Tag Archives: canadian comic creators

Darwyn Cooke.

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I have a bunch of Darwyn stories, but they all add up to what I said above…he was a funny, generous, charming guy.  I wish the last time I saw him (in Montreal outside our hotel at a comic convention) he hadn’t been smoking a cigarette, but I’m stuck with that last visual memory no matter what I do.  Fuck cancer.  

(The family has set up a page with the Canadian Cancer Society to accept donations in Darwyn’s honour. Link HERE.)

Ty the Guy OUT.


A couple of images of Slam Bradley by Darwyn.

slam bradley


Darywn showed up in the Bun Toon every now and then.  He was too important to our industry, doing too much interesting work for me not to comment on him now and then.  Here’s one from a few years ago, when he did a magnificent job on his issues of Before Watchmen.


Amazingly enough, the Alan Moore Hover-Guilt quieted down when I read Darwyn’s series.  It helped that I knew Darwyn, and don’t know Alan.  It also helped that Darwyn did a fantastic job on the book, as he did every time he did anything.

I still haven’t read his last book, The Twilight Children, and wonder when I’ll be able to enjoy it properly.   I flipped through it today, and it’s beautiful.  Of course.

darwyn grin


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for last week’s Bun Toon, click here.

00 bunny red blue toon

For the Bun Toon ancient archives, click here.

Hoverboy vs. Microwaves. Movies vs. Comics

Friday, my old nemesis, you've beaten me again.

It’s been a few weeks since we’ve had one of these Floatin’ Fighter of Crime entries.  As I may have mentioned, one of the trio of Hoverboy Museum curators (Marcus Moore) recently had his first son, Rowan, and it’s caused a bit of a slowdown at Hoverboy central.  But now that the toes and fingers have been counted (10) and life is settling back down, we should be regular like a middle-aged bran salesman again.

A few weeks ago, we were sent this ULTRA RARE Hoverboy to grade and give a value for…and considering how rare it is, we felt it’s best not to send it back through something as unreliable as the mail, so it’s staying with us for a while.

“Killing You Slowly- VERY SLOWLY!”
April, 1960

Monsieur Microwave was one of many 60’s characters created by Hoverboy co-creator, Charles Nutt, which expressed his irrational fear of technology and his fairly rational hatred for the French. (See also: Hoverboy #6 – “The Computerized Gaul”, and Hoverboy #11’s infamous “The Putrid Parisian’s Perverted Pig”. )

Microwave ovens were once a mysterious and misunderstood  household appliance, much like the “Slap Chop” or the “Sham Wow” is today.  According to personal correspondence from the time, Nutt was convinced that invisible microwaves would leave American appliance users impotent –-all part of a French plan to make themselves look sexier in the eyes of the world’s women.

In Monsieur Microwave’s first appearance in Hoverboy #2 (1958), restaurant Maitre D’ Jacque Penier turns evil, “…as all Frenchman eventually do…” and straps on the restaurant’s microwave to blast dozens of the clientele into pools of goo, before Hoverboy can stop him.  The character proved fairly unpopular, with letters running eleven to one against his ever appearing again, which made this follow up issue a strange gamble, alienating the audience as Nutt  did.


And it proved disastrous for Nutt’s finances.  Not only was this the worst selling Hoverboy comic of that decade, but Nutt found himself again in court, when microwave manufacture TAPPAN STOVES sued Hoverboy for falsely representing their product. So here in HOVERBOY #10, we see the lethality of Monsieur Microwave reduced to long term effects that could not be legally disproven; such as drowsiness, hair loss, and swelling of the “man-fruit”.

An amusing co-incidence:  The artist for this run of Hoverboy, Dave Owen, was killed shortly after this issue was published.  Dave was on his way to a local hardware store to BUY a microwave oven, when he was attacked and eaten by a mountain lion.


A pair of young writers approached me a year or so ago, about getting a graphic novel, Kill Shakespeare, produced, in the hopes of someday turning it into a film.  I suggested that there was no guarantee of a film deal, but I thought their idea was good enough to help them find an artist, letterer, colourist, etc. for the project, and get them started.  Their enthusiasm was contagious.

Well, we’re a little over a year later, and not only did they produce a pretty good comic, but they may, in fact, be producing a film after all.    Anthony Del Col and Conor McCreery (the creators) have just won the 11th annual PITCH THIS competition at the Toronto International Film Festival.  The prize is a whopping 10,000 bucks, and a chance to pitch real producers and get it made.

Go Shakespeare - Go Shakespeare -

Congratulations guys.  Your enthusiasm is as contagious today as it was last year.   Just remember me when you both have gated houses, right?  You’ll leave my name at the guard kiosk, so I can use the pool?

Read all about it here.

Ty the Guy OUT!

Here now, your Comic Book Moment of Zen

Unseen Star Trek – from the LOSER.

As promised on the weekend, I said I’d do a fun blog about my recent Star Trek graphic novel whether I won or lost the Shuster Award for Best Writer for that very project.

As you can see from the title of the blog, I lost.  The winners of the awards can be found here!  Congrats to all the talented folks who were recognized for the contributions we get to make to canadian, and comic culture.  YAAAY all around.

But here’s the fun blog anyway.

Star Trek:  Mission’s End was illustrated by a wonderfully skilled young Canadian named Stephen Molnar, who worked himself ragged to get the likenesses, the costumes, the backgrounds, the aliens, and the whole “feel” of Star Trek absolutely right.  He’s a big part of the reason people liked the book, if they did.  I’m going to show you guys a couple of Steve’s elegant pages in pencil and inks in a moment.  You’ll have to get the comic, GN or phone app to read it in colour; the final product belongs to Paramount and IDW.

Not mine to give away online, without a spanking.

But here’s where the fun comes in.  A couple of months ago, a fellow named Darrin Egan took one of my Comic Book Bootcamp courses, and was interested to try his hand at a full set of sample pages, based on an existing script that was yet to be published (so he couldn’t be influenced by the published version).   Though the Trek issues had already come out at the time, Darrin hadn’t seen them, and was interested in trying his hand at the pages.    Below are both versions:  First, the terrifically talented Steve Molnar, artist of the published story, in either inks or pencils,  followed by the vivacious version by Darrin Egan, from the same script, but without seeing Steve’s art.

Obviously, I’m a pushy writer, as the basic storytelling is remarkably similar.  So the parts that mirror each other, are the fault of a micromanaging writer…it’s the little ways in which they differ I find fascinating.  At any rate, I thought you guys might enjoy.  They’re both good at likenesses, and storytelling rules.  Each has strengths.  It’s like the Tiger and Princess.

Steve Molnar, pencils and inks

Darrin Egan - pencil

page two and three was a double page spread.  Click on the images to make them bigger…

Steve Molnar - pencils and inks

Darrin Egan - pencil

Next:  The sexy moment, with the ripped shirt and the flirty, sweet GLAVIN!

Steve Molnar - pencil and ink

Darrin Egan - pencil

Finally, the two page spread that reveals that we’ve been inside a HUGE space ship, originally piloted by giants, and now long abandoned and overgrown with foliage and giant insects.   I think they both knocked it out of the park, though I do confess, the last panel of  Spock in the Molnar layout, is what made this whole introduction work for me.  The concept of the satanic character in the middle of Eden, interjecting and ruining everyone’s appreciation of the nature.  Darrin did a GREAT job on every panel,  but his Spock is a little too friendly for the “beat” of that moment.

Again, these are double page spreads, so click on ’em to make ’em bigger.

Steve Molnar - just pencil this time

Darrin Egan - pencil

Wasn’t that fun?  I’d love to hear how much you like Darrin’s pencils…so would Darrin, I imagine, and he deserves a little slap and tickle for these excellent pages (and please, feel free to equally gush about Steve Molnar’s work, but he’s already a comic book superstar, so he’s getting raves from all quarters fairly continuously!).

And one last bit of unseen Trek before we head on over to Ten Forward for the afternoon….When I first found out I had a chance to do some Star Trek comics, a good friend of mine, Richard (Pitt, X-Man)  Pace (here’s his blog, where he’s doing a GORGEOUS painting of a jungle girl at the moment…) jumped up and asked if he could participate.  Schedules and other things precluded his helping out, but the sample sketch he tossed my way was so lovely, I’m including it here at the bottom of this entry.

Richard Pace pencils

I’d love to do a Star Trek comic book with ANY of these individuals in the future, should the fates or the Great Bird of the Galaxy allow.

Ty the Guy

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