Saturday, December 26, 2015

365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 360: It's too big to be a space's a giant Star Wars book!

Hola, amigos. I know it's been a long time since I rapped at ya, but I've been busy playin' with all my new Christmas presents. I showed you some of the cool stuff I got (and yes, I'm writing all my thank you notes on the new stationery Grammy Bull sent me — thank you very very much for the lovely stationery, Grammy Bull!*). And if you can remember through your haze of roast goose, figgy pudding and smoking bishop and possibly from living in the Victorian Era, I promised to show you a Star Wars-related present (or two) that I got. Lovely Randi got me this gorgeous Star Wars: Dark Times Gallery Edition! WOWWWWWWWWWWWW

Each double-page spread reproduces Randy Stradley's script, and on the facing page, the original pencils by Douglas Wheatley, for five issues of the comic series Star Wars: Dark Times. It is really cool.

For example, here's the script and pencils for a page from Dark Times #3:

And here's what it looks like in the original comic book:

Panels from Star Wars: Dark Times #3 (May 2007), script by Randy Stradley, pencils and inks by Douglas Wheatley, colors by Ronda Pattison, letters by Michael David Thomas and Dan Jackson

This is brilliant and I'm going to enjoy reading it a lot! I shall be singing the Star Wars theme all the time I'm enjoying it.

*This sentence technically counts as a thank you note to Grammy Bull.

Stuff Bully Got for Christmas 2015

Happy holidays to you all, and I hope you are having a wonderful Christmastime or whatever you celebrate, even if it's Wookiee Life Day! Did you get good things in your stockings? i got legs in mine.

No, no, I kids the Christmas, because I got all sorts of wonderful things from Santa and from my pals! I am a very lucky and fortunate little stuffed bull.

We do not have a chimney with care, or indeed any other possible masonry-related emotions, but we did get big full stockings stuffed with oranges and walnuts! Hooray!

Today in Comics History, December 26, 1973: M. Night Shyamalan's worst film is released

from Tara Normal #1 (CreateSpace Publishing, July 2013); script, art, and letters by Howie Noel

Friday, December 25, 2015

Today in Comics History, December 25, 1776: Looks like George Washington picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue

from "George Washington's Drum!" in Superboy (1949 series) #2 (DC, May 1949), pencils by John Sikela, inks by Ed Dobrotka

Today in Comics History, December 25, Christmas: Hulk's Christmas in New Mexico TV variety show is not a success

from Spider-Man 2099 (2014 series) #10 (Marvel, May 2015), script by Peter David, pencils and inks by Will Sliney, colors by Antonio Fabela, letters by Joe Caramagna

The Best Rodents Infesting a Department Store Commercial You've Never Seen

Christmas 2015 commercial for British department store Harrods

The Best Sugar Water Commercial You've Never Seen

2014 Christmas advert for Coca Cola

The Best Man in the Moon Movie You've Never Seen

Don't cry now.

2015 Christmas advert for British Department Store John Lewis

The Best Christmas Commercial Featuring a British Cat You've Never Seen

"Mog’s Christmas Calamity," 2015 Christmas advert for Sainsbury's, British grocery store chain

The Best Muppet Show You've Never Seen

"The Giant Crumpet Show," 2015 advert for Warburtons Family Bakers

The Best Star Wars Film You've Never Seen

Promotional Christmas 2015 commercial film for Kaufman, German supermarket chain

365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 359: And you thought I couldn't find a comic celebrating Christmas in the Star Wars Universe

Cover of Return of the Jedi Weekly (Marvel UK 1983 series) #28 (December 28, 1983), art by Bob Wakelin

Happy Christmas and May the Force of Santa Be with You!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Yes, Virginia, There Is a Spider-Man: An Editorial by J. Jonah Jameson

DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
Papa says, "If you see it in THE DAILY BUGLE it's so."
Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


VIRGINIA, your little friends have a promising future in journalism. Who accepts any blasted story he hears on the street as fact? Around here I call him Ben Urich and he's fired. You heard me, Urich! Clean out your desk! Get the blazes outta here. This story is crap! Crap! Crap! Who are you trying to fool with this Daredevil story? Everybody knows Matt Murdock is as blind as half of Sandy Duncan. Go ahead, smart guy, tell me how a blind man can be Daredevil? Next thing you'll be telling me is that I'M Daredevil! You wanna see me in spandex tights swinging around the office? NO! Nobody wants to see that. Because I'm a journalist and a journalist gets the story! Okay, you're unfired. Fill up your desk again. Go out there and get the story. I want quotes, denials, pictures. Take Parker with you. Where's Parker? PARKER!

Yes, VIRGINIA, your friends are right to be suspicious about Santa Claus. Just because you see him on every street corner doesn't mean he's real. I see Spider-Man all the time and he's no real hero, I tell you. I've seen some of these con-artists and bums masquerading as Santa Claus down in Times Square and at Macy's and I wouldn't give them a seafood dinner if they were King Namor of Atlantis! You know why? Because they can't prove it. Where's the reindeer, where's the sleigh, where's the presents? I'm gonna come right out and call each and every one of those Broadway Santas a big fat fraud. What're you gonna do, fatties? Sue me? I know more lawyers than you know elves.

Not believe in Santa Claus! That's the kind of no-nonsense, forward-looking view I want to see in an investigative reporter. You might as well believe another planet crashed into us this summer! That's outrageous! I'll tell you what I told Parker: no photos, no story. This is a picture newspaper, dammit! If we can get a picture of Donald Trump giving a Nazi salute, we can certainly get a picture of a planet crashing into the Earth. But does anybody ever think about what I want? No! A little piece and quiet is all I want. And pictures of Spider-Man! Get me pictures of Spider-Man! Get out of here, Parker!

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, and that's the only thing that's gonna get you is the low-down story on those snake-filled baby rattles from Doctor Octopus. You think I got two Pulitzers sitting here at this desk and yelling at Parker to get me pictures of Santa Claus? No! I got them looking out this window and peering into the hearts and minds of every man, woman, and child in this city. And I know what they want. They want honest, solid journalism about corruption, crime, and Spider-Man! Ah, VIRGINIA, in this entire world there's nothing else more real and abiding than catching Spider-Man with his pants down. Metaphorically speaking.

So yes, VIRGINIA, there IS a Spider-Man. He's a threat and a menace, Thank God! for the increase in circulation every time we put one of those Spider-Man photos on the front page by Parker that looks like he shot it through cobwebs. Yes, Spider-Man will continue to threaten you and your family, and the only place you can count on to tell the truth is the DAILY BUGLE. And about this Santa Claus thing: there's only one way to tell for sure. If you don't get absolutely everything you wanted on your Christmas list, every single toy and doll and hula hoop or whatever it is you kids want — it's because Spider-Man killed Santa Claus.

Dictated but not read,


365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 358: Yoda is a jerk

Introduction page from Star Wars Tales #13 (September 2002); script by Dave Land; pencils, inks, and colors by Lucas Marangon; letters by Steve Dutro

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Marvel Team-Up guest-starring Angel Love

Panels from Amazing Spider-Man (1963 series) #344 (February 1991), script by David Michelinie, pencils by Erik Larsen, inks by Randy Emberlin, colors by Bob Sharen, letters by Rick Parker
and from Angel Love #1 (August 1986); script and pencils by Barbara Slate, inks by John William Lopez, colors by Bob LeRose, letters by Bill Yoshida

365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 357: Well, that didn't work out the way we'd planned

Cover of Star Wars: Purge one-shot (December 2005), art by Adam Hughes

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 356: Carmine Infantino Got a T-Square for Christmas

Panel from Star Wars (1977 Marvel series) #18 (December 1978), script by Archie Goodwin, pencils by Carmine Infantino, inks by Gene Day, colors by Janice Cohen, letters by Rick Parker

Panels from Star Wars (1977 Marvel series) #19 (January 1979), script by Archie Goodwin, pencils by Carmine Infantino, inks by Bob Wiacek, colors by Carl Gafford, letters by Irv Watanabe

Panel from Star Wars (1977 Marvel series) #22 (April 1979), script by Archie Goodwin, pencils by Carmine Infantino, inks by Bob Wiacek, colors by Bob Sharen, letters by Clem Robins

Monday, December 21, 2015

Monday Night Murals: Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time

Hey, what's a mural? you might be asking right about now (since it's been seventy-'leven years since I did one of these Monday night features). Well, a mural is a series of two or more comic books that, when combined, form a complete scene of greater vista or landscape! (You can also call them a tryptych Also: a way to get you to buy more comic books to see how they all fit together. Unless, of course, you read this very puppet-town cow blog, because I do it for ya! And what better time of the year than Christmastime for the Man with No Time for Time, The Doctor? or should I say...The Doctors?

Left to right: covers of Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor #5; Doctor Who: The Eleventh Doctor #5; and Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor #3 (The WHO Shop, London variant covers, December 2014), art by Lee Sullivan
(Click picture to bigger-on-the-inside-size)

Say, where's Nine? Aw, he's probably off somewhere else in London eating chips with Rose. And I suspect the War Doctor is somewhere in the Who Shop...but when it comes to buying gifts in boxes, he's very indecisive.

365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 355: You can type this stuff, George...

Panels from Star Wars: Infinities: A New Hope #2 (June 2001), script by Chris Warner, pencils by Drew Johnson, inks by Ray Snyder, colors by Dave McCaig, letters by Steve Dutro

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Ten of a Kind: Bah humbug

(More Ten of a Kind here.)

365 Days of Star Wars Comics, Day 354: I’ll meet you coming back when the universe has expanded

So, what's this about fanatics being so uptight (short for "up their butts is way too tight") about the decanonization of the Expanded Universe that they're threatening to reveal spoilers for The Force Wakes Up? As the star of the Star Wars franchise once scolded: "Get a life!" And remember, when you're defending the Expanded Universe, you are also defending this Luuke Skywalker, the evil clone of Luke Skywalker, who you can tell is a clone because he has two "U"s in his name:

Panels from Star Wars: The Last Command #6 (July 1998), script by Mike Baron, pencils by Edvin Biuković, inks by Eric Shanower, colors design by Dan Brown, color rendering by Digital Chameleon, letters by Ellie de Ville

Yes, you read that right. Cloned from the hand he left behind on Bespin.

And if that isn't enough to roll you into fits of giggles, here's another prime moment in the clone-ridden post-Jedi Star Wars Expanded Universe: the clone of Emperor Palpatine (Paalpaatiinee?) trying to kidnap Leia and Hana's son Anakin Adolf Solo away from Threepio. Yes, grand serious science fiction space high drama as you like it!

Panels from Star Wars: Empire's End #6 (July 1998), script by Mike Baron, pencils by Edvin Biuković, inks by Eric Shanower, colors design by Dan Brown, color rendering by Digital Chameleon, letters by Ellie de Ville

Also, never forget that in the Expanded Universe Han Solo rode on a giant bird.

from Star Wars: Empire's End #6

So, I may mourn the non-canonistencing of Mara Jade and Dash Rendar as much as the rest of y'all, but I'll trade any number of Expaanded Uuniverse cloones for Finn, Rey, Kylo Renn, Lando Jr., Kid Jabba, Li'l Yodella or BB-Pellet or the rest of 'em. And I haven't even seen the new movie yet.