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Showing posts from March, 2008

Classic Comics: The Australian Spirit

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THE SPIRIT #6

Snared this little wonder just this week. I've not seen a Spirit comic as early as this. There's three stories within, all from the original newspaper strip (indeed each story and the cover boldly sports the title, "The Spirit Section") and none of the USA original comics, from the Quality in the '40s through to Harvey in the '60s sport this particular cover, which leads me to believe that it's an Australian original, cover wise. The only information I can gather on this one is that was published by Transport Publishing and I have no idea as to the date but I am thinking it might be around 1955-1956 due to the price, size and paper stock. Someone out there, like the ever knowledgeable Kevin Patrick, would probably know more about this than I ever will, so hopefully someone will share what they do know. Either way I'm damn happy to have it and will be looking for more examples of this run.

Classic Will Eisner indeed.

As an aside, if you'…

Original Art Stories: Bruce Patterson's Old Views

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GREEN LANTERN CORPS #201: COVER ART

This cover was sold back in November of last year via the usual on-line auction outlets. There's nothing overly special about it, it's a decent enough cover and such items are always in demand with certain collectors. Personally I like my cover art to have logos and the like, but hey, you can't have everything. My only DC cover from the same time period, the cover to a Justice League annual also doesn't sport logos, but that doesn't mean it's not a great little piece of art. Having said that there's something special about this cover that makes it worth it's price. It's not the fact that it's a cover, or that it's Bruce Patterson, an artist I admire as an inker, but the writing in the lower right hand corner.

If you enlarge it you'll find a message to the series editor, Andrew Hefler, from Bruce himself, saying, "Andy...Every time you guys stat this, that, etc. you fuck up the re-sale value of the a…

Original Art Stories: Superman vs The Amazing Spider-Man

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Ok, finally, it's here - the article you've been waiting for: SUPERMAN vs THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN.

I've gone back and revisited the original article, which ran in Back Issue #11, and added some additional information. I've managed to throw in some comments from the likes of Neal Adams and Gerry Conway, the comments from Neal have never been revealed before and stem from a conversation that we had shortly after the original article was published. I've also included some previously unseen original art, from the collection of one Terry Austin. So you know this is gonna be good. Funnily enough there's a lot more I can write, and in the fullness of time it'll all come out, but until then visit the main site and enjoy the article. It'll be the last word I have on the topic until such a time when I can reveal more, and I expect that won't be for years to come.

While you're at it you might enjoy reading a behind the scenes look at the creation, and afterma…

Hidden Gems On My MP3 Player: China Crisis

BLACK MAN RAY - CHINA CRISIS



Are we believing,
Black Man Ray?
Persuasive danger,
In everything you say

Great stuff. Great tune. It's one of those songs that the moment you'll hear it you'll say, "Oh, so that's what that song's called!" And then you'll be insistent that it's not China Crisis, it's OMD. And you'll be wrong. But not to fret, you won't be the only one in that little boat.

Funnily enough this wasn't their biggest hit by far, but I'd hazard a guess and say that it's the best remembered. Certainly where I am it's virtually the only China Crisis song played on the radio. In fact I can't think of any other song by this band that gets any airplay whatsoever - perhaps in other countries, but certainly not here. And that's a shame. The song itself is one of those tracks that's often called 'haunting', and deservedly so. It's a beautiful piece of music, very understated and with excellent h…

Hidden Gems On My MP3 Player: The Payola$

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EYES OF A STRANGER: THE PAYOLA$



I know, it's been a while, and I'll do some more music based posts from now on. In the meantime I have to confess that I love this track! I think I first heard it when I saw Valley Girl for the first time and from that moment on I couldn't get enough of it, along with other tracks in the film such as Melt With You, Johnny Are You Queer? and the brilliant Million Miles Away by the Plimsouls. All of which I'll be covering in due time.

With an opening that goes as such;
Can I touch you to see if you're real?
Cause in nothing there's something I feel,
Will my heart take the strain?
Or will it break down again?
The Payola$ exploded out of the traps into everyone's heart as they watched Nicholas Cage lusting after Deborah Foreman. Truth be known Cage wasn't the only one lusting after the perky Debbie.

It got better.
Have I been sleeping for all these years?
Is it magic that makes you appear?
When you walked in the room,
I felt my heart …

And To Think, I Knew Him When...

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Saperstein takes on 'Snaked'

Producer options film rights to Meth series
By MARC GRASER

Producer Richard Saperstein has optioned the film rights to Clifford Meth's comicbook series "Snaked" from IDW Publishing, the company behind "30 Days of Night."

Based on an original story by Meth, "Snaked" is a horror-noir that follows the personal and political exploits of a government employee with supernatural, snakelike abilities.

"The political arena forms the perfect backdrop for Clifford Meth's heady mix of horror, sex and mayhem," said Saperstein, former prexy of production at Dimension Films, who has overseen pics including "1408," "Rob Zombie's Halloween" and "The Mist."

IDW released the first installment of "Snaked," whose publishers call it the most "controversial book" it's ever published, in December. The third book in the series was released on Feb. 13. Meth will pen the scree…

Psycho Battle Cats

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Just for fun, when either of our cats, Merlin The Grey and DeKlerq The Mental, get bored they usually lash out and whack the other on the head and begin to fight. We generally pull them apart, although I'm all for them fighting (but then I grew up as the youngest with three older brothers, so I'm used to the fights). Merlin has weight, size and age on his side, while Klerq has speed, the sharpest claws and teeth this side of a Wiltshire Staysharp knife and a Kamikaze attitude when it comes to fighting. Usually they leave no lasting damage, outside of scratches on the nose and general cuts, but last night saw a stunning battle that went through the house, up the stairs and back down again and has left Merlin with a closed eye and Klerqy limping with a sore back leg.

Serves them right I say. Seconds after this photo was snapped they split apart and Klerq launched himself through the air to tackle Merle like we've not seen before. I think it might have something to do with Mer…

Online Art Auction For American Cancer Society

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Generally I don't do these sort of announcements, but with the recent passing of Jeff Healey and the sad news about Patrick Swayze I thought, well, why not? It can't hurt anyone. My pal Bill Nichols pointed me towards these auctions late last week. I had to check them out and by Jaysus is the collection impressive. There's art there, on sketch cards, by around 200 artists from all walks of life, from Steve Rude, Don Perlin, Joe Staton, David Michael Beck, David Mack, Michael Peters, Terry Pavcet, Steve Bissette, Dick Giordano and too many more to mention. You'll find something there, from head sketches to full bodied, fully coloured cards, it's all there.

Without any further rant from me, here's the official press release:

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Blue Line Art is sponsoring an online charity auction of Original Art Sketch Cards. The e-Bay auction will begin Saturday evening, March 8th, following a gallery exhibit at Comics2Games in Florence, Kentuck…

One Of The Best Runs In Comics: THE PUNISHER - CIRCLE OF BLOOD

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THE PUNISHER: CIRCLE OF BLOOD

Marvel Comics, 1986
Writers: Steven Grant (issues 1 -4, plot on issue 5); Jo Duffy (script on issue 5)
Penciler: Mike Zeck (issues 1 – 4)
Breakdowns: Mike Vosburg (issue 5)
Inker: John Beatty (issues 1 - 4; finished art on issue 5)

It was the first ever Punisher mini-series and it remains one of the best. If they ever wanted to make a proper Punisher movie then Hollywood should look no further than the first issue and use that as a starting point.

The first issue contains some of the most defining moments in the Punisher’s career, and the team of Grant-Zeck-Beatty was one of those magical combinations that come along only in the proverbial blue moon. Zeck and Beatty were the hot artistic team of the time, fresh from a dream run on Captain America and the (now much maligned) mini-series Secret Wars. Zeck had falled into difficulties with the Secret Wars series and several issues featured work by a host of Marvel artists, including John Byrne, Bob Layton, Jack Abe…

Original Art Stories: Jason Chatfield

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How do you turn an ordinary milk churn into a piece of art? Actually, why would you want to turn a milk churn into art? Damn good questions and they are answered on the blog of Jason Chatfield.



Jason is an obscenely talented cartoonist who lives in Perth. I can forgive him the latter as my brother also lives in Perth, but then so do the West Coast Eagles, and even worse, Fremantle FC. But hey, no-one is perfect. Jason's site features his biography and it's what you'd expect - young man, drawing pictures whilst watching the Saturday morning cartoons, we've all been there and done that. However Jason went that extra step and turned his hobby into a full blown career. For a young man he's already achieved a lot - he was made a full member of the Australian Cartoonists Association at the Age of 18, and became the VP of the WA branch at the age of 21. Perhaps his greatest achievement thus far was when he was tapped on the shoulder by James Kemsley and handed the iconic A…

The US Presidental Race

I swear, if you're gonna vote in America, you might want to watch the above video first. What amazes me is that this guy can admit what happened, under oath, and seemingly nothing happened and the machines are still in use. Incredible. As I just wrote to Norm Breyfogle, here in Australia you can be sure that if that happened then Parliament would be dissolved, the machines thrown in the bin, a new election called for and someone, or someones, would be facing some serious criminal charges.

How can any American be sure that they're going to get who they voted for?

Nexus #100 -- FINALLY!!

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It's not often that a comic book comes out that genuinely excites me, especially in this day and age. Call me jaded all you want but the facts are that I've seen so much that mainstream comics just don't do it for me anymore. It's the little publishers that get the juices going, publishers like First Salvo and now Rude Dude. And with the latter it's this book in particular that's got me buzzing to anyone within earshot.

NEXUS!!! 100 issues! FINALLY!!!

I've been waiting for this milestone for so long I've lost count of the years. Nexus has gone through too many publishers to think about and has a long and arduous journey to get to this point. Nexus first made it's debut back in 1981 and it's only now that issue #100 has hit the shelves, and that's down the drive and vision of one man alone - Steve Rude.

Not so long ago Steve Rude turned his back on the easy money that Marvel and DC would have gleefully thrown his way to draw their creations an…

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