’ll let Craig tell you more about the book itself over at his blog.

If anyone finds more Disney/Marvel images, feel free to add the links. This is getting fun!

Holy Bat S#it, Micky! Is that an Iron Web in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?

Settle in for a wild ride kids, I just spotted this in The Financial Times!

Disney buys Marvel for $4bn

New York, August 31 – Walt Disney said on Monday it plans to buy Marvel Entertainment for $4bn in a deal that would add characters like Iron Man, Spider-Man, and the Fantastic Four to its entertainment empire.

The cash and stock deal values Marvel at $50 a share, or a premium of 29 per cent to Marvel’s closing stock price of $38.65 on Friday. The deal has been approved by the boards of both companies.

Marvel’s shares shot up to $48.70 in pre-market trade. Shares of Disney, which will acquire ownership more than 5,000 Marvel characters, dropped about 3 per cent.

Marvel shareholders would receive a total of $30 a share in cash plus approximately 0.745 Disney shares for each Marvel share they own.

Can you say, wow?

Not sure what all this means, but off the top of my head:

  • I wonder if Universal will still be able to have Marvel Land at their theme parks, or will Spidey and company start showing up at Disneyland?

  • Will the more “adult” aspects of some of Marvel’s comics be Disnified?

  • Will Disney start to exert editorial control over the Marvel line (i.e., will they force Joe Q. to get Peter and MJ back together?

  • Will the cost-conscious Disney trim staff at Marvel, will they trim the budgets of the Marvel films?

Obviously there is more (MUCH MORE) to this story.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Building my Spidey Library

So, my local comicbook shop (A Timeless Journey) shot me an email the other day about a big one-day-only sale. So — given that I’ve been working on the Official Index to the Marvel Universe Spider-Man entries, I just couldn’t resist the opportunity to fill in some of the gaps in my Spider-Titles. So I scored a fist full of comics at a sweet discount.

While I’ve been doing this type of back-fill over the recent years whenever I go to a Comic Con, I finally realized that I sort of owe my local shops some of my back-issue business, and want to purchase as much of my back issue needs from their stock.

I figure over the next couple of weeks I want to seriously take stock of the Spidey comics that I’m missing, and make up a serious list that I’ll start carrying around with me. I really would like to see how close I can come to completing all my runs by the end of the year (I’m not that far off).

I’ll keep you posted.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Now this is a Wedding Cake!

I don’t know the folks who got married and used this cake as their wedding cake, but I do know someone who went to their wedding, and then sent me this photo.

I’m totally envious of the guy who managed to convince his wife that this was a cool wedding cake.

Like I said, totally cool.

August for Belkis

Hey I just realized that I all but forgot that this was August, and that I needed to post the Belkis image of the month.

This image is brought to us by my gal Michele St. Martin who was born in the Big Apple, and (by her own admission) initiated into a very strange family that weaned her on a steady diet of Famous Monsters, Eerie, Creepy, Heavy Metal magazine, stoner-rock, Kung-Fu movies, really bad horror & exploitation films, and great books & art.

Eventually she attended Manhattan’s High School of Art and Design, graduating with honors & a penchant for drawing truly naughty images. After attending Brooklyn’s Pratt Institute for a spell, she figured she’d be making more money freelancing than actually going to class, which she did with relish & has been doing ever since, illustrating for various companies, publications, and private clients. Currently, Michele is pursuing various projects, including a collaboration slated to appear in an original horror comic entitled MUTATIA. She now divides her time between New York City and Seattle, WA. You can also check out her ComicSpace page, DeviantArt, and her online gallery.

Face it, kids, Michele St. Martin is simply the coolest! Oh yeah, if you want a copy of James Rodriguez’s über-cool NovaStar Studios, Fantasy Art Calendar (featuring Belkis), you can contact James over at his site, and while you are there, ask him about his up-coming sci-fi comicbook.

Fun Time at Dave & Busters

So, I haven’t had the opportunity to post on this yet, but last week (two weeks ago?) I attended a Funnybook Happy Hour in Times Sq. that was thrown by the good folks who stage the NY Comicbook Convention. They have been doing this for a few months now, and promise to keep doing it until they get it right er, until the next NY ComicCon (next October, I believe).

Well, this one was very special for me, and not just because my favorite Marketing professional (Belkis) showed up, but because my son, Dylan, attended the event with me. Now, Dylan is normally not a funnybook buff, (he has attended shows with me in the past, but mostly when he was much younger), but as this was his last week before he began college @ Syracuse University, he chose to hang out with me for a bit.

One of the advantages of having Dylan with me was Dylan is a very lucky kid, and I don’t mean lucky in that he has me as his dad, but lucky because he keeps wining stuff. Needless to say, he won for me the nifty-cool comic that you see with this post (which was autographed by the artist, I believe). The comic is Darkness/Hulk #1. While I’m not a usual reader of either title, I am (obviously familiar with both characters, and did enjoy this very well-written and well-drawn comic.

Thanks Dylan, and don’t forget to buy that lottery ticket. I hear it is worth around a quarter-of-a-BILLION-dollars (Hey, you still have four more years to go, and I still have to put your sister through school when it is her turn!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

On-Line Funnies that made me Laugh

OK, I just wanted to share a couple of funny online comics that my brother sent me that made both of us laugh:

This first one is the ideal comment on Twitter.

This next one is a comment on marriage.

While this final one sort of sums up my feelings about the fact that my son is now away at college himself.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Romantic comics

When adding the “Love” back into comics; one of my favorite books that I love is Thom Zahler’s wonderful Love and Capes. It is easily the best combination of super-heroics and romance that I’ve ever read. While it really is essentially a comic that details the relationship between the Crusader (Mark Spencer) and his girlfriend, Abby Tennyson. The Crusader protects Deco City, and pals around with other heroes, including Darkblade (Paul LeCroix, protector of Chronopolis, and fellow member of the Liberty League), while Abby runs a bookstore, knows that Mark (an accountant) is The Crusader, and has a sister named Charlotte.

Other characters include Amazonia (Crusader’s ex girlfriend), Arachnerd, Steel Worker, and well, a number of other characters that are thinly-veiled versions of DC and Marvel heroes. Oh yeah, issue #11 is the most recent issue out, with #12 (due out later this year), slated to be the double-sized wedding issue. As always, Thom provides sparkling dialogue, and engaging stories, perfectly blending the amount of super-heroics with a requisite amount of mushy relationship stuff that keeps this ideal blending of both genres.

It is a true treat to read this comic, and I look forward to each and every issue (as a matter of fact, Thom always has a Free Comic Book Day version of one issue, which then is also issued in sequence as part of the on-going series.

Well, as long as we are talking about “romance” Comics, I thought that I’d run this report from my pal Heidi MacDonald over at The Beat (a column she writes for Publisher’s Weekly) about comics. This particular edition of her column is about a romance publisher that is developing romance comics for both online and iPhone delivery. Now while I’ve never really read any of their comics, I have read my share of romance comics over the years, and know of their worth and value. So if you like romance comics (or you want to hook your romance-reading girlfriend on them so she will stop breaking your stones over your reading comics), then you might want to hook her up with these folk.

Oh, if you want more info on romance comics, follow these links:

  • Captain Spectre - Adventure in the grand tradition of 1930's - 1940's newspaper strips.

  • Corbett Features - Enjoy Romantic Comics? Read Star Crossed at Corbett Features. 6 Comic Strips and a Weekly Caption Writing Contest!

  • - A directory of online comics.

Now go and have fun!

When Companies Collide!

One of my favorite type of comic is the inter-company crossover. You know what I’m talking about, when the heroes from two companies team up in the same comic. I just love that kind of stuff. I know that it doesn’t happen as much today as it did back in the ‘80s & ‘90s, but it apparently still does, as evidenced by this miniseries that I ran across just last week which was a Marvel/Top Cow team-up pitting The Mighty Avengers & Cyberforce against Thunderbirds & Hunter-Killer.

This story occurs just after Civil War (Marvel Time) and just before the events of the Cyberforce/Hunter-Killer Top Cow match-up. For the Avengers the story is just after the formation of the Mighty Avenger team by Tony Stark (they spar with mole Man then take part in this story).

While the story itself was quite entertaining, I did have a bit of a problem with the story. Unfortunately, part of the set-up of the story just doesn’t hang right. The New Avenger team is doing photo ops promoting how totally cool they are (much to the chagrin of some of the team members), and are pulled off course on a return trip to New York and get involved with Cyberforce. Now while this is innocent enough the geography itself is off.

Cyblade is in his ancestral home in Westchester, NY. when he is attacked. The Avengers are on a return trip (in a Quinjet) from Washington, D.C. and head to the conflagration. While they are on the way to the attack, Black Widow says to Ms. Marvel “Are you sure? Don’t the Thunderbolts have jurisdiction...”

Now, I’m not a big T-Bolt fan, but even I know that the T-bolts are located in the Rocky Mountains (Colorado Springs, CO, in fact); which — last time I checked — is no where near Westchester, NY.

Other than this (not so) minor glitch, the story reads fine, and seemed to capture the animosity between the Avengers and Thunderbolts, as well as Stark and Osborn (this is before the flip-flop that occurred just after Secret Invasion and Osborn replaced Stark as top dog (and inserted his (Dark) Avengers in place if the Mighty Avengers).

I’m not sure how the series did (it ran from May to July of this year, and just might be on the shelves of your favorite comic shop if you are lucky), but hopefully it will lead to more teaming of secondary and tertiary groups of characters. personally, I have my hopes on a Spider-Man, Static, Backlash, Creeper team up, as the last three characters are among the most notable “knockoffs” of the first, and all personal favorites of mine.

How cool is that?

More Fast Food Toys

OK, so it’s been a couple of days since I’ve been here but I haven’t been idle, I’ve been scoring some fast food toys (among other things). First up, I picked up a couple of Lego race cards at McDonald’s. While I’m normally a big Lego fan, these toys are only three pieces each (it tool longer to affix all of the decals than assemble the car itself), which puts this way down on the Lego coolness scale as far as I’m concerned.

Next up, are a couple of more G.I. Joe toys from Burger King. Again, I’m really not a big fan of the flick, but the toys are OK (to be sure, I was hoping for one of the other figurines, not a vehicle or device (which is what I scored this time out).

Not quite sure if I’ll be getting any more of either of these sets, as I’m just not really impressed with either set, but I suppose that they are cool enough for the younger kidlings.

I’ll have to try checking out some of the other fast food places to see what else is out there these days.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

A Pair of Heroes

Spider-Man and the Human Torch, a pair of teens from the dawn of the Silver Age of Marvel Comics. They have been rivals, they have been friends. Last year, Dan Slott wrote a five-issue limited series that tracked these two teens across the time of their lives.

For me, it was one of the best Spidey limited series that I had read in recent days. So it was a real pleasure for me to be asked to write the cover copy to the hard cover bound volume of those comics.

So you can imagine my surprise when I received this very book as a wedding anniversary present from my wife this past week when we celebrated our 21st anniversary.

How cool is that?

Friday, August 21, 2009

Spidey @ Old Navy

So I just learned that Old Navy is giving away a 12-page reprint of the Spidey portion of Amazing Fantasy #15. However, before you run out to grab your own copy, be aware that they are making you purchase a collectible kid’s T-shirt (for $10.50-$12.50) before they will hand over the comic.

Now, I don’t know about you folk, but I really don’t need a kid’s collectible T, so what I did was purchase the T, and am intending on bringing it back in a week for a return. I’m sure that they will give me a store credit, which I’ll take and simply use that to purchase something for my daughter that I’m sure that she’ll need for back to school stuff.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The MARVELous Tim Gunn

While I personally don’t watch the show, I understand that Tim Gunn hosts Project Runway (formerly on Bravo, and now on Lifetime). Well, I was watching The Daily Show today (from last night), and I learned that Gunn, will appear in an up-coming Marvel comic!

Fun! Marvel comics is releasing a fashion comic named Models Inc. on Aug. 26 starring Tim Gunn. Similar to his role on Project Runway, Tim will act as the "wise one," helping to solve the crime of a young set designer murdered during New York Fashion Week — all while wearing an Iron Man suit! So far, we know Models Inc. will feature three ladies: Millicent Collins (Millie the Model), Patsy Walker (Hellcat), and Spiderman's Mary Jane. Sounds like a fashion paper version of Charlie's Angels.

By all reports, Gunn will join forces with the Invincible Iron Man this month (August) in a backup story in the pages of the comic, Models, INC. #1.

Here’s the story description from the press release: “The New York Museum of Fashion is hosting an exhibit of Iron Man’s armor—the best suits in the Marvel Universe. When a villainous threat crashes the event, it’s up to Iron Man to save the day, but he will need help from the man best-suited for the job: Tim Gunn.”

Seriously, how wicked-awesome is that?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Another Spidey toy

I was at my local comic shop yesterday, and dropped three bucks worth of quarters into his “gumball” machine, only to come up with one of the remaining five figures (A Spidey who appears to be ledge-surfing). I also acquired duplicates on Sandman and the Spidey figure I already had (still don’t know what the eighth figure is (perhaps Tobor?)

This set of figures is way cooler than the first set, as that initial set had the figures separated into two or three pieces, while this one has them in three or more pieces.

(Daughter has the camera, I’ll get a better pic when she gets back from the Maccabi Games.)

John Carbonaro, we miss you.

A few months back my friend John Carbonaro passed away. A short time after that, Jakie Estrada from the Comic-Con International: San Diego invited me to contribute a tribute to John within the pages of the program book.

With the help of Hal Jones, I did just that.

Today, I received a couple of copies of that tribute. It appears below:

Monday, August 17, 2009

...About that Spidey Play...

A buddy of mine just sent me this link which seems to indicate that the Spidey B’way play is kaput...

The shutdown of the Spider-Man musical, initially reported as a temporary hiatus while a new producer was installed (see “Spider-Man Play Shut Down”), may be more permanent, according to New York Post columnist Michael Riedel, who also reported the initial shutdown. He reports that the cast has been released from their contracts, which would make restarting production difficult. Riedel said that a new producer could not be found for what he called “the biggest fiasco in Broadway history.”

Obviously I hope not, but the Play site is still up. Not sure what to make of it all, but I’ll stay on top of it, and will keep you posted.

Spider-Man returns to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade!

Now here is some good news!

Some time back I (along with some 2161 other folks) signed an online petition to bring Spider-Man’s balloon back to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade. Well, after three block-buster movies, and a date with Broadway in 2010, Spidey is Back!

You read that right, Spider-Folk! Spidey will return to the parade this year!

Marvel and Macy’s have announced that, after far too long of an absence, the Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man will be making a triumphant return to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade this year. I had stopped watching this thing years ago, but with a little one in the house now, it’s back on the Must See docket of holiday specials, and I do admit that I was kind of curious as to how and why I managed to miss Spidey this last go-round. This press release solved that mystery and cheered my day just a little bit.

I might have to actually watch the parade this year!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Hey kids, it is the Last Fan Happy Hour of the Summer!

Brought to you by the NYCC folks they are having another Happy Hour at Dave & Busters in Times Square, NYC!

Here is the info you need!

Summer is almost over, so what better way to celebrate than a happy hour? Come by Dave and Buster's August 19th 6pm-9pm. Enjoy drink specials, half priced games and our spin the wheel raffle! We have so many prizes, I don’t know if they will all fit in this email:

• Goody Bags courtesy of Metal Machine Ent.
• Exclusive Ron English MC Super Size Keychains
• Limited Edition Jericho Aschans courtesy of Devils Due
• DC Comics Swag
• Tons of Swag from
• Surveillance DVDs and more from Magnolia Pictures
• Manga Kamishibai: The Art of Japanese Paper Theater
• The Art of Harvey Kurtzman
• 1 Pair of Tickets to the Toxic Avengers Musical
• Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monster Gift Packs and Posters

Have you heard of our new Podcast/Radio Show/Blogcast, Streaming Medium? Want to be on it? You'll have your chance at the NYCC Fan Happy Hour! All you need is your opinions and the willingness to talk to an NYCC Team Member,which means it's easy we hope. Want to hear our first show, check it out at streamingmedium.

Don’t miss out on your last chance to win amazing prizes and hangout with the NYCC Team this summer. See you On Wednesday!

(Not so) Creepy

The first comics I read were newsstand comics, Harvey, Gold Key, Archie; I then grew into the world of Superheroes (DC, Marvel), but when I got to High School, I discovered Warren’s line of horror mags (Creepy, Eerie, and the rest of the Horror-verse that was Warren Comics), Along the way I was also exposed to the old EC-style comics (both from EC and the mass-market pablum that filtered into DC, Marvel, and the rest of the mainstream, newsstand books), so in spite of my admitted bent towards guys and gals wearing Spandex and punching the crap out of each other, I do know a bit about the history of horror in comics.

(Unavoidable aside, I not only interviewed Steve Bissette for four hours about his then-upcoming book Taboo (and remained friendly with him for several years afterward until we lost tough with each other) but I also interviewed Jim Warren (several years later) and still (occasionally) get a Christmas card from him (no, really!).)

Anyway, a couple of years ago Papercutz (helmed by my friend and former editor Jim Salicrup) re-launched the classic EC Comic, Tales From The Crypt. This version was re-imagined for kids (sort of an illustrated Goosebumps). Not bad, but not really horror either. Well this month, Dark Horse has relaunched Creepy. Well, in spite of the fact that I’ve written a horror story or four (the first three issues of Psychosis! for GWP, and issue #3 of Only In Whispers for Free Lunch Comics, plus am continuing my Wülf Girlz series for Atlas Unleashed) I really wasn’t interested in picking up Creepy #1, that is until Mark Mazz, my editor, publisher and friend prompted me to do so.

Well, I did, and wow, was I extremely disappointed. For whatever reason, Dark Horse (or, more specifically, New Comic Company who — I believe — packaged the material for Dark Horse) chose to not so much relaunch the title but essentially pick up with stories that could have very well been published by the title some 30 or 40 years ago.

Please note, this is so not a compliment.

Let me digress for a moment. As good and ground-breaking as those stories were all those years ago, for the most part, they were all what I term “Turnabout Revenge Fantasies”. That is to say, (and this is an oversimplification) a young boy would pull the legs off spiders, and then get trapped in the web of a giant spider. Effective stories for a 12-year-old, but not so scary for an adult read. (I say that even though to this day I’m not entirely unconvinced that when a smash insects in my house that someday soon a hoard of gigantic insects wont swarm me and kick me to death.)

Still, to return to Dark Horse’s Creepy. It just isn’t scary The stories are all cast in the precise mold of its earlier incarnation, and just don’t do it for me any more. Now, while it may be possible that these stories just might be scary to a younger generation that didn’t grow up reading these stories already, I am highly suspect. If only due to the vast expanse of Freddie Kruegers, Michale Myers, and Jason Voorhees populating the movie landscape. It could be me, but I just don’t see this stuff as scaring anyone.

I realize that this may come off as professional jealousy (because of my association with Psychosis!, even in spite of the fact that this version of Creepy (at least in it’s packaging) looks nearly identical to Psychosis!. Still, it has no teeth. This Creepy still thinks the stuff that scared me at 15 in 1970, is going to scare me (or someone else) in 2009. I think not. At least in Psychosis we tried to update the fear-mongering to relate to issues and fears of the 21st century (the schoolyard Bully, Predators that stalk our children, global warming, eminent domain, shadow conspiracies, and the like.

Our fear base has changed over the past 30 years, unfortunately the storytelling in this tome has not.

If you want to see what I mean, write to me and I’ll sell you copies of the GWP issues of Psychosis! that I still have. Or, if you are going to be at the Wizard/Big Apple show in NY this October You can look up Atlas Unleashed in Artist Ally, and check out what we are doing with the genre.

Until then. See you in the funnypapers!

Friday, August 14, 2009

GI Joe Invades BK

OK, so the movie was for crap, but the toys are kind of cool. The set is eight items two vehicles, two figures, and four pieces of equipment. The first two toys are Storm Shadow and the Mantis Sub.

I’m not entirely certain that I’m going to go for the whole set (I made no effort to grab any of the Transformers) as I really didn’t like any of the toys. (Ironic, I liked that movie, but hated the toys, and I really didn’t like this movie but am going to get some of the toys — go figure.)

Anyway, here is a photo of the first two items:

While I understand that my 15-year-old nephew Tony-o loved it, I had a number of problems with the film. First of all, it is hard for me to take a film seriously when it is so totally obvious that no one associated with the film takes it seriously.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have watched it after seeing The Hurt Locker, and Black Hawk Down (on TV again). Hell, even the military Rangers from Transformers seemed like more of a sincere military unit than these Yabos.

I think that I would have liked it much better if it was set more in the real world and not so much “Star Wars.” Still, I wasn’t the target audience, Tony-o was, so, what do I know, eh?

G-Man Flies Again!

OK kids, yesterday I received my very own copy of Chris Giarrusso’s wicked-cool Image comic, G-Man: Cape Crisis. (To be sure, I purchased it through my funnybook retailer.)

I have to say that this is easily the most entertaining comic I’ve read in a dog’s age (OK, OK, I really like the Franklin Richards: Son of a Genius series by Chris Eliopoulos, and Marc Sumerak). Still, this stuff is a hoot-and-half. Chris, as you all know, is the talent behind Marvel’s Mini Mavels. This five-issue mini-series is done in the style of those Mini-Marvels, and picks up on the story of G-Man that ran in Image comics (collected in its own comic late last year).

This first comic has G-Man and his older brother dealing with a crowd of kids from their neighborhood who feel that they should have the right to possess some of the magic fabric that turned our two heroes even though mst of the kids are jerks and never really liked G-Man before he acquired his powers.

The dialogue is hip and story itself is light and breezy. It is exactly what comics should be. Further it is a perfect introductory comic for young readers, and I strongly urge all retailers to scoop this comic up and highly promote it.

It is the sort of comic that will ensure this industry readers for years to come. I kid you not.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Eating Spider-Man

So, have you ever had your favorite superhero for lunch? No, I don’t mean over for lunch,, I mean, for lunch. Well, if you are a Spidey fan then you can do just that. My wife and daughter were away a couple of weeks ago and while they were out they discovered Spider-Man Mac & Cheese from Kraft.

Even better than just finding it, they purchased a box for me.

I’ll probably have it for lunch sometimes soon. Today, it's leftovers.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

And the Human Torch wraps it up!

OK, so I’ve been telling you folks that I’ve been going to my local movie theater to watch films (D'oh) and while there I’ve been tapping this “gumball” machine that has Marvel character toys in it. Well, tonight when I went to see both Public Enemies and G.I. Joe, and I managed to score the final figure in the first (?) set of toys, none other than the Human Torch himself.

One of my local comic shops has another gumball machine with a second set of Marvel characters of which I’ve already scored three of the eight figures. Each set has the characters come in a plastic egg an each figure needs to be assembled. I’m enjoying acquiring these toys, and some of my friends are also enjoying my hunt, as they are getting my duplicate figures.

Oh yeah, as for the films I say, Public Enemies was quite good (although I really liked The Lady in Red much better). As I was already at the theater, I figured that I’d stick around and check out G.I. Joe, and — even though I was really pumped after seeing the trailer — I was very disappointed in the film itself. It is very hard for me to take a film seriously when it is clear that the producers of the film don’t take it seriously.

Actually, I liked Transformers much better than this film (yes, both of them). As a matter of fact, if the G.I. Joe squad had been a little more like the Rangers from the Transformers films, I would have liked that film much better.

Ah well. Sometimes you hit, and sometimes you get hit.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Vampyres Among Us

Everybody loves vampires (personally, I’m more of a werewülf fan, but that’s something of another story). I know that they are all around us, everywhere we look, TV, film, even in comics. a couple of months back I scored a comic by a very talented fellow named Baron Misuraca. His comic, In Flesh and Spirit is a rock ‘n’ roll vampire comic that is not only wonderfully rendered, but beautifully written as well.

Funny thing, though, when I read it, I felt an odd sense of Déjà vu, you see. it looked a whole lot like the comic Gothis by my good buddy Melvin Ylagan who illustrated the cover of Psychosis! #1.

In this adult-themed comic, Baron pulls of a very cool mix of vampire lore and the underground rock scene as his characters explore their lives living forever in the darkness of the night. Well, the funny thing I subsequently learned, is that Baron and Melvin are not only friends, but both rock ‘n’ rollers, and not only gig out together, but produce comics together. (Ain’t it funny how life works out?).

Anyway, it is very clear that Baron has been influenced by classic horror cinema and ‘70s comics, In Flesh and Spirit chronicles the origin and ongoing existence of Baron Misuraca, a 14th Century musician cursed into living the life of the undead. Now the Baron has been reborn in contemporary New York City, where he reigns in dark dominion but — as always — is a slave to two masters: his insatiable lust for blood and his spiritual quest for redemption.

This is a very cool comic, and if you see Baron and Melvin gigging out in NYC or at a comiccon, then you should ask to buy a copy of his comic.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Dust Cover Copy

So I’ve mentioned that I’ve been writing for Marvel (again) lately. (The Official Index to the Marvel Universe) Well, that’s really only only part of the Marvel work that I’ve been doing. One of the other bits that I’ve been doing for them is penning the dust jacket cover copy for some of their hard-cover collections.

This is fun, and gives me access to the Marvel offices, and well, is really as entertaining as all get-out. Plus with the email loops that I’m involved in with the other writers, it feels like I’m part of this great big funnybook jam session, and what could be cooler than that?

Any who, enough of this, I’ve got to get back to it, chat more later.

To date, I’ve done four. Iron Man: The Art of Iron Man, the Movie (Hardcover) which covered the art of the wildly-successful film; Supreme Power: Contact Premiere (Hardcover) which collected the six issues of the Marvel Supreme Power comic by J. Michael Straczynski and Gary Frank; Spider-Man And The Human Torch (Hardcover) which collects the wonderful limited series that paired long-time friends Johnny Storm and Spidey (a personal favorite of mine); and — most recently — the up-coming TIMESTORM 2009/2099 (Hardcover) that collects the (not yet completed) mash-up of the current Marvel Universe with an altered version of the one from 2099.

Last night we all got roped into a big project that was fun (tedious and exhausting, but fun, none-the-less). I really feel that I’m having a good time again, and rebuilding some of the connections that I had back in the ‘80s & ‘90s.

Plus I’m still working on a number of freelance/Indie projects (including penning a number of scripts and developing some new ideas — more on those as they develop). In fact, I just finished off a couple of scripts last week, and am am part-way through a couple of more already.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

News from the (Funnybook) Front

So as you all know, I am continuing to contribute to the indexing of The Amazing Spider-Man title’s entries in the current issue of The Official Index to the Marvel Universe, which is out in comic shops right now.

As with the previous issues, I realize that I’m way more impressed with this stuff than all of you, but, well, that’s OK, as I’m having fun producing this stuff.

At any rate, I just learned that we are probably going to wrap this version up around issue #12, then begin re-numbering as we launch the next volume which is probably going to cover three different titles (Captain America, the Fantastic Four and Thor, I believe).

Oh, not sure if I’ve mentioned this, but I’ve been writing the cover copy to a number of Marvel Hard Cover collections. These collections have included Supreme Contact HC, The Art of Iron Man The Movie HC, Spider-Man Torch HC, and TIMESTORM 2009/2099 HC. Now How cool is that?

The Great Egg

So, I’ve been telling you that I’ve been stopping by my local movie theater to, well watch movies, but also to score figurines of my favorite Marvel characters. These little figures come in three pieces each. Well, I haven’t been able to make it to that theater recently (there is still a Human Torch figure I’ve been trying to score), but I did get to my local comic shop, and it turns out that they have a new “Gumball” machine with Marvel figures as well. Only this is the “Version 2” set of characters.

There are eight figures in the set, and I recently acquired three of them.

Sorry for the blurry image. I took this one with my camera phone (because my wife & Daughter have the regular camera)

Here they are again posing with three larger versions of them selves that came from a recent McDonald’s Happy Meal set. I thought the juxtaposition of the two sets was kind of cool.