ComicsGeek, LiteraryGeek

History: Unwritten(Work in Progress)

Ambition is a good thing. Only by tackling new challenges can we truly discover where our limits truly lie.

Recently I decided to dive into a new project. My own attempt at a Web Comic.

The entire thing is daunting. Written by me. Drawn by me. Entirely produced by me. Everything lays at my feet.

I am both excited by this endeavour and utterly terrified. One moment I am invigorated by the art and concepts I am bringing to life. The next I worry that I am about to do a tremendous faceplant for all the world to see.

The idea came from a picture I found on social media. The text was simple:

‘What if the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs was an UFO…

And we were the Aliens?’

I will be honest one of the big draws for me is the best chance I will ever have to draw a cowboy dinosaur riding a mastodon. But there is more.

It may be my one chance to create my very own comic. My opportunity to display my own work to all the world.

I am still working out the details on how many installments this story will be told over. My initial thought is using single pieces of art to tell the story of each chapter. That may change. For now I simply have the beginning…

History: Unwritten

‘History, they say, is written by the victors…

History lies.’

 

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ComicsGeek, LiteraryGeek

We Are Legion

Another day and another conversation. And it leads me back to this column from way back when.

So this column came from a conversation I had with some friends over twitter. Actually it began after I read an interview with Keith Giffen and J.M. DeMatteis.

Interview: Giffen and DeMatteis, another LEAGUE and LARFLEEZE

What prompted me to read the interview you ask? It was Giffen and DeMatteis…seriously you need more. They are bloody brilliant. Even if they did not give us an absolutely inspired take on Justice League and bring Blue and Gold together for the first time-Keith Giffen has long been connected to the Legion of SuperHeroes. That was more than enough for me.

The important part (for me at least) was this:

“This way when — because it is ‘when’ — DC will relaunch the Legion of Super Heroes eventually”

That was a direct quote from Keith Giffen and if I trust anyone talking about the Legion it is Mr. Giffen. Of course at the time they were talking about their new project Justice League 3000, but the Legion comment is what mattered to me.

Then came the conversation with @777DAMM and @JanArrah over in the twitterverse, follow them you will thank me.

It ranged over elation over the prospect of the Legion returning and the skepticism over how it would be handled.

More than any other comic book property the Legion seems to regularly suffer from changes that take place in the main universe. The Legion has been rebooted so many times it is difficult to know where a new book would start from, what pieces of the universe would be included and what parts and characters would pass into memory.

The biggest thing I took from the conversation was the realization that we all came at our fandom from different times, different points in the history of the Legion. Starting in different times gives us different perspectives, different things about the Legion that we love in our own ways. If I could see that from a conversation with two other people imagine trying to create a Legion for a hundred or thousands of people.

As fans we often believe these characters, these stories belong to us. We sometimes forget we don’t own them. Everyone does. We may not like the new version of the Legion but is it not better than not having them at all. The task is not easy. There is an abundance of history-but then if you have been around for sixty years and you don’t have history I have to ask: What have you been doing all this time..?

The job of creating a new Legion that will appeal to new and old is a big job and an important one. The Legion has been around since April of 1957 beginning with Adventure Comics #247. Why is that important?

The Legion predates the Avengers, the Justice Leagues, the Teen Titans and yes even the X-Men. Great creators have come from the Legion: Mike Grell, Jim Shooter, Dave Cockrum, Paul Levitz, Giffen, Oliver Coipel, Jim Starlin and even Francis Manapul. Someday soon another creator will step in with his vision for the future.

That vision is the important thing. It’s the future, not some horrifying dystopian future but one of hope. That is what the Legion has always been about hope and family. The belief that when they come together good people can do great things and there will always be a tomorrow.

The Legion is the bedrock for which that future will stand. Until that day…

Long Live the Legion.

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ComicsGeek, MovingPicturesGeek

The Attack of the 50-foot Trailers

Avengers: Age of Ultron comes out May 1st. It marks the beginning of the blockbuster movie season. Blockbuster movies mean trailers.

I love trailers. I always get to the movies early so I can see each and every trailer. Even if somehow the movie disappoints at least I get to salivate over movies coming soon.

Recently the studios have released the first trailers for both Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice and Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

These releases should be met with excitement and a sense of wonder. Maybe I am simply a glass half-full kind of guy. These little glimpses of what the future holds give me hope for great movies to come. That is not the case for everyone.

I saw people criticizing the trailers. Holding up these trailers as evidence for how these movies will suck, how they will disappoint.

When did we become so cynical as a society?

It seems more and more that supposed fans just want a reason to hate and complain about any new movie, new story.

Some simply fondly remember past versions of these franchises. There is so much joy these franchises have given us. That does not mean the new versions cannot give us great epic stories. We simply need to allow them the chance.

So with the trailers for Star Wars, Batman vs Superman and whatever the next trailer we are treated to I only look to the future. I look to the great possibilities they hold within them.

While we cannot go back to our youth and discover these things again, we can take the blinders off and find the wonder we have lost.

Bring on the Trailers…

 

 

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ComicsGeek, MovingPicturesGeek

The Rise of Jar Jar

“Secrets. They define us, control us, they may free us or destroy us. We all have them, from the highest king to the lowliest of fools. Oh the fools they have the darkest secrets of them all.”

And it begins…

Ideas fall from the sky sometimes. They come from a sound, an image in the distance, sometimes they come from a friend. This one came from a picture of Jar Jar Binks, an image of him leading the Jedi in a future Star Wars movie. He suggested that they should make this movie, I of course had other thoughts.

My first thought, my first response was:

“Only if they kill him in the first 20 seconds…”

Jar Jar has always bothered me. He just irks me. For many critics of the prequel-series of Star Wars movies Jar Jar was the symbol for everything that was wrong with those very movies. I do not blame Jar Jar. The prequels have major issues for me but it is not Jar Jar’s fault. He just bothers me. Killing him off quickly would be nice, having him suffer a Kenny-like fate of repeated deaths would be even better. The very idea brings a smile to my face. It would be simple passive-aggressive revenge for the perceived failures of those movies.

Then I thought better of it. The joy of killing Jar Jar would be so fleeting, it did not do justice to the depth of my feelings on the matter. No, more was needed. We must redeem Jar Jar.  In this case redeeming is not bringing a character back from the brink, but in making an worthwhile character out of a caricature. A villain he shall be.

This Jar Jar would be outrageously evil and vile. Only the most depraved actions would do. I am looking for behavior which would turn Jabba the Hutt’s stomach. Jar Jar is cute and funny, but the potential is there. Somehow this fool got elected to the Galactic Senate, he was even involved in giving Chancellor Palpatine the power necessary to overthrow the Senate. What if he was not a fool, what if it was just an act to cover his own scheming.

Hiding in plain sight he could direct a vast criminal empire. No one would suspect him, not Jar Jar. He might massacre Ewoks, torture Chewy (well until Han rescues him), worst of all he pumps helium into the room when Darth Vader is speaking. No one is safe. He would make a wonderful villain: horrifically sadistic, yet still obsessed with fart jokes. The possibilities are endless.

Someone has to fill the void left by the fall of the Empire. Why not the Dread Binks. I can see him now channeling Joe Pesci…

“Do I amuse you? Do I make you laugh..?”

After the rise of Jar Jar no one would laugh again…

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