Wednesday, October 28, 2009
My World Fantasy Convention schedule
* Chances are I'll have to leave it from time to time, but if I'm not there, I promise I'll be right back!
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Hey, man, is that Freedom Rock?
The Great Pumpkin!
Bone thinks he's subconsciously riffing on an image that Jay Stephens has already done. Can anyone remember the piece he's thinking of, if so?
Monday, October 26, 2009
Klingon Recruiting Film
New Muppet Videos
Giant Robots and Boy Detectives
Over on his blog, Dan Santat has posted a bunch of his inspirations for the approach, including old pulp sf covers, kaiju movie posters, and Thai action films. In other words, my kind of thing.
A couple of weeks ago I read The Brixton Brothers: The Case of the Case of Mistaken Identity, also written by Mac Barnett and illustrated by the amazing Adam Rex.
I read The Case of the Case of Mistaken Identity in one sitting because I literally could not put it down (though I did have to pause occasionally when laughing outloud). To say anything about the plot at all would be to spoil too many surprises, so I'll simply say that it is a very clever, very self-aware middle-reader novel about a boy obsessed with the fictional exploits of boy detectives (in the Hardy Boys vein) who finds his life turning into just such an adventure. Rex provides illustrations throughout that are absolutely pitch pirfect.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Lucy Knisley's "Saved by the Spell"
Fantastic Family Circus
Friday, October 23, 2009
Georgia's New Glasses
And if there are those of you afraid of YouTube videos for some reason, here's a still image:
Moebius and Miyazaki
Here are two quotes from Miyazaki in particular that resonate with me very much.
"The 21st Century is a tricky time. Our future isn't clear. We need to re-examine many things we've taken for granted, whether it's common sense or our way of thinking. We need to reconsider each norm in the field of entertainment and children's films, too. We must question the format we've been following. You can't just create a baddie from a mould, then beat him. We must not make a film in the easy way."And...
"Inside me I have negativity, despair, or hopelessness; in fact a lot of hopelessness and pessimism. But I don't feel like expressing it in my films, which children see. I'm more interested in what drives me to make a happy film or what makes me feel happy."This is a much better way of expressing my current philosophy towards my own writing, which I in my hamfisted way have instead formulated as "Cheer up and have fun."
42 Essential 3rd Act Twists
I like "Frankenwolf," myself.
While obviously covering different ground, this reminds me a bit of the Creebobby Comics Archetypes Times Table. Put those together with this and you might just cover every conceivable story.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Noam Raby's "I Love XKCD"
And here's the original strip, for reference.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
We Are All Connected
Here's the details, from the YouTube posting:
MP3 available at http://www.symphonyofscience.com.And as a bonus, here's They Might Be Giants with some similar sentiments, from Georgia's favorite album of the moment, Here Comes Science:
"We Are All Connected" was made from sampling Carl Sagan's Cosmos, The History Channel's Universe series, Richard Feynman's 1983 interviews, Neil deGrasse Tyson's cosmic sermon, and Bill Nye's Eyes of Nye Series, plus added visuals from The Elegant Universe (NOVA), Stephen Hawking's Universe, Cosmos, the Powers of 10, and more. It is a tribute to great minds of science, intended to spread scientific knowledge and philosophy through the medium of music.
D&D on the Microsoft Surface
So imagine my excitement when I saw this on Topless Robot last night, a proof-of-concept video for the Microsoft Surface, turning a table-sized multi-touch display into a D&D game table.
I like the fact that you can hear the sound of dice clicking as the virtual dice roll across the display.
Here's the full credits, for reference:
A walk-through of the current build of our proof of concept for a Dungeons & Dragons experience on the Microsoft Surface. Created by the Surfacescapes team at the Entertainment Technology Center at Carnegie Mellon University.
Theyab Al Tamimi
Terminator - How It Should End, Take Two
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Grocery Store Musical
My favorite thing about this are the people who just go on shopping, pretending like nothing strange is happening two feet away from them.
Cinderella: From Fabletown With Love #3
CINDERELLA: FROM FABLETOWN WITH LOVE #3Issue one hits the stands the first Wednesday in November, if I'm remembering correctly. But in case you were concerned that Cindy might not end up in a wetsuit at some point in this adventure, let your fears be laid to rest. (Better yet, she's wearing a catsuit *under* the wetsuit...)
Written by Chris Roberson
Art by Shawn McManus
Cover by Chrissie Zullo
Super-spy Cinderella and her uneasy ally Aladdin are hot on the trail of the shadowy figures who are smuggling black market magics into the mundane world, and the search leads them from the hot sands of Dubai to the cold waters of the North Atlantic. Meanwhile, back in Fabletown, Crispin Cordwainer’s new shoe designs are a big hit – maybe a little too big!
On sale January 6 • 3 of 6 • 32 pg, FC, $2.99 US • MATURE READERS
Monday, October 19, 2009
Tom Rhodes's "Swampgas"
In a nutshell, it imagines what it might look like if other monsters were given the "Twilight" treatment. In this instance, the Creature from the Black Lagooon...
Friday, October 16, 2009
See, Matt's tired of what he's calling "mashup fiction," which he defines as "stories whose genesis is the intentional combination of unrelated tropes, historical figures, or characters from previously published works." I know just what he's talking about. That's not just my bread-and-butter as a writer, it's the primary staple I consume as a reader. That's the stuff I live for.
Naturally, as one might expect, I disagree a bit with Matt's assertion that such stuff is getting stale, and past its sell-by-date. And not just because "mashup-fiction" includes the vast majority of all of my favorite books, comics, music, and movies. "Mashup-fiction" isn't simply a viable approach to entertainment.
Entertainment needs "mashups" in order to survive.
"Portrait of a Domesticated Predator," by Georgia
original, you'll see that Georgia has added a few details. For example, adding black over the eyes to suggest that this is, to paraphrase the old Monty Python bit, a late fish, removing any doubt that it might be a live fish who has inadvertently flopped up on land. And the gaping wounds and streams of blood? She added those, too.
So what was originally a sedate drawing of a cat looking at a fish on the ground now becomes a somewhat unsettling portrait of a cat contemplating the results of its own predatory instincts, clearly able to kill its prey but unsure what to do next. A portrait of a domesticated predator, if you will, with all of its killer instinct intact but lacking the real-world experience to know how to put them into play.
I'm sure it's a mere coincidence that the coloration of this cat matches that of our our own cat Blue, who has killed more than a few insects and lizards unlucky enough to cross his path in our house, and then sat and stared and them as they bled out their last, unsure what to do next...
"B.O.B.", by Georgia
Here's one of her offerings from yesterday, a rendition of B.O.B. from Monsters Vs. Aliens, drawn from life. Or rather, drawn from the new action figure that was sitting on our kitchen table. (If you'd ever seen the tablecloth on our kitchen table, you'd be struck by how accurate it's represented by the colored dots underneath.)
HorrorScope on Book of Secrets
This is a very ambitious book, comprising both Spencer’s current day narrative and an assortment of the stories that he was given, their genres ranging from pulp short stories to a medieval ballad. Each style is captured perfectly, reflecting Roberson’s clear talent.
The obvious comparisons to books such as the Da Vinci Code will be drawn by many readers. While there is a similarity to some of the themes, Book of Secrets is, overall, much better written. There is a feeling that some depth of character has been sacrificed in favour of plot and intrigue. Spencer himself comes across as not being fully realized much of the time, and many of the secondary characters are little more than sketches. As this is a book more about ideas than characters, however, it’s not a huge drawback to the enjoyment of the story.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Google Street View Guys
How Clouds Work
He explains it, thusly.
A weird illustration for the upcoming graphic novel anthology “This Will Explain Everything” to be published by the Scotland-based Forest Publishing very soon.
For a bigger view click here.
If by some bizarre chance the notion of Afrodisiac fighting a T-Rex in Vietnam wasn't enough to sell you, the following trailer should make clear all of the reasons you need this book.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Harvey Awards Animation
Go Buy This
1) Go to your local comic shop. (If you don't know where that is, look here.)
2) Locate a copy of the House of Mystery Halloween Annual, which is hitting the stands today.
(Here's what the cover looks like, for visual reference.)
3) Go to the counter and purchase the House of Mystery Halloween Annual.
4) Go somewhere comfortable and read the contents, enjoying all of the stories and vignettes, but paying careful attention to "Trick or Treat," illustrated by Michael Allred and written by some dude.
5) Mark your calendar to remind yourself to repeat these steps in March when the first issue of iZombie is released, which picks up right where "Trick or Treat" leaves off.
BONUS points: For extra credit, also purchase a copy of Hector Plasm: Totentanz, by Benito Cereno and Nate Bellegarde, among other notables. I've been waiting patiently for this one for a while.
"T-Rex," by Georgia Roberson
I went to Georgia's first parent-teacher conference on Monday. At one point, her teacher paused for a moment, unsure how to phrase her next thought, and then proceeded to explain about the strange, high-pitched groan that Georgia makes on the playground, in the classroom, and especially when playing with the big bin of plastic dinosaurs during free time.
"Yeah, that's the noise she makes when she's being a dinosaur," I said apologetically, and the teacher was immediately relieved to know I was already aware of it. I promised to encourage her to be a dinosaur more quietly in future.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Jim Rugg's MODOK Vs. Lucha Libre
What do you need? MODOK versus luchadores, obviously...
Monday, October 12, 2009
An Angel on His Shoulder, A Devil on Hers
Anyone who has suffered through one of my rants about Battlestar Galactica knows how I feel about the last few seasons of the series, and about the finale in particular, and my ire over the epic fail may obscure the passion with which I raved about the first seasons earlier on.
One of my favorite pastimes is trying to anticipate where things on good television series are headed. The complex ones, I mean, that are clearly built around puzzles and mysteries. Allison and I are currently rewatching Lost from the beginning, and I've been gradually refining my Grand Unified Theory of Lost as we go. From the first moments of the initial BSG miniseries I devoted a fair amount of brain processing capacity to figuring out where the show was heading, what the "plan" of the Cylons was exactly, and what would happen next. This essay represents my thinking at somewhere around the middle of the series, if I recall correctly, sometime shortly after the liberation of New Caprica. You know, right before it All Went Wrong. Of course, my projections and predictions turned out to be entirely wrong ("Oh, you mean they're really angels?! Of course, I should have seen that all along!"), but if you're curious in seeing a kind of under-informed "what if" scenario about just what was going on with the version of Six that haunted Baltar (and the image of Baltar that haunted Caprica Six), this is your chance. Consider it fan-fiction, and leave it at that.
Ford for Adventure
If I found myself needing to haul a giant gorilla back home from the jungle, I doubt my Ford Escort would be equal to the task. Then I might see getting an SUV. I'll stick with little lozenge cars for now, but if giant gorillas are discovered let me know and I may reconsider.
Jvstin on Three Unbroken
Roberson writes precisely the kind of SF that I want to spend my recreational time reading.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Toy Story 3 trailer
Friday, October 09, 2009
Gary the Cylon - Episode 17
I gotta say, I kind of miss the old school Cylons...
Thursday, October 08, 2009
Doc Shaner's "Fantastic Four"
Check out this terrific group shot of the Fantastic Four that he's just posted to deviantArt.
Lucy Knisley's "Mayhem at Mickey's Diner"
I love all of the little bits of business going on, the little stories hidden in the details. As much as I love Lucy's autobiographical comics, I think she should really be doing kid's books. Georgia would eat this stuff up.
Check out more awesomeness at Lucy's website.
Wednesday, October 07, 2009
Murray Ewing's "Alice at R'lyeh"
Here's a snippet...
The text of the poem is available online, and the illustrated version is available as a PDF download and on sale in hardcopy form. Check it out, won't you?
"If you please, Mr Lovecraft, I'll venture to prove
"(And I hope that you won't think me forward or rude)
"That the way that you look at the world is quite wrong
"My argument, truly, is not overlong:—
"Caterpillars are dopy, and Hatters are mad,
"And the Mouse and the mournful Mock Turtle are sad,
"And the White Rabbit's late, and the Red Queen is vexed
"And 'Why is a Raven like a Writing Desk?'"
"What kind of an argument is that?" Lovecraft cried
"A nonsensical argument," Alice replied,
"For if it's all nonsense, or meaninglessness
"You can take your conclusions any way you think best!"
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Bill Willingham's Peter & Max
A new issue of Marvel's indie spotlight Strange Tales? Awesome. A new Grant Morrison-penned Batman and Robin? I'm in. New issues of House of Mystery, The Incredibles, Models, Inc., Irredeemable, and Secret Warrrios? Yes, yes, yes, hell yes, and yes.
But the absolute best thing on the ship list for this week, I'm sorry to say, won't be on my To Read list. Because I've already read it.
I envy you lucky people who haven't read it yet, and now get the chance.
Here's the full text from the solication:
Set in the imaginative realm of the award-winning comic book series FABLES, PETER & MAX is a stand-alone prose novel - the first ever published starring FABLES characters!If you're already a fan of Fables, you won't want to miss this. And if you're not yet reading Fables, this is the perfect place to start. I was lucky enough to read it a chapter or two at a time as Bill was writing the novel last year, and I was on the edge of my seat between installments waiting to see what happened next. You folks are even luckier than you know, since you'll have the whole thing right there in your hands.
Long ago, in the deepest dark of The Black Forest, two brothers - Peter Piper and his older brother Max - encountered ominous forces that changed them both irreparably. Thus begins an epic tale of sibling rivalry, magic, music and revenge that spans medieval times to the present day, when their deadly conflict surfaces in the placid calm of modern day Fabletown.
PETER & MAX: A FABLES NOVEL features the deft prose of award-winning comic book writer Bill Willingham and lush ink spot illustrations from FABLES artist Steve Leialoha. The novel also reveals secrets of some of the regular FABLES series cast members including Bigby Wolf, Frau Totenkinder and Bo Peep. Included as well is an 8-page bonus sequential comic story by Willingham and Leialoha that serves as a bridge to the FABLES graphic novel collections.
Buy it. Read it. You won't be disappointed.
Monday, October 05, 2009
X-Men Versus Agents of Atlas
I've raved about Agents of Atlas more times than I can count (just see for yourself), and I'd very much like Jeff Parker to continue writing their adventures well into the future. Healthy sales on this X-Men crossover miniseries would no doubt do much to increase those chances. So buy it, already!
And if you're on the fence, check out Chris Samnee's blog all this week, where he's showcasing preliminary sketches done in the run-up to the series. Here's the first taste, posted this morning.
Come on, people. Killer robot and talking gorilla? What else do you need to know?!
Saturday, October 03, 2009
Terminator - How It Should End
I must say I'm in complete agreement here...
Looks like new HISHE videos are expected every month. You'll hear no complaints from me.
Friday, October 02, 2009
Now I'm off to watch last night's Fringe, having spent the day tinkering with a novel outline involving occult spies and multiversal invaders. See, I'm nuts for this kind of thing! Now go check out Hsiang's nifty readers guide, already, and see if there's anything you've missed, too.
(The fact that Hsiang flatters me by including my name among such luminaries, of course, does absolutely nothing to amplify the high esteem in which I hold him. I'm shocked, shocked, that anyone might think differently.)
Thursday, October 01, 2009
Meet the cast of I, ZOMBIE
Over on the Vertigo blog, Graphic Content, there's a selection of preview pages from the upcoming House of Mystery Halloween annual, including a couple of pages of Sturges's framing sequence and a couple of pages of Willingham and Buckingham's Merv Pumkinhead story. Oh, and look at that, a page from the 7-page I, ZOMBIE preview story, in which we get our first glimpse of Gwen Dylan and her pals Spot and Ellie.
Cool points to the first person to identify who Gwen (that's the one in the middle, the hero of our story) is dressed as for Halloween...