Monday, April 30, 2012

Action figure customizing kit

By Emce Toys, an action figure customizing kit available for preorder at the BBTS:

-3 articulated base bodies (4" tall)
-5 heads with different mask and hair configurations
-2 pairs of spare hands
-2 capes, 2 brushes
-6 plastic jars of paint-
-1 decal sheet
I wonder if there's anything stopping Hasbro from doing something similar with unpainted Marvel figures.

Logo trends 2012

A look at 2012 logo trends. Via.

Creepy street art promoting... Goodwill?

Advertising campaign by Red:

To promote Goodwill as a destination for Halloween costumes, stickers of eyes and hands were placed on various objects to create unique costume ideas. On everything from dumpsters to statues, the “Street Masks” showed that Goodwill is the place to “Be anything this Halloween” or “Go undercover this Halloween”.

Amazing Spider-Man 618-620, 638-641

(This week I'll be reviewing comics I've bought from Comixology 99-cent sales over the last few months.)

Spider-Man is my favorite video game character. He has a great set of costumes, a large group of villains that work perfectly as bosses, and a sublime skill set. But he's probably my least favorite comic book character. Self-pitying and devoid of ambition. I picked up these issues because they were illustrated by the brilliant Marcos Martin and Paolo Rivera.

Amazing Spider-Man 618-620, written by Dan Slott and Illustrated by Marcos Martin, is Spider-Man at his best. Spider-Man's whining about Aunt May, Uncle Ben, and all the gorgeous women that keep making passes at him, is kept to a minimum, and the emphasis is on a gang war featuring Mysterio, a cyborg mafioso, and some sort of super-powered Chinese gangsters.

Tremendous art and a fun story.

On the other hand, Amazing Spider-Man 638-641, written by Joe Quesada, and illustrated by Paolo Rivera, is exactly why I don't buy Spider-Man comics.

It is occasionally funny:

And Rivera draws maybe the best black Spider-Man ever:

But it's oh so miserable to read. Just a lousy soap opera.

And the portions of the issues not illustrated by Rivera just seem really off:

In their favor, the issues also feature a delightful backup story illustrated by Marcos Martin:

The art is good enough to justify buying these. Just ignore the writing.

World War Hulk 1-5; Wolverine 26-31

This week I'll be reviewing comics I've bought from Comixology 99-cent sales over the last few months. First up, World War Hulk and Wolverine Agent of Shield. I'm reviewing these together because they both feature art by John Romita Jr. and show that a brilliant artist is just not enough to make a good comic.

World War Hulk, written by Greg Pak, is probably the least ambitious and most tedious event comic from a major publisher that I've ever read. Five issues of nothing but Marvel heroes senselessly punching each other. The art's great. The problem is Romita has nothing interesting to draw:

So, so, tedious. Even Dr. Strange, the world's greatest sorcerer, decides the best plan is just to take magical steroids and punch the Hulk:

By comparison, Wolverine 26-31, written by Mark Millar and illustrated by Romita is a blast. Just compare these pages to the ones above. They're bursting with surprising, exciting, lunacy:

Yes, that's Elektra leading a horde of flight suit-equipped zombified super heroes and super villains in an assault on Shield's flying headquarters. These issues are what super hero comics are all about.

Highly recommended.

Bat Signal in real life

Bat signals placed on lights in New Zealand. And from the same advertiser, a clever ad for waterproof cameras:

Via these sites.

Darth Vader takes a fall (and more)

Some recent (brilliant) toy photos and clever Tintin/Indiana Jones poster by Vesa Lehtimäki.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Original art from Mondo's Adventure Time show now available online

Annie Wu and Dienzo's submissions are among the few works of art still available for purchase from Mondo's Adventure Time show.

*Buy Adventure Time toys at eBay.

The Avengers by Nathan Stapley

Nathan Stapley's submission for the upcoming Avengers show at Gallery 1988.

The Wind Through the Keyhole is wonderful

Stephen King's The Wind Through the Keyhole takes place between books four and five of the Dark Tower series. Similar in structure to book 4, Roland and his friends stop on their way to Calla Bryn Sturgis and Roland tells them two stories, which make up the vast majority of the book.

The first story is pulpy horror western. Shortly after the return from Mejis, young Roland and (the extraordinarily forgettable) young gunslinger Jamie must save a down on its luck wild west town from an apparent werewolf.

The second story is a fairy tale with just a touch of North Central Positronics. A boy named Tim must save himself and his mother from a wicked stepfather - - the cover of the book is an illustration of the adventure he goes on.

Both stories are wonderful, and Tim's story could easily become the foundation for an entire new series. Highly recommended. The cover price is an outrageous $27 for only 300 pages, but you can buy it for about half off at Amazon.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

New Super Best Friends Forever short (Grounded)

Here's the latest Super Best Friends Forever short - - "Grounded."

Illustration roundup

May Day poster by Eric Drooker. Via.

Preview of Mondo's Adventure Time show.

Batman Beyond by Adam Tan.

Jill Thompson made her own fan merchandise for WWE wrestler Daniel Bryan.

*Buy Mondo posters at eBay.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Link roundup

1. The LA school system has decided that the school day will now start with breakfast being served in class. But what about kids who want to spend class time learning?

Although the school offered free- and reduced-price breakfasts before school, students who were late missed them and others preferred to spend the time playing rather than eating.

"Now it's more of a classroom activity that students don't want to be left out of," [Principal] Stokes-Mack said. "There's a lot of camaraderie eating with your teacher and classmates."
And how about the kids who have already had breakfast?
The classroom breakfasts are so good the fifth-grader said she gobbles them up even though she also eats eggs and toast at home before coming to school.
2. Wait a second, chocolate isn't really that poisonous to dogs? (I've been reading the Bunnicula series to my boys and it really bothered me that the dog was always eating chocolate.)

3. How Kohler tries to buy good reviews of its products. (I'm for sale, btw.)

4. "Meet the women actually running the Obama re-elect. Low profile, high-powered 'badasses,' says one campaign staffer."

5. New backpack design contest at Threadless (their bags to date have been pretty terrible).

Special Quantum Conundrum event

Quantum Conundrum event:

Square Enix, Inc. and iam8bit have joined molecular forces to create the ultimate gaming experience. In honor of this summer's release of Quantum Conundrum, the new puzzle game from famed designer and co-creator of PORTAL™, Kim Swift, and developer Airtight Games, we're looking for hardcore fans to join us for a very unique production taking place in the Los Angeles area this May.

While we can't give away too many details, if you're chosen to participate (as only 50 lucky people will be), it's quite possible you'll be transported to another dimension, all in the name of science. Seriously, we're not messing around. And that's all we can say!

Participants must be at least 18 years of age and available during the days of Friday May 11 and Saturday May 12 in the Los Angeles area.
Relatedly, the new promotional video for the Portal level designer was pretty lackluster, right?

Old Spice Guy action figure

One of Mick Minogue's creations for Gallery 1988's upcoming Memes show is this Old Spice Guy action figure.