Friday, March 27, 2009


I have been an Art Adams fan from as far back as his stint in the early eighties on X-Men, X-Factor, and, of course my once-owned LONGSHOT series that I picked up in Delaware as a youngster. Anyway, Adams quickly became one of my favorite artists, due in part to his incredible detail, his dynamic hero and villain poses, and, of course, his really attractive women. This guy can draw some chicks. Another couple personal favorites of mine in terms of series Adams worked on were his run on a four-issue limited Fantastic Four featuring Marvel heavyweights, Wolverine, Spider-Man, Hulk, and Ghost Rider stepping in to fill the regulars shoes, and his own Monkey Man and O'Brien. Here's a bit of history from Wikipedia before we move on to the hotties:

"Art Adams was born on April 5, 1963 in Holyoke, Massachusetts, and dreamed of becoming a comic book illustrator from a very early age, largely teaching himself the skills he would later use. He became a fan favorite when he penciled the critically-acclaimed Longshot miniseries, written by Ann Nocenti and published in 1985 by Marvel Comics. Adams' highly distinctive and detailed artwork gained him considerable popularity and he found it easy to find further work in the field. However, due to the labor-intensive nature of his detailed art, Adams found it difficult to meet the short deadlines often found in the comics industry. This has led to him to pursue work for shorter projects such as miniseries, specials, and annuals rather than pursuing work for ongoing comic book series. Exceptions to this include a 1989 two-issue run on X-Factor, and a 1990 three-issue run on Fantastic Four. He also had a ten-issue run on Tom Strong's Terrific Tales (2002-2004), which being an anthology, required only eight pages from him for each issue.
Adams' distinctive style has often been named as a considerable influence among a newer generation of popular comic book artists. Adams was also one of the founders of the short-lived Legend imprint for Dark Horse Comics. The consistently popular Adams has worked on many notable series, including various X-Men titles, Fantastic Four, The Authority, Tom Strong, Gen¹³, as well as numerous annuals. He is also known for Art Adams' Creature Features, a collection of previously published stories that paid tribute to various B-movie monsters, published by Dark Horse Comics. Some of the stories had been originally published in black and white, but they were colored for the collection. Along with writer Steve Moore, Adams is the co-creator of Jonni Future, a popular character in Tom Strong's Terrific Tales.
Most of Adams' work has been on properties owned by others, but he is also the author of the creator-owned series Monkeyman and O'Brien, also published by Dark Horse.
Adams is also a highly-regarded cover artist, and he has provided cover images for issues of Superman, Batman, Justice League of America and Vampirella, among other titles. In addition to his work on comics themselves, he has also produced popular commercial art, such as numerous illustrations for trading cards, posters, shirts, and various other comics-related merchandise. Outside the field of comics, he has also provided illustrations for various magazines, movies, games, worked in toy design, and even a series of X-Men-themed Campbell Soup cans.
Starting in December 2007, he did regular covers for Marvel's Incredible Hercules ongoing series. In October 2008 he started drawing half of Hulk starting with issue #7."














Friday, March 20, 2009


This list is all about those other animal-related superheroes who aren't such popular characters as Batman, Robin, Spider-Man, Wolverine, Rhino, Vulture, or The Wasp. Or, really any other of those overly famous comic book folks inundating the shelves these days. No, this list is specifically geared toward those either forgotten, lost, or just plain not quite up to the level of snuff of those other guys and gals. Read on and see if your favorite back-ground heroes and villains made the list.


ORIGINS: "Animal Man (Bernhard "Buddy" Baker) is a fictional DC Comics superhero. As a result of being in proximity to an exploding extraterrestrial spaceship, Buddy Baker acquires the ability to temporarily “borrow” the abilities of animals (such as a bird's flight or the proportionate strength of an ant). Using these powers, Baker fights crime as the costumed superhero Animal Man"


ORIGINS: "Puma possesses a number of superhuman attributes that are a result of a combination of genetic engineering and mysticism. Thomas Fireheart is the latest in a line of Native Americans that were specially matched and bred to produce a perfect human being. That genetic manipulation was enhanced by an unknown supernatural process through which his tribe endowed him with magical abilities.
Fireheart undergoes a physical transformation through intense concentration that includes an increase in his height and weight, his body becoming covered with a fine tan fur, and razor sharp fangs and claws.
Transformation into this form also grants Fireheart superhuman physical attributes of strength, speed, stamina, agility, and reflexes.
Puma also possesses superhumanly acute senses. His sense of touch is heightened to the extent that he is able to feel the impressions of ink on a piece of paper. His hearing is enhanced in a similar manner, enabling him to both hear sounds that ordinary humans can't and to hear at much greater distances. Puma also possesses a superhumanly acute sense of smell that he uses to track a target by scent."


ORIGINS: "Silver Sable (Silver Sablinova) is a fictional character from Marvel Comics, a female mercenary, hunter of war criminals, the leader of the Wild Pack, and CEO of Silver Sable International. Though a legitimate mercenary, her methods and motives have sometimes brought her into conflict with other superheroes."


ORIGINS: "Howard the Duck, as his name suggests, is a three-foot-tall anthropomorphic duck. He generally wears a tie and shirt, and is almost always found smoking a cigar. Originally, like many cartoon ducks, he wore no pants; Disney threatened legal action due to Howard's resemblance to Donald Duck, and Marvel redesigned that aspect of character.
Howard has an irritable and cynical attitude to the often bizarre events around him; he feels there is nothing special about him except that he is a duck, and though he has no goals other than seeking comfort and to be left alone, he is often dragged into dangerous adventures simply because he is visibly unusual. His series' tagline, "Trapped in a world he never made", played off the genre trappings of 1950s science fiction. A common reaction to meeting Howard the first time is a startled, "'re a DUCK!"


ORIGINS: "In his original incarnation, Killer Moth has no superhuman abilities; he relies on the vast array of equipment he has developed. Killer Moth’s range of gimmicks includes a moth mobile, a moth signal, and a steel-line, which allows him to swing through the skies. He carries a cocoon gun that fires a stream of sticky threads that can totally envelop a victim. The gun can also fire a grenade.
As Charaxes, he has superhuman strength, agility and endurance, an exoskeleton that gives him some protection from physical and energy attacks, a set of wings that allows him to fly, sharp claws, and sharp, prehensile feelers. Charaxes secretes a sticky acidic substance that can trap the strongest of men and dissolve their bodies."


ORIGINS: "By taking his bat-gland formula, Kirk Langstrom can transform himself into a bat-like creature. By taking an antidote he can return to human form.
As Man-Bat, his strength, agility and endurance are all enhanced to super human levels; Kirk possesses a set of leathery bat wings that allow him to fly, super-sensitive hearing, and natural sonar. He emits high-pitched sound waves and can hear the echoes they make when they bounce off nearby objects, enabling Man-Bat to navigate perfectly in pitch black darkness.
If in Man-Bat form for a prolonged time, he will lose control over his animalistic side and works purely on instinct, making him prone to harm friend and foe alike."


ORIGINS: "In 52 Week 52, an alternate version of Earth-3 was shown as a part of the new Multiverse. In the depiction were characters that are altered versions of the original Justice League of America, including Batman. The names of the characters and the team are not mentioned in the two panels in which they appear, but the altered Batman is visually similar to Owlman. This same character—assisted by a team referred to as the Crime Society—later appears in issue 31 of Countdown and fights Jason Todd, who is aided by his traveling companions, Kyle Rayner and Donna Troy.
Based on comments by Grant Morrison, this alternate universe is not the pre-Crisis Earth-Three, making this a new character unrelated to previous versions.
In The Search for Ray Palmer: Crime Society Owlman is shown with a sidekick called Talon, who had a relationship with Duela Dent, the daughter of his greatest foe, the Jokester. Based on statements and illustrations in this same book, it is stated the original Talon succeeded the old Owlman in a manner parallel to the way that Wayne as Batman was succeeded by Dick Grayson in the role of Batman for a period of time."


ORIGINS: "Rocket Raccoon comes from Halfworld, in the Keystone Quadrant, an abandoned colony for the mentally ill where the animal companions were genetically manipulated to grant them human level intelligence and bipedal body construction for many to become caretakers of the inmates. Rocket was Halfworld's chief law officer ("ranger") who protected the colony against various threats.
Rocket Raccoon acts as the "Guardian of the Keystone Quadrant", an area of outer space sealed off from the rest of the cosmos by the so-called Galacian Wall. Rocket is captain of the starship Rack 'n' Ruin, and he and his first mate Wal Russ (a talking walrus) come from the planet Halfworld, half of which is inhabited by other talking animals, and half of which is inhabited by automatons."


ORIGINS: "The young Devil Dinosaur was nearly burned to death by a tribe of Killer-Folk, hostile beings native to his planet, but was rescued by Moon-Boy, a young member of a rival tribe, the Small-Folk. Exposure to the Killer-Folk's fire activated a mutation in the dinosaur which gave him powers greater than others of his species and turned his skin from olive green to flame red. Devil Dinosaur is fiercely loyal to his constant companion Moon-Boy and seems more intelligent than the average dinosaur (as they are portrayed in the comic). Devil Dinosaur first encounters extraterrestrials, and is briefly transported to Earth via magic before returning to his home world.
Godzilla rampages through the Marvel Universe (Earth-616). In an attempt to stop the monster, S.H.I.E.L.D. shrinks Godzilla with Pym Particles and attempts to teleport him via a time machine to the prehistoric past. However, Godzilla's radiation distorts the time machine so that he is transported to the alternate universe of Dinosaur World instead. While there, he briefly unites with Moon-Boy and Devil against a common foe before being pulled back to the main Marvel continuity."


ORIGINS: "Captain Carrot is depicted as a superhero who lived on the otherdimensional world of Earth-C, an alternate Earth populated by sentient animals, which was later redesignated Earth-26 in the new DC Multiverse. At the beginning of the Captain Carrot series, he was referred to as "Roger Rabbit"; later in the series, "Rodney Rabbit" was usually used, to avoid legal issues involving the literary (and later film) character Roger Rabbit.
After their initial appearance in New Teen Titans #16, Captain Carrot and team appeared in 20 issues of their own series, Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew!. According to the final issue of the series, the book was cancelled in favor of placing the Zoo Crew in a number of miniseries, but only one such miniseries, the three-issue Oz/Wonderland War (in which the characters became involved in an interdimensional war involving the worlds of L. Frank Baum and Lewis Carroll), was ever published.
The Captain and Crew returned in a miniseries titled Captain Carrot and the Final Ark! (October-December 2007). After the new DC Multiverse, Captain Carrot and the Zoo Crew are said to reside on Earth-26. The end of that series shows their Earth to be rendered uninhabitable and the Captain has an ocean liner loaded with refugees that is transported off the planet by the Just'a Lotta Animals. The ship is then accidentally sent to New Earth. The Justice League encounters the ship and lands it safely, though all the passengers, including the Captain and his Crew are transformed into non-anthropomorphic animals. The superheroine magician, Zatanna, unaware of the animals' true nature, claims Rodney as a pet for her magic act.
However, in the climatic battle in Final Crisis #7, Captain Carrot participates, his humanity and powers restored by the renegade Monitor Nix Uotan."

**Thanks to WIKIPEDIA for its wealth of info!**

Friday, March 13, 2009


Normally I am not a huge fan of cars. I just never got that big into them as a kid and, well, the interest hasn't risen an iota since then. So, be that as it may, what I do like are cartoons. Now there's something I can get behind. So, when it comes to the 'coolness' of cars mixed with the uber-coolness of toons, well, there ya go: Toons + Cars = Super Duper Uber Kick-Ass Cool! Yep, just made that up. So, from over a few decades, here are the TOP 10 COOLEST CARTOON CARS.

10) THE WACKY RACES - Take all the Hanna-Barberra properties and give 'em a bunch of silly cars.

9) M.A.S.K. - Especially Matt Tracker and his killer Camero/Jet!

8) POLE POSITION - One of the many toons based on video games fro the 80's. This one was all about the CARS! Woo hoo!

7) CARS - I think I'd be Crucified if I failed to include one of Disney/Pixar's most marketable films.

6) VOLTRON - Yes, for those uninitiated, there was a version of Voltron featuring a slew of cars that merged into the 'World's Mightiest Robot.' Not quite Lions, but still really cool.

5) THE MYSTERY MACHINE - What would Scooby's gang be without their eponymous van? Just a bunch of meddling kids, that's what.

4) TURBO TEEN - Tell me you remember the exploits of the teenager who could morph into a car and his buddies could, somehow, ride in him. Cool! Kind of a Knight Rider meets An American Werewolf in London.

3) THE TRANSFORMERS - Well, more specifically, the Autobots. I mean CAR is practically in their name!

2) SPEED BUGGY - More or less a Scooby knock off but without the dog and with a sort of anthropomorphic car voiced by Mel Blanc (Bugs Bunny). 

1) SPEED RACER - The quintessential CAR-TOON for the ages. Speed Vs. Racer X was just about as cool as it got! And somehow Chim Chim and Spritle always found their ways into the trunk of the Mach 5.

BONUS: THE BAT MOBILE - Cool car to be sure, just not the focus of the show. But Bats would likely be caught in some situations without it for sure.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


No. No, I haven't seen it yet, not until Saturday at the IMAX in Lansing. But, much to the behest of my buddy Doug, I have seen a ton of previews and read a ton of reviews, and I have to admit, as much as I enjoy Zack Snyder's films (especially 300) I'm a bit concerned about WATCHMEN. Being based on perhaps the greatest graphic novel of all time, the story boards are more or less sketched out right in front of Snyder, yet, in direct response to those who deem this material un-filmable, there are a still many key elements missing, not the least of which is the entirely new ending not related to the 'giant space squid' from the book. So, as I perused this preview constructed of clips that have been released thus far, I have taken an even deeper skewed look at a movie I feel so strongly about. Okay, I understand completely that something like this is just a vast piece of literary pie, and trying to incorporate all of its ingredients into an entirely different dessert without really having a solid recipe is nearly an act of futility, but leaving out such obvious things as sugar and fruit makes for a pretty bland taste. However, on the other side of the coin, the visuals that we see here are absolutely stunning and it appears, for the most part, that the actors portraying such dynamic characters are doing a wonderful job. Even so, here are my ten love/hates for the movie I've yet to see based entirely on this clip. Enjoy.

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10) Malin Ackerman (As Laurie Jupiter) is stunning, of this there is little to argue. However, she appears to have all the acting prowess of mayonnaise. We'll see.

9) I'm sorry, but Dan Dreiberg (Night Owl II) is supposed to be a lonely, washed-up shell f his former self with a pretty pronounced paunch. I mean this is a major bit of his character. I don't see it. 

8) Billy Crudup as Doctor Manhattan looks absolutely perfect, right down to, from what I understand, his 'hang down'.

7) Though I'm no fan of 'age make-up', I do love Carla Gugino in anything she does and here, too, as the elder Silk Spectre. However, wasn't her hair white?

6) The atmosphere created by Gibbons and Moore of an alternate 1985 looks outstanding here on the screen. Snyder really seems to have captured it.

5) Though I know that the 'Tales From The Black Freighter' will be released as a separate DVD narrated by Gerard Butler, would it have been so tough to include it in the film, even shortened?

4) Rorshach's mask. Even the concept within the comic seems almost impossible, yet, vaguely probable, especially since it's supposed to be a piece of 'chromatically living' dress fabric. The mask is, virtually, alive and looks every bit so here.

3) Conversely, I'm not too sure how I feel about Nite Owl (Dan Dreiberg's) get up. It actually seems less owl-like -and the dude LOVES him some birds- than the one from the pages. If the scene remains where he and Rorshach discover Veidt's arctic hideout, I hope that Dreiberg's 'winter gear' still looks exactly like the owl from the book. 

2) The Comedian is PERFECT. Jeffrey Dean Morgan has completely captured his look of the 'inside joke' that no one gets. Awesome.

1) Jackie Earle Haley is Rorshach. 'Nuff said.

Oh yeah, and THIS SHIT is just stunningly, absolutely, unabashedly hilarious!