12.28.2006

The obligatory year end list. Blah. Blah. Blah.

These are my lists, without rhyme or reason as to whether they came out this year or not.

ALBUMs:
Maestro Echoplex - Last Night I saw God on the Dance Floor reissue from Catbird Records

A Passing Feeling - Self-titled EP from 75orless Records (Yes, I know I designed the album cover - I said no reason - I can play favorites!)

Mission of Burma - The Oblitarati from ? I don't have it in front of me

Bonus non-album: The Of Montreal live cover show that my friend Slick gave me - much respect.

Most looked forward to in '07: The new Stooges LP featuring Mike Watt on thunderbroom!

BOOKs:

All three Charlie Huston books I read: Caught Stealing, Six Bad Things, and Already Dead!

Robert Polito's Biography of Author Jim Thompson, Savage Art.

Looking forward to in '07: Huston's two newest novels and finally getting around to reading Miller/Eisner.

DVDs/MOVIEs:

Superman Returns - loved it.

Serenity - solid sci-fi for the first time in what feels like ages.

Veronica Mars: Season 1 - still in the midst of it, but if it maintains or gets better I will be very impressed.

and finally, COMICs:

Infinite Crisis by Various, DC - despite having some big flaws, I still thought this was the comic I was the most excited about and satisfied with in years. Outperformed Identity Crisis and had a much better resolution, in my opinion.

ACME Novelty Library 16 by Chris Ware - Again, I just read it late this year, so that it wouldn't be too far removed from getting number 17. Love Rusty Brown; really really really love Chalky White!

Fell by Warren Ellis and Ben Templesmith, Image - one of two comics in the "done in one" format on the list. Although its been absent for most of the latter half of the year, the first 6 issues deserve all the praise they get. Creepy, disturbing, scary, compelling, but most of all, moving.

Casanova by Matt Faction, and Gabriel Ba, Image - the other short format book that I can't get enough of. Great art, amazing plots, kick-ass dialogue that consistantly breaks the 4th wall without being cheesy in the least.

52 - by Various, DC - simply the most daunting task in comics for the creators and publishers, this weekly series consistently delivers the goods like no other comic on the racks. Great, week in and week out. 35 weeks in and I can't wait for what's to come!

HONORABLE MENTION: Punisher War Journal, Vol. 2 by Matt Faction and Ariel Olivetti, Marvel; and Immortal Iron Fist by Matt Faction (see a trend here?), Ed Brubaker, and David Aja, Marvel; and finally, Criminal by Ed Brubaker and Sean Philips, Marvel. All of these books had too few issues in '06 to count as best of the year, but all three are already on the short list for best of 2007.

Most looking forward to in comics in '07: The end of Civil War from Marvel out of morbid curiosity. The limited series has been so eractic that it is really hard to follow what is happening from issue to issue without reading the tie-ins, but the series also has a great baseline story and tons of potential. The artwork by Steve McNiven is phenomenal and cannot be beat. So . . . . we'll see what the last two issues have in store.

That's it for me - see you in the odd numbered year to come.

end transmission.

12.26.2006

A link and an image

Here is the new FF movie teaser trailer for Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer! Awesome - I was really surprised by the comedy and family feel of the first one, and am definitely looking forward to this 2nd installation in what should be Marvel's biggest franchise . . .

and, an image of one of the FF's greatest covers by co-creator/madman mastermind, Jack Kirby:

12.21.2006

Goodnight and Good Luck

This last week and a half saw the passing of:

Jack Burnley (artist of the classic Golden Age Starman)

Martin Nodell (co-creator of the original Golden Age Green Lantern)

And finally . . .

R.I.P. Joe Barbera


a giant of the industry - he'll live forever through his wonderful creations

12.12.2006

More Ash/Marvel Synergy



This shall kick all ass! So sayeth the shepard!

The Human Spider??

Ash speaks about his roles in Spider-man and their importance

Gimme some sugar, baby!

12.11.2006

Castle Speaks

from CBR.com:

PUNISHER 2

Actor Thomas Jane talked to IGN about what can be expected from the sequel. "It's more of a 'Taxi Driver' kind of a feel which I think we'll go for in the second movie," Jane said. "I think that's where the first one succeeded, where we were doing more realistic type stuff. And if we can, [we should] get away from the lighter aspects of the first film. Because I think that's where the movie failed."


I will be posting more later this week, with a look at the latest relaunch of

Justice Society of America, the first two parts of the origin of Jonah Hex and possible an end of the year round-up!

12.01.2006

11.30.2006

Bevy of Brewings

click here for a look at the Fantisticar that will be showing up in the FF sequel, Fantistic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer . . . nice.

The Hollywood Reporter reports that Garth Ennis' and Steve Dillon's Preacher has been picked up by HBO as a series to be written, directed and co-produced by Mark Steven Johnson (Daredevil) and Howard Deutch (Pretty in Pink) - not a huge fan of Johnson's previous work, but I have confidence in the HBO track record for shows and production values. I always thought Watchmen would work best in such a format, and think this is the best avenue for Preacher - we'll see.

Finally, I have to give props out to Matt Faction this week. The writer has tipped the scales for great comics work in the last two weeks with three of the best books I have read in the last couple of months. First, Faction and Gabriel Ba's Casanova continues to play havoc with the comics medium and the Nick Fury/James Bond superspy genre. Awesome, and at a $1.99 cover price it ranks at No. 1 for value, tied with Ellis's Fell.

Then, Faction hits with the brand new ongoing from Marvel, Punisher War Journal (Vol. 2) - a book that manages to be funny, disturbing, action-packed and the best Civil War tie-in so far all at the same time. So different from the MAX title Marvel produces with Ennis writing the Punisher, but equally as chilling and dead-on in its approach to Frank Castle. Always one of my favorite characters, it was actually the original War Journal (with art by Jim Lee) series and its first few issues that turned me into a Punisher addict.

And last, but by far least, Faction, with co-writer Ed Brubaker (Captain America, Uncanny X-Men, Criminal) and artist David Aja, bring back part of the 70s best dynamic duo, Iron Fist in The Immortal Iron Fist No.1. This comic literally kicked my ass yesterday. Definitely Wednesday's best release (and that's in the same week that Loeb and Darwyn Cooke's Batman/Spirit one shot came out!)

Do yourself a favor and get to your LCS asap for some truly kick-ass comics.

11.20.2006

Dark Constantine

two announcements went out over the wire today:

the sequel to Batman Begins, simply title The Dark Knight, hits theatres on July 18th, 2008. Boo-yah!!

and, Lauren Shuler Donner has confirmed that there will be a sequel to Constantine again starring Keanu Reeves. While I know there were a ton of complaints from purists, mainly that John wasn't English in the movie, overall, I thought it was well done, with an engaging story and one of the better performances of Reeves' career. I own it and look forward to the sequel.

finally, a bonus: The Punisher comes out in a special edition DVD tomorrow. Has its faults, but Tom Jane is simply deadon as Frank Castle. At least, rent it.

11.16.2006

Holy Moly

If this doesn't get you excited, you must be built like Metallo with a Kryptonite heart.

Check it out - this ad has been running in DC comics and this version premiered on the back cover of the latest issue of Action Comics which was the first issue of Richard Donner's run as co-writer/plotter with Geoff Johns. The screen saver I made a few posts back is from the second cover of the run, and should be on stands at your LCS now.

11.10.2006

Comics-to-film

Few quick hits:

-New Spidey 3 trailer up at ifilm.com

-Donner's cut of Superman 2 out on 11/28

-Watchman news from Zach Snyder all over the place (try Comicbookresources.com first)

-DC's 52 hit the halfway point last week and just keeps getting better. Weekly comics, man, that rocks.

-Jonah Hex #13 ranks as my comic of the month - finally, the first part of the bounty hunter's origin story - I have been waiting since I was sixteen for this!

10.29.2006

Desktop Creator Zone


A Hulk desktop I made using the art of Brian Hitch which was used for promotion in the 2nd Ultimate Avengers direct to DVD movie.

Desktop Creator Zone


Here is a desktop I created this morning, using the cover to an upcoming issue of Action Comics by the team supreme of Johns, Donner & Kubert - feel free to add it to your wallpaper collection! All characters and artwork copyright their respective owners.

10.15.2006

Comic Cover Crazy (vol. I, no. 3)




This installation of Comic Cover Crazy is not so much crazy-weird as it is just plain crazy-good (like those damn Pop Tarts!)

Anyway, The King brings us this one and it truly is one of my favorites by him. Kirby just owns me when it comes to covers. His angles; his color schemes; those crazy machines - it all equals pure comic magic. I don't think anyone comes close to do a cover or a splash page like Jack, and I don't know if anyone ever will. There are some great ones out there (you can't go wrong with much by Neal Adams or Brian Bolland - especially on covers) but no one has ever done with so much, well, "Kirby" too it.

Gaze in wonder . . . DC's Mister Miracle No. 1!

10.13.2006

Triskaidekaphobia

Appropriately enough, on Friday the 13th (in the same year as 06/06/06! Bwa-ha-ha!) Marvel has posted a new Ghost Rider Exclusive Trailer on Marvel.com!

And, as I stated from the rumor-mill earlier on the terror-blog, actor Terrence Howard has been cast in the Iron Man movie as Jim Rhodes.

Now? Who's gonna be the Mandarin? How 'bout John Lone!

10.02.2006

From the Archives

As Terror Central continues its new commitment to web-based activity blogging, tonight we roll out the latest feature, "From the Archives" (to be renamed when I am thinking more creatively).

For the inaugural peak into the tombs of the Terror house, I am posting two picks of the original pencil and inks for a 1985 poster that was used to promote and sell Kenner's Super Powers line of action figures. These are to many collectors, myself included, the greatest of all super-hero action figures. A whole blog could be and are dedicated to these fine plastic masterpieces.



Tonight, though, a glimpse at the artwork I bought about 10 years ago. It is by Paris Cullins and Bob Smith, done on DC Comics, Inc. Bristol board in August, 1985 for Kenner Toys. This original artwork was later partially covered with a paste-up, also drawn by Cullins, to cover the Wonder Woman driven All Terrain Trapper, that was scraped from production.

Truly a unique piece, and the gem of my meager Super Powers collection. Oh, and one other great thing about this line of figures - a lot of the design was by none other than Jack "King" Kirby himself!

Beat That, Hot Wheels!

9.30.2006

The Week Gone By . . .

Two major stories that broke this week in comics. One is mildly interesting, but still big news; the other is not really big news, but really became the talk of the messageboards for most of the week.

The former (which was the later breaking story) was the casting of Robert Downey, Jr. in the role of Tony Stark for Jon Favreau's Iron Man movie, coming from Marvel Films sometime in 2008. This is a nice piece of casting. Downey is one of his generations most adept and versatile actors, and can easily pull off the sometimes smarmy, often belligerant, and always smarter-than-the-average-bear Stark. If the rumors hold, and Terrence Howard has been cast as Jim Rhodes, this movie will have two powerhouse actors to push it through. Looking better and better.

The latter story, which broke on Thursday - the day after the week's comics came out, - should have been a fairly obscure piece of news, with little or no reaction. At least, that's how the news would have been received about 10 years ago. But in the day and age of the messageboard and instant news-feedback, the story of DC Editor Steven Wacker - the lead editor on DC's ambitious weekly comic, 52 - leaving the company for Marvel only a little more than halfway through the yearly series, hit the intraweb like wildfire. Mere minutes after the posting of the story on Newsarama.com, the messageboard was buzzing with fans' comments. Most of which were maligning Wacker, calling him un-professional and in some cases just cussing at him.

Unlike most books' editors, Wacker has been more visible with this series because of the Herculean production task of this undertaking and his weekly recap/question and answer period on Newsarama.com with their editor, Matt Brady. But even still, ten years ago, most fans wouldn't even know who the editor was on a given book, never mind care so much about one leaving.

That's not to say that I (or many other fans) aren't critical of or supportive of other editors now or in the past - I for one credit Stan Lee, Archie Goodwin and Denny O'Neil with giving me some of the best comics I ever read - but I don't think the amount of vitriol that was hurled at Wacker was in any way comparable to the reaction that fans may have had to some of the crazier things Jim Shooter did at Marvel in the 70s, for example.

A little over 3 hours after Newsarama posted the story, there were 12 - that's right 12 - pages of messageboard posts. Even the writers behind the series got involved and eventually Wacker had to post a sort of explanation/mea culpa for why he was leaving the Distinguished Competition for the Marvelous Men downtown. Pretty much unheard of.

Personally, I don't know the reasons for Wacker leaving, but I am sure they are both financial, creative and personal in other ways I can't even imagine. A creator (and let's face it, as much as they are often maligned, editors are creators) has every right to move on to new and different things. He was not the writer of this comic and he was not by any means (not to lessen his mammoth contribution) the only one holding this book together and getting it on the stands. Honestly, before 52 who even knew who Steve Wacker was? Not me.

He's done a great job with getting 52 to the market on time and in great shape. I beleive that the book will eventually go down as one of the finest examples of comic output - top notch writers, amazing collaboration and redefining 70 year old characters in a non-jarring and simply entertaining manner - but it is the product of many hands and visions, not just editorial, and especially no just one editor.

I hope Wacker does great things at Marvel and the competition between the two companies keeps up. The more these two are competing for us and our dollars, the more great product will be out there.

The big thing about this story that strikes me as wild, is the state that fandom is in. So much is the fan involved directly with the creators of the books we love, that the feelings of personal hurt are hard to put aside. While a lot of people out there are calling the negative commentors immature and idiotic (which, of course, some of them are), I think the main thing is that we all love this medium so much and we are so dedicated to it, that these so-called "creator betrayals" do hurt fans personally. And while some might see that as a bad thing, I see it as a positive force for a medium that is one of only a few truly American artforms and one that I love dearly.

It's good to be passionate about something. Let's just remember that it's not all about us and the books all the time, and a man's personal decisions are his own to make. Try not to aim your anger at someone who is doing what is right and best for him, his family and maybe in the long run the books he is involved with. We have a unique medium where the creators of the things we love actually listen to us sometimes and for the most part respect our opinions. Let's not destroy that.

In other words, don't shit where you eat.

Good Luck, Mr. Wacker. And good night . . .

read about Iron Man here.

read the original story reporting Wacker leaving and the acommpanying messageboards here.

read Wacker's Goodbye here.

9.29.2006

Make Mine Retractable

Just a quick post before the weekend and tons of upgrading (ie yard work) here at Terror Central (my suburban ranch)

Credit to Boing Boing and Make Zine for this!

Snikt, bub!

9.27.2006

Comic Cover Crazy (vol. I, no. 2)

Silver Age Flash comics from DC Comics had some of the best and craziest cover's of all. Under the watchful eye of Julius Schwartz, stories sometimes were spawned simply from a cover sketch that he created.

Here's a classic, and one of my all time favorites: from Flash #177, "the Big Head Flash!"

9.22.2006

Superboy and the Legion! Re-dux!

That's right, Superboy and the Legion are back! Maybe not in the comics, or with Giffen and Levitz and Shooter at the helm, but The Legion of Super-heroes is back in animated form! Debuting tomorrow morning (saturday.sept.23.2006) on KidsWB . . . uh . . . I mean . . . uh KidsCW (the CW), a whole new series of 30th century adventures begin. Featuring the Boy of Steel himself, Lightning Lad, Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, and more, this looks like it is really going to do wonders for the classic Legion.

Now if they just have an episode with Karate Kid! That would be killer . . .

9.18.2006

New Season Sneak Peek

Remember when you were a kid, and about a week into the new school year, all of the networks would have a TV Special that previewed all of the new cartoons for the Saturday Morning line-ups? You'd get previews of things like Thundarr the Barbarian and Challenge of the Super Friends and be so excited that you could hardly wait to be in front of the tv with a bowl of Coco Puffs and a Crazy straw to drink the transformed-into-chocolate-milk while you watched Ookla the Mok lay a beatdown on some mutant freak!

Well, this is sort of like that. Yahoo has an exclusive look at the pilot episode of Heroes - the new NBC show that has been getting great press, both in and out of the comic/geek world. They are streaming the whole episode prior to it premiering during primetime in its regular time slot, next Monday (9/25) at 8 PM.

Me? Well, I loved the previews, but I have grown to love the anticipation of a new show too. It will be tough to avoid all the spoilers that are going to come out this week, but I'm going to try and just watch in my living room on Monday.

Maybe with a bowl of Coco Puffs.

See it yourself here.

9.14.2006

Comic Cover Crazy




New weekly feature: Comic Cover Crazy - a look at a different far-out cover each week!

Week 1, let's start with the book that introduced the super-hero to the world, Action Comics. This is #386 from March of 1970 featuring the lead story: "The Home for Old Super-heroes!" If I had to guess (and I do), I would say it is most likely a Curt Swan cover. Ginchy!

9.11.2006

9/11+5

Thought this was worth reprinting today. By comics writer/film director Frank Miller. For the actual article follow this link. Part of a series of NPR This I Believe essays.

That Old Piece of Cloth by Frank Miller:

I was just a boy in the 1960s. My adolescence wasn't infused with the civil rights struggle or the sexual revolution or the Vietnam War, but with their aftermath.

My high school teachers were ex-hippies and Vietnam vets. People who protested the war and people who served as soldiers. I was taught more about John Lennon than I was about Thomas Jefferson.

Both of my parents were World War II veterans. FDR-era patriots. And I was exactly the age to rebel against them.

It all fit together rather neatly. I could never stomach the flower-child twaddle of the '60s crowd and I was ready to believe that our flag was just an old piece of cloth and that patriotism was just some quaint relic, best left behind us.

It was all about the ideas. I schooled myself in the writings of Madison and Franklin and Adams and Jefferson. I came to love those noble, indestructible ideas. They were ideas, to my young mind, of rebellion and independence, not of idolatry.

But not that piece of old cloth. To me, that stood for unthinking patriotism. It meant about as much to me as that insipid peace sign that was everywhere I looked: just another symbol of a generation's sentimentality, of its narcissistic worship of its own past glories.

Then came that sunny September morning when airplanes crashed into towers a very few miles from my home and thousands of my neighbors were ruthlessly incinerated -- reduced to ash. Now, I draw and write comic books. One thing my job involves is making up bad guys. Imagining human villainy in all its forms. Now the real thing had shown up. The real thing murdered my neighbors. In my city. In my country. Breathing in that awful, chalky crap that filled up the lungs of every New Yorker, then coughing it right out, not knowing what I was coughing up.

For the first time in my life, I know how it feels to face an existential menace. They want us to die. All of a sudden I realize what my parents were talking about all those years.

Patriotism, I now believe, isn't some sentimental, old conceit. It's self-preservation. I believe patriotism is central to a nation's survival. Ben Franklin said it: If we don't all hang together, we all hang separately. Just like you have to fight to protect your friends and family, and you count on them to watch your own back.

So you've got to do what you can to help your country survive. That's if you think your country is worth a damn. Warts and all.

So I've gotten rather fond of that old piece of cloth. Now, when I look at it, I see something precious. I see something perishable.

9.07.2006

75orless Records NOW AVAILABLE!!

the record label I am a party to and design/art direct for, 75orless Records, now has its entire catalogue available on Interpunk! Of course, you can buy direct from our site, but it is nice to see our work available elsewhere on the intraweb.

Item! The latest release from the aformentioned label, Rome, Italy's Turnpike Glow has a new spaced out cd, rush home. Get it while it's hot!

Item! 75orless Records t-shirts now on sale at the site - in both non- and pocketed-version! White only, great for getting stains!

9.06.2006

The King of the Seven Seas, CWB Style!

Finally was able to d/l and watch the Aquaman pilot episode on iTunes this past Labor Day and without having watched it a second time yet -- with a more critical eye -- I was way impressed with it. It had all the emotional punch and modernization that Millar/Gough have brought to Smallville and came off much better than that show's pilot episode.

While Smallville really came into its own in the third season, getting past the villian of the week syndrome, the Aquaman pilot seems to have put the show into the perfect mix of classic DC lore and X-files-esque conspiracy theory with a nice mix of action-adventure thrown in.

Without spoiling too much, the premise follows a twenty-something Arthur Curry, a/k/a AC, a/k/a Aquaman. After losing his mother in a tragic and mysterious accident in the Bermuda Triangle, AC has mostly been a slacker that occasionally dabbles in animal rescue and activism. His Coast Guard stepfather (played by Lou Diamond Philips) is always there to bail his son out of trouble, but is frustrated with the young AC's lack of direction.

When things from the past start showing up to wreak havok in AC's life and mess with his home town, the young hero takes it on himself to discover who he is and where he came from. He's helped along this course by a mysterious figure in the body of Ving Rhames, who turns in a really subtle performance in a role that could have been pure cheese.

The adopted son story of AC searching for his true origin keeps the show from falling into a hokey "origin of" episode and allows the story to play out dramatically instead. Set against the government's interest in the Bermuda Triangle and what lies under the sea, shady G-men roam the landscape of this pilot and set up a future conflict that will have AC caught between his loyalties to his adopted home and that of his true birthright.

Anyone who knows even a little about DC history, knows that Aquaman truly is a King, and that little bit of knowledge -- like the knowledge that Clark Kent and Lex Luthor will one day be mortal enemies -- drives the show with a giddy anticipation.

Too bad the suits at the CW passed on the show. If the fan reaction on iTunes is any indication though (927 Positive Reviews and counting, with an average rating of 4 and 1/2 stars), maybe there is hope for a mid-season pick up or a home at another network.

Someone really needs to adopt this Aquaman!

9.05.2006

'Nuff Said

True believers won't want to miss this link to an Earth-Stan version of Moore's and Gibbons's Watchmen remix in the inimitable style of Stan "The Man" Lee. Woah.

Excelsior!

8.31.2006

Reports: Katharine McPhee Up for 'Wonder Woman' Role

McPhee, who finished behind Taylor Hicks in last season's "Idol," is being considered for the big-screen version of "Wonder Woman," according to reports.The movie will be directed by "Buffy" creator Joss Whedon

Plus, I just read that Whedon turned in his latest draft of the s/p, so progress could finally be going forward on this!

read more | digg story

8.28.2006

New Ones and Twos




After writing a pretty long review of the new DC comic, Justice League of America my computer crashed before I could post it. I was in the middle of giving quick review of two other books when it crashed. So . . . being mightily pissed, I am just going to give a little thumbs up/thumbs down sort of look at last week's books that I bought:

Justice League of America #1 4 out of 5 Batarangs - the new relaunch of the League by Brad Meltzer is looking very promising. Say it with me now . . . Black Lightning!!

Batman and the Mad Monk #1 2.5 out of 5 Batarangs - Matt Wagner's second mini-series under the Dark Moon Rising stable of retellings of classic Batman monster villians from the Golden Age, is well-written, well-drawn and generally enjoyable, but for all that, it's still a little flat. Got the .5 for featuring a recreation of one of my all time favorite covers (Re-doing Neal Adams's tribute to the original cover from, I think, Detective Comics #31).

Wonder Woman #2 2 out of 5 Batarangs - by Heinberg and the Duo Dodsen. Beauty to look at, not so much on the story. I am giving the benefit of the doubt and will get one more issue of this WW relaunch.

Batman #656 4.5 out of 5 Batarangs - not really a number 1 or 2, but it is the second issue of the Son of the Bat storyline by Grant Morrison and Andy Kubert. What can I say that hasn't already been said. Simply great on a single, dual, even triple level - there is great popcorn fun here with a masterful meta-text on comics and the state of the "new" Batman, plus it all ties into one of the more classic (and personal favorite) Batman tales that had, for a long time, been written off by the suits at Warners as an Elseworlds tale. Bring me more Ninja Manbats!

Cassanova #2 3 out of 5 Batarangs - this past week, #3 came out, but I just read two, so I can squeeze it under this post, dammit! Fraction's mind-blower of a comic with absolutely stunning one-color art by Gabriel Ba, the second issue does not disappoint. Super-spies, creepy Earth-2 incest overtones, and great back-matter, if you aren't reading this book and Warren Ellis's Fell both for the measily ticket price of $1.99, you should quit reading comics now. Go listen to your old Milli Vanilli tapes in your AMC Pacer. You suck.

Thursday, look for more.

8.23.2006

Prison Break Season 2 Premiere Free Video

Watch (Stream) the entire season premiere for free.

read more | digg story

No Price Cuts For Verizon & BellSouth DSL Customers

Verizon Communications' and BellSouth's DSL customers won't see a reduction in their broadband bills, even though a special fee that had been tacked on to bills to pay for a federal program has been eliminated.

read more | digg story

8.18.2006

the new House of TERROR

In an effort to keep myself blogging, I am going to try to focus my entries more and concentrate on reviews/commentary/analysis. I haven't done much be re-posted from other sites lately, so, within the next week you can look forward to more comics talks and hopefully a new look - if you are seeing this site with Firefox, it probably looks messed up and I can't seem to fix it.

anyway, more by the end of the weekend.

8.15.2006

Kick Ass!! Blacklight Tattoos

Tattoo artist Richie, who lives and works in Colorado, has been offering UV blacklight reactive ink to his clients for most of his 4-year career.

read more | digg story

8.10.2006

China's Super Space Seeds

In an effort to feed its ever-growing population, Chinese officials are launching over 2,000 seeds into orbit for a two-week trip designed to force the seeds to mutate. Exposed to special environment such as cosmic radiation and micro-gravity, it is hoped that some seeds will mutate to such an extent that they may produce much higher yields.

read more | digg story

Bill Gates Donates $500 000 000 to AIDS Research

The Bill (and Melinda) Gates Foundation donates half a billion dollars ($100 000 000/year over the next five years)! Whatever evil he may have wrought as the Emperor of Microsoft, this trumps it all.

read more | digg story

8.02.2006

Senator Complains That Senator-Only Elevator Getting Too Many Non-Senators

I hesitate to say that it
�s a big problem,� said Senator Frank R. Lautenberg of New Jersey, shaking his head gravely. �There is terrific crowding.� Mr. Lautenberg, a Democrat who has served more than two decades in the Senate, said he had never seen the Capitol so packed with unelected interlopers.

read more | digg story

7.25.2006

Millionaire Takes Fight to MPAA

It's about time someone with some cash took a stand.

read more | digg story

American Bar Association: Bush is Destroying the Constitution

President Bush's penchant for writing exceptions to laws he has just signed violates the Constitution, an American Bar Association task force says in a report highly critical of the practice.

read more | digg story

7.24.2006

And Finally . . .

You all should be on this like white on rice. One page of Bendis's Powers everyday, for free. Get on it, bitches!

On a Lighter Note

Here are two teaser posters that surfaced at Comic-con over the weekend:

Iron Man to be directed by Jon Favreau



And Transformers by Michael Bay

Sad to say . . .

that it's been reported that legendary actor, Mako, died at home at age 76. He was recently recording voice-overs for the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle flick. A true loss.

An Article on Mako's Passing

7.19.2006

Miller's Spirit!!

FRANK MILLER TO ADAPT/DIRECT FILM VERSION OF EISNER'S THE SPIRIT
Frank Miller’s next big comic book gig?

Adapting and directing a film version of his late friend Will Eisner’s The Spirit for Odd Lot Entertainment and Michael Uslan’s Batfilm Prods., according to Variety. Miller will talk about the gig at Saturday’s The Spirit movie panel at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, where the announcement will be officially made.

Odd Lot is financing the film, with Deborah Del Prete, Gigi Pritzker, and Uslan serving as producers. Odd Lot’s Linda McDonough and CBM’s FJ DeSanto will co-produce. Benjamin Melniker will executive produce. It will be the second time Miller has sat in the director’s chair – the first being his co-directing gig with Robert Rodriguez on last year’s adaptation of his Sin City. Miller is currently working on the screen play for Sin City 2, while a film version of his 300 is due in theaters next spring from Warner Bros.

"When (Uslan) invited me to do this, first I said I can't do this and then I said I can't let anybody else touch it," Miller told Variety. "I intend to be extremely faithful to the heart and soul of the material, but it won't be nostalgic. It will be much scarier than people expect."

“With his first film, Miller made Sin City live and breathe by capturing the look and style of his source material and expertly guiding an all-star cast,” stated Deborah Del Prete. “We cannot wait to see how he utilizes his endless talents in bringing Eisner’s vision of The Spirit to the screen.”

Uslan: “What makes Frank’s involvement with The Spirit particularly poignant was his special relationship with Will Eisner, captured last year in the book, Eisner-Miller. In it, you have two of the medium's greatest storytellers of sequential art and cinematic comics discussing the ins-and-outs of the compelling and controversial art form.”

Miller told i>Variety that he is working on a treatment that consists in large part of panels from The Spirit strip. Shooting on the film is due to begin late next spring.

The announcement at SDCC will be the second year a movie panel for The Spirit has been held. Last year, the production team hosted a panel at the convention, where it was announced that Jeph Loeb would be adapting the material for film.

7.18.2006

Stan Lee's Latest!

Be Your Own Hero

Sci-Fi will be premeiring this reality show next week - go make your own ZERO HERO today!

7.13.2006

RIAA loses in file sharing case -- One down, a Thousand to go

The RIAA suffered a legal setback today, as a file-sharing case was dismissed and the defendant awarded attorneys fees.

read more | digg story

Run to the Future

Since my Doc says I have to make a life choice and that I'm at a health cross-roads, I need to get in shape. If I have to, I guess this is on my Christmas Wishlist

Hellboy's Spawn!

Click on the title for a link to the pilot episode of Mike Mignola's Amazing Screw-on Head - it rocks! It captures Mignola's art perfectly and Paul Giamatti as the lead voice actor is spot-on casting.

Screw-On HERE!

7.12.2006

Cartoon Network to launch broadband channel for Toonami

Cartoon Network is launching a broadband version of it's anime and action block,Toonami, on July 17th. It's the world's first broadband destination for full-length episodes of the best in action and anime. Kick-ass!

read more | digg story

Pixies say they will never record again

lack told Uncut: "I wish it could go a bit further again and we could make a record. Not all of the band-members are willing to do that. Rather than make a big deal out of it, we've agreed to just continue to play live."

read more | digg story

Queens Of The Stone Age return

"Josh Homme has revealed that Queens Of The Stone Age have started work on their new album."

read more | digg story

7.11.2006

New Release = P.A.R.L. Compilation Double Disc! Limited Hand Screenprinted!

Head over to www.75orlessrecords.com for the latest release - 2 discs of Southern New England-based bands all in support of the Providence Animal Rescue League! Hand screenprinted and limited to only 500 copies!

read more | digg story

Super-powered Comicbase becomes world's first Blu-ray PC software

(San Jose, CA) ComicBase, the world's leading comic book collection management software, is the first commercial PC product available in the new Blu-ray format.

read more | digg story

I was a writer for this software company, giving brief synopses of comic book titles. Great company and really good people behind it. Get over to the Digg link and give them some props! Then if you are a mad-geek comic collector like me, give the software a try - it really is the best out there.

6.22.2006

Why They Will Rock Your Face OFF!!

Two looks at the phenomenal My Morning Jacket (thanks to my bro for the point out about the B-Pops!)

On Conan O'Brien:




On Letterman:

6.15.2006

That's Right, Mother-F'n Snakes!




SNAKES ON A PLANE #1 & 2
Written by Chuck Dixon
Art by Gordon Purcell
Photo covers
Issue #1 Variant cover by J.G. Jones
Issue #2 Variant cover by Jerome Moore

You’ve heard the Internet buzz…seen the hair-raising trailer…now experience the comic of the sensational summer movie Snakes on a Plane, written by Chuck Dixon (NIGHTWING) with art by Gordon Purcell and painted covers by J.G. Jones (52) and Jerome K. Moore!
Snakes on a Plane stars Samuel L. Jackson as an FBI agent assigned to escort a government witness on a flight to Los Angeles. But when a crimelord sets loose hundreds of deadly snakes during the flight, the agent must band together with the pilot, frightened crew and passengers in a desperate attempt to survive and protect his witness!

There are mother$%#@!! Snakes On The mother$%#@!! Plane!

Retailers please note: Each issue will feature two covers; see order form for details.

Issue #1 on sale August 16; issue #2 on sale August 30 (1 & 2 of 2) 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US MATURE READERS

6.09.2006

The Howard Roark of Comics!

Great artist with a will of steel - a man molded from the Ayn Rand school of thought:

COMIC URBAN LEGEND: Steve Ditko does not use the original art that Marvel has returned to him, except sometimes as CUTTING BOARDS!

STATUS: True

The beginnings of this situation happened back when Marvel was caught up in the whole “not returning art to the original artists,” using the argument that Marvel not only paid for the production of the art for the comics, but for the art itself. In any event, after some time, Marvel eventually relented, under the following condition - it would give the artists back the art, but it would be as a GIFT due to Marvel’s generosity. They still believe that THEY (Marvel) own the work fair and square, but would allow the artists to have the work itself.

Well, Steve Ditko did not like that arrangement.

As a result of this (and other factors I am sure, like not wanting to look to his past and hell, probably some other stuff, damned if I know), Ditko basically just let the art pile up, and actually used some of his old work as cutting boards!!

The story appeared in an issue of Wizard a few years back (thanks to Linda Burns at Ditkoland, for transcribing this last year):

There’s simply no way to separate the fact from the fiction, no way to determine which Ditko is the real Ditko. One story about him contradicts the next, which-in turn-contradicts the next.

Take for example, one of [Comic publisher and restorer, Greg] Theakston’s last visits to Ditko’s studio. While embroiled in a conversation, the historian noticed a piece of illustration board leaning up against a wall, slashed to pieces.

“He’d been using it as a cutting board,” Theakston said. “I looked a little bit closer and I detected a comics code stamp on it.”

He asked Ditko to turn the board around, a request met with a deadening gaze from the artist.

“I didn’t think he was going to do it,” the historian recounted. “It looked like a ‘Screw you’ look.”

Slowly, however, Ditko reached out and flipped over the board. It was a page of original art from a late 1950s issue of Journey Into Mystery, a splash featuring a hard helmet diver. Theakston couldn’t believe it. Not only was Ditko not displaying, preserving or prizing this piece of original art, he was using it as a cutting board.

Theakston quickly offered Ditko a deal: “Steve, I will go down to the nearest art supply store and buy you a cutting board that will mend itself-a plastic cutting board that’s so smart that when you cut on it, it mends itself-and you’ll have the finest cutting board on the block.” “Nope,” Ditko replied, twisting the artwork-turned-cutting-board back around.

Theakston pleaded. “Steve, geez. That’s worth a fair amount of money. At the very least-damn, Steve-it’s an artifact. It’s an important piece of publishing history in terms of comics.”

The artist turned and pointed to the drapery-obscured window next to Theakston’s chair. “Lift that curtain up,” he said.

The curtain, the historian estimated, was about 18 inches off the floor. He pulled the drape aside and saw a stack of original artwork from Marvel standing roughly a foot-and-a-half high.

“Can I look at these?” Theakston excitedly asked.

“No.”

The writer was dumbfounded. “I was sitting next to a hundred thousand, two hundred thousand dollars, maybe, worth of Ditko artwork and he was cutting it up without letting people look at it.”

For whatever reason-Theakston feels Ditko may have thought Marvel was wrong for returning the pages-the artist seemed to attach no particular affection to his early work.

“He would rather not have people think of Steve Ditko’s best work as being Spider-Man from 30 or 40 years ago,” the historian said. “He wanted to be represented not by what he had done, but by what he’s doing-he wants now to be his best time.


source: Comics Should Be Good blog

6.02.2006

GO! GO! AQUABATS, GO!

The latest video from the Masters of Nerd Super Powers:



See them live at Avalon in Boston on 6/9/06!

5.31.2006

Another Legend Passes through the 4th Wall . . .

R.I.P. Alex Toth - Creator and designer of such Saturday morning classics as Space Ghost, The Herculoids, and more, plus the lead designer for the look of the classic SuperFriends. Not to mention his stellar career in comics.

According to his son in an online open letter, Toth died at his drawing table on a Saturday morning. Can't ask for more than that . . .

5.26.2006

Work Work Work




After a busy month of work I have three pieces to show for it. One is for my son's 4th Birthday, with cribbed art from the amazing Darwyn Cooke - seek him out now, like here! The second is the album cover for the upcoming 75orlessrecords release for Western MA's Killing Pablo. And finally, an approval poster for the band A Passing Feeling's summer tour - they are one of the best young bands out of NYC and you can get your copy of their latest EP at the above linked 75orless Records!!











5.15.2006

The Punch!

Probably the coolest Superman moment since Alan Moore made him say 'Burn!' in Superman Annual #11

Science Powers, ACTIVATE!

the new ambiguously gay duo of T. Cruise and J. Travolta coming to a neighborhood near you sooner than you think . . .
tune your preceptors


Wow!

5.14.2006

More of You!

from the guys that brought you the Secret Wars Re-Enactment Club:

5.05.2006

I Tube, YouTube, We All Tube . . .

I am googoo over YouTube. Now you can be tube - one the best I have seen this week of about 200! Click the title for the link to RealLife Frogger!

5.02.2006

I don't know if you'd call this journalism . . .

Click the title above for a link to a recent post by Dan Gillmor, the end-all-be-all of citizen journalism. It's what real blogging is all about, not the crap you read on this site. Thanks to Boing Boing for the heads up:

Dan Gillmor explains "citizen journalism"

Dan Gillmor, the hero and lion of "citizen journalism," gave a tremendous speech on what participatory, 21st-century news-reporting can and should look like at at Columbia's Hearst New Media Lecture, and he's posted the transcript on his blog:

This is called a "New Media" lecture. Two items: First, We are moving at light speed to a time when the expression "new media" will too many words, and we'll drop the new part; it'll just be media. I'm glad to see this school and the organizations that hire its graduates are adopting at least some of tomorrow's techniques more quickly than I predicted. That's good. Forward-looking folks are aware that there's no alternative, not to mention the fact that the journalism will benefit.

...I was calling attention to another reality of tomorrow's journalism. In a craft that's shifting from lecture to conversation, the publication (or broadcast or whatever) is not The End. It is somewhere in the middle of an emergent system in which we all can keep learning, and teaching.

This is increasingly doable in part because of what has changed so much for so many: the collision of technology and media, which has helped democratize communications and is turning traditional notions of journalism in new directions. Now, I don't mean democratization so much as in the sense of voting -- though collective community thinking is an intriguing and valuable part of what's coming. I mean it in the sense of wide participation.

5.01.2006

Rolly Finger



follow this link for an "only in RI" story.

4.30.2006

Iron Swinger

JON FAVREAU TO ADAPT, DIRECT IRON MAN FOR MARVEL
He may have played Matt Murdock’s best friend, Foggy Nelson In the film version of Daredevil, but when it comes to a film version of Marvel’s Iron Man, Jon Favreau has a much larger role than that of a supporting character.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Marvel has tapped the actor/screenwriter/director to develop and direct Iron Man, working on the script from Arthur Marcum and Matt Holloway. While many may only remember Favreau as Nelson or perhaps from his breakout role in Swingers, Favreau has moved recently, to work behind the camera, directing last year’s Zathura, executive producing the acclaimed Green Street Hooligans, and directing Elf, among others. Favreau is also attached to direct a film version of John Carter, Warlord of Mars.

As Favreau said in an interview quoted in the trade, he’ll be looking to use CGI with the project, something he has been reluctant to do, making Iron Man his first film which will use the technology extensively. “I think that now, through motion-capture and the integration of miniatures with CGI, like in King Kong, I'm starting to be a lot more convinced by what the technology can do,” Favreau is quoted as saying. “But the idea of using CGI and relying solely on that to tell your story, those days are past. I think that integrating practical filmmaking and augmenting it with CGI is the key to making it an emotionally involved story."

If things move according to plan, Iron Man will begin production in early 2007.

4.13.2006

She Blinded Me with Art!

check out this link BLIND ART for a cool switcheroo on the Japanese blindbox toy idea. The idea is a ton of different cheap toys are packaged in little boxes, you see all the different toys on the box, but don't know what you are getting until you buy - so you buy a bunch, hope for the best, and then trade off doubles or ones you don't want for ones you do. Well Future Plastik in England has taken the idea and filled their blindboxes with original artwork by some well known artists. And for about $20 US (with shipping!) you can get a great original like this one from Hammo:



Go get some!

3.30.2006

Process

a little look at my development in three quick pics!

First though, the brief: A gig-flyer for my friends' band showcase in RI : www.75orless.com Presents that would feature three local bands (including my brother's and friend Slick's and Jay's band, Six Star General) PLUS a nod to their friend Greta's Birthday Bash that they would be celebrating that night. Oh, and I had to get in the fact that Six Star General would also be releasing their new full length CD.

So, I was provide with that info and this photo of Greta:



Since I didn't want to just punch the photo in a corner of the poster like a sore thumb, I went with the idea of using it as the basis of the poster, so I went to work illo-ing it. Hence:



Finally, I put it together with some text, used a Roy Lichtenstein-inspired color palette, some Benday dots, and voila:



For the poster, I added some detail work to the illo, like the "lightning star" that I created for 6Star's logo and some finishing work on the bottom of the jacket and sleeve, to give a more geometric look (that's sort of hidden by the band names, but it is there, trust me!).

So, if you're in the RI this weekend, stop by Houlihans in EP on the Waterfront -- listen to some hardhitting rock from three great local acts and drink a beer and a shot with Greta. Plus get the new cd from 6Star, artwork for which I also did and will post in a day or so - it will be available for sale on www.75orlessrecords.com all!

3.22.2006

Trip-tastic?



above is a three part poster series I did for 75orless.com for there concert series here in the motherland, Rhode Island and the Providence Plantations. The right side of the poster is for this saturday's show - if you're in the Prov area, head down to Houlihans Tavern for cold beers and some hard rocking guitars.

Be a Hero! Not a Zero!

Summer Job?

SIX FLAGS NEW ENGLAND LOOKING FOR JUSTICE LEAGUE MEMBERS
Press Release



Six Flags New England is looking for the best to take center stage with them as they bring an all new line up of entertainment! Now is your chance to be part of the excitement as the JUSTICE LEAGUE joins the park's expanding shows experience!

The park is now working on the largest entertainment expansion in the park's history and actively seeking performers immediately for the 2006 Season including character actors, superheroes, stunt performers, and character escorts to help staff and support the new interactive HALL OF JUSTICE attraction and BATMAN THRILL SPECTACULAR stunt show. Roles include BATMAN, GREEN LANTERN (Hal Jordan and John Stewart), WONDER WOMAN, THE FLASH (Wally West), & ROBIN (Tim Drake & Dick Grayson)

The park is holding open call auditions at the Six Flags Human Resource Center, located 1756 Main St. Agawam, MA 01001 on Tuesday March 28th from 4:30-7:30PM. Applicants can save time by applying online beforehand and checking the latest updates and complete audition schedule at ww.sixflags.com/newengland. Superhero applicants must meet DC Comics character requirements along with Six Flags standards for role consideration.

Superheros must be physically fit and heights range from 5'7"-6'4". Must be at least 16 years old to apply. Must be at least 18 for stunt roles Stunt roles require strong motorbike skills. All roles require close interaction with Guests and co-workers. Six Flags supports and enforces a drug free working environment. Candidates MUST be Energetic, Enthusiastic, and Team focused.

NEED MORE AUDITION INFO?
Contact the Six Flags New England Entertainment Department at (413)786-9300, x3320 OR send us an e-mail at sfneshow@sftp.com

3.09.2006

Tetsujin Coop

click the title for a nice link to a video interview with one of my fave artists, Coop, about his obsessive Japanese toy collecting. Lots of megs, but worth the DL.

night!

3.03.2006

And Bingo is his Name-O!

Here's a link to my new favorite game:
http://www.catbirdseat.org/catbirdseat/bingo.html

3.01.2006

a work in progress




this is a flyer for an upcoming children's theatre production - this will be used for b/w mailers and then I will expand it for a full color poster with the playwrites' names and the actors, and so forth. This is about the 4th or 5th poster I have done for this Providence, RI-based group, the Manton Ave. Project. Click the title above for a link to their site!

2.19.2006

The Greatest Commercial Ever??

Maybe not, but I still love it. Click on the title for a link and then on the right side of your screen click on the "Watch Mexican Pac Man Video"! Totally Rad!

2.16.2006

And Another Great Cartoonist Doing John K!

Bill Wray is still the King: no Wray, no John K; no John K, no Gendy Tartakovsky; no Gendy, NO FUN!

Finally, Powdered ToastMan has Found a Home!

The master cartoonist, and creator of Ren & Stimpy has got his own blog - click the title for a link to John Kricfalusi's new All Kinds of Stuff blog!

Fantastic! Filled with Shaven Yak Hair!

2.13.2006

Welcome to the Darkseid!


poster for my brother's and friend's band - this weekend in E.P., R.I.

2.09.2006

Publication! At Last! . . . Still no pay . . .

Just thought I would let you all know that a design I submitted to the great Bran-man website was selected as one of the top 75 of the site's first year and has been included in their self-publised "yearbook." The book includes a page dedicated to my design along with a small bit of info/propaganda about me, the designer. Click the title above for a link to the Bran-man shop website with some details on the book and a link to where you can purchase it from Lulu.com - it's a bit steep at $34.95, but there are some really great designs in the book (mine is by far the least of those!) and it makes a really interesting coffee-table book.

Anyway, here is the cover - astute readers will be able to locate my submission on the cover, since before I posted it on the Bran-man site, it debuted right here in the House of Terror!

2.08.2006

The Jungle, The Liquor and the General!



A poster for my friend's and brother's band's upcoming show with one of my all time favorite local bands, the Jungle Dogs - A band that I first saw at the old Living Room in Providence back when I was about 15! Amazing that they are back together, playing with my bro's band and that I got to do the poster for the show - the J-Dogs, along with Husker Du and the Minutemen, were the bands that got me into listening to what I listen to today and are a huge influence on the graphics that I do and the work the my friends and I have put into 75orless Records.

Seeing them again this weekend in Newport is going to be pretty mindblowing! If you can, get there.

1.31.2006

It's Arrived!




The 75orless Records website is up and running with our first two releases ready to be purchased/pre-ordered. If you like limited edition art and kick-ass indy music, click on the title above now for a direct link to the site. The design of both the Staggering Statistics EP and the A Passing Feeling EP were done by yours truly (the Passing Feeling features original art by me, while the Stag Stats cover features the artwork of Cinncinatti's Alan Sauer).

Both of these EPs are hand made, the Passing Feeling is hand silk-screened in a limited edition of 250, while the Stag Stats is printed with a raised printing technique with a limited number of pressing hand silk-screened or foil-stamped. The Stag Stats is an edition of 750.

Keep watching this space and the 75orless Records site for future releases, limited edition pressings and rare boxed sets.

1.16.2006

Nuns with Guns!

That's right, it's finally happened: My favorite cover artist (besides Jack Kirby and Neal Adams)- Brian Bolland - has drawn one of my all time favorite characters, Jonah Hex! Revel in the horror and the beauty!


1.13.2006

Thursday's FREE COMIC!!




before I forget, I missed this one yesterday: Robert Kirkman's Battle Pope! I have to admit, I haven't read this, but Kirkman is the writer behind two critical and commercial mega-successes: the zombie love letter, the Walking Dead and the teen-angst ridden, superhero stomp Invincible. I have read both of those, and based on my love for those books, I have no problem recommending Kirkman's other pieces, unread.

Thanks again to Newsarama and Image comics for making all these books available for the week! Hope some you have taken my advice, 15 minutes, and made yourselves into comics fans!

More FREE Comics!



Continuing Newsarama's/Image's free comics on the web week, we here at Terrorcentral give you the Luna Brother's Girls! How can anyone resist that cover. Click the title for the link to the whole issue and if you like it, the The Brothers Luna are currently doing the artwork for the Brian Bendis-penned Spider-Woman: Origin from Marvel. Check 'em out.

'Nuff said!

1.11.2006

Free Comics!! THE SEQUEL!

yet another free comic in the week long event from Image and Newsarama = get you pointies-a-clicking on that title above and experience Fear Agent #1!

1.10.2006

Free Comics!!

If I can't get you bastards to buy comics, maybe you can at least read some for free. And one of this quality might make you actually search out more. Click the title for a link to Warren Ellis' and Ben Templesmith's Fell issue #1.



See the cover here <

Truly a great example of the medium and if you like this, the issues only sell for a $1.99 - cheap in this age of inflated comic pricing. Plus, each issue is self contained, so it doesn't matter if you read them in order, every issue, or just the ones you want. Perfect for the comic-newbie out there.

Well, what are you waiting for, man, click on over and be in awe!

1.09.2006

Surf-and-Find

Click the title for a peek at the cover of an upcoming book from DC/Vertigo - love this guy's artwork, so check out it his site as well. Plus this is written by Brian K. (Y The Last Man, Ultimate X-Men, Ex Machina, Runaways) Vaughn.

Yes, comics are good.

1.05.2006

New Year, New Art





Here are two recent projects - ones done, ones in progress . . . Possibly a new look coming to the blog site soon. Maybe.