Jake & Leon #308: Webcomic: The Origin

Except for the wizard.

Except for the wizard.

I’m sure he’s also a skilled martial artist. He has his friend to do the tech part. This strip gave me the opening to play with a few Clip Studio Paint (I wish they kept it Manga Studio) tools, even combining some for the glowing space rock. I’m glad it went down well. Shading is still one of those things I need to work on, though.

This is where I usually link to this week’s Clutter Report project, but if you recall from last week I was doing a Mega-Project organizing my comic, and it took most of the week between my recovery and just being a lot of comics. So here’s the complete run-down as I had multiple posts during the week:

  1. The Start: I broke out the table and put the loose comics into order, as well as the graphic novels.
  2. The stickers: I talked about how I use stickers and bookmarks to keep track of what I’ve reviewed among those comics I’m keeping. I was also deciding if I wanted to add the comic from the magazine racks. Decided to add them, which would give me a place to put them all later.
  3. The Rack: Added the rest from the rack, and discussed the “holes” in my order because comics are all over the place.
  4. The S titles: The letter S is big as far as titles of comics. I needed a whole day just to put them in order. But I got further than I thought with the letters before it.
  5. The magazines: In the final day of the project I put the comics back into the magazine rack…but it required making a future project more difficult.

But I’m going to take a breather with other projects before the next phase of the comic organizing project. Speaking of comics, this week we start the next Thundercats miniseries, Dogs Of War. It’s not very good, but doesn’t push my fanrage buttons. Not sure which is worse. We’ll also look at the last issue of IDW’s take on MASK I own, but so far all I can say is “it’s good but lacks the nostalgia I’m looking for, especially since the covers are covered with nostalgia”. The Marvel multiversal reviews (the comics not set in the main Marvel universe) goes into Marvel Adventures, alleging to be in an animated style, but not set in any of the cartoons and frankly just looks like regular 90s style artwork. I mean Uncanny Origins, the comic that’s set in the main Marvel universe, has more cartoon style to it than the one claiming to be in a cartoon style.

I’m going to have quite a few distractions this week so I may not have the best main articles but I’ll give you the most interesting I can. If I can ditch this cough I’ll try for that V-log, although I’m not sure what I’m going to talk about. I want to save something for the Art Soundoff Challenge in November. We’ll see what happens.

Saturday Night Showcase: The 80s Ninja Craze

Ninja Reflex

Ninja Reflex (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I know, this was supposed to be a v-log, but I have a lot of congestion in my throat that’s coming up, and…let’s just it’s not something I want to broadcast online. The FIRST TIME I try to do this…..anyway, it’s not an option today. So let’s talk ninjas.

Martial arts movies go through a pattern of crazes. Wire Fu, kung fu, ripping off Power Rangers–it changes focus every year. In the 1980s that focus was on the ninja…or at least a very glamorized take on ninjas. For example, the traditional media costume was taken from bunraku theater puppeteers, trying to keep the focus on puppets and props. While it’s possibly a ninja once wore something like it to get close to a victim, they usually dressed like normal people so they could hide in plain sight. That means technically Naruto Uzumaki’s track suit is closer to an actual ninja outfit than your typical Foot Clan soldier.

During the 80s ninjas were everywhere, whether they were fighting turtles, possessing innocent women with their ghosts, or working for a daring, highly trained special missions force. And they’re still with us today, missioning forces, answering questions, and killing people while dancing ninja style. They’re even doctors…although that recently changed. (We miss you, Doctor McNinja.) In this panel conducted by the hosts of YouTube show RetroBlasting we get a look into the media craze that was the 80s ninja.

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Today’s Comic> MASK #1 (IDW)

mask-1-idw

If only the comic invoked the nostalgia its cover does.

MASK #1

IDW Publishing (November, 2016)

WRITER: Brandon Easton

ARTIST: Tony Vargas

COLORIST: Jordi Escuin

SELECTED COVER ART: Tommy Lee Edwards

LETTERER: Gilbert Lazcano

EDITOR: David Hedgecock

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Scanning My Collection> Batman: Digital Justice

Scanning My Collection logo

The world is an ever-changing place. Some are good and some are bad. Thus is the way of things. For example, I was a kid when video games became popular and we even had an arcade in walking distance (at a time when parents didn’t freak if their kid left the yard…if they’re even that “brave”). I was a kid when home video game consoles were first being sold in stores, from the Odyssey II to the Atari 2600. I was a kid when home computers were first marketed to homes. My cousin had a Commodore Vic 20, my friend has the same kind of TRS-80 that was in the corner of our homeroom in school, and my dad eventually bought an Atari 800 where my mom schooled us in Ms. Pac-Man.

This morning I took a walk since it’s good for my recovery and it’s unusually warm today. (It should be back to normal by the weekend.) In a case strapped to my belt was a device that was more powerful than all of those machines, can do everything those old machines can do and more, and was thinner than the manual for any of those devices. We are all now more connected than ever thanks to data plans, wi-fi, texting, and that rare moment someone actually makes a phone call. I still remember one day when I walked past someone talking to a friend on her cell phone in the days before smart phones, walked a little ways down and saw her friend as they were trying to find each other. (Of course I pointed her in the right direction. It still makes me laugh.) But in the days when the internet was just starting to exist and required a separate service that would tie up your telephone, people were still worried about what this brave new world would be like. Some people are afraid of it now as there are those who are more than willing to cause you harm in one form or another for their own benefit and amusement.

1990’s Batman: Digital Justice is a combination of Tron and Blade Runner, a predecessor or early contemporary of the rising “cyberpunk” movement of science fiction, where man and machine fought for control. And technology even played a part in its creation. While characters are drawn on the computer (long before programs were actually designed to make comics on the computer), 3D modelling was used for backgrounds and other imagery. It followed on the heels of Marvel’s gimmick of using a computer to create a comic, 1987’s Iron Man: Crash. While I have never read that comic, this one is more Tron that what I’ve read about it, while set in a computer-controlled Gotham City. But does Digital Justice go beyond the gimmick? Yes…until things get weird.

batman-digital-justice

“Darn static electricity. Why did I buy this carpet?”

Batman: Digital Justice

DC Comics (1990)

WRITER/ARITST: Pepe Moreno

DIALOG: Doug Murray

ADDITIONAL DESIGN: Javier Romero

ART ASSISTANT: Bob Fingerman

PRE-PRESS: Anaya Systems

ANAYA PROGRAMMER: Vincete Sosa

The closest I could come to finding a computer drawing program called Anaya was a plug-in for Photoshop whose website hasn’t been updated since 2008. I know he made this on a Mac II. Computer geeks would find the full stats interesting, but there are better computer programs released for free now while most of the comic creators I know split between Photoshop and Clip Studio Paint (formerly under the more fitting name Manga Studio). But you’re here for a comic review, not a computer/art geek lesson.

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BW’s “Yesterday’s” Comic> Oh My Goddess! Part V #2

oh-my-goddess-part-v-2

This is my problem with manga covers. I do anything with them because they’re just poster art.

Oh My Goddess! Part V #2

Dark Horse (October, 1997),

originally published by Kodansha, LTD, adapted into English by Studio Proteus

“The Lunchbox Of Love”

WRITER/ARTIST: Kosuke Fujishima

TRANSLATORS: Dana Lewis & Toren Smith

TOUCH-UP ART/LETTERERS: Susie Lee & PC Orz

DESIGN: Amy Arendts

EDITOR: Dave Chipps

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BW’s Morning Article Link: A Nightwing Movie?

Nightwing from The New Batman Adventures. Art ...

Nightwing from The New Batman Adventures. Art by Bruce Timm. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Look, I haven’t been discussing the DCEU (why “expanded” instead of “cinematic” like Marvel, even though Marvel’s extends to TV and the internet?) movies because after Man Of Steel and all I’ve heard about Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Wasted Time I just don’t care anymore, curious as I am to see the Wonder Woman and Justice League movies. The DCEU is every the MCU isn’t and that’s a bad thing because the MCU comes off more like DC Comics than DC did before the Rebirth, and the movies are still messing it up.

However, Warner Brothers still thinks they can salvage a train wreck without fixing the rails. They’re producing a Nightwing movie. How? They haven’t even had Robin yet in the movieverse. They’re also going with the director of The LEGO Batman Movie, which is an odd choice given the tone the DCEU is going with.

“Yesterday’s” Comic> NiGHTS Into Dreams #3

nights-into-dreams-3

“Check out my invisible clarinet!”

NiGHTS Into Dreams #3

FINAL ISSUE

Archie Comics (April, 1998)

“Flight To The Finish”

PLOT: Dan Slott

WRITER/COLORIST: Karl Bollers

PENCILERS: Pat Spaz & Marry Galan

INKER: Harvo

LETTERER: Jeff Powell

EDITOR: J. Freddy Gabrie

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