Friday, March 1, 2024

The Official Handbook of The Marvel Universe issue 9 re-covered sketch card

Hopefully you're familiar with the 80s Official Marvel Universe Handbook series? Anyways, here's issue 9 for you to reference  . . .

What I did here was replace the characters on the front page cover with characters on the page page cover with the one exception being ROM whom I just repositioned on the front cover. Interestingly enough as I was working on this labor intensive sketch card I realized that Sabertooth was completely absent from the cover art for issue 9 despite having his profile in the issue. I've had this issue since the early 80s and I'm just noticing that for the first time. His profile shares the same page (15) along with Israel's Sabra. I'm thinking that might have been some sort of over site at the time. Anyways, I decided to add him to the mix. 

March 30th Update: Well I thought I was gonna have to finish up this month with out anything else to update this posting with when by chance I came across this gorgeous gouache painting of The Mad Thinker with his awesome android by Dan Orgil which also happens to contain a ROM Easter egg. A reference to ROM the events in 14 and later recapped in Captain America 311. In a description attached to this illustration Orgil goes on to say that he likes to give a little love once in a while to non A list characters. Thank you Dan we appreciate that and you taking us on a little trip down Marvel 80s memory lane. 

Monday, January 1, 2024

Enter 2024

I usually don't care much for character study type fan art. I much prefer fan art that involves some sort of scene that tells a story or pays tribute to an awesome moment comic book or sci-fi fandom. But once in a while I make an exception and this would be one of those times. This is just excellent from a figure composition stand point and in general really encapsulates that greatest of the spaceknights vibe. Compliments of artist Patrick Goddard 

That's a pretty good deal when you consider that the ROM Spaceknight 1 facsimile goes for 5 bucks. With that TPB you get 4 ROM issues for just a little more. Get your copy in 2024. 

Once again, it was nice to see a ROM publication on a new comic shelf. And even though it was a reprint, at least this time it was something that featured new original cover art unlike in the case of the facsimile. Perhaps we're inching ever closer to the day where we will have new stories of the one and only Greatest of The Spaceknights appearing every month on new comic book day?

Although I'm always on the look out for anything ROM related that's cool I've had other matters on my mind in recent weeks and it's not looking like that's gonna change any time soon. Are sick and tired of seeing this so called flag and all the propaganda, thuggery, mayhem and vandalism that comes with it? Then this part of the posting is for you my friend. 
 January 13th Update: So as with all my postings for many months now I had to add some Sabra into this one. That aside I was long over due to do something with Sabra fighting islamic terror this one became my first fan art piece of 2024.

January 23rd Update: Today a buddy of mine texted me the sad news about Gary Graham having passed away. I met Gary at a con in San Jose California about 7 or 8 years ago. He was at a booth with the late sci-fi legend Richard Hatch (Apollo from Battle Star Galactica ofcourse, RIP) promoting Star Trek Axanar. I told him how at first I was skeptical about him playing a Vulcan diplomat on Star Trek Enterprise after having enjoyed him several years before as a smart mouth but street smart detective on ALIEN NATION. But he pulled it off brilliantly, and he seemed to be quite delighted by my compliment. Ofcourse I was also sure to let him know that I was a faithful viewer of both shows and that I felt they ended long before their time. Gary Graham was only 73 and reportedly died of a cardiac arrest. 

February 3rd Update: Carl Weathers is dead at 76, and It's hard to even write that as a statement of fact as of yesterday. So many great 80s memories (Rocky and Predator ofcourse) going back with this guy to say nothing about his more recent notable work in the Star Wars franchise. Been finding out a lot of interesting stuff about Weathers that I didn't know in recent hours about his time as a professional athlete as well as his work in films and TV both in front and behind the camera. Way too much to write about here but I did want to make a mention of his appearance on The SHIELD which is probably my all time favorite cop drama TV show. 

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

The Greatest of The Spaceknights enters the war on terror

I recently decided to make some new corner boxes out already existing fan art of mine. Sabra comes from a sketch card posted here two postings ago. Added some color to a sketch card of ROM from the previous posting so that's where that one came from. And Misty Knight is from some fan art I did a few years back. 

I've actually been thinking of doing something like this for years now. I even had this idea in my head of portraying a ROM vs islamic terror scene like this using the cover art of ROM 3 as a template. Obviously recent events in The Middle East has given me the final motivation to get this done even though I ultimately decided to go with a less challenging composition then the Frank Miller cover art from ROM Spaceknight #3.

Shogun Warriors 13 was one of the very first comics I ever which at the time I used to have to nag my parents to buy for me. A few years ago I stumbled across a copy of issue 12 in a dollar box so I figured what the Hell let's check it out. And I was treated to yet another pleasant surprise when discovered one of the most rare ROM spaceknight house ads on the letters page. 

Sunday, October 1, 2023

A New Comic Book Day unlike we've seen for decades now

Last month we had a New Comic Book Day that had a unique ring of nostalgia to it that even a few months ago I would not have believed would have ever been possible. Even though just a reprint, it was nice to see ROM back on the shelves of a comic shop in the new comics section. I didn't pick up the copy you see here I had already a couple days before placed an order for a foil cover variant. Unfortunately when I showed yesterday to pick it up I found out those dumbasses somehow ordered a standard copy for me. I was so pissed, it's really something else check it out...

And just to be clear, I'm talking about the genuine article and not the pale and pathetic imitation that was a commercial flop from idw publishing. Same goes for idw's MICRONAUTS reboot.

All this buzz about the ROM facsimile variants along with all the other upcoming ROM reprint projects has got me in a nostalgic mood this weekend so here's some new fan art. This one is a tribute to ROM 63 which was what I considered to be the last issue from the series where the art work was still decent. Plus it was always one of my favorite covers of the series.


I recently came across some Marvel Over Power cards for Sabra I had never seen before. I like the art work on them (artist/s unknown unfortunately) it's almost like discovering new fan art. 

October 9 Update: Speaking of all things Israel, I'm sure even those of you who are not much into politics have heard something about the war that broke out in Israel thanks to what was nothing short of an invasion by those iranian regime backed jihadi nazi mother fuckers in gaza. This is a photo I took of the scene in Redwood City yesterday which is about 30 minutes south of San Francisco on the other side of The Bay from where I live.

Friday, September 1, 2023

Contest of Licensed Properties unredacted and in color for the first time

If this looks familiar to you this might be why . . .
There's this from earlier this from the tail end of last year . . .
In recent weeks I've become quite certain that the original art work by Alan Davis was colored only after it was redacted. If I'm right that's a damn shame, but I recently decided that I wanted to see what it would look like in color and with out all those annoying black boxes all over Davis's kick ass art work.

 The question of all questions as illustrated by Kapandais Nikolaos way back in 2018. Would The Greatest of the Spaceknights be able to lift Mjollnir? I'll let the 3 or 4 people out there who will come across this posting ponder that. 
Over the decades we've seen the Sabra character go through several costumes and hair styles. But depending on who was drawing her it seemed like she also went through a spectrum of ethnic appearances as well. Sometimes she's been drawn to look more ashkenazi (basically more caucasian) and others have drawn her with more sephardic (Middle Eastern) features. I'm sure there's a further discussion on that subject matter to be had but for now I felt like just doing a more sephardic interpretation of Sabra.
And speaking of strong Israeli women (fictional or otherwise), I saw the movie GOLDA last weekend. It was epic! Golda Mier's legacy is certainly not with out it's critics both in and outside of Israel. And as far as the movie goes, like most any other historical biography I'm sure it was not with out it's inaccuracies. But despite that, it had me totally emotionally invested in it and in a state of suspense through out even though I knew how it would end and that says a lot. Best film about Israel's history I've seen since Munich. Way better then 7 Days In Entebbe I assure you of that!

September 22 Update: Marvel/Hasbro will be reprinting ROM's first encounter with Marvel's mutants in a one shot coming out right before Christmas this year. Ofcourse I have those ROM issues already but I'm getting a copy of this just for the cover art alone which is by Nick Bradshaw. For me it's kinda like new fan art that's actually good for a change. Get the full details here...
In other news of all things having to do with Marvel & Hasbro joint projects for ROM I'm sure most of you by now have heard about all 3 variants of the ROM spaceknight 1 facsimile having come up a couple days ago. There's no hard data as to how well they're selling but I can tell you my LCS sold out of all their copies within the first couple of hours after opening on new comic book day although by the owner's own admission he did place a pretty small order.

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

Marvel Universe fan art trading cards by Greek artist Kapandais Nikolaos

It seems years of nagging my fellow artist and friend about trying out doing some sketch card fan art has finally paid off, and in a big way. He cranked out a bunch of these awesome kick ass business card sized fan art pieces over the course of just a couple weeks. You might say the ones you see above are the Bill Mantlo subset collection but there's many many more . . .

What I posted here are just a few samples, there's nearly a dozen in all check em out over at his deviant art gallery...

I was browsing at one of those over sized hard bound Marvel encyclopedia books a couple weeks ago when something occurred me when I was looking at Sabra's bio. Writers for comic books actually have a better grip on reality then leftist antisemites do. You see up there where it reads "BASE Jerusalem Israel"? One of the things antisemites love to ramble on about on social media is how Jerusalem is actually in "palestine". And that's despite "palestine" not being listed on virtually any geographic map or even on whatever GPS app that is on your phone. Ya see even within the fictional world of The Marvel Universe there are certain basic facts that are a reflection of the real world such as the existence of gravity or that the planet earth is round and not flat. Another basic fact, Jerusalem ISRAEL nuff said.

If you're any kind of Marvel 80s fan then you shouldn't have too much trouble figuring out the cover art this commission fan art piece by artist Carlos Franco is based on. 

August 9th Update: A big thanks to Eclectic Lee for the heads up on this dire wraith reference made in the pages of Avengers Annual 13 (1984). I love it when this kinda nostalgic 80s stuff turns up, it's right up there with the discovery of great new ROM related fan art. 


Saturday, July 1, 2023


About two or three weeks ago I stumbled upon some new ROM fan art on social media but unfortunately thus far I haven't had any luck finding out who the artist is. Now I don't know if the setting is original art or if it was lifted from some other source but ROM himself was directly taken from the final page of ROM annual 2. Usually I'm not big on facsimile fan art because of its inherent unimaginative nature but this one was some what of an exception to me. It kinda had this 70s/80s sci-fi fantasy art style to it that had me feeling a bit nostalgic. Then I got to thinking about what it would have looked like on the cover of HEAVY METAL Magazine.

And speaking of nostalgic mock covers, this Strange Magazine cover art is apparently a convention sketch by Bob Layton who is in Lyon France. I'm almost certain that's ROM's neutrilizer in his right hand ... or at least it was. I guess there must still be some ROM fans in France.

This digital fan art of Sabra vs antisemitic dumbass ruffalo Hulk is actually from last year I just didn't post it here at the time for what ever reason. Anyways, fuck mark ruffalo. And as stated so pointedly by front man David Draiman at a Disturbed concert in Tel Aviv a couple nights ago "FUCK roger waters" to . . .

4 of July Update: Someone posted this (Hembeck ofcourse) on Farcebook recently and I'm always happy to discover some new archival ROM related stuff out there. I remember an old interview with Stan Lee in which he explains the HULK was originally intended to be grey but because of some glitch they couldn't fix at the printers he ended up being green so Stan basically just went with it. In regards to ROM, I did notice how his armor was introduced as grey but shortly later took on a more blue look but I never really gave it any thought for some reason. I do like the blue tone a bit better but at the same time when I see the more "Grey ROM" it kinda feels more classic Marvel 80s.

July 9th Update: I don't know about the 3 or 4 of you out there who have read this posting but I'm loving The Secret Invasion series on Disney Plus. Woke up this morning in the mood to draw something having to do with The Skrulls here we are. I ended up doing this sketch card which is based on the history of the Dire Wraith and Skrull conflict as explained in ROM Spaceknight 50.