Tag Archives: Justice League

Annoyed Ranting Bun Toons YAY!

I have a lawn, and you kids are getting OFF it!

Behold the crankiest of human beings known to science:  a middle aged fanboy with a complaint.

Actually, next week is Christmas, and we’ll be facing the empty promises involved with THAT.

Ty the Guy OUT!

Now your BONUS moment of comic books supporting the troops.

Soldiers passing out Superman comics which explain to the locals how to safely deal with land mines.

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For last week's delightful holiday Bun Toon, click HERE.

For Every Bun Toon ever, even the ones that aren't delightful, click HERE.

And…to order my first ever SKETCHBOOK click HERE

DC 52 New Justice League Bun Toons. YAY!

First of a series of one. Collect them all.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, or unless you mainly read Marvel comics, or unless you don’t care about comics at all, you’ve heard that DC is rebooting with all-new Number #1 comics in an all-new universe, and it started this week.  Is this Earth-3?  Is this Ultimate DCU?  Is this worth reading?  Ty tells all below.

MASSIVE SPOILERS by the way…

I know how to give the fans what they want.  Now that the TRUNKS of TOMORROW belong to me, you’ll be seeing them around here quite a bit.  If you’re reading the New DC and you feel a little red-underwear-nostalgia, you know where to go.

Ty the Guy OUT!

Here now, you BONUS Superman Junk Cover Moment:

See? The New Superman designs in the comics could be WAAAY worse. It could be THIS latex sausage-hugger sported by Henry Cavill!

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For last week's somewhat penis-related bun toon, click the rabbit at the urinal.

For every Bun Toons Ever (many which do not feature male anatomy) click the bunny between the legs.

Happy Christmas 2010. My favorite Santa Cover

The Golden Age of everything is twelve.

I was twelve years old the Christmas that this giant comic book came out, and it is forever enshrined as my favorite Christmas comic book of all time.  It’s not better drawn, or better composed than other covers, but it was in my stocking twenty five years ago, to this day, and I cannot see this lovely illustration by Nick Cardy without being transported to my childhood home, and my childhood sense of joy at the holidays.

It won’t mean the same to you guys, but I present it, nevertheless…happy Kringle to all.

And now some “unseen” Christmas Comic Book moments of zen:

An official DC Christmas card from a few years back.  Bruce Timm drew the Wonder Woman figure, and I did the rest.

And…

My un-used original version for the  DC Christmas Special collection from the year 2000 (or thereabouts, don’t make me remember dates!).  The final cover that was used was slightly different, and this version only used in the advertising.

Ty the Kringle Guy OUT!

SANTA WARS IV: He Knows When You’ve Been Sleeping WITH THE FISHES. The Top Seven Dead Santa Covers

Ask not for whom the bell jingles. It jingles for thee.

Whew.  That might be my longest title ever up there, but what can you do with sequels? Once there’s a set of Roman Numerals involved, things get ungainly.

After a few days of wholly inappropriate images of homicidal Santas,  monster Santas, and beaten, hogtied Santas, we arrive at the inevitable fate for these poor icons of the winter solstice…

I warn you, this is not for the kiddies.  You think I’ve had some inappropriate images before?   There’s a couple here you don’t want your eight year old to see….  You’ve been duly warned, but I can’t help myself, I’m in the holiday mood and I want to share….

THE TOP SEVEN DEAD SANTA COMIC BOOK COVERS.

#7

I have a newsflash for all concerned:  Santa loses the match.  The cover is a bit of a giveaway, as the Santa I know would be fighting back a little harder while that Zombie lady rips out his throat, unless he was already dead.   At least the brains will keep fresh at the North Pole.   This is an indy comic, so you might not have seen it, but it has the dead Santa spirit in such evidence I was charmed into including it.    The following indy comic…

…doesn’t give you a good enough look at Santa’s remains for it to have made the cut.  It’s nice to see the indies getting in on all the dead Santa fun, but you got to bring me the flesh if you want my vote!

#6

No matter how cute and amusing we may or may not think Casper the Friendly Ghost is, we must never forget that he’s the spectral remains of a dead child, held to this Earth by an unsolved murder, or some other never-resolved trauma of unimaginable sorrow.

And in this issue:  He’s Santa!

#5

We’ve ruled out a robbery, the murderer left behind a dolly and a toy drum, both as valuable as diamonds on Christmas Eve.

Is it just me, or does the entire Justice League seem to be waving their crotches at the dead Santa corpse.  They’re posed awfully strangely.  Maybe it’s just me.  This is a personal treasure of mine, as I still own the copy I bought when I was twelve.  Dead Santa good times.

#4

This delightful image of the Santa corpse stuck in the chimney ( seared into our brains by the movie Gremlins) is rendered here in loving detail by Joe Jusko, Conan cover artist of the Eighties.  One of the better Marvel Holiday issues of this era, mostly because it didn’t have Dazzler in it.

#3

Nick Cardy (who drew my favorite Christmas comic cover of all time, we’ll get to that one in a day or so…) gives us this unquestioned masterpiece of the Kris Kringle Korpse genre.  The best part:  The skeletal remains are still fat, no matter how much of the body has rotted off the skull.  Ah, the joys of the holidays.  Why are people reading this sick, sick, entry?

#2

This special one shot was a spin-off from the series SOUTHERN KNIGHTS, produced in the late Eighties.   No, Carl and Larry are not gay, they’re just carefree assassins with a good attitude and a strong work ethic.  Get your mind out of the gutter and just let the men do their job.  This cover is subversive in every way, isn’t it?  One of those images that most artists only aspire to.  Why are museums usually so empty of these kinds of scenes on the wall?

Okay, next one’s not for the squeamish, but that’s why you’re here.

#1

There’s actually a few lovely dead Santa covers for this LIVING DEAD  series, but in all the other ones, Father Christmas is up and walking around like a zombie.  At least for this one, Santa’s corpse has the decency to sit still and that earns it my number one spot.   If you’re going to be dead, keep in one place, this is not Weekend at Bernie’s, it’s a holy holiday.

If you think any of these made you squirm, come back here tomorrow for the top seven INAPPROPRIATELY SEXY CHRISTMAS COMIC BOOK COVERS.  Until then –

Ty the Guy OUT!

Go HERE for the Top Seven Homicidal Santas.  Go HERE for the Top Seven Monster Santas, and HERE for the Top Ten Santas going down in defeat to super-heroes.

Here now, your Dead Santa Claus moment of zen:

It's Jerry Garcia, get it?

If you’re too young to know who Jerry Garcia is, then I’m too old to be making jokes about him.  And that’s MY moment of zen.

The KEVIN FAN. Saturday Morning Toons!

Try to escape the power of the Bun Toon! It's hopeless! You're all trapped!

I’m off at the FanExpo convention all weekend, pushing the Holmes Inc. book and sketching for the comics peeps.  But I’ve saved a True-Life Adventure to share with you from a convention from years past.  Another factual story pulled from a sketchbook, every word of this is verbatim from the original conversation.  Read on…if you DARE!

Of course, darn near everyone I’ve ever met at a convention was the nicest person evah!  This story is from many years ago, precisely because it’s been so long since I came across someone this rude.  But we all get ‘em sometimes, and it’s best to laugh, or there’d be too many arrests.

See you at the convention!  ( Remember that I’m at P66A in Artists’ Alley, or from 2-4pm at the Toronto Cartoonists Workshop booth #4009.) Or see you online!

Go here for the epic Hulk vs. Buddha fight!! And here for Superman vs. Jesus!

TY THE GUY OUT!

Here now, your comic book convention moment of zen.

THE TOP SEVEN REASONS WHY UNCLE SAM SUCKS. (The comic character, not the country!!)

Happy Fourth of July.

BEFORE YOU READ FURTHER, PLEASE NOTE:  The following blog post deals exclusively with the comic book character UNCLE SAM, and not the concept of America, their government, or their people.   I kind of like Prezzie Obama, adore many American citizens, and consider the Constitution of the United States the greatest instrument of human freedom ever created.  So up front, I’m down with my American brothers.

But I just can’t help it.  Whenever I see the comic book character UNCLE SAM, I just want to punch him in the face.

Let the punching begin!

Here now, are the…

TOP SEVEN REASONS WHY UNCLE SAM SUCKS

(The COMIC BOOK CHARACTER, not the Country!)

1-HE IS A CREEPY ZOMBIE / GHOST.

The punching continues.

When the character first appeared (created by WILL EISNER for Quality Comics in the forties) he was presented as the spirit of America, joined “as one” with the ghost of a slain Civil War soldier, and using the bodies of other slain soldiers as a physical vehicle to travel around in.

Let's "join as one", pal. There's nothing gay about it, if we're dead.

That makes him a zombie in my book, or a creepy half zombie version of Deadman’s ghost who “inhabits” other dead guys.  A handsome zombie in a top-hat, sure, but a stinking zombie at his core.  Would you let your sister date one?

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2- UNCLE SAM IS A PATHETIC LOSER.

If she had really died in this issue, it would have been his fault, trust me. Everything around him turns to crap in the Seventies.

When DC Comics bought the Quality characters, and gave them their own DC debut in “Crisis On Earth-X” a crossover appearance in the Justice League of America  (Volume !, #106 and 107), the world of Quality Comics was depicted as a place where America (and Russia and England presumably) never defeated the Axis forces, and the war raged on until the Seventies. That means in a world where Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters WERE around, the allies couldn’t defeat an enemy that was soundly defeated in a world where Uncle Sam and the Freedom Fighters WEREN’T around.  That makes  Sam and the Freedom Fighter the deciding factor that caused the Allies to lose  Earth-X.  That’s not me talking, that’s science.

Help us, DC heroes. On our own, we make things much worse!

And in All Star Squadron, issues #31-32, ol Uncle Sam and the gang cannot stop the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Defeated heroes beaten senseless when it REALLY matters? You can bet Uncle Sam was on the job...

Sorry Uncle Sam, but what good are you?  Ya  crappy, loser, zombie–

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3- UNCLE SAM LOOKS A LOT LIKE A TRAITOR TO THE UNITED STATES:

Though Uncle Sam has been interpreted by many artists, to the general public, his iconic image was painted best by JAMES M. FLAGG for the World War I recruitment poster that says “I WANT YOU” and THAT is the version that has been used for the comic book version by both Quality and DC.

No question about it, that's an inspiring image.

Flagg claims he based the poster’s face for Uncle Sam on his own face, adding age, and gray hair.  That may be true, but whether he intended it or not, the face, the beard, the haircut…all created a dead ringer for JEFFERSON DAVIS, President of the Confederate States during the Civil War.

Whoops.

Flagg was born in New York, so it’s unlikely he intended this to happen, and he DOES bear a resemblance to his Uncle Sam character, but accident or not, recruitment was disproportionately higher in the South during  World War I, when the poster was first used.   To many in the South, the image was not an accident.

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4- HE WAS CREATED BY EVIL OCCULT MAGIC

Don't you feel all "patriot-y" now?

According to a wonderful run of the 90s Spectre, not only is DC Comics’ Uncle Sam a serial zombie/loser/accidental image of a traitor, traveling in the various corpses of American patriots, but he was originally summoned up by occult forces during the country’s birth -  forces wielded by unnamed representatives of the thirteen colonies, a group that is suggested to have included a founding father or two .  Now, personally, I think that’s cool, but it is a real kick in the religi-nards to any god-fearing citizen who ever believed in the spirit of Christian America.   The comics are worth reading if you’ve got the time ( Spectre #37-50 by Ostrander and Mandrake).

More chest-swelling, flag-salutin' feelings of pride from the Spectre.

Special NOTE:  This run of the Spectre included a scene where Uncle Sam’s spirit talisman briefly manifested itself as a super-hero called the PATRIOT or EAGLE MAN or SUPER-AMERICA-PUNCHFACE, I can’t remember and I’m not going to look it up…but he did wear a contender for the ugliest super-hero costume ever created.

O say, can you see this funky ass costume I'm stylin'?

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5- UNCLE SAM NEARLY KILLED ALEX ROSS’ CAREER

Please don't pee on me, and can I have some money?

Though he had previously done the Terminator comic for Now ComicsAlex Ross got his first big break with MARVELS, (1994) a HUGELY popular series about the Marvel Universe seen through the eyes of a photo-journalist.  The series made writer KURT BUSIEK into a household name.    Alex’s next big project, KINGDOM COME, (1996) was huge, and solidified Ross’ place as the A-list of his time, and solidified the career of writer MARK WAID, who has remained huge ever since.

Alex’s third big project was UNCLE SAM.

From beggar to burning in hell. The feel-good story is often politely referred to as "experimental".

The story, about a drunken, homeless Uncle Sam feeling stomach turning levels of guilty because of his country’s history of misbehavior, sold next to no copies, is rarely discussed, and literally DID kill the career of marvelous writer Steve Darnall, who has not worked in comics since. (This series is so ignored by the fans, if you go to the UNCLE SAM wiki-page, you’ll find that no one has uploaded an image of the cover or any interior page).   Steve Darnall is a wonderful creative person,  with a great speaking voice and the best Christmas cards in the world, but even he could not escape the curse this miniseries was to retailers who over-ordered it by the truckload.  (Full disclosure, I know and adore Steve, and thought this series was EXCELLENT!)

Uncle Sam prepares to defecate all over the career of Alex Ross and Steve Darnall--the bombing metaphor is obvious.

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6- HE’S CORRUPTED, or SOMETHING?

I’m not sure what it was in reference to, but in Final Crisis #4, Alan Scott is looking at a monitor screen, trying to decide who can help him fight Darkseid, and Uncle Sam seems to be off the list because he’s CORRUPTED–  I have to  confess, I read this series with growing disinterest, and shrinking attention span, and I know I  missed something….but any way you stack it, is being “corrupted” ever a good thing?  Someone let me know what this was about…?

If I'd paid any attention to the story, I'd probably know what this meant. Blame my late nights working, and my addiction to dentist-grade ether.

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7-THE CONCEPT OF UNCLE SAM IS PLAGIARIZED FROM BRITISH IDEAS IN THE FIRST PLACE.

"I beat that SAM fellow into print by a century. The lad is naught but a common thief!"

Relatively speaking, Uncle Sam is a newcomer to the world of national symbols, and he’s clearly based on the much older British personification character named JOHN BULL, created by John Arbuthnot in 1712 ( a hundred years before Uncle Sam existed).  And the female symbol of Britain, Britannia, had been around in one form or another since ROMAN times!

Suck on that, baby country, America.

The Germans had Germania.

When are THESE gals getting a Justice League? (No one take that idea, okay, I've had it for years!)

and of course, the Chinese had MR. CHING-CHONG, THE RACIST BUFFOON

Do Yankees and Engrishmen want flied lice? Me likee imperialism.

And as for getting there late, there was already a national symbol in human form.  Lady Columbia was America’s symbol for YEARS before Uncle Sam.  Dressed a lot like him too.

The name “Uncle Sam”, by the way, comes from a government contractor named Samuel Wilson (yes, that’s where Captain America’s partner, the Falcon, gets his name) who supplied meat products to the army during the war of 1812.  Soldiers started making the joke that every meal marked “U.S.” was a gift from “Uncle Sam” and the phrase stuck as a synonym for the letters ever since.  The guy in the stars and stripes top hat stole this meat packing guy’s name.  Another bit he just lifted from someone else…sigh.

But back to the “character” of Uncle Sam, and his iconic, American attitude.

John Bull is there first, yet again--Recruiting for the BRITISH army in the GREAT WAR.

If you think that pose looks familiar, you’re right, it was taken from a far better known recruitment poster created a couple of years earlier:

Oh no. Was ANYTHING to do with Uncle Sam original?

This recruitment poster, from 1914 depicted Britain’s Secretary of War, Lord Herbert Kitchener, looking  to fight the Germans in 1914.  The image (by artist Alfred Leete) worked very well, as over three million men signed up.  In fact, this poster was such a hit, it inspired many direct copies, used in many different cultures for years to come.  The one with John Bull (above) was the copy used in Britain just three years later.  The American one we all know.

Here was the Russian one, to join the White Army.

I VANT YOU-SKI

Here was the Nazi one, used to recruit Frenchmen to join the S.S. cause, if you can believe it.

Ve haff ways of making you want us.

Here’s the Commie recruitment poster used to recruit Commies to the collective Commie farms.

We want you to want to be part of us, Kommerade

And of course, the most famous version of all…

I think this one was originally Russian, as bears in hats all come from there.

To be fair, Uncle Sam can’t complain about all these people using his famous pose.  It’s not like it’s his in the first place, lousy plagiarist.

Uncle Sam, you are under arrest. You have the right to remain silent, ya thieving-zombie-foreigner loser!

I just want to finish on this note.  I don’t really mind that Uncle Sam is an amalgam of other images.  So is Batman, and Superman, and a lot of characters I love.  But with the DC version of Uncle Sam, we’ve been handed an amalgam of images that turn out to be a creepy, unpopular zombie loser, who fails his friends and his country on a continuous basis.  I have no idea why the creators at DC keep doing this to the character.  Maybe there’s something in their hearts that makes him fun to kick around.  Maybe, they feel uncomfortable with a borrowed symbol of American war propaganda as a character of adventure fiction.    Truth to tell, I’d love to take a crack at the character.  As an outsider, I might even have a decent idea about what makes America great to the world, and could paste that spin over this very potent symbol.  Captain America is my hands-down favorite Marvel Character, after all…

It bugs me that I don’t like DC’s Uncle Sam as a character, when the country he’s supposed to represent has got such potential.

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Happy 4th of July, everybody.  And please don’t kick me in the teeth when you see me, I have children and I’m weak, and this was all in fun.

TY THE GUY.

PS: (Hey, I just noticed if you type 4th of july with the shift key on, it spells $TH OF JULY.  Does that mean anything?)

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JLA pages

Ty’s wandering around the kitchen eating a sandwich (he regards it as a tribute to his Jewish roots* to regularly eat corned beef on rye.  So, it’s apparently some kind of religious ritual that can’t be interrupted, but he can talk), so I’m sitting here typing as he tells me interesting things about these pages.

Okay, I’m still waiting…I’ve got to hear lots of things about the never-shown (?) Richard Pryor tv-special/roast, but there’s no way I can repeat any of those jokes.

Okay…c’mon Ty.

So, sez Ty,

“I think these pages are from my best-selling project to date. Inked by Joe Rubinstein. Please don’t ask about pages with Batman and Dr. Fate on them; those were sold long ago.  Pages with civilians on ‘em are the only ones I have left and that’s why they’re so cheap.

“Imagine my joy for this issue when I got the script from Keith Giffen and discovered that the first four pages were given up to Maxwell Lord in a bathrobe staring out a window.  Strangely, these pages have never sold.  Now, they can be yours at whatever low price Keiren has typed in, and you can use them for placemats or paper airplane practice.  Or the training of dogs.”

Keiren

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(* Ty frequently jokes about his Jewish heritage and people generally assume it is just that–a joke.  But, yes, his beautiful blue-eyed blonde mother is in fact the daughter of a Jew. I specify “daughter of” as she self-identifies as an atheist–that would be in tribute to the years spent being educated in a Catholic school and having the nuns tell her that she had to compensate for her “heathen mother”.  Her father was Catholic.)