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I'm Not Putting My Donkey Outside When I'm Sad
Feels Like A Concession Speech
Hi. I’m Danny. I write comics and at the moment I’ve got an unbelievable amount of oranges and potatoes in my fridge.
This Month’s Soundtrack
This isn’t meant to tie into the Kickstarter stuff below. I just like this song!
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So, The Kickstarter Didn’t Fund
I’m not as bummed as I expected to be, honestly. Probably because I spent about a month watching the numbers plateau, then start going down (!). That made it easy to come to terms with impending public failure.
I’m mostly baffled, because I actually put MORE work into this campaign than I did for previous ones, AND I was coming off a massively successful one with Rubber Match!
On the bright side, the campaign had a slight jump in the last couple of days, taking it from triple digits to quadruple digits. For real, if the final total stayed at 900-something, I would have been both UP and SET.
Either way, I blame Elon Musk sucking out all the oxygen outta Twitter, shitty social media algorithms, and my poor math skills in not realizing the campaign was going to end on a major American holiday. MOSTLY NOT MY FAULT, I ACCEPT VERY LITTLE RESPONSIBILITY
So what does it mean for Survivant? Nothing! Issue 2 will be completed and put up for pre-order before I send it to print, and then we’ll get to work on Issue 3.
Not sure what the funding situation will be going forward for Survivant. Do I run another Kickstarter for #2 and #3? Do I switch to Crowdfundr, or is that just for extremely online people who have a moral objection to Kickstarter? Does anybody actually know what Zoop is?
Next campaign I run early next year will be for another one of Elizabeth’s books, then we’ll see about Survivant #3.
At Least The Signing Went Well
A couple of weeks ago Elizabeth and I headed up to Republic of Lucha for a signing/release party for Rubber Match. It was great! Lots of our homies made it, the Republic of Lucha crew are awesome, and it seems like even more people were watching the livestream Q&A (embedded above).
If you’re anywhere near Pasadena, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND Republic of Lucha. It’s got lots of dope lucha libre stuff on sale like masks and T-shirts and toys, plus some of Penta and Fenix’s actual gear on display. And it’s next to Vidéothèque, a super cool video store.
ROL also printed up some T-shirts for the signing, so definitely stop by and grab one.
One Last Con For 2022
This weekend is LA Comic Con, in downtown Los Angeles at the LA Convention Center. It’s December 2-4, but we’re not going to be there Friday.
This is going to be the first show where we’ll have Rubber Match at the table, so hopefully that catches an eyeball or several.
Dunno what to expect from this show. It’s a SoCal convention, which, as established, tend to be mostly populated by normies and off-putting weirdos, so I’m keeping my expectations low. Either way, expect some complaints next month.
I hope they have beer!
Survivant #3: Draft 1 is done! It’s not what I’d call “good” yet, but it’s on its way.
Battle Jacket: Pitch doc PDF is all pretty and ready. Just gotta send it to every publisher in existence.
Big Fucking Hammer: We’re back on, baby! Diana recently sent me the first page of issue 8:
I really wanna do an X-Men bootleg comic. I wrote an insane script for someone that condensed an entire original future crossover event into like 12 pages, but it never ended up happening. I really want to expand it into something epic and crazy.
Shit I’ve Been Enjoying Lately
Adventureman: A new Matty Frax comic is always an big deal for me, as Casanova is one of my favorite comic books of all time. Burned through the first two oversized hardcover volumes and loooved it. Just really fun adventure comics in the vein of Fraction’s Iron Fist — remember those bits with the historical, pulp-inspired Iron Fists? — with some of his and Terry Dodson’s Defenders mixed in. TONS of making-of material in the back pages, too.
P.S. I’m still mad they cancelled Defenders.
Godzilla, Mothra and King Ghidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack: Had this on DVD for about a thousand years, but I finally got around to it in October. I fucks with Godzilla, but I can’t say I’m an expert or anything. Was extremely to find out that Giant Monsters All-Out Attack swung for the fences thematically, playing off of the 1954 original to depict Japan as a nation gradually forgetting its traumatic past until history repeats itself again. Definitely a movie for those who enjoyed Shin Godzilla.
Power Rangers (the comics): Read a whole heap of nice hardcover collections thanks to Elizabeth getting comps from BOOM! I was a huge fan of Power Rangers as a kid and regularly put on the TokuSHOUTsu channel on Pluto TV but I pretty much ignored the existence of the comics until a couple of months ago. Turns out they’re really good! They play off the first few seasons of the show and expand the universe in huge ways. Just really solid cape comics, up there with Archie’s TMNT comics, which is the highest possible praise I could give to licensed comics.
Carlito’s Way: Watched this for the first time. Solid romance/crime flick with the most wonderfully hokey ending and one of the most exciting foot chase sequences I can recall. But I’m not sure what’s funnier: Al Pacino opening the movie with the extremely clarifying line “My Puerto Rican ass” or Viggo Mortensen doing a way better PR accident than Big Al.
Hickman’s X-Men Run: Stuff that’s way up my alley. I bought that Hellfire Gala Red Carpet Edition thing that had every single tie-in, but found the varying vibes/styles across various creative teams kind of tedious. There’s the jokey one that’s kind of serious, the serious one that’s kind of jokey, and then the REALLY jokey one. Turns out I should have bought the bare-bones trade!
The most interesting part of this era of X-Men for me is the macro shit that ties back into HoXPoX, so “important” stuff like the X-Men terraforming Mars and pissing everybody off ends up being a highlight for me. Ditto Inferno. I’m onto Gerry Duggan’s X-Men run and that’s pretty good so far.
Black Adam: Onto some movie capeshit, starting with the one where the hierarchy of power something something.
For how much the movie is marketed as “This guy’s not like Superman, he KILLS people” and how the conclusion of the movie is “Sometimes you don’t need a hero, you need an ANTI-HERO,” Black Adam is pretty goofy. The moment a skateboarding kid showed up to be a main character in this movie, its “Darkness is necessary” affectations totally dried up. This movie isn’t THAT different from the first Shazam flick. They both even have the same surprise DCU cameo at the end!
The best part? Not The Rock, sadly, because he’s terrible in it, and his character’s motivations never made any sense to me. The best part of this movie was the Justice Society, who in Black Adam are basically a low-rent Avengers complete with a comedic size-changing guy and a magic guy whose special effects aren’t that different from Dr. Strange. But I found them totally charming and fun to watch.
Saw this in a double feature with…
Black Panther: When it comes to MCU or Star Wars, I don’t bring them up here often. Everybody watches those, and I’ve got nothing to add except that I dug them, too. Seriously, all of them, even that one.
But I thought Wakanda Forever was AWESOME. Totally different vibe from the first one, which I tend to appreciate in a sequel, and I was really impressed by the scale and the conflict. People slam these things for being producer-driven and cookie-cutter or whatever, but I like capeshit and it’s kind of wild to me how these tentpole CG action movies have gotten strive for a certain sense of complexity and sophistication. YMMV whether they’re successful at those things, but they seem to aim pretty high.
Like, the first Avengers movie was about all the action figures teaming up to 1) keep a big thing from falling and 2) close a big hole that monsters were coming out of.
The Banshees Of Inisherin: Love Martin McDonagh’s films. All of them save for Seven Psychopaths, which I haven’t seen. I honestly believe there’s nobody better at writing people insulting one another or writing the stupidest people alive. If they ever take another crack at Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s Preacher, he’s the obvious choice.
The premise of his latest, The Banshees of Inisherin, is simple: it’s about a guy who who doesn’t understand why his best friend doesn’t want to be friends with him anymore. That’s it. But there’s SO MUCH going on this movie. Small town loneliness. A decrepit old woman haunting everyone. Brendan Gleeson’s moviations going from seeming to be understandable to ultimately self-absorbed to the point of being cruel. Barry Keoghan being a weird little freak. The things that transform decent men into terrible ones. All while a civil war rages in the distance and Colin Ferrell plays the second-stupidest person in town.
Here’s a quick rec, because I doubt anyone’s seen it: The Guard, written and directed by McDonagh’s brother, which has a similar vibe to some of McDonagh’s ohter flicks but with more Don Cheadle.
Everybody’s quitting Twitter! It all seems a bit melodramatic to me, considering how many days have been packed with morose Tweets about the end of the platform even though everyone’s back on dunking on a bad take the next day. I really liked this piece on the “death” of Twitter, amazingly titled “We Deserve This, Fellow Disgusting Worms”
People have been jumping to other platforms, but my phone is out of space so I can’t download Hive Social, and Mastodon is too confusing for my walnut-size brain. Also? I’m deeply afraid of comics people who follow me back on Twitter not doing the same on other platforms. I’m deeply insecure, and THE NUMBERS DON‘T LIE.
My friend Brett Marcus Cook, who drew BattleArc 2088, just started their own newsletter. Check it out!
If you read any of the infinite “Top 10 Worst Wrestlers EVER” listcles, you’ll pretty much immediately encounter Phantasio, whose gimmick was “magician who’s also a wrestler” and who won his two-minute debut (below) by magically stealing a dude’s boxer shorts.
But I don’t think Phantasio is bad. I think he’s PERFECT.
For real, though. I think Phantasio was a perfectly executed concept. He showed up with a clear shtick, did some goofy moves to go along with the magician gimmick, and then disappeared forever, never to be seen on WWF television ever again. That means that Phantasio never overstayed his welcome, got stale, or got repackaged into a weed dealer character in the Attitude Era. It’s probably a waste of money and resources, but I’d love to see more one-off characters like this.
My daily paying gig involves writing about wrestling for TheSportster, a sports website owned by the same company that owns Comic Book Resources. Here’s everything I’ve ever written for them — lots of informative Top Ten pieces that have me doing a ton of research into the history of the sport.
Ironically, one of my favorite recent pieces of mine was about comics.
At the risk of horning into Chris Sims circa 2011 territory, I read every issue of the insane Ultimate Warrior comic from the mid 1990s and wrote about them.
These comics have spent decades as fodder for joking-ass articles about that don’t dig much further than to lampoon the books’ Rob Liefeldisms. So when I finally got around to reading the four issues and holiday pin-up special, I was shocked to find out that:
They absolutely SHRED. They’re berserk nonsense, but in the best way possible. It’s a wild metaphysical (?) adventure that doubles as a vehicle for the concept of Destrucity, Warrior’s incoherent pet philosophy.
Warrior not only wrote the book himself, but took on design and lettering duties for the later issues thanks to some ridiculous behind-the-scenes drama that Warrior makes sure to let us know in his backmatter rants. The last issue has a completely different artist and was published in black and white. Wild.
Buy My Comics
In the spirit of self-promotion, I should talk about a book of mine you can buy.
Since I brought up BattleArc 2088 above, let’s talk about that.
Drawn by Brett Marcus Cook, BattleArc is a cyberpunk action one-shot inspired by not only foundational stuff like Blade Runner, but also the various anime derivatives like Bubblegum Crisis. Zell used to be a scientist specializing in nanotechnology, but now she fights back against the megacorporation using a stolen armored suit. It’s about what happens when you fight to prevent a future that, unbeknownst to you, has already happened.
Looking through it again, I liked this moment:
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