Saturday, September 23, 2017

Batman Day 2017 - A Black and White Aesthetic

Since today is Batman Day, I decided to pick up some back issues at my local comic shop (Thanks Coliseum of Comics).  So while we're in the spirit of the Caped Crusader's 78th anniversary, I thought to share another collection I tend to obsess over:  Batman Black and White Statues

Inspired by the anthology mini series produced in the 90's, these statues capture the artistic vision of comic book masters.  While most are different depictions of Batman, a few sculptures show diverse stylizations of his Family and Rogues Gallery.  Starting in 2005, I can remember buying my first-ever eBay item - A Batman Black & White statue inspired by Brian Bolland.  Since then, my completist mentality has purchased almost every statue produced over the last 12 years. 

Besides Kim Jung Gi (which I hope to find soon), here are some pictures of all the released statues (I believe there's 79 in total).  With no foreseeable end in sight, DC keeps announcing more and more fascinating designs including John Romita Jr. and Becky Cloonan.  So as long as DC Collectibles continues to "cast" and "forge" these iconic statues, I'll continue to collect!

Frank Miller, Jim Lee, Darwyn Cooke, Jock, David Mazzucchelli, Brian Bolland, Neal Adams

Tim Sale, Simon Bisley, Greg Capullo, Alex Ross, Frank Quitely, Jae Lee, Dick Sprang, Jim Aparo

Francis Manapul, Ethan Van Sciver, Sam Keith, Gotham Knight Series, Arkham Series

Joe Kubert, Bob Kane, Jim Lee, Dustin Nguyen

Carlos D'Anda, Neal Adams, Kelley Jones, Steve Rude, Brian Bolland

Kelley Jones, Lee Bermejo, Michael Allred, Mike Mignola, Ivan Reis, Gary Frank, Dustin Nguyen

Sean Murphy, Matt Wagner, George Perez, Bruce Timm, Cliff Chiang, Eduardo Risso, Tony Millionaire

Tony Daniel, Paul Pope, Nicola Scott, Sean Galloway, Andy Kubert, Carlos D'Anda

Ed McGuinness, Sergio Aragones, Patrick Gleason, Bryan Hitch, Michael Turner
Frank Miller, Jim Lee, Greg Capullo, Lee Bermejo, Brian Bolland, Dick Sprang, Paul Dini, Bruce Timm

Rafael Grampa, Jime Lee, David Finch, Rafael Albuquerque
Norm Breyfogle, Carmine Infantino, Cameron Stewart, Jason Fabok

Steve Rude, Marshall Rogers, Dave Johnson

Friday, September 22, 2017

Tarantino Comics - Issue 48

Once again I'm sorry for the hiatus, but at least the time void wasn't near as long.  Maybe one day I'll get back into the habit of writing.  But for now, I hope you enjoy today's issue - Tarantino Comics #48 illustrated by Kaymonstar at MegaCon 2014.

Reservoir Dogs has a lot of things going for it - It's an unconventional caper with a funky soundtrack, cool dialogue, and flashbacks mixed with ultraviolence.  In addition to all things awesome, Tarantino conjured up some great performances (especially for a first film).  For instance, the audience welcomes the paternal bond created between Mr. White and Mr. Orange.  As "Lawrence" defends the honor of his fallen "son," Tarantino really amps up the tension between the experienced Mr. White, the quirky Mr. Pink, and the terrifying Mr. Blonde.  However, once Mr. White discovers he's been duped for the entire film, we feel his heart drop as he raises a gun to the head of his dying "partner."

This emotional blow to the gut is beautifully depicted by Kaymonstar.  Even with cartoony flourishes, I empathize with the tears dripping down Mr. White's face.  Even if I had no knowledge of Reservoir Dogs (which is impossible within any Earth of the Multiverse), this image is more than enough to entice a grab off the old spinner rack.

Unfortunately I cannot find an "official" website for Kaymonstar on the internet.  However, if you see her at a show, I highly suggest you checkout her work.  I've commissioned her in the past and all her pieces turned out pretty rad (ranging from Batman and Daredevil to Super Grover).

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Tarantino Comics - Issue 47

Wow - It's been over a year since I last posted (since the theatrical release of The Hateful Eight to be exact).  I don't watch as many movies as I used to, but I have a backlog of films I eventually want to get caught up on.  However, my love for comic books has been reignited so I'm super excited for Heroes Con next week.  I went to MegaCon earlier this year (only for a day), but I was disappointed - Unfortunately the show has become too media and Anime driven.   At least Heroes Con is still an comic convention, so I'm looking forward to getting some awesome sketches with back issue diving in between (in particular, I'm searching for old issues of Batman, Daredevil, and 70's Marvel titles).

Anyways, let me present an issue illustrated 3 years ago - Tarantino Comics #47 illustrated by Neil Posis at MegaCon 2014.

Featured on this cover, we see O-Ren Ishii from Kill Bill.  Neil portrayed the deadly assassin posing as an iconic comic book cover image.  I love Neil's artistic vision to maintain the "EC Comics Banner", but allowed it to flow into frame with blood - a great representation of the iconic splatter seen in the Crazy 88 battle inspired by Lady Snowblood.

If you want to see more of Neil's work, check out his blog: . Not only does he draw beautiful comic art, but he illustrates a decent amount of movie icons as well.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Tarantino Comics - Issue 88 (The Cancelled Edition)

Merry Christmas!  I know it's been a while since I've posted, but today is truly monumental - It's opening day of The Hateful Eight!  So without further adieu, I now present Tarantino Comics #88 outlined by Amanda Rachels!

So you may be asking yourself, why have we skipped Issue #'s 47-87?  A few cons ago, Amanda (returning cover-artist) wanted to contribute a special piece to the Tarantino Comics sketchbook.  At the time,  Tarantino was no longer going to shoot The Hateful Eight after his script was leaked online.  However, to make light of a disappointing situation, Amanda found a snip-it of the script and imagined the sketch you see above.  Amanda also skipped to the 88th page of the sketchbook (leaving 38 blank pages), creating an even greater sense of "The Lost Issue."

Fortunately, all disputes were resolved and The Hateful Eight  has now been shot, edited, and produced.  Showing in glorious Ultra Panavision 70 mm film, I now get to partake in the Roadshow with my family at 7 PM and see "The Lost Issue" come to life.  Having sat through The Hateful Eight SDCC Panel, I'm pretty sure Amanda's depiction is a shot of Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson) sitting on top of dead bodies in the cold Wyoming snow.  When the time comes, hopefully Amanda can create the "found and completed" issue of Tarantino Comics #88.

Anyways, Merry Christmas and I hope everyone enjoys their holiday!  And if you get a chance, celebrate with your family by watching The Hateful Eight.  I'd also recommend participating in the Roadshow because Tarantino is really trying to create a unique cinematic experience. To find one of the 100 participating Roadshow theatres near you, check out:

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

SDCC 2015 - The Hateful Eight Panel

Even after hours of waiting in the Hall H line, I couldn't have cared less about the Batman vs. Superman Trailer.  Don't get me wrong, I'm going to see Zack Snyder's film, but I was in that room for one thing and one thing only - Quentin Tarantino.

Moderated by Chris Hardwick (the coolest Nerdist I know), I was jumping with glee once Tarantino was welcomed to the stage.  After explaining how this movie was shot in 70 mm (using some of the same lenses from Ben Hurr), we were privileged to watch several minutes of unseen footage. 

Without getting into too much detail, this is going to be a very claustrophobic film.  Since the characters are trapped in the snow, I sensed The Thing resonating across the screen.  Even the footage was accompanied with a thumping score similar to the John Carpenter musical theme (Coincidently, Morricone will be scoring The Hateful Eight).  From the few clips we were privy to, the characters suffer from paranoia, they want to kill each other, and they're unsure who's really the "bad guy" among all these crumudgeons. 

After Tarantino talked, we got to meet the cast of The Hateful Eight:

-John 'The Hangman' Ruth (Kurt Russell):  With another tie to The Thing, I can't wait to see Kurt Russell in another Tarantino Film especially after doing a fantastic job as Stuntman Mike.

-Sheriff Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins):  I loved him as Boyd Crowder in Justified.  Now I can't wait to see him play on the "good side of the law."

-Daisy Domergue (Jennifer Jason Leigh):  As Travolta was to Pulp Fiction, I believe Leigh will be to The Hateful Eight... except a whole lot scarier.  Plus if you check out this old blog entry (click here), Jennifer has given one of the best female performances I've ever seen.

-Oswaldo Mobray (Tim Roth):  Overly dramatic, Roth is really pushing the theatrics and I think he's going to provide much of the comedic relief.

-Joe Gage (Michael Madsen):  In any Tarantino film, Madsen always plays a despicable character... so I don't expect anything different here.

-General Sandy Smithers (Bruce Dern):  I'm not sure what to expect from his performance, but Dern is a Hollywood Legend and had lots of kind words to say about Tarantino as a director.

-Bob (Demian Bichir):  Originally this character was supposed to be a Frenchman, but Tarantino decided on a Mexican instead.  However after talking with Robert Rodriguez, Demian was recommended since he's truly a "Tarantino Actor"

-Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson):  Unfortunately Sam Jackson was the only member of the "Hateful Eight" who was not there in person.  However, he did leave a message and described how this film will be presented as a road show - For the first few weeks, the film will only be shown across select theatres in 70 mm.  So after some Christmas cheer, I'm dragging Angie on a road trip.

Before we left the panel, we were given tickets to pick up a Movie Lobby Card.  Since I love Demian in The Bridge and Machete Kills, I chose a card pictured with Bob (collecting lobby cards could become another addicting hobby).

Although shaking Tarantino's hand can't be crossed off my bucket list, at least I can say I saw the man from the distance.  But in the meantime, I'll patiently wait for Christmas Day to see a truly monumental film - Because whenever there's a new Tarantino film, just going to the movies is an event. 

Sunday, July 19, 2015

SDCC 2015 - Shout Factory Score

The first stop I had to make on the SDCC convention floor was the Shout Factory booth.  I picked up a few Blu-Rays and scored some free swag:

- People Under the Stairs - This is one of the earliest horror films I remember seeing as a kid.  However, I rewatched it a few years back after going through a haunted house based on the film at Universal's Halloween Horror Nights.  Now that it has a proper release in High Definition, I can't wait to rewatch it again!

- Robot Jox - I never seen this movie before, but the guy at the booth sold me on the special features.  Besides, it's Stuart Gordon.

- Hackers - Angelina Jolie as a computer nerd - What's not to like?

- Dog Soldiers -  This is actually another film I've never seen before.  However I was a big fan of Neil Marshall's The Descent in college, so this should be a fun watch.

- Thunderbirds The Complete Series - Someone filmed marionettes before Team America?  How could I pass this package up?

I also attended the Shout Factory panel and I'm excited for their new releases (especially the ones from Scream Factory).  And in case you didn't know, Scream Factory is once again celebrating their Summer of Fear, so be sure to take advantage of their sales at !

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Reginald Hudlin - A Bona Fide Writer of Tarantino Comics

So what seemed like an eternity to get here, SDCC 2015 has come and gone.  However, I had a great time spending an extra week in San Diego (I even got engaged) and was able to be in the physical presence of my celebrity hero (more of this to come in a future blog post).  As you already know, I created this blog to showcase the awesome cover art of Tarantino Comics.  Ideally, I'd love to present the "Master of Genre" my sketchbook in person, but Hall H was just way too big for a personal meet and greet.

Fortunately, I was able to meet another giant in the entertainment world - Reginald Hudlin.  I was first introduced to his work through comics, where I read his Marvel Knights Spider-Man run which followed Mark Millar's arc.  I also watched his Black Panther cartoon from BET.  Although I loved his contributions to the Marvel Universe, I was most excited when he adapted Tarantino's screenplay of Django Unchained through Vertigo.

Knowing Mr. Hudlin was a film producer on Django Unchained, I scanned and printed a hardbound book collecting the first 50 covers of Tarantino Comics.  This book provides some written detail on how Tarantino Comics came into fruition and the general process of obtaining art commissions at comic book conventions.  Since I'd love to share this beautiful fan art with Quentin Tarantino, I presented this book to Mr. Hudlin.  Hopefully he'll be able to show these fantastic images to Tarantino through the reprints in this book.  As you can see from the pictures below, I was very excited to meet Mr. Hudlin and even had him sign a few of my Django Comics.

In the meantime, be sure to check out Reginald Hudlin's upcoming work - The Return of Milestone Media.  If you're unfamiliar with Milestone, they created a world of culturally diverse characters, my favorite being Static Shock (I loved the cartoon as a kid).  This is a great imprint that promotes diversity and was one of the first pioneers to do so.  I'm excited for Milestone's return and can't wait to see their continuing impact within the pop culture world.