Bloggity-Blog-Blog-Blog Archive
Laura "Tegan" Gjovaag

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Sketchbook - Kensuke Okabayashi

Here's my last sketch, for the time being. True, I have a few more sketches... but I don't have permission to post them. This is the last sketch I got at The 2005 Emerald City Comicon, and it was a direct result of Siya Oum's persistence. She ragged on me until I asked him to sketch for me. Kensuke is the artist on the amusing Java! comic. I thought his Aquaman turned out very nice, what do you think.

by Kensuke Okabayashi
6 February 2005
(permission to post given 6 February 2005 in person)
Java Comics

As a reminder: Almost every sketch in my sketchbook was non-commissioned and done on the floor of a con. These are not the best works of the artists. These are only representative of what the artist can do under pressure in a loud, crowded, and often stressed-out environment. Most of them were done as quickly as possible, to prevent huge lines from forming. Don't judge any of these artists negatively by the artwork you see, instead be as impressed as I am by what they accomplished in far-from-ideal conditions.

To see all the sketches I have permission to post so far, check out my Sketchbook Page. If you have any contact information for any of the other artists I'm trying to contact, please e-mail me. Click for a random Aquaman sketch.

The Saturday Sketch ™ is brought to you by the letters "K", "O" and the number "100", and also courtesy the fine artists who pour their lives into producing wonderful comic books, then come to conventions only to get asked by geeky fangirls for a sketch of Aquaman. Support an artist, buy a comic book.

by Tegan at 8:32 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Rapid Reviews - Manga

Mars (Vol 3) by Fuyumi Soryo. More hot biker dude and shy artist. This time we get to see Rei in action, as he participates in a big race. I think the best moment comes at the end, however, when Rei sees the painting that Kira made of him. There's a great panel of him in front of the painting, turning to look at the other people in the gallery. This series is definitely turning into something interesting. It's still just a pretty good manga, but each volume explores something different and doesn't retread old ground. 3 starfish

Alice 19th: Inner Heart by Yu Watase. A girl named Alice, a strange bunny creature, and a hot European mage named Frey! This is like Cardcaptor Sakura on speed. I'm not entirely sure I'm enjoying it, but I find it too compelling, in a sort of "can't look away" style, to not continue reading it. Any book that has two guys accidently kiss in a shower... with the girl they've both fallen for watching, is just too strange to not see through to the end. 2 1/2 starfish

I'm going to stop reviewing further volumes in series I'm reading, unless there's something so noteworthy that I feel I have to bring it up. Each time I'm writing a Manga review I feel like I'm trying to find new ways to restate the same thing. I think I will, however, try to review each Manga series as I finish it. So, in future, here's the plan: I'll review the first issue/volume of each Manga series I try, then if I continue to read it, I'll do a series review when I have read the last volume. And, while this is the rule, there will no doubt be exceptions.

by Tegan at 8:20 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Happy Birthday Michael!

Happpy day to you and your family.

by Tegan at 7:47 AM Seattle time - Permalink  

Friday, July 01, 2005

Random Thoughts

The dirigible of death.

What song was Number One on the day you were born? For me: "American Pie" by Don McLean. For Eric: "We Can Work It Out" by The Beatles.

Ask Yahoo attempts to explain second person point of view.

Shane does a blogaround.

Bootleg Action Figure Gallery. Check out the really odd Aquaman repaint (scroll down)... and what they did to poor Black Lightning...

Blog about crappy service in a restaurant, get sued?

Hey, go read the Astro City Rocket.

by Tegan at 10:02 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Extra Superfriends

How about some screen caps that I didn't post the other day? I've discovered that I really don't need as many images as are cool enough to grab. And then, some of these didn't fit really well in the narrative of the show that I wrote. Most of these are Aquaman-related, as well.

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Aquaman is startled by a bat. He overreacts just a tad.

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Aquaman just after being turned into the Scarecrow.

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Ok, just what is Superman doing to Wonder Woman?!?? Warren Ellis might enjoy this one.

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AquaScarecrow sinks into the Purple River.

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AquaScarecrow summons fishy help.

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AquaScarecrow after a nice flip from the water to avoid falling down the Purple Falls.

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AquaScarecrow shows off his nice glowing waterproofness.

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Nothing special about this one, except I like the funky pink unicorn.

by Tegan at 6:46 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Thursday, June 30, 2005

Random Thoughts for the End of the Month

From Elayne: "If, as you live your life, you find yourself mentally composing blog entries about it, post this exact same sentence in your weblog."

You like catblogging? Check out Kitten War... be sure to click on "winningest kitten" and check out the cutest of the bunch.

Tips for Faster Web Browsing. I actually found a couple of things I didn't know, so I'm passing the link on. Via Various and Sundry.

How Computers Work from the early 70s.

Polite Dissent does a medical review of Green Lantern #154.

A fantastic web comic, Detached is about James Burns experiences with a detached retina.

Ah, it's the But I Digress... column that started the whole big fight.

Go visit The Invisible Library and look up such classics as The Junior Woodchuck Guide and Advanced Ocular Science.

Funky is going to tackle the issue of landmines.

Mozillas and Gnus are attacking Redmond Washington.

Propaganda Posters.

Wil Wheaton gets slashdot interviewed.

Ten reasons why you should never accept a diamond ring.

Andy Runton Livejournal post with Owly as superheroes. I wanna get a Owly Aquaman. Via Johnny B.

Various and Sundry Linkdumps again, and this one intrigues me: 10 Unbreakable Sports Records.

Garry Trudeau actively supports the troops by donating all proceeds from his latest book to the Fisher House Foundation, which offers family members of wounded troops temporary housing at little or no cost during their loved one's hospitalization.

Skippy is trying to get one million hits by his third blogiversary. Click to help out. Via Modulator.

Someone is trying to use Eminent Domain against a Supreme Court Justice. This is amusing whether or not it's a joke.

And lastly, My Complaint about Aquaman:

People generally have strong views about Aquaman. But first, I'm going to jump ahead a bit and talk in general terms about how all Aquaman does is complain, complain, complain. Then, I'll back up and fill in some of the details. Okay, so to start with the general stuff, Aquaman truly believes that his decisions are based on reason. I hope you realize that that's just a venal pipe dream from a lawless pipe, and that in the real world, if you intend to challenge someone's assertions, you need to present a counterargument. Aquaman provides none. Help me provide an antidote to contemporary manifestations of immoral particularism. Join your hands with mine in this, the greatest cause of our time.

by Tegan at 10:56 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Offbeat Review - The World's Greatest Superfriends: Planet of Oz

This particular episode of the Superfriends has obvious amusement value for Eric and I, as Eric is a rabid Oz fan and I'm a rabid Aquaman fan. Thus the sheer entertainment value inherent in a crossover between the two is quite high. As expected, I was giggling through the entire episode as I watched it and looked for good screen grabs.

The World's Greatest Superfriends: Planet of Oz - First aired on Saturday November 10, 1979 on ABC. Eighth and final episode of the season. My review copy was taped off Boomerang. The main characters in this episode are Superman (Danny Dark), Wonder Woman (Shannon Farnon), Aquaman (William Callaway) and Mr Mxyzptlk (Frank Welker). Batman, Robin, and the Wonder Twins also appear briefly at the beginning and end of the story.

Plot: A tornado sweeps away the Hall of Justice with Superman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman inside. Upon landing they discover that Mr Mxyzptlk has brought them to his twisted version of Oz. After a series of misadventures, the trio manage to outwit Mxy and somehow return home.

The story starts out with Batman in his batcopter trying to get into the "eye of the tornado"... Um. If a tornado has an eye, it's really small and only a complete doofus would be attempting to get into it. But then, this is the Superfriends universe.

Upon landing in Oz, Mxy confronts Superman, Aquaman, and Wonder Woman with the words, "What's the matter, Superdunce? Don't you read the classics? You're in the Land of Oz!"

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Of note: Mxy is holding up a book. However, I think Eric can confirm that it's not a recognizable edition of the book (maybe it's a fifth dimension printing) and there's a small flaw in the image in that you cannot read the author's name. And to be honest, it doesn't look like "L. Frank Baum" to me. Still, it's nice to see The Wizard of Oz being acknowledged as a book.

Naturally, Mxy tells the trio to find the Wizard and to follow the yellow brick road... and so off they go. Of note: no Munchkins, no good witch, no magic shoes.

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Their adventure doesn't follow the book at all. First they run into a walking venus flytrap with an extra dragon head, then into a witch who attempts to boil them. Then, the witch turns the trio into characters from Oz. Superman becomes the Tin Man, Wonder Woman the Cowardly Lion, and Aquaman the Scarecrow.

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Continuing on their journey, Aquaman is attacked by crows and carried to a purple river, where he convinces a local jellyfish to waterproof his straw so he can swim.

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Nice use of Aquaman's powers here, as he's dropped into a river and quickly summons aid. However, he seems a bit concerned about going over the falls... doesn't he realize he's made of straw and probably won't get hurt? As he goes over the falls, he does a nice acrobatic jump out of the water.

Wonder Woman is dragged underground and into a dark swamp, where she is attacked by wild boars and must electrify her lasso (using a kite made out of bark and a handy lightning storm) to fight them off.

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It took WW long enough to remember that she had a lasso on her. Even though their powers weren't working quite right, she could have done tons of stuff with it. I found it very giggle inducing that she would immediately think to make a kite and try to charge her lasso with electricity, rather that use the lasso to secure herself safely in the tree or something.

Superman gets caught in a rainstorm, and then Mxy turns the yellow brick road into Kryptonite. Somehow Supes uses his heat vision to turn the tin into lead (???) and solve both problems at once.

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This is the most difficult bit to accept in this story. Aquaman summoning a sea creature in a purple river? Odd, but not too odd. Wonder Woman electrifying her lasso with a kite made out of tree bark? Strange, but I'll buy it. Superman using his heat vision to turn tin into lead? Huh? I thought that was Firestorm's shtick? How can heat vision do that?

The trio, now waterproofed, electrified, and rust-proofed manages to meet up again, and they continue their journey to find the Wizard.

Note that after Superman changes his suit, it becomes silver instead of blue.

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At this point things get really strange. The trio is captured by a gang of Jawa-like creatures (who even mutter in Jawa-ese) that take them to a giant hourglass (no, seriously!) and toss them in.

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Just to make sure we get the Star Wars connection, the bottom of the hourglass has a monster in it that drags them down. How do our intrepid heroes get out of this horrible jam? Um. They don't. The monster drops them just outside the gates of the Wizard's castle. The castle is giant-sized, and the crew uses a handy key to get into the building where they are confronted by a giant Wizard!

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Of course, it's not what it seems. No, it's only Mxy, who used them to create the ingredients for a magic spell: "Grassius Oxide" (the straw Aquaman waterproofed), "Electo-lassiosium" (Wonder Woman's electrified lasso), and "Krypto-leadonium" (Superman's transformed tin). Mxy combines the ingredients into a potion that will prevent him from returning unwillingly to the fifth dimension. Unfortunately for him, the trio figured out his plan "hours ago" and Superman turned his suit back into tin.

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As Mxy fades into the fifth dimension, so does the world he created. And the trio are left standing in a desert. A quick cut later and they are back in the Hall of Justice, somehow restored to its proper place, with Batman arriving to ask where the tornado took them.

As usual, this is a hilariously bad episode of one of the goofier shows of the late 70s. It's strangely compelling in that can't-look-away sort of style. And if nothing else it qualifies as a fun little romp.

Crossposted to/from The Wonderful Blog of Oz

by Tegan at 10:55 AM Seattle time - Permalink  

Wednesday, June 29, 2005


Episode four starts out with Ari and Eric very nervous that Warners hasn't come through with the contracts (and money) for Vince playing Aquaman. Vince, meanwhile, spends money like a madman on decorating his new house. As the episode progresses, we learn that James Cameron is being asked to direct the Aquaman movie. Naturally, this gets everyone overexcited and even leads to the accidental firing of a mailboy. However, just when everything seems to be going aces for the team, Ari and Eric learn that (spoilers)(end spoilers)

This episode adds two more real-life names to the mix of the fictional Aquaman movie, along with Andrew Kevin Walker as script-writer (as heard in episode two). Nothing visual on Aquaman in this episode, thus no new screen caps. I will, however, give you a couple of caps from previous episodes to *ahem* enjoy:

Episode One:

Episodes Two and Three:

by Tegan at 9:29 AM Seattle time - Permalink  

Rapid Reviews - Manga Online

Takuhai Online is Tokyopop's new online magazine, and it features free previews of upcoming Manga projects along with some other content. I read all ten previews available, and here's my thoughts. First off, some of the stories did suffer from being presented online in a low resolution. There were some that I simply couldn't read, although it was a case of certain sections being unreadable, and not the whole Manga. Despite the problem, I think I managed to get the feel of each story. The excerpts were generous and usually ended in a cliffhanger of sorts. Very nicely done for preview material.
  • Bizenghast: A somewhat Gothic ghost story that doesn't quite fit in any category. I was a bit put off by the character designs, and I figure if I check out this book it will be literally... checked out from the library.
  • Dramacon: This was definitely the best of the lot from my point of view. Con newbie with boy trouble. It somehow managed to catch the feel of a con AND had a plot. This is one I would like to read.
  • I Luv Halloween: This one suffered from the low resolution. There were points that I couldn't follow the story because of it. It looked like it might be amusing, but it was also a bit creepy. I probably won't seek it out.
  • Juror 13: Clean art and nice mystery set-up made this one intriguing. I think I'd like to read it, but I can wait until it finds its way to the library.
  • Princess Ai: I really don't see what the fuss is about this book. The main character seems to be a boring self-absorbed twit, and there isn't enough of the bad guys to figure out what's going on. Then again, this one is the only one that starts on the second volume and not the first. I won't be seeking this one out.
  • Psy-Comm: Scienc fiction drama and adventure. I'm not feeling excited enough about it to want to buy it, but it would be a fun read from the library.
  • Sokora Refugees: Elves and naked schoolgirls. Fun fun fun. Surprisingly, this one doesn't look too bad. This one doesn't look good enough to buy, but I'll be impatient to see it show up at the library.
  • Sorcerers & Secretaries: Poor secretary who loves fantasy has to deal with the mundane world. And, as often happens in stories like this, the fantasy seems to be more than just her simple imagination. Another one I'll be impatient to see at the library.
  • Van Von Hunter: I think this is comedy. Not sure. Not interested.
  • War on Flesh: Zombie horror. Not interested.
So, out of ten, I liked one enough to be willing to buy it and five more enough to hunt them out from the library. That's not a bad ratio, all-told. And hey, they were free to try.

by Tegan at 7:47 AM Seattle time - Permalink  

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Rapid Reviews - Mostly Zombie Edition

Zombie Tales from Boom! Studios: I don't like zombies. I don't like horror. In fact, the cover of this book screamed "YOU AREN'T GOING TO LIKE IT!" to me. I read it anyway, since they were kind enough to send it to me. And, amazingly, I really liked it. I didn't love it, but the stories were a nice selection, all complementing one another. There was an overall thread to them. And they were often very touching, very human stories despite the zombies. I'd say the two best stories were in the center of the book, "Daddy Smells Different" and "For Pete's Sake". Both stories have great artwork and a strong sense of drama. Altogether, not a bad package. If you actually like zombies, I recommend picking it up. And even if you don't like 'em, this one isn't bad. This should be out in stores tomorrow. 3 1/2 starfish

Johnny Public #9: Entering Bridgewater from Hula Cat Comics: They've sent me a couple of other books to try. Dope Fiends of the Zombie Cafe didn't do anything for me, but A Yearly Treat was intriguingly odd. This book is a mostly standalone issue of some sort of ongoing series that I'm actually tempted to read more of, now that I've read this one. A traveling salesman discovers horror while passing through a small town. This is enough of a taste to make me curious about the rest of the story. Good art, nice plotting... I wonder what happens next? 3 starfish

Drive from Frequency Press: No zombies in this one. A cab driver gets stuck in the middle of something big and makes all the wrong choices. This seemed too flow almost too naturally. Brian is just a dumb guy driving a cab. Maybe he wants to be a hero, who knows? But the results are grim, with too many people dying. Perhaps the message is that's what happens when you try for an adventure. Not a bad plot, and the story couldn't have ended any other way and made sense. Let's see... artwork isn't bad. A little too studied in spots, and some of the characters were too similar... they needed something to stand out from each other. I got a little confused about who was chasing who at some moments. Storytelling was pretty good though, and you have to admire that. Not the greatest book ever, but certainly worth checking out. I almost thought Larry Young must have published it, but no... he only wrote the introduction. 2 1/2 starfish

by Tegan at 7:08 PM Seattle time - Permalink  


I just got a letter from my credit card company. My credit information was among the ones recently "compromised". They don't know for sure if any of my personal information was compromised, but they assure me that I'm not responsible for any fraudulent transactions as a result of the screw-up.

What they are going to do is give me a new card and new number. This is going to be a pain in the rear as I've got some automatic payments going to this card, and each one is going to have to be reset as soon as I get my new number. On the other hand, I guess it's better than letting whoever stole the numbers (if that's what happened) play around in my account.

Ug. I want to never have to use credit again.

by Tegan at 6:35 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Massive Random Thoughts Post From Heck

Newsarama does an interview with Phil Foglio in which he discusses the change from the regular comic format to webcomics with collections.

I took a blogger survey, just because I'm sure if enough comics bloggers take it, we can skew the results.

Take the MIT Weblog Survey

Need to know what that acronym means? Check out Acronyma to find out!

I've linked to this before, but I might as well point it out again: A Photographer's Rights, a downloadable flyer that you can print out and carry with you.

Little Toy Robot says: I am never going to leave my computer again. as he directs us to Google's new video service... and to Robots in particular.

Speaking of Google: They've taken over the Earth.

Warren Ellis directs us to a Doctor Who Theme Remix Site.

Zombie Dogs. Recipe: Replace all blood with very cold saline solution. Put regular blood back in. Electric shock. Dogs wake up and appear to have no brain damage.

Studio Foglio is now selling Girl Genius Candy. Phil comments on his level of popularity.

The Absorbascon visits New Venice as part of his Forgotten Fictionopolises series.

Marvel Solicits for September.

Scarely do I get a review up than someone links to it. They also link to another review. Just so you know I'm not too special.

Aaron Williams on Global Frequency. Seems like everyone has seen the pilot now.

Interesting bit about trolls on message boards from Rampage: "restriction of venue is not restriction of speech" attributed to Kurt Busiek. To an extent I can agree with that. As long as the venue you are being restricted from is private, and not public: ie a privately run message board or website.

Scott on the lack of plot movement in Shanna the She-Devil.

Suspension of Disbelief checks out Justice in Astro City and also links to a free download of Astro City 1/2.

Bugpowder points out a blog called Drawn! and after checking it out, I recommend it as well.

Garrett directs us to an article on Royal Brougham.

Elayne tells us how to write your name in hieroglyphs.

FilkerTom directs us to Statler & Waldorf From The Balcony, reviewing current movies.

My sister is on a cross-country geneology road trip with my parents and niece, and she's blogging it.

Various and Sundry keeps dumping cool links on me... Lost as an extension of Zork, Three planets in conjunction, What a Solar Eclipse looks like from space, Newspaper Corrections blog, lots of Free Fonts, and Time Magazine's 50 Coolest Websites of 2005.

BoingBoing Links: Beast Blender, Dock Ellis' No Hitter, New LEGO Journal, Vertical Farming, Lost Shopping Malls, Moving Company Scammers, and lastly, download the Supreme Court Grokster decision or the Grokster Press Conference via BitTorrent.

William Powell, author of The Anarchist Cookbook, has renounced the book on Via Bookslut. Out of curiousity, I checked to see if the King County Library System has the book. There are four copies. Two are lost, one is missing, and the last copy is apparently able to be checked out, but has a really odd location. No, I didn't put it on hold. I don't really want to read it.

Bookslut also warns us about inquiries to libraries from law enforcement officials. I wonder if my query about The Anarchist Cookbook puts me on a list somewhere?


Take It To Karl: a blog devoted to all our liberal servicemen and women who Rove insulted recently. Rove refuses to apologize for his slanderous remarks.

And, because of Rove's insults, FilkerTom is Mad As Hell, and He's Not Going To Take This Anymore. I absolutely agree with him.

The Slippery Slope To Mass Murder. If you didn't read it the other two times I linked to it, read it now.

Identify the speaker of this quote: "The administration should clarify its intent in [the war]. People lack confidence in the credibility of our government... It's a difficult thing today to be informed about our government even without all the secrecy. With the secrecy, it's impossible. The American people will do what's right when they have the information they need."
Answer: (select to read)(end). Via Political Wire.

Identify the speaker of these quotes: "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." "I think it's also important for the president to lay out a timetable as to how long they will be involved and when they will be withdrawn."
Answer: (select to read)(end). Via Political Wire.

A couple of thoughts from Tom Tomorrow: Gulags and Just Like Houston (because DeLay said that Houston is just as bad as Baghdad).

A former Republican speaks out. I don't believe the current leadership of the Republican party are actually Republicans. I don't know what to call them, but they hold almost no true Republican views or values. I've taken to calling them Rethuglicans to distinguish them from real Republicans, but maybe someone has a less provocative name?

Mark Evanier on Flag Burning.

Tom Peyer directs us to Iraq War Posters. Some are good. Some... aren't.

As amusing as I find Operation Yellow Elephant, I don't think parents who support the war should be 'sending their kids' to enlist. No, I think that IF THEY TRULY SUPPORT THE WAR they should be encouraging their children to enlist, but no parent has the right to 'send' a child to war. In fact, I think it's the parents who should be enlisting. If they really support the war. We have a severe troop shortage, and if someone really believes that this war is Just, and not an evil exercise in greed by the Rethuglican leadership, then that person should sign up for the military immediately. The fact that the College Republicans wouldn't even let an ad suggesting they sign up for duty be put in their program shows me that they are a bunch of hypocrites. They claim to support the war, but only as long as someone else is doing the dirty work and risking death. Cowards.


by Tegan at 11:38 AM Seattle time - Permalink  

Monday, June 27, 2005

Rapid Review - Larry's Sampler Book

The Black Diamond Onramp/Smoke and Guns/Five Fists of Science preview book from AiT/Planet Lar: Larry thoughtfully provided me with this preview book and a note that said he was never sure what I'd like. I'm slightly worried that my tastes are so hard to pin down, especially as I have the same problem trying to figure out what I'd like. Still, a sampler is often the best way to figure something out, so this is the perfect book for me.

On to the stories then...

I have had dreams/nightmares of a road similar to the Black Diamond on and off since I was in High School. The concept is simple, yet unthinkable. A lawless superhighway across the US? But AiT/Planet Lar specializes in the unthinkable, and that's why it appears that this story will work. Mix the unthinkable with the mundane, and you get a tale worth reading.

Moving on, Smoke and Guns doesn't do much for me. But for the art, I'd probably ignore it completely, but Fabio Moon can make any tale look good, and his storytelling skills are simply amazing compared to far too many modern comic book artists. While this one doesn't look like it's for me, I recommend checking out the artwork if you get a chance.

Last up is the smallest preview, only two pages worth and one of them a splash. It only needs two pages. In fact, it only needs the one splash page to draw me in... Nikola Tesla and Mark Twain? I'm there.

Two out of three from this sampler, with the one that isn't my style still looking amazing thanks to the artwork. Yeah, I'd say that Larry still hasn't missed a step. And this, for a sampler, is nearly perfect. 4 starfish

by Tegan at 7:57 PM Seattle time - Permalink  

Sunday, June 26, 2005

3-Day Walk

Only $165 more to go.

Please Donate

by Tegan at 9:03 PM Seattle time - Permalink