Friday, October 28, 2011

Me and Roy down by the schoolyard....

Hey people!

So last week I proudly announced that legendary comic creator Roy Thomas was guest-speaking at a nearby college where I live. Well, it went really well actually.

He briefly talked about his career and most of the major projects he's done over the years, as well as telling an amusing story about how he got hooked on comics in the early 50's.

He tells how there was a comic book burning event that he and his parents went to, and how he was the only kid he knew that actually came home with comic books as opposed to most kids losing theirs in the bonfire.

He talked about starting his fanzine Alter Ego with partner Dr.Jerry Bails, then taking it over solely a few years later.
From there he worked for DC writing a few titles in the Superman family, such as Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen. He noted that he didn't particularly care for famous Superman comics editor Mort Weisinger, nor did he like working for him, and that Stan Lee called him up and asked "What will it take for you to work for me?" Roy's reply was "You just did."

Roy then went over his list of accomplishments while working @ Marvel, which any and every comic fan worth his salt such already know.

Here's some highlights anyhow though:
  • He didn't like to write Spider-Man, despite the fact that he wrote and co-wrote the Spider-Man newspaper strip w/ Stan Lee. He didn't like the teenange angst factor of Spidey, but did like him as a reader.
  • He created the name and background of Wolverine. John Romita created the visual of course, but Thomas came up with the main elements of Wolverine up to that point. He then handed the character off to Len Wein, and the rest is history.
  • He also came up with the international aspect of the new X-Men; this was based off corporate wanting to really sell the comics in more international markets like Kenya, Russia, Germany, and so on. He claims to have also created Nightcrawler, Colossus, and Storm in an attempt to better represent those countries.
  • He created Sunfire of course, but snuck him in his last issues because Stan didn't care for the character.
  • He also created Banshee, which lead to an amusing story about Stan wanting the character to be a man, not a woman as is tradition, because "It didn't look right to have 5 guys gang up on a girl." I swear he actually said this!
  • Created Havok
  • Wasn't a big sword and sorcery fan at first, but after discovering Conan around age 20, fell in love with the character and s&s.
  • Has written over 300 Conan stories, as well as a recent run for Dark Horse comics, and created Red Sonja.
  • Legendary artist John Buschema hated superheroes except for his work on the Avengers, but loved Conan.
  • He did indeed save Marvel in the mid-70's after he was approached by George Lucas and co. about Marvel possibly publishing Star Wars after Stan Lee turned the idea down. Roy himself wasn't too big on SW until he saw the artwork for the Han Solo vs. Greedo scene, and some others. This was in late 75, before the movie ever came out. Jim Shooter mentions this on his blog.
  • Speaking of Shooter, Roy Thomas said he quit Marvel because "an editor he didn't like became Editor-in-Chief." He didn't mention Shooter by name, but it's no mystery that's who he's talking about. Again, go to Jim Shooter's blog for more on that story.
  • Favorite artist to work with was John Buschema, as well as Neal Adams on X-Men.
  • He didn't create too many characters of his own, because he knew whatever company he worked for would own them.
  • He's been married twice, with each wife co-writing or contributing on whatever he was working on at the time.
  • His favorite work was Conan and the WW2-era characters he worked on, such as the JSA, All-Star Squadron, and The Invaders. This should come as no surprise if you're familiar with his work.
After all that, the he answered some questions, then signed hardcover copies of his works, and then after waiting ever so patiently, I managed to get my picture taken with him.

And how was your week?

Friday, October 21, 2011

A mouth full of crow....

Hey people,
Yes it's been awhile, and yes absence has made my heart grow fonder....for this blog anyways.

I was just e-mailing Goo that THE famous Roy Thomas will be speaking at a local college that's mere blocks away from where I live. That's right, Roy Thomas. It's all happening on the 26th around noon, so you know I'll be there. Plus, and this is the really good part, admission's free/open to the public. He'll have stuff to buy and sign, put I'm planning on sneaking a digital camera in, and taking a pic or two.

I'm also getting DCUC Robin this week, so I'm very happy indeed to reunite the Dynamic Duo. One of my local box channels now features old episodes of the 60's Batman series, so he'll fit right in as we all roll with the POW!s, the OOOF!s, and the BAM!s.

Alright, now for the thing you've all waitied ever so patiently for.....a funny-ass homemade skit:

I call this one, "Mouth full of crow":

Well, at least I thought it was funny....see you kids next week, as my next sketch will be just in time for Halloween.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

"Well shit the bed!"

Well folks, I know I've complained about my computer possibly shitting the bed in the past, but this time it really looks like it just might.

An odd coincidence considering that legendary Apple founder Steve Jobs died yesterday.
I don't know how much time this ol' gal's got, but if you don't see an update from me soon, then you know why.

I'll try to upload a funny skit I had planned on posting today, but with the computer loading so damn slow, that might not happen. Oh well, so is life. If I can't, then I hope you guys all have a great and safe weekend!

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

"...And nothing else matters."

 "There's a sucker born every minute"
-P.T. Barnum (1810–1891)

Happy Hump Day folks! That's right, this is the middle of the work-week, so press on, because Friday is a mere 2 days away!

I wanted to briefly discuss Dan Didio's controversial statements that all Crisis events are no longer in continuity in the rebooted DCU.

I first saw this made mention, and if you follow this link, you'll see what I'm talking about:

So, Didio basically states on facebook this:
 I'll "bracce myself indeed. Learn to spell idiot!

How nice of Didio and Co. to declare this(note the sarcasm)
So what does this mean exactly?
You know all those trade paperbacks of those famous DC events from the last few years that you "just had to buy"? They don't mean anything anymore. So basically they're worthless(continuity-wise that is) and you wasted your hard-earned money on something that won't likely be ever referenced to again.....except maybe 5-10 years down the line, or whenever Didio and Co. feel like declaring those events to have happened again.

How nice for all those loyal DC readers)and me) who bought those expensive TPBs.

So basically, Final Crisis, Infinite Crisis(which actually does deserve to be forgotten) maybe the 1st Crisis, 52, Blackest Night, Brightest Day, and Countdown no longer matter. Wow. And DC just suckered fans to "have to" buy BL and BD last year and the year before that respectively. For those poor people, I feel bad for you.

Not to mention Morrison's Batman epic storyline R.I.P. is also majorly affected, thus possibly making even that one moot as well. I wonder how Morrison personally feels about that? I'm sure the barrels full of money he's made helps, but it still has sting on a professional level.

Maybe he reads this quote by Elizabeth Bowen:
"Art is the only thing that can go on mattering once it has stopped hurting."
I will admit though, to possibly seeing Didio's view on this;(oh no Hell's frozen over!)
Like he said, this reboot is pretty much like the very 1st one back in 1985/6 w/ the 1st CRISIS.
The writers, artists, and editors all had to start continuity from scratch basically, and while that led to whole bunch of problems due to not everyone being on the same page, it also paved the way for Vertigo and other forms of progressive story-telling. So with really good books out there like Synder's Swamp Thing and Batman, and  Lemire's Animal Man, perhaps there's still hope for DC yet.
Still, it can't possibly feel good to those creators who worked on those events to see it "doesn't matter" anymore. Yes, the physical works are still out there to be enjoyed by all who own them, but that still doesn't soften the blow any less.

And now for your Zen moment of the day:
Some people just have it all don't they?

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

"Welcome to the jungle baby, you're gonna' die!"

Hey folks!

Quick news bits:
  • Amanda Knox and her ex-boyfriend are set free. Prosecution has filed an appeal though, so she might have to go back to Italy again.
  • NJ Gov. Chris Christie is not running for President in 2012. So stop asking GOP!
  • NBA season still in doubt due to lockout. Wow, the life of a spoiled and over-paid athlete is real hard nowadays!
Alright, now who wants some HJA: Hot....Jungle....Action?

You didn't want it, but I'm giving it to you anyway(That's what she said!):

Monday, October 03, 2011

Making a mountain of an Ant hill....

And how was your weekend folks?

Mine was pretty damn good, so I can't complain! Especially since I brought home a new addition to the DCUC family: Indigo Lantern Atom.

Pretty cool huh?

Yessir, the action figure gods must be smiling down on me now that word of my imminent retiring from action figure collecting is nigh. That and pookie just wanted to make me happy, so there.

If you noticed, this an IL-ed version of his "Sword of the Atom" costume he wore for a few years back in the early 80's as seen here:

And it even appeared in an episode of the Batman: The Brave and the Bold cartoon:

And here's what inspired the action figure; Becoming an IL in Blackest Night:

Alright guys, now for the obligatory skit featuring Ray and another shrinking doctor.....Hank Pym:

Everybody's a critic!

"Closing time. You don't have to go home but you can't stay here."

Well..... I kinda always knew this day would come, and it sure has. It's been a hell of a ride, but it's time to for it end. Ti...