Friday, January 31, 2014

I'm Told It Starts As A Tingle...

Peep my farewell tribute illustration to the show that entertained me since last fall, American Horror Story: Season 3 - Coven! Respekt to everyone responsible for bringing Angela Bassett and Jessica Lange together (and also Kathy Bates). Queen overload for real! We were not worthy. When they butted heads and came together, they especially reminded me of these two X-Ladies.  This one's inspired by their Entertainment Weekly cover. Hope y'all feel it!


Check out the black and white version HERE.


Peace.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Vision Board: DC Collectibles Justice League

I can't afford 'em at this time so I just made a desktop wallpaper of DC Collectibles Justice League Action Figures that I'd love to own someday and for me to look at regularly until I do. Just taking the first step in making a vision a reality!



Feel free to use it also! I'll add more as new products I like are solicited/released.

Updated 19 February 2014!



Updated 24 April 2014!



Updated 13 May 2014!


Peace.

Friday, January 03, 2014

31 Days of Comics

This blog post is inspired by Comics Should Be Good's 31 Days of Comics, which, in turn is inspired by GoodOKBad. I'll update this every other day or so until I complete all 31 Days of Comics.

1: FAVORITE COMIC


Chew
Story: John Layman
Art: Rob Guillory

Hilarious, clever, weird, unique, and witty. If I was a comic book, I would aspire to be Chew. It has everything I could ever want from anything, including an Asian Pacific American lead and a diverse cast of lovable characters, most with eating-based superpowers.





2: COMIC I RECOMMEND TO URRBODY NO MATTER WHAT

Superman: Birthright
Story: Mark Waid
Art: Leinil Francis Yu

This maxiseries made me get Superman for the very first time after decades of not truly appreciating him due to him being overempowered. I dug him ever since. This is an accessible book I recommend to everyone looking for a gateway or a standalone experience. Why not go with the most iconic and ultimate immigrant superhero?



3: GREAT ADAPTATION/REMAKE OF ANOTHER WORK

Transformers: Generation One

Story: Chris Sarracini
Art: Pat Lee

Before the controversial company, Dreamwave, went belly up, they were at the forefront of pushing comic book art technique and production to the next level. They were popular for their adaptation of our favorite 80s cartoon, featuring well-crafted modern stories and beautiful art. The Transformers never looked as good before and after this period. I naturally and welcomingly got swept up in the wave.


4: FIRST COMIC SERIES I SURRIOUSLY PURSUED

X-Men
Story: Chris Claremont
Art: Marc Silvestri

X-Men. I'm so not alone. My older cousin started me off and hooked me with Inferno, then I pushed myself simultaneously forward to X-Tinction Agenda and backward to Dark Phoenix Saga whenever I saved up enough lunch money allowance until I was all caught up. My body starved, but I fed my sense of imagination well.


5: GREAT LOVE STORY

Scott Pilgrim

Story & Art: Bryan Lee O'Malley

Aside from Saga (which, trust, I will get to), this is admittedly the only other comic book I've read that later became obvious was centered around a romance. Initially, the manga aesthetic, the nods to the 8-bit video games I lived for as a kid, and news of a Hapa creator drew me to the digests. Upon finishing, I didn't mind at all reading a romancey comic book. I'm glad this was the first that popped my cherry. It totally prepared me for the buck wildness of Saga. Whether or not you loved the film, the source material here is top-notch entertainment. Trust a fellow child of the 80s.


6: NON–FICTION COMIC I'D RECOMMEND TO PEOPLE WHO DON'T DO NON–FICTION

Action Philosophers!

Story: Fred Van Lente
Art: Ryan Dunlavey

Almost couldn't come through on this one! Thankfully, I remember reading a few stories from this book for a previous The Line It Is Drawn assignment. I enjoyed what I read. Check out what it brought out of me HERE.



7: COMFORT COMIC

Jimmy Olsen One-shot

Story: Nick Spencer
Art: RB Silva

Best one-shot ever! It made me unexpectedly enjoy Jimmy Olsen of all people. That's one of the biggest shockers I've experienced in all my time spent reading comics. If/when you ever have time to curl up in bed and experience the true magic, relevance, and delight of today's sci-fi, this is the comic for you even if you're not big on sci-fi nor superheroes.


8: GORGEOUS COMIC

Batwoman: Elegy

Story: Greg Rucka
Art: JH Williams III

If it's JHW3 art, you MUST own it. 'Nuff said.






9: COMIC THAT TOTALLY BLEW MY MIND

Morning Glories vol. 3: P.E.

Story: Nick Spencer
Art: Joe Eisma

Almost every issue of this series blows my mind, but this particular arc featured the first time I physically reacted to a startling revelation. Of course, the big reveal centered around my favorite character in the book. And, not to mention, my second favorite character stunningly didn't make it out of this story alive. Buckle your head in for this one.


10: MOST BEAUTIFUL SCENE IN ANY COMIC

All Star Batman and Robin, the Boy Wonder

Story: Frank Miller
Art: Jim Lee

Jim Lee's Batcave. Glorious! Not a euphemism, by the way. It's a six-page foldout of pure majesty. Also, Robin kickin' Green Lantern's ass in a room painted yellow was a riot. It felt like a cathartic preemptive strike against the character's feature film flop. I laughed so hard, I had a lasting six-pack afterwards. Beautiful!



11: OLD COMIC I LOVE

Giant-Size X-Men 1
Story: Len Wein
Art: Dave Cockrum

It's the classic gateway into superhero comic books.







12: GREAT HOLIDAY COMIC
Story: Dustin Nguyen & Derek Fridolfs
Art: Dustin Nguyen

Need a hot holiday-themed comic to fulfill your holiday needs? This comic series got you covered for about an entire year's worth of holidays. Fantastic legacy to the Bruce Timm/Paul Dini Batman: The Complete Animated Series. Fun for all ages! One of my favorite DC offerings ever.



13: GREAT PLOT TWIST

Mind the Gap

Story: Jim McCann
Art: Rodin Esquejo

Every suspenseful issue of this title contains at least one mind-blowing plot twist. Very well-crafted mysteries featuring a Hapa lead and a diverse array of characters who make you question "whodunnit?" and "why?" This series truly satisfies with a very personal story, gorgeous art, and most excellent nods to one of my favorite series ever, Runaways (more on this later).


14: COMIC THAT I LOVE THAT I'LL NEVER READ AGAIN

Shortcomings

Story & Art: Adrian Tomine

This story about a failing relationship affected me a lot. I love it, but reading it made me depressed. Of course, I'll read it again, but I'll really have to be in the mood because I know it'll put me in a dark place by the time I finish.




15: COMIC THAT MAKES ME SMILE

Blue Beetle vol. 3: Reach for the Stars

Story: John Rogers
Art: Rafael Albuquerque

This volume and the next chronicling Rogers & Albuquerque's run made me feel a whole range of emotions, but each issue always ended with making me smile. The things that came out of Paco's mouth is worth the price of admission alone. He's, by far, one of my most favorite supporting characters in any comic.


16: COMIC THAT MAKES ME CRY

Final Crisis Requiem

Story: Peter Tomasi
Art: Doug Mahnke

Very emotional sendoff to a beloved character, who was needlessly and hastily taken away. This story placed Pete Tomasi on my radar and I followed some of his work since. This comic goes down as my all-time favorite from him.



17: COMIC THAT REMINDS ME OF SOMEONE

American Born Chinese

Story & Art: Gene Luen Yang

This reminds me of all my Asian Pacific American brothers, especially those of us who grew up in the 80s.







18: COMIC THAT DESERVES A SOUNDTRACK

Private Eye
Story: Brian K. Vaughan
Art: Marcos Martin

When I read this phenomenal name-your-price web series, also one of my favorite recent comics, I hear a soundtrack that sounds similar to Cowboy Bebop, one of the best anime ever.

19: COMIC THAT I QUOTE FROM

Daken: Dark Wolverine

Story: Daniel Way & Marjorie Liu
Art: Giuseppe Camuncoli

The way Daken thinks is so F-ed up, yet it's stuff I admittedly also thought about, but keep to myself, which is scary.





20: COMIC WITH WITTY DIALOGUE

Runaways

Story: Brian K. Vaughan
Art: Adrian Alphona

Kids say the darnedest... or, rather, the smartassest things and it's best reflected in this phenomenal comic. This one set the standard for how contemporary teen superhero books are told and is one of my favorite comics ever. I highly recommend this to any and everyone all the time!


21: COMIC THAT I USED TO LOVE, BUT NOW DISLIKE

X-Force: A Force to be Reckoned With

Story: Fabian Nicieza
Art: Rob Liefeld

I remember it being a very good story in the beginning. Mostly, I was so enchanted by the art as a kid. Now I can't even look at it without questioning my taste. It's a style I definitely outgrew.




22: COMIC THAT MAKES ME WANNA HAVE SLOPPY MAKEOUTS WITH SOMEONE

Saga

Story: Brian K. Vaughan
Art: Fiona Staples

Hella sexy and twisted! The best kinda sexy! Please note: this is my other favorite comic book. Ever. This one's nothing like you've ever experienced. The realest contemporary sci-fi at its peak finest! Get it. NOW.



23: FIRST COMIC I EVER BOUGHT

Uncanny X-Men 269
Story: Chris Claremont
Art: Jim Lee

It's been a long time, but I think it was this one at the local Vallergas. The cover alone grabbed me. Who was this hottie-boom-bottie with skunk hair getting choked by a decomposing blond bombshell?? I had to know! And the art! Glorious, glorious Jim Lee art! My life was never the same.


24: COMIC THAT MAKES ME LAUGH

Deadpool Classic vol. 9

Story: Gail Simone
Art: Alvin Lee

This is literally the arc that made me laugh reading a comic book for the first time. So many fond, twisted memories of this run, and the following Agent X arc and finale by Gail.




25: COMIC FROM A FAVORITE CREATOR

All-New Atom

Story: Gail Simone
Art: various

It's the book that gave us Head and Jetpack Hitler. *mic drop*






26: GUILTY PLEASURE COMIC

Danger Girl

Story: J. Scott Campbell & Andy Hartnell
Art: J. Scott Campbell

The best comic book series I've ever read featuring some of the best cheesecake art ever. It's a guilty pleasure I'm not at all ashamed for enjoying, even though I know I should be a li'l bit.




27: COMIC I'VE READ THE MOST TIMES

X-Men: Mutant Genesis

Story: Chris Claremont
Art: Jim Lee

Whenever a new superhero team comic book launches, I measure it up against the opening arc of X-Men. It has everything from drama, cheekiness, action, and all the compelling, diverse, beautifully rendered characters I cared for and followed religiously. The solid writing remains memorable and affecting, but the art always served as the main draw. Jim Lee was my first comic book artist hero. When I saw his art at around age 11, I knew immediately that I wanted to become a professional illustrator one day.

28: GREAT COMIC FOR KIDS

Tiny Titans
Story: Art Baltazar & Franco
Art: Art Baltazar

Sweet and delightful for the kids, Bebe's or not. Also amusing in-jokes for the adult DC fan.





29: COMIC THAT CHANGED THE WAY I SEE THE WORLD
Stormwatch: Team Achilles
Story: Micah Ian Wright
Art: Whilce Portacio | Carlos D'Anda

Brilliant, satirical, and both a product and ahead of its time, this title showed me how a comic book can reach and connect with people in a different and very mature way. Unfortunately, the title was plagued with art changes and ethical issues outside of the story, which made me see the obstacles and politics in comic creation beyond the printed pages. Despite the challenges, the story never dipped in quality and remains one of my favorites even if it wasn't allowed a proper ending.

30: TRULY SMART COMIC

Ex Machina
Story: Brian K. Vaughan
Art: Tony Harris

This series made me question, then strengthen my own beliefs and moral compass. When anything achieves that, be appreciative and cherish it.





31: COMIC THAT I WOULD FEEL BAD LEAVING OFF A LIST OF COMICS

Batman/Superman vol. 1: Cross World (The New 52)

Story: Greg Pak
Art: Jae Lee

Don't miss this kick-off arc that joins two Asian American comic book giants on a project featuring two of the world's finest superheroes in history. Well-written and beautifully rendered, it's not to be missed.





Peace.