Gah! Look at how cool these new World War Robot toys/action figure thingies are! These are a part of Ashley Woods comic book series World War Robot, and honestly they look exactly like their comic book counterparts. I’m not sure what to call these exactly, because they’re kind of like giant action figures with moving parts, but they’re also sort of like models.
These guys come in at a whopping 14.8 inches tall, and come in two different colorways, Shadow Guard and Lunar Camo. I prefer the Lunar Camo, personally. You can pick one up yourself for the meaty price of $250 each by clicking here.
I was looking through my bookshelf earlier this morning and I came across this book called Marvel, Five Fabulous Decades of the World’s Greatest Comics. The book covers the history of Marvel including behind the scenes looks at art and stories that tell a little bit more about how the Marvel universe was created. I totally gushed over this book as a kid, but looking at it now it’s kind of silly.
But in the back of the back they reprinted some original stories from some classic comics, and one page in particular definitely caught my eye. It’s from Fantastic Four #51, a story called This Man… This Monster! about The Thing being shunned by society. The story isn’t really relevant, it’s all about the art above drawn by Jack Kirby. As the description in the book reads:
During the 1960’s Jack Kirby experimented with photo collages as a device for altering the look of comic books. The idea never really caught on, but it influenced the work of later artists from Jim Steranko to Todd McFarlane.
Why wasn’t this done more?! I’m guessing this was a bit far beyond what people were used to in the 60’s, especially in a comic book, but it absolutely looks like something someone would create now. Jack Kirby was certainly a pioneer far beyond his time.
I’ll be up front about this, I’m a total Marvel nerd. In the world of comic books, I tend to find DC comic books rather… unbelievable, which is a silly thing to say about comic books. But if you have Superman, who’s basically God, why aren’t all of the worlds problems fixed yet? Nonetheless, if the storytelling is good, I definitely want to read it.
So I was pretty excited to hear that DC was actually trying to do something different. Every Wednesday for the next 10 weeks (they’ve already released 2 issues) they’ll be releasing a tabloid-sized collection of comics, like a classic newspaper called Wednesday Comics. Each page is one part of the story, so in the end each story will be twelve gigantic pages long. This isn’t quite enough to sell me on it, but that’s where the creators come in. Honestly, I bought this because Paul Pope was doing an Adam Strange story, and he’s one of my biggest heroes in comics. But there’s also Mike Allred teaming up with Neil Gaiman to do Metamorph, Brian Azzarello and Eduardo Risso doing Batman, and even Kyle Baker doing a Hawkman story. The talent in each issue is amazing.
I also love the tactile sensation of the newsprint, it definitely gives it a lot of character, plus you could totally frame one of these pages as art and put it on your wall, something I’m tempted to do with the Paul Pope story.
Check under the cut for a ton of details from the most recent two issues.
How great are these superheroes by Allan Sanders? Allan is a Brighton based illustrator who graduated from the Royal College of Art in 1999. His superheroes are a personal project he’s working on, and I think they’re delightful. I love how kitschy and fun they all look, not a bit of seriousness to them. Plus look at those colors in that grid at the top, how could you not want a poster of that?
He also did some larger images of Captain America and Batman & Robin which I’ve put under the cut, so be sure not to miss those as well.
Three of my favorite things in the world are design, music, and comic books, so when French wünderkind Jean Jullien let me know about his newest project, a culmination of those three things, I knew it was gonna be awesome. The project is for a band called Niwoiunwouin, which I haven’t the faintest idea of how to pronounce, and their newest release called Fall of the Supers.
Jean decided to go all out on this project, crafting full costumes as a part of the packaging for the album. I think they look really rad, like some sort of pop art comic turned real. I’m not 100% sure, but I think the fella you see above is Jean himself, though hopefully I haven’t doomed Jean by revealing his secret identity! As for the album, well, it’s not quite my taste. It’s really abstract and electronic, kind of scattered all over the place, but I did enjoy some of the songs. To give a listen for yourself, click here.
You can also check out the rest of the things that Jean made by looking under the cut below!
Here it is lady and gents, the next big movie coming from DC Comics, one of the most celebrated comic books ever written, Watchmen. For those who’ve never read it, WIkipedia describes it as:
Watchmen is set in 1985, in an alternative history United States where costumed adventurers are real and the country is edging closer to a nuclear war with the Soviet Union (the Doomsday Clock is at five minutes to midnight). It tells the story of a group of past and present superheroes and the events surrounding the mysterious murder of one of their own.
The book basically changed the entire medium of comics, edging more towards a darker, more realistic tone in comic books. The comic was seen more as an epic novel done in comic book form than about people dressing up in tights. It was about real people with problems, trying to deal with a murder of one of their own on the brink of world disaster. And even though it’s been 22 years since it first came out, the ideas in the book still ring true, just different circumstances.
Directing the picture is Zak Snyder who also did 300, and while it wasn’t the best plot, it was certainly beautiful to look at, and he’s definitely recaptured that. I personally think the trailer looks great, it looks like he’s definitely gotten the mood and feel of the world, the characters look right and real, and hopefully the story can hold up to the original book… But I’m not holding my breath. Anyhow, watch the trailer and let me know what you think. I think if DC can keep this up they could start to rival Marvel in movie terms (they’re still nothing comic book-wise, haha…).
Or watch it over on Apple Trailers in HD, plus it has the iconic smiley button : )
A couple of weeks ago I got an email from illustrator and Kitsune Noir friend Nathan Fox and it mentioned he had a new comic out called Pigeons From Hell. I had NO idea that he was working on a comic book so I went out and bought it the very next day, read it all the way through and was amazed. The story is adapted from a Robert E. Howard story, the guy who created and wrote Conan the Barbarian, though this story is a spooky/horror kind of story set in a swamp in the South.
Nathan’s art has never looked more beautiful, and it’s pretty rad to see him doing sequential artwork for a change. The story is also colored by the amazing Jeromy Cox, who colored one of my all-time favorite comics, Promethea. Since I was so enamored with the first issue of the series, I did a little interview with Nathan and asked him a little about the book and his new experience with comics.
+KN: So how did you get attached to drawing Pigeons From Hell?
Nathan Fox: I’ve been sending my work around for a while through pitches and narrative illustration work, trying to see if anyone would take a chance, and Matt Dryer at Dark Horse called me up for Pigeons From Hell.
+KN: Were you a fan of Robert E. Howard’s work before you started work on the comic?
Nathan Fox: Nope. Didn’t know about Joe’s work at all. I really didn’t know that much about the breadth of Howard’s work out there to tell you the truth beyond the barbarian movies. I only knew about Conan comics wise but rarely picked up any issues except for Greg Ruth’s work on the series. Love his stuff. But once I got into Howard’s writing and short stories and read the original Pigeons From Hell and caught up with the work Joe had been doing I was sold. And here we are.
If you’re in Los Angeles tonight I highly suggest stopping by my favorite comic book shop Secret Headquarters for the opening of a new art show titled, Mats!? Traveler of Time and SPACE. Mats was born in France to Swedish parents, and has been drawing weird shit since he was in kindergarten. I stopped by the shop yesterday night and was able to take a sneak peek at the artwork and it looks like it’s going to be a really rad show.
The opening goes from 8 to 10 pm tonight and Mats artwork will be up until April 30th in case you can’t make it tonight!
Since I’m a big ol’ comic beek nerd, I want to post my thoughts about Marvel’s newest mega-event, Secret Invasion.
I’ve been looking forward to this event for quite a while, and I’ve loved the build-up immensely. I think Brian Michael Bendis is easily the best comic book writer out there right now hands down. The man has orchestrated this event over the last 4 years, like, that’s unheard of.
Thankfully the issue definitely pays off and you see Marvel universe go to hell in a handbasket really quickly. I”m not gonna talk about the issue, but I do want to talk about some the ideas I have about who may be a Skrull and what might be coming up in the series. So if you haven’t read the first issue yet, don’t look under the cut. If you have, please let me know what you think!
A couple weeks ago my best friend Garrett suggested I check out this comic book called The Walking Dead, which he described as a really good zombie story. I’m a big fan of zombies, so I bought the first trade paperback and gave it a try. I ended up getting completely addicted to this comic, and have since bought trades 1 through 7 in an effort to try and catch up.
The story is a pretty simple one, a good cop gets shot and put into a coma, wakes up to find the world’s gone to hell. There are zombies everywhere, and no one has any idea why. There’s no government, no law, just a lot of random people trying their best to survive. But what really sets this story apart is the incredible writing from Robert Kirkman. I think he described it best in the introduction to the first trade paperback when he said, “With The Walking Dead I want to explore how people deal with extreme situations and how these events CHANGE them.”
This isn’t just some zombie story, this is about people trying to keep their humanity in a world that’s been turned upside down. What also makes the story so amazing that it doesn’t hold anything back. People cuss, people get eaten, people die. Nothing is taboo or off limits, this is how fucked up the world would be and how people would react. It’s also pretty gruesome, so if you have a problem with gore, this probably isn’t the book for you, but it’s certainly not what this book is all about either.
I can’t say enough great things about this book, so go to your local comic book shop or even a bookstore and take a peek for yourself!