Posts Tagged ‘carl mitsch’


Just posted Page 3 pencils here. And, just like that, Carl becomes Teddy KGB to my Mike McDermott. Calm down, Teddy. Have an Oreo.

(By the way, guys, playing cards is not macho. It’s just a damn card game. It’s not like it’s rugby or anything.)

Also, WordPress is doing something wonky with the order of the posts when you scroll down. Some older posts are higher in order than some of the more recent posts. Oh well. Perhaps that’ll get fixed at some point.

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The dogs howl, but the caravan rolls on.

Carl just called from NE to taunt me for not having any panels to ink. Never poke the bear, Carl. The coming artistic onslaught will melt your brain.

Listening to a new Bob Mould song on The Current online (you can find it on iTunes radio Alternative section) called “I’m Sorry Baby.” What a great songwriter.

That is all. Rock!

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Carl sent me page 2 of inked panels today. Ball’s back in my court. I’m planning on knocking out three pages of pencils this weekend. The point is this: Carl has artistically slapped me in the face, challenging me to an duel. I have a vicious terrapin ready to amphibiously destroy his underachieving reptilian tortoise.

Inks are under Page 2 in the Pages section.

Glove slap!

The Interweb is weird. You can find anything on it, but seldom the thing you’re looking for.

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What Else Can One Say?

-besides, “Bill Murray is a God.”


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Andrew Sullivan reminded me of this: Bowie and Crosby singing “Little Drummer Boy.” I’m hard pressed to think of two voices that sound better together. Maybe Emmylou Harris and Neil Young doing “Wrecking Ball.”

Even the cheesy pre-song banter seems heartfelt and genuine:

Matthew Ryan also does a great version of this song, but it’s much darker. Matthew’s version sounds like Jacob Marley beating his chains in an alley in penance for every man he’s ever cheated. Or at least it sounds like that to me. It’s a haunted, beautiful version.

I have no idea where Carl’s at with the panels. Trying not to bug him.

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I just finished watching Steamboy about 4 days ago. After sitting on the dvd for at least a year.

An excellent description, which pretty much nails the uncomfortable place that it put me in: I hate feeling (the way new Disney movies so often make me) that extraordinary talent has been in service of mediocre (or committee) art/story direction. The follow through on Steamboy was first rate, and the designs, backgrounds, pallette, everything about the industrial revolution setting was gorgeous. So why did the multiple endings feel so tedious (and even painful, when you think about how much work went into them)? And why does the story leave you ultimately so empty?

For starters, I think it bears pointing out that this is Otomo, not Miyazaki. Miyazaki is an accolyte of the Campbell school. Otomo’s most successful work owes itself to a stunning studio follow-through, surrounding a sort of foxhole romance formed in the midst of chaos. (hmmm…)

Everything about the romantic story is half-assed. We are invited to scorn Scarlett for being a contemptable priss until she is the only living human being of breeding age within nautical miles of Ray. Then we really want her to live, right?

What they did right: I loves me a David Seagal-esque plot reversal (surprise! your surrogate Dad is an asshole too) Oh, the disillusionment! (I’m being a dick — I thought that was a great reveal)

What they did wrong: everyone Ray had come to previously trust is a corrupt POS. Ray’s crazy unibomber grampa is the only voice of reason. Is he really right? Demolishing every other allegorical point of view without replacing it with something –anything– is pretty damned nihilistic for 1880.

What I found amusing: how many times can you steam-punk’t Star Wars in one movie? Luke, Leia, Vader(x2), Obi-Wan. Of course a steam-powered Death Star posing the same question — will the machinery of industry serve mankind or enslave it? (in Star Wars the Death Star was a metaphor for State, but close e-fucking-nough)

Rarely does a movie fail in such similar ways as it’s characters do. MORE PRESSURE! I DON’T CARE! DIVERT ALL VALVES TO TECHNOBABBLE!

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Finally Netflixed Steamboy, Katsuhiro Otomo‘s stunning anime picture.  I’m of two minds about it: It’s visually staggering. The London Exhibition, the sheer imagining of the visuals, the alternate reality, all overwhelming.  But I couldn’t help feel as if there was something missing. According to Wikipedia, it’s the the most expensive full length Japanese animated movie ever made. After watching it, I felt a lot like I feel after watching a Tim Burton movie: artistically shellshocked, in awe of the vision and craft, but absolutely uninvested in the story and emotional center of the film.

What’s the deal with animation? Why can’t they figure it out? Gaiman, Sim, Miller and Moore(and many others) elevated comics, why can’t anyone but Pixar and early Disney make me give a shit? When the credits rolled after Wall-E, and that great Peter Gabriel song came on, I was moved. (Of course, I’m a HUGE PG mark, so that may’ve infected me.) Watch Lady and the Tramp; it’s unbelievably atmospheric and beautiful.

The point I’m trying to make is this: How come there can’t be animated adult narratives that don’t try and be all things to all people? An animated Sopranos? Something that pushes the envelope. This was even my complaint with Lord of the Rings: They just had to shoehorn that goddamned Arwen narrative in there, didn’t they? Had to add that trite romantic sublot. It didn’t work.

If I can agree that Tom Bombadil wouldn’t have worked in the film (and doesn’t really work in the novels), can’t we agree that no one gives a shit about Liv Tyler? And I like Liv Tyler as an actress. She did about as good as anyone could’ve done with an extraneous subplot. But Tolkein didn’t write it, and it sticks out like a gangrene thumb.

Like Carl, I’m watching The Wire. I’m on Season Three. Like the Sopranos, like Deadwood (still my favorite), it’s sublime, uncompromising, and a work of art. People love it. They rent it, they buy it. Although it didn’t get the audience it deserved on HBO, it will eventually get the audience through word-of-mouth rentals, downloads and DVD purchases. It will live on. It’s too good not to. What TV and Film execs always fail to realize is that when you swing from the heart, you always connect with someone. (How many people do you think actually are passionate owning Everybody Loves Raymond on DVD? On second thought, don’t answer that- I may not want to know.)  All I’m asking is that someone make an animated film or series that doesn’t talk down to me, and challenges me the way the aforementioned series do.

Too much to ask? Probably. At least I’ll have South Park, which keeps going from strength to strength.

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Since Carl refuses to actually read emails, he has taken to adding snarky comments on the pages. I have sent him both the UN and PW. I have called him.

Still, he remains: The Lord of Snark.

Below, a trailer for the game TRINE. Man, that looks fun, in that “Commando/Gauntlet”-way. For those of you too young to know of this “Gauntlet,” eat it.

Seriously. Eat. It.

Go ahead.

Not kidding.

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I got an email last night from Carl. It read, in essence, “Got the panels. Inking tomorrow night. New England is crazy. Stop.”

That’ll do, pig.

I’m sending another page off to him tonight, so our recent work should cross each other in Ted Steven’s System of Tubes. I sent off the 3rd draft of the script to a couple of friends of mine in LA last night, a producer and a writer on a network show, asking ’em for feedback.

Apropos of nothing, here’s a video of Robyn Hitchcock covering Bob Dylan’s “Not Dark Yet” with John Paul Jones (yes, that John Paul Jones). It’s pretty remarkable.

Goddamn, I love Robyn Hitchcock. I have an old cassette bootleg of Robyn Hitchcock playing the Fine Line in Minneapolis duped from my roommate at the time. It’s from the “Eye” Tour, and Robyn introduces “Queen Elvis” by saying, “This is about the descent into stardom.” Which is about as apt a description of becoming famous as I’ve ever heard: a Faustian bargain, best viewed with Clooney-esque bemusement.

Anyway, enjoy:

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…to Carl.

I’ll be doing my best to keep him honest about this stuff. I’m still considering whether or not to start coloring the panels, but i figure that’s just another distraction from doing the actual work of penciling. Procrastination is an evil, evil thing. This blog helps. If I declare (i.e. publish) to the world that I’m gonna finish, there’s a sort of odd accountability, even if no one checks out the blog.

It’s a sort of phantom-community: they may not exist yet, but potentially they do.

Bottom line: I finished two panels yesterday, scanned ’em, sent ’em off to Carl to ink. Took me all of two hours. I’m shooting for having two more finished before Thanksgiving. Hopefully we can get a vibe going where I just send ’em off, Carl inks ’em, posts ’em, and contributes to the blog on the process, if he has time.

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I’ve finally posted our first two panels. “‘Mazin’, innit?” I’ve sent Carl the WordPress site, and still nothing from him. His indifference is heartbreaking.

Despite that, I continue undaunted. You can access the panels through the tab at the top of the page, or via the page archive at right.

Here’s a great page with a live set by one of my favorite songwriters, Matthew Ryan. Go buy all his albums. You will not be disappointed. Unless you’re immune to Springsteen-esque beauty, you heartless pricks.

Seriously, I’ve been digging Matt since I saw his video for his first single, “Guilty,” way, way back when Mtv actually played videos. You know, before it became culturally irrelevant. And worse than that, vulgar and artless.

Beavis, we miss thee.

Come the pride, come the fall
We volunteered.

-Matthew Ryan, “American Dirt”

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We’re off.

Here’s the plan: I’ll be sending pencilled panels to Carl, which he will then hastily ink. He was concerned intitially that he wouldn’t either a. be able to ink fast/well enough, or b. be too sloppy. (I think those were his concerns; I paraphrase). I assured him that a. he’s a turd, and b. the point of the whole project is to just get it done. Obviously, we’d both like it done well. And I wouldn’t have asked Carl to work on it with me, unless he wasn’t already brilliant with pen ‘n’ ink.

I’ll be uploaded the first couple of panels in a couple of days. Await with baited breath, you vast audience of none.

Oh, and Joanna Newsome knocks me on my ass:

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