May 19th, 2011

smokin'

Under The Weather

I've been sick and overwhelmed, but I figures I'd duck in to say hi, for those of you who are still with me here.

Dark Horse sent out a brief press release on The Goon #35, which I wrote and which series creator Eric Powell is probably working on as I type this.

We finished up a series of six really small spot illos for an upcoming issue of Mad.

Started my entry  for Team Cul-De-Sac, but the deadline was pushed back, so I'm juggling that around. Along with another round of commissions, trying to get those done asap.

Working on the cover layout for the new MC Frontalot CD.

Working on one...two...projects I can't discuss publicly. Bo-ring.

Totally unprepared for Heroes Con. A few of you folks have written regarding commissions at the show, I'll get back to everyone asap. Not sure if I'm sketching at the show or not, I'm leaning towards it, mainly because I can't work on anything else while manning the table.

Speaking of shows, I had a really nice time at the Hawthorne HS event last Saturday. I was going to write up the show in detail but things have been crazy. Missed seeing my friend Ken (he showed up while I was in the teacher's lounge, eating and gabbing and looking out the window at the flawless, all-American football field across the street), but it was nice, as always, to get a chance to talk with Walt Simonson. Appreciate the H.O.F. faithful who stopped by the table. I was kept pretty busy for a laid back school show, very surprising. Sold a few books, a few small drawings, did a bunch of freebie sketches, and on the way out traded some artwork for a 40's Lee Elias Black Cat page. Nice day, all-around.

Not- H.O.F. related, but we were really happy to hear that Andi Watson has done three new Skeleton Key stories for Dark Horse Presents.

Ditto, that first Alex Toth book from IDW is amazing. Wish I had time to read it. As well as the Shigeru Mizuki book from D&Q.

Finally, Sarah's started a new blog called Tumbling Tumbleweeds, stemming from our family's growing interest in Gene Autry B-westerns and cowboy/girl culture/pop culture. Which I guess grew out of listening to a lot of Western Swing recently, Bob Wills and his Texas Playboys, Tex Williams, The Light Crust Dough Boys, et al. Which grew out of listening to a lot of The Maddox Brothers and Rose after Sarah read about the group on The Hound's Blog. I think that's how this all started. Anyway, Emily has been a driving force in all this, she really took to the Maddox Brothers and Rose tunes in a big way (we all did, actually), and for Christmas she wished for (and got) a Jessie doll from Toy Story 3, and at the moment she's becoming horse and cowgirl-crazy. Yee-ha. We started watching a lot of Gene Autry B-flicks recently, they're fun and silly and often less than an hour long, I can sketch in front of it and watch for re-used plot elements and gags. Unfortunately, Emily won't watch The Phantom Empire with us, she finds the SF elements and serial death traps too scary. I love that serial, I saw it as a kid on T.V. and it's as nuts as I remember it. it is bona-fide insane and has one of my favorite plot contrivances ever -- Autry is facing an underground society bent on destroying him, as well as some evil scientist-types who also have it out for him. He's also up on a trumped-up murder charge. While tangling with all this, he must broadcast his radio show daily -- which includes singing at least one song -- or lose his contract and his ranch. That's better than whatever it is you're watching. Sort of. Well, it's stupider. The underground super-science sets and models are great/ridiculous, there's also a swell twelve year-old trick rider named Betsy King Ross (who unfortunately does almost no trick riding, but she's awesome nonetheless), it has a kid gang on horseback in homespun crazy costumes (emulating a group of enemy "Thunder Riders" who wear "authentic" crazy costumes), Smiley Burnette doing what Smiley Burnette usually does (comic relief, novelty songs, froggy sounds, general goofery), Champion, the Wonder Horse (unbilled), a secret kid's lab/hideout, and the semi-infamous worker robots with blank faces and tin hats stumbling around doing stuff (bored stuntmen in left-over suits from a Clark Gable/Joan Crawford musical, no less). And a lot of bad acting, and crazy stunts, as this is a 12-part serial made by maniacs on a budget with little time for niceties. This is called entertainment, kids. The copy we borrowed from the library is pretty much no-frills with bargain basement extras, but there's a new, authorized version of the serial due out on DVD next month. 

Also -- before I forget,  thanks to those out there who bid on our recent auctions, we appreciate it. We sent a few packages out already, a few more are going out asap, I was too sick to get out to the post office yesterday. Expect some additional auctions in the near-future.

All for now.