Saturday, March 9, 2019

Fan art . . .the good, the bad and the bizarre

https://www.deviantart.com/csuhsux
Think of this posting as a public service announcement. Kinda like an emergency broadcast on your TV once in a while.

https://www.deviantart.com/nikoskap
The two works above are examples of the good. Well illustrated and creative while also being faithful to the source material. Everything below, would be good examples of the bad and the bizarre which unfortunately are far more commonly found then the good stuff. Yeah I know I'm kinda of being a dick by doing a posting like this but truth be told I had wanted to do this since early last year but had always felt it was kinda of crossing a line. But now, with this being a semi-retired blog these days I'm not really too worried about making new friends or my reputation. I'm just so very happy to finally really make this point.

All this shit should be banished to Limbo
I really love it when I come across some kind of ROM related fan art that reminds me of the good ol days of when I had a new issue of ROM or some kind of tie-in to look forward to every month. None of that kind of shit does that for me. When I see that stuff it's like that feeling you get when you see a dead animal on the road or people who spit in public all the time.

Example of good fan art
I just got back home after having seen Captain Marvel and I just wanted to start off by coming to it's defense because I thought it was fairly good. I mean seriously based on all the bitching I've heard about it so far you'd think it was the next Iron Man 3 or Thor The Dark World both of which were very forgettable films in the Avengers movie series. Captain Marvel was packed with a ton of 90s and even some 80s pop culture references along with a lot of good Avengers MCU tie-in points. And quite frankly I thought Brei Larson did a pretty good job with the Carol Danvers character. By the way I had no idea Larson is from Sacramento California that's only about an hour and a half from where I live. The movie was not with out some flaws ofcourse but still over all it wasn't bad and you'd be a damn fool to not see it before Infinity End Game comes out next month.


The Monica Rambeau (the first female Captain Marvel) character is also in the movie which I thought was a cool nod to the comic book source material. She's not an Avenger with photonic powers in the movie but it never the less made feel like re-reading classic ROM tie-ins Avengers 244 - 245 this weekend.


On a side note as far as I know this back story from Marvel Fanfare 24 is the only time Monica Rambeau and Carol Danvers (when she was Binary) had ever met each other.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Ringing in the new year with some fan art that kicks ass!


I had been bitching to my good friend and fellow artist and ROM fan in Greece https://www.deviantart.com/nikoskap recently about how December was so fucken devoid of any new ROM related fan art that was worth a shit with November not having been much better. Now one of the reasons I consider this guy a friend is because he actually checks and responds to his emails on a pretty consistent basis which is rare these days even the other ROM fans I've connected with over the years are such assholes when it comes to that. So woe and behold after I woke up on New Year's day a sketch had been emailed to me from my Greek friend which I thought was great.
Didn't have to go to work today ofcourse and I had plenty of spare time on my hands so I decided to color it in photoshop. I know I'm not really blogging here any more these days but I'm pretty damn sure this will probably be the best ROM related fan art for much of . . or most of  . . or maybe for all of 2019 at this rate. So yeah I'm gonna post it here seeing as this is something of a special occasion although certainly not nearly as special as my Stan Lee posting.

Look what was just posted today. This is fucken awful...
http://gramha.com/media/1947937774984684833


Here's something I neglected to post all these years so I guess I might as well now. It's from the last couple panels from Avengers 243 (1984). Speaking of all all cool things from the 80s . . .


I saw Bumbleebee last weekend. I wouldn't say I loved it but I did like it and I think it was a much over due sea change for the franchise. Ofcourse it taking place right here in The San Francisco Bay Area during the 80s was a big plus for me. The movie wasn't with out it's problems though the story line had more then a few logic gaps and at times got a bit too tongue n' cheek for my taste. Although I appreciate how this one was closer to the source material I still really like even till this day the first Michael Bay TF movie but as ever all the sequels aren't worth a shit and I'd like to forget they ever happened.


Back to the 80s one more time with a totally awesome Back to The Future themed chalk drawing on this sandwich board sign outside of  High Scores (80s video game arcade) in downtown Hayward. Trust me, that's a good deal!

Jan 6 Update: Since I used to watch Lavern & Shirley when I was a kid I feel like I'm obligated to make a mention about the passing of Penny Marshal with only days having remained for 2018. I was kinda disappointed that it drew so little attention in the mainstream media I don;t remember seeing anything about on any major news outlets.
Also, here's a thumbnail preview of something I uploaded just this morning. Just did this on a whim and partly through the inspiration of other artists who are friends of mine. The link below will take you to the full size image . . .
https://www.deviantart.com/csuhsux/art/Transformers-and-Rom-spaceknight-recornered-779992170


Jan 15th Update: Well, we're now 2 weeks into the new year and not a single descent thing turned up when it comes to good ROM related fan art but there is this. But I did I happen to see this on the back of a van by chance as I was out and about last week. The 80s just seems to be every where I go.


Jan 26th Update:
HAPPY BIRYHDAY SAL!
https://www.deviantart.com/csuhsux/art/Happy-Birthday-Sal-Buscema-ROM-cover-concept-782841722


Jan 31st Update: Just happened to see this vintage Star Tours bumper sticker today. This really brings back some great memories from the early 90s when I first went on the Star Tours ride.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Stan's Soapbox as seen in ROM spaceknight 3 February 1980


I'm temporarily pulling this blog out of retirement for this very sad occasion and you all know what I'm talking about. For my own tribute to Stan Lee I wanted to post something unique and I think I just found the perfect thing. This little excerpt from a Stan's Soapbox column is unlike any of the other ones I've seen thus far on the internet. Those are some wise words from this man going back nearly 4 decades ago that America should really take to heart now during these very troubled times.
Beyond the mourning process let's also rejoice in a few things here. Unlike Prince, David Bowie and George Michael, Stan Lee did not die young. He had a wildly successful career and he lived long enough to eventually even see his some what more obscure characters like Black Panther become cinematic sensations and house hold names. And what a legacy he left behind I mean really that in and of it's self practically gives him a sense of immortality. Simply put, the man has already become a legend.


ROM spaceknight 27  (1982)
One last thing I wanted to add here speaking of Stan Lee's legacy. Here's a gorgeous bonus pin-up page of The Silver Surfer (created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby) by Akin & Garvey from Marvel Fanfare 33 (1987). As far as I can tell it's the only bonus pin-up page from that issue that seems to be absent on the internet so here it is along with some cool corresponding clip art.


November 17th Update: Here's some other cool ROM related stuff that have recently turned up worth having a look at. That mural behind me is located in Hayward California. It's been there for years I can't believe it's only today that I came up with the idea to get a selfie in front of it with my ROM t-shirt. Even when it comes to characters like ROM and Wolverine that Stan didn't have a direct hand in creating none of it would have existed if not for Marvel Comics. Thank you Stan for all of this.

Check out what this mural used to look like many years ago...
http://www.itsadansworld.net/2010/09/united-by-style-marvel-takes-dc-to.html

https://www.deviantart.com/nikoskap/art/Above-the-skies-of-Galador-772207750
http://gramha.com/media/1913405531888880590
https://web.stagram.com/p/BfRYzb5ltXN
https://web.stagram.com/p/BfEzRFfFkkY
http://gramha.com/media/1916730832027300086

Saturday, September 15, 2018

We Wish You Well


Having some fun here bringing back that 80s feelin just one last time here. As a parting gift I just wanted to share a few cool items with you all that some of you may or may not have seen yet and some that all of you definitely have not.

http://retrocoverproject.blogspot.com/
This fictitious cover art is gorgeous but at the same time it kinda makes me sad. To think about what could have been as opposed to what was. Ofcourse I'm talking about all the half baked continuity that ended up from Marvel after they lost the character rights and on top of that many years later the travesty that is IDW's reboot after they gained the rights. I'm still not sure to this day which of the two publishers has done a bigger disservice to the character.


And how about one last sketch card? This one as you can see having to do with an 80s property cross over I've had on my mind in recent weeks. Although I have to say after having seen IDW's idea of the Hasbroverse in the past couple years I must say some cross overs might be better left in the imaginations of the fan base with some occasional fan art popping up here and there.



October 10 Update: Even though I've decided to bring this blog to and end there's still plenty of cool ROM related stuff out there that turns up nearly every month. You just have to set a side a little bit of time and make an effort to look for it but here are just some examples of stuff posted this month so far...
https://www.comicartfans.com/GalleryPiece.asp?Piece=1503693
https://www.deviantart.com/csuhsux/art/ROM-spaceknight-vs-dire-wraiths-envelope-art-766972270
https://www.deviantart.com/nikoskap/art/He-is-worthy-767450104
And here's something I recently found that was posted earlier this year that had real potential but it just falls a bit short of being an all around great piece of fan art. It seems like the artist kinda struggled with ROM from a figure composition stand point...
http://gramha.com/media/1838021603406161534

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Bill Mantlo was trying to warn us

Rom spaceknight 58

It's so interesting how sometimes a movie or comic book issue can take on a whole new meaning to you when you re-visit it as an adult as opposed to to when you first read or watched it some where in your teens. I just figured out now that the story line in ROM 58 which revolved around a mutagenic dire wraith taint introduced to the Earth's ecosystem was basically just an allegory for the harmful short term and long term impact of pollution from human activity. This is made even more obvious by the fact that actual man made pollution in the form of run off from a coal mine played a direct part in the previous two issues that took place in Beaver Falls Canada with guest appearances by Alpha Flight.


Soylent Green
Kinda makes you wonder if Bill Mantlo was a fan of dystopian sci-fi movies especially with issues like environmental collapse usually being such a central theme? I know I am. I love em in spite of being terrified by them at the same time. Now if you're tired of my politics becoming part of yet another blog posting you know I don't give a shit right?

Children of Men
I mean if you're one of these evangelicals that are still devoted to trump ask yourself if Jesus would be a trump supporter? Or for those of you who are Bill Mantlo fans ask yourself if he was still healthy today and in complete control of his mental faculties would he have voted for trump? And how do you think he would feel about his presidency thus far? And if that answer isn't as immediately obvious to you as it is to me then congratulations you win the biggest dumb ass in the universe award.

Dredd
The typical aspects of a dystopian future as told in most science fiction are environmental collapse, dwindling natural resources, out of control corporate corruption, massive class and gender inequality, over population, scarce natural resources, authoritarian governments and urban decay. Are we moving in that direction or just going through a really really rough patch on the road to an eventual brighter future?


I can't say for sure but if today we're seeing the early signs of a dystopian future right out of the movies all I ask is that I'm not around to see that shit go down. I'd rather check out while the world is still in half way decent shape.

Left click to enlarge
September 5th Update: Look what I found today, on farcebook no less. This is some damn good professional quality fan art (artist unknown) of Nova and ROM along with the spackenights of Galador taking on two villains who have proving to be almost as dangerous to planet Earth as donald trump and scott pruitt.

September 7th Update: Damn, just heard the sad news about Bert Reynolds passing away. I don't like this growing list of dead celebrities that I grew up with especially with 2018 still having almost a few more months to go. Boogie Nights, hands down one of the best movies ever made.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

A salute to John McCain spaceknight


   Like so many other people all over America yesterday I was shocked when I heard the news about McCain's passing yesterday I just didn't see it coming this soon after his decision to stop his cancer treatment. John McCain was on my short list of republican politicians I actually respected although it's not like my list of dems that I respect is all that long either. And when I woke up this morning it occurred to me that John McCain and the ROM spaceknight character actually had a lot in common. Just look at the obvious similarities.
   Both were soldiers who understood the meaning of sacrifice and lived by a code based on honor. They were very empathetic toward others and felt conflicted at times when they did not feel like they were living up to the ideals they espoused to. And they both fought for something bigger then themselves and almost always put what they fought for first before anything else including self interests. In short, they both embodied everything that donald trump is lacking as a human being and as a president. Case and point, here's a typical trump supporter from the white nationalist rally in DC a couple weeks ago. So fucken stupid!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0nKDW69UBA
   McCain's death is made even more tragic seeing as it happened on the heels of another larger then life iconic American taken from us, Aretha Franklin. Other notable deaths this year so far I think are worth mentioning here would be Barbara Bush, Anthony Bourdain, Margot Kidder and Harlan Ellison. All these people have either done some work that I liked and or were just celebrities I remember growing up with. If you're a life long science fiction fan as I am then I bet at one time or another you've either watched something or read something that Harlan Ellison had some part in writing or producing. Issue 286 of The Incredible Hulk written by Bill Mantlo and penciled by Sal Buscema was loosely based on a time travel episode written by Ellison (Soldier) for the classic Outer Limits TV series. It turned into a bit of a copy right infringement matter but was quickly and easily settled out of court between Marvel and Ellison. I talked about this before on this blog actually back in 2013. Where does all the time go? Pun intended.
http://romspaceknightart.blogspot.com/2013/10/bill-mantlo-vs-jim-shooter.html

Left click to enlarge
Aug. 29 Update: As something of a follow up to the previous posting about racial matters that Marvel Comics has tackled over the years I decided to show case this panel from Secret Wars 8 (1984) from the classic original series. Interesting how it juxtaposed Reed Richard's color blindness with Victor Von Doom's racist attitudes as seen in the previous posting. Even as a kid back in the day not even quite into my teens I recognized what a cool and thoughtful moment this was. Kinda thinking Reed Richards would not have likely been a trump supporter : )

Monday, August 20, 2018

The greatest of the spaceknights vs nobody's favorite superhero and how comics tackle racism

Left click to enlarge
This guy I used to know on social media who was both a ROM and Captain Atom fan used to call Captain Atom "Nobody's favorite superhero". Can't seem to recall what exactly he meant by that but unfortunately he's disappeared off the grid and now hasn't been seen for years now so I guess I won't ever get a chance to ask him again. Those of you who saw my last posting will no doubt recognize the source material for this art. I had some down time recently so for the Hell of it I decided to print out the sketch and try out adding some color to it. Can't imagine what kind of scenario would have these two heroes unleashing holly Hell on each other like this but it's not like we've never seen this sort of thing before right? But it's never the less interesting and creative and it's just the sort of fan art I like to post here.



Allow me to pivot here. I saw Blackkkklansman on it's opening weekend and I loved it and I hope some of you will see it while it's still in theaters. I thought the movie did a great job of telling a fascinating story based on a real life situation back in the 70s while drawing a straight line to today's troubles in race relations and political partisanship. There was also a lot of great humor but aside from all that I thought it was very interesting and unexpected with how it dealt with Adam Driver's character. For some people (some "very fine" people I'm sure) this Spike Lee joint might have been a bit too heavy handed or even over the top. A minor issue at best, this was never the less a great film on many levels with much contemporary relevance.

Fantastic Four 278 (1985)
Black Panther Civil War TPB 2007
Speaking of the history of taking on racism in artistic forums I had some thoughts about the world of comics. It's interesting when I look at comics of the 80s and how the writers seemed to take on racism in it's more blatant forms. But clearly in more recent years writers have become much more sophisticated with putting a spot light on the more subtle forms of racism. I think that's very commendable, especially during times like this with all the dog whistles, assault on the truth and pretenses to national security to what are largely policies and statements motivated by this culture war of race politics.