Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Rom spaceknight, agent of S.H.I.E.L.D

Rom spaceknight #54
I just got done watching the premier of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D yesterday. I gotta say I deliberately avoided all the hype around it in fear it might end up being like some "CW ish" kinda sitcom which I'm completely burnt out on especially with what a bore Arrow turned out to be. But after having seen it it's anything but! It was funny with out being campy, the action was good as were the characters (for the most part) and story line. There was no shortage of  references made to both the recent Marvel films in the last few years as well as to the actual Marvel comic book narratives related to S.H.I.E.L.D. And they even brought back agent Colson with a fairly plausible explanation. Maybe Marvel should just co-produce movies and TV shows it seems to be the only thing they're good at these days. All of which got me thinking of how well S.H.I.E.L.D was interwoven into the ROM series which is something I blogged about a while back:

The King of Thessely gave me a heads up about a Fred Hembeck Torpedo sketch card for sale on ebay. As you all know I'm not a huge Hembeck fan but I thought both sketch cards together in one scene look kinda cool none the less. And in general I thought it was cool that Hembeck even did a sketch card of this somewhat forgotten hero of the 80s.

One last thing here I wanted to include in this posting. You remember the Eagle Moss Publications origins one shot magazines that go with those Marvel superhero lead figurines I posted about last week right? Well the issue for the Jack of Hearts figurine has an actual two page spread about Bill Mantlo's career and even covers that dreadful day of the accident. The whole thing is way too much copy for a blog posting but it's stuff Bill Mantlo fans mostly know already. However as you see here I added the last segment of it here which I enjoyed the most.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Sometimes big things have small beginnings

Left click to enlarge

This wonderful labor of love is by artist Dana Black. Black was quoted as saying on farce book "this was a 3 piece commission, each piece 11x17 and I loved doing every inch of this damn thing!!". It took her all of 8 months to do for the client who requested that ROM be included.

Here's a concept I've had for a little while now of doing something that featured Optimus Prime, Rom and Acroyer together in relative scale to each other. I kinda like it but at the same time it didn't quite turn out as I visualized it in my head, that happens sometimes. So after playing around with it for a while I decided to add a tag line to it and make it into an 80s tribute piece. I'm feeling even more nostalgic about the past given all the shit lately in both Marvel and DC. Between the cancellation of the Young Justice cartoon, the DC reboot and what that asshole jonothan hickman did to Galador and it's space knights recently I'm more indifferent then ever from any new stuff from DC and Marvel.

Marvel Age Magazine #17
These three guys have so much in common and most of us love em all largely thanks to Bill Mantlo who wrote The Micronauts first series, the entire Rom series and the first two issues of The Transformers mini-series which launched an endless stream of Transfomers comic book titles for years to come. Speaking of which how many of you out there are old enough to remember this commercial? It's what prompted me to pick up the first issue of Transformers when I saw it at a 7 Eleven nearby the apartment complex I lived in at the time. The 80s, what a great decade!

September 25 update: And since we're on the topic of Bill Mantlo inspired coolness of the 80s I wanna give a shout out to The King of Thessaly for bringing this insanely hot Cloak & Dagger illustration by Mark Beachum to my attention.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Eagle Moss Publications not afarid to print ROM

Hat tip to Gary Martin Jr. for picking up all this stuff on ebay for me to present here. "Eaglemoss Publications Ltd" is a London based company that licensed characters from Marvel, DC, & other entertainment to produce all kinds of merchandise mainly for their market in the UK.  Customers there could subscribe to a series of lead figurines packaged with magazines that were delivered every two weeks, and they'd get other special items like t-shirts & calendars, too.  Eaglemoss also translated their magazines into many languages other than English & exported them to a number of countries.  For some reason United States buyers were prohibited from subscribing directly from Eaglemoss, but Diamond Distributors made the items available for sale through comic shops in the United States.

Left click to enlarge
So first off you see here some snippets of clip art from the Rogue one-shot magazine. As you can see they reprinted the cover art for Rom #31 and also mention him by name. Many of you will recognize the scene from Rom #32 that the clip refers to in which Rogue attempts to absorb Rom's powers.

Rom spaceknight #32
And I guess you can say in this panel here are her after thoughts on what ended up being a vulcan mind meld as opposed to the usual power and memory siphoning that results when Rogue kisses her adversaries. I guess you can say Rom's plandanium armor is a chick magnet of sorts clearly Rogue is taken with Rom as far as what kind of person he is on the "inside".

Obviously this clip art goes to the magazine that comes with the NOVA figurine. Keep in mind that this magazine series from Eagle Moss was published within the last few years. As for any licensing issues to the Rom name and likeness you're guess is as good as mine why it wasn't an issue. It should also be noted that other issues such as for Galactus, Forge and The Skrulls make text mentions of Rom and The Dire Wraiths. But regardless of the how or the why I give Eagle Moss Publications some major props for including Rom and The Dire Wraith's role in the histories of these character and alien species profiles.

And by the way it looks like another page (#12) from that ROM #1 remix project has turned up. I don't mean to be a dick here and wish I could sound more optimistic but the more I see of  this project the less enthusiastic I get about it

This is an update to this posting with something that turned up on deviant art just a day ago:

Sunday, September 15, 2013

How I see art and characterization

I know I'm probably gonna catch some shit for this but keeping things interesting around here every week doesn't come from me sugar coating my opinions and thoughts on things. That being said I've never been a real big fan of Fred Hembeck's work. A lot of the behind the scenes humor for Marvel's production staff that Hembeck's art often centered around didn't really resonate with me as a kid back in the early 80s. I'm not saying he sucks or anything and in all fairness I'm not all that crazy in general about caricature type renderings when it comes to my favorite comic book and sci-fi characters. There have been exceptions ofcourse such as in the case of the parodies done in MAD Magazine and similar type satire.Well, it so happens that this Hembeck sketch card that I found on ebay recently is also an exception. I actually like I don't know why but I think it has some charm to it. So what do you think, like it?
Here's a Torpedo redesign. I really like it but at the same time I can't help but want to see that new suite drawn in a less "cartoony" way it would have really kicked ass then.

Left click to enlarge
You all remember that posting of me lambasting those preliminary designs for The Micronauts cartoon that never was right? Well just by the animation style alone I knew it would have sucked and done an all around disservice to the original Bill Mantlo series. Just like a really really bad movie sequel to a great original.

And speaking of great things that Mantlo helped inspire here's a couple of Sabra sketch cards I found recently. As you can see both are quite excellent in terms of what the respective artists were going for but as usual I'm more partial to the one that is a more accurate representation (minus the cape) of Marvel's premier mutant power house of The Promise Land.

And speaking of fan made art of all sorts we've made some other new discoveries of stuff posted in recent weeks:

Speaking of my kinda art look what just turned up from Dann Phillips again. We've seen so much new ROM fan art from this guy he must be able to do it in his sleep or something.
Left click to enlarge

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

New ROM commission Fuck Yeah!

Aw Hell yeah look what I just found! What we have here is a mixed media commission piece by Ed Hannigan. Ok so the left leg needs a bit of work and conceptually it's not especially original but I like the energy in it. It makes me wanna say ROM, FUCK YEAH! just like the Team America: World Police theme song. And speaking of all things Bill Mantlo and Ed Hannigan this ROM easter egg comes from Spectacular Spiderman #72. The clip art is courtesy of Gary Martin Jr. "A Rom curator". I've been sitting on that one for a while now just waiting for the right time to present it.

Sept. 12th update: Speaking of artists who have worked with Bill Mantlo the legendary Sal Buscema was just recently at the Baltimore Comic-Con

Monday, September 9, 2013

Bill Mantlo enjoying his new gift from a fan

Here's one from an artist I've featured before on this blog. I've always really liked this one too but there was just one thing that still bothered me about it. And even though I colorized it that's not what bothered me about it. It's actually the same thing that I recently had to fix on another recent piece of fan art in which just about everything else on ROM looked alright except one goddamn thing. Here's the original

For those of you who saw this posting earlier you know that I was still waiting for some new stuff to update today's posting. Well I'm happy to say some of it has started to show up such as this photo from Michael Mantlo's most recent visit to his brother Bill. What you see in Bill's hand there is the custom Starshine II figure which I sent to Michael a couple of weeks ago after it got passed off to me by Chris who wanted it to be given to Bill as a gift. And speaking of Chris's custom spaceknight figures we've got another one coming up I hope to have something to post here within the next 24 hours stay tuned.

And finally, here it is! Told ya it would be worth the wait. For more images of Chris's latest custom spaceknight and other custom figure projects:
Shit, kinda as an after thought maybe I should have made this custom it's own posting. I could have titled after my favorite Talking Heads song, "Burnin Down The House".

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Some new Youtube videos of ROM & Bill

I'm making this posting on the fly in order to feature some newly discovered videos. This one here probably won't tell you much of anything new but it's well produced and would make for a nice intro to the world of ROM for other people out there who don't know the series very well or at all. Also worth checking out is this Cloak & Dagger video and this short CG video of Rom's confrontation with Firefall II

I just wanted to do a quick follow up to Lee's Seitz's posting a couple of weeks ago for a Rom reference made in Avengers Forever #1 in regards to Rick Jones's back ground. In that posting there was some question as to the legal legitimacy of the use of Rom's name in that narration box. But I still feel based on the Rom related stuff that came out just before 2000 (Nova #2 Vol. 2) and the stuff that appeared during and right after 2000 (Universe X #3 and the Spaceknights mini-series) that it was just before 2000 that Marvel lost the rights to the Rom name and likeness.
As for Jones his first appearance in Rom spaceknight was in issue 54 but it wouldn't be until 55 that they would team up against the Dire Wraiths in what turned out to be an ALIENS like story line. Jones was a regular character in the series until issue 72. A similar reference was also made back in Incredible Hulk #319 (1986)

This sweet Acroyer piece by Art Adams was probably the easiest coloring job I've ever done here's the original posting where I found it:

Sunday, September 1, 2013

More Rom #1 remix pages & the Terminator spaceknight custom figure!

If you have a copy of Rom spaceknight #1 (you rock) you should bust it out right now unless you happen to have a photographic memory. If you don't have a copy (WTF!?) then you should copy and paste this link into a new window now before you read on
You'll notice right away that this link will take you to a posting that has all 18 pages of Rom spaceknight #1 nicely laid out for you. Thanks to myself and Gary Martin Jr. we've collected about half the pages of the Rom re-mix project so that you can now see how the original Sal Buscema art compares to the efforts made by the various artists involved in the project. Thus far the best pages in terms of technical execution (page layout, perspective, figure composition and proportions) are 4, 9 and 15.

Page 1
Page 2
Page 4
 Page 7
Page 9
Page 10
Page 11
Page 15
Page 16
Page 17

By Chris Motito
Along with some humorous photoshop embellishments compliments of yours truly I am proud to present the latest custom figure from Chris (exhuman999). Hands down next to Firefall Terminator has always been one of the most bad ass fucken spaceknights. You all by now are well aware that a newer version of Terminator was among the spaceknights that were incinerated with Galador in Infinity#1 so along with featuring this custom the Jonathan Dickman hate fest show must go on.

ONE LAST THING. Treat this as purely hypothetical for now but the notion of a new custom ROM statue (limited edition I believe?) not unlike the M. Helder one is being floated around out there at the moment. Evidently, rather it ever happens or not is dependent on the interest expressed by fans. So the question is would you be willing to throw down some cash for a presumably bad ass custom limited edition Rom statue? If nothing else just leave a ye or nay in the comments section about that, nobody will ever know if you're down for it if you don't take a whopping whole 5 to 10 seconds to write at least that down.