Channel the entity "Jeff Parker" from beyond the Ether

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Over to the Newsarama, there's an excerpt of Todd DeZago interviewing his oft-collaborator Mike Wieringo from the new Modern Masters magazine. Mike's memories are dead-on, because I can remember him being freaked out and working round the clock to make his deadlines on The Flash. That reminds me that I meant to use this blog to also recount some fun (or at least, entertaining) details from those Artamus Studio days. Maybe I'll wait until the melding of this blog into the main Parkerspace.com website though, since I may lose a lot of old postings. Everybody pick up that magazine!


Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Major (Atlas) Spoilers 

"...M-11 The Human Robot sets out to melt the ice encasing Namora, as the rest of the team realizes that they’ve set off the alarm. And since Namor has proven that Atlanteans always respond without drama, the alarm had to be a swarm of forty-ton giant rock crabs. Heh. You have to love a book where a talking gorilla fighting a crab isn’t even the highlight."

I just saw thisreview of Agents of Atlas as a whole by Matthew Peterson. I think he gets across well all the stuff we were shooting for in this miniseries, so if you've just heard about it and want to hear more about how it all works, please read it. I love the 3-D Man on the milk carton at the beginning.


Friday, November 24, 2006

Look In 

Loyal poster Zack sent me this link to the Look In archives of 70's shows in 'picture strip' form. Which makes Buck Rogers seem a lot more exciting than it was- I'm pretty sure Dr. Theopolis orders someone to be put to death in there. There's neat dynamic stuff with the spaceships and the Wilma Deering at the top of the pages looks like Mort Drucker drew her. I haven't had a chance to go through the other stuff yet, but there's Six Million Dollar Man and some Gerry Anderson stuff in there too. Thanks Zack.


Wednesday, November 22, 2006

3rd Act Storms 

I know you're all racing out of your respective workplaces at top speed now to go make food, so I won't provide any more blog content than anyone else is at the moment- which is none! But I was just thinking about how many Disney animated features have their climactic scene in a rainstorm that just blew up outta nowhere. These occur to me at the moment:
Snow White
Sleeping Beauty (I think)
Beauty and the Beast
The Little Mermaid
The Jungle Book

And I'm thinking 101 Dalmatians, but I'm not sure. Any occur to you?


Wednesday, November 15, 2006

XFC 3, Go and See 

That's right, the issue with Chaz Xavier pimprollin' out to you is in stores today. You can pick up some sadbastard mutants if you want, but our little X-Hippy Love In is waiting for you when you need that boost afterwards. As Bobby Drake says: "X!!!!!!"


Monday, November 13, 2006


First, I want to put up this cool Darwyn Cooke Criterion cover thats making the rounds thanks to Chris Butcher talking about it. I wish DC would ask Darwyn to do lots of their covers in addition to giving him his own anthology ala the Solo book.

Now I want to see if I can contribute to a meme since when tagged I usually do nothing. He didn't mean to start one, but over at Chris' Invincible Super-Blog during Halloween, Chris made a great note of The Incredulous Bystander.

"Often seen while someone is "crashin' thru," he's a guy who is freaking out so hard at what he's seeing that he cannot believe it. "

A demon with a cape, no less! I love these people who remind us that we're seeing something fantastic. The other day while wrapping up a Sons of the Serpent story for Marvel Adventures: Avengers, I was looking through their first appearance in an Essentials volume. I couldn't stop reading these two panels where nothing in particular is happening except Vision is buzzing off and everyone on the street is losing their stool. Because if it was established by Kirby or Lee, then you know Roy Thomas took it as Mosaic Law.

It's actually kind of appropriate for them to freak out at someone walking into the sidewalk, but I don't know why Soul Brother on the right (who earlier in the scene is demanding that Vision pick a side in the Race War) thinks he needs to be stopped. And the spazzin' guy up in foreground is mostly struck by how grim he looks. The next panel, I think, gets to what's really bothering the incredulous bystanders.

Ultimately, Vision just didn't acknowledge them, and they can't live with that- much less understand a character who doesn't scream out everything he sees around himself. Did that foreground guy try to punt Vision's head and went through, or is he just the most off-balanced man ever? This doesn't really need to be a meme, I just had nowhere to duplicate this scene in my story so I had to get it out of my system here. But WHY?? WHY!!???


Friday, November 10, 2006

More Hank Palahniuk 

In case you didn't see the link down in his comments, Jesse Hamm has more Dennis the Menace/Fight Club mashups. Love 'em.


Thursday, November 09, 2006

And Now, A Message To The Republican Party From Spider-Man. 

And please my conservative friends, that's not a dig at you or any of the rank n' file, just at the evil overlords who usurped your party long ago. And he's a Spidercrat, which transcends party lines. Still this is the first time in a long while I've been able to follow political news without my stomach acid eating through me and five more floors of the ship's decks.

In other equally odd developments, Jill and I got to go out and watch a moving picture show at a theatre. It was The Prestige, which reaffirms the long suspected truth that magicians are horrible people. It's well worth watching, and it stars Wolverine, Batman, and Alfred. It's directed by Memento. Oh, and Major Tom plays Tessla! A great looking film, and though I did have a qualm with it, I'll do the ultimate SPOILER failsafe, and say that thought in the Comments...


Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Dennis Durden 

Or Tyler the Menace, whichever, please go look at what Jesse Hamm has done. He has mashed up DENNIS THE MENACE and FIGHT CLUB. Essentially Dennis and Joey are Brad Pitt and Ed Norton. Genius.


Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Vote Up On It 

And when you cast that vote, consider it in terms of the superheroes, as laid out by Dave's Long Box. I dare you to find fault with his reasoning on the affiliations of the costumed.


Monday, November 06, 2006

PROCESS: How To Draw Like Leonard Kirk 

Let's just take a Monday morning to consider that pencil fiend Leonard Kirk. First, the Wizard Roundtable gave AGENTS OF ATLAS some love, and their favorite line of Book 4 is actually one LEONARD suggested to put in!


Then Ray at Silver Bullet Comic Books rightly hailed Leonard for giving the returning Namora a very majestic bearing.


And if you really want a look inside his head, Leonard just spoke to Jen Contino at the Pulse, and you see those sweet pencils in all their glory. By the way, go leave some comments there if you're registered.


Now I'd like to say a little something about collaboration and how something like Agents of Atlas works. Because you could get the highest paid artists in comics to work on your projects, people reserved for the biggest titles, but you can't make them be into it. And from day one, Leonard and I have essentially been running around like some Rosy Grier/Ray Milland Two-Headed Man with this book, very much on the same page and just having a blast with the subject matter. It's a lot of over-the-top stuff, but what makes it work is the subtle approach.

I used to get scripts from other writers to draw, and I'm in a studio full of artists and I see the kinds of things other writers call for. "SPLASH- Hero X is standing there in front of the group. And he is PISSED." After I re-attach my jaw from the giant yawn that just induced, I wonder how someone could waste a splash page on a character looking pissed, and then I think of the things I ask of artists I work with. Then I thank the Young Ancient One for Leonard who doesn't bat an eye at requests like the next panel descriptions. He goes the extra mile- here's page 11 from Book 3, where the gang go to the diner, and thanks to Bob Grayson, psychic holograms make them look not as unusual as they normally do. In fact, you get to see what Gorilla Man Ken Hale would look like as a normal man, but look at how he staged it. I described this...

Panel 1/ Waitress is pouring coffee into Jimmy's cup. We probably only see her arm, and part of her body. Everyone looks like normal people, sitting in a rounded booth. Gorilla Man, as Ken, has taken his plate of overeasy eggs on toast. After this panel we see them as they are.

GORILLA MAN/KEN: Prices went up since ‘59. I’ll get the bill.

WAITRESS: Here, hon.

JIMMY: Thank you, ma'am.

And Leonard comes back with this.

See the extra thinking he's putting in there? Even though he looks human, Ken is still moving like a gorilla! It's such a nice subtle bit when even drawing a convincing breakfast table is pretty tough. I wouldn't even complain that he made all the eggs sunny-side up! Now here's the part of the page I love the most. Again, my babble:

Panel 2/ Bob has a plate of scrambled eggs.

JIMMY: Okay, now that M-11 isn't around... Ken. How did he ....

GORILLA MAN: I'm out in the forest on a recon mission for SHIELD and bam! The robot's standing there!
2: I'm like, hey, where have you been?

Panel 3/ Bob pours milk on his plate. Gorilla Man is stiffening up and making a blank-eyed imitation of a robot.



Now think about what he pulled off there: A GORILLA DOING AN IMITATION OF A ROBOT. I don't think I can stress that enough- most people can't give you a passable gorilla, much less a gorilla imitating an android. This series has just been hundreds of panels like that which make me giddy to open my Kirk emails. Every couple of weeks I thank editor Mark Paniccia for asking Leonard to draw this series. Thanks to him our team is so well defined that readers already have a strong sense of each's character, and the group dynamics aren't cliche. They feel like real people you might know, and it's made this project one of the most enjoyable of my career. Now the gasbagging about me and how I great I am will resume, but for today, I wanted to salute Leonard Kirk- watch him carefully.


Friday, November 03, 2006

WHAT IF...I Needed Glasses? 

Yow, my backside's a-burnin' from some of the heat vision of readers who have found out who I implicated as the real culprit of AVENGERS DISASSEMBLED! If you'd like to know and don't have the latest WHAT IF by me and Aaron Lopresti, you have a fair chance to figure it out. Hope you honed your skillz on all those Where's Waldo books years ago...


Okay, the real menace is actually somewhere on the cover. Study the Scarlet Witch and then look at each of the floating characters, and you'll probably figure it out. Or you can just read the story and reverse engineer it.

In other developments this week, I cold got me some specs. I finally realized that maybe my eyes were more tired than even they should be after a day of work, and an eye exam revealed that I've had astigmatism for who knows how long. I was really not prepared for how weird the world would become while my eyes are adjusting to the prescription. As I left the optical store I felt like I was walking below the sidewalk, and my laptop computer looked more like a trapezoid. It's starting to come together now, and it's like I've put on 3D glasses- I didn't realize how flat I was seeing the world. I got away with decades of unaided scoping, so it's my turn. Well played, Father Time- this round goes to you. And well, all subsequent rounds...


Thursday, November 02, 2006

Boo Part 2 

Halloween's all over now, but here was my jack o' lantern.

And here's the rake-hand ghost that got much scarier once it was dark. Now, has everyone picked up ATLAS 4?


Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Yep, she's back in action in AGENTS OF ATLAS #4 today. Her daughter is dead, but she's back in a big way- spread the word, please. If you want heroes fighting every kind of bad guy imaginable, you're going to want to pick it up.

Hope everyone had a great Halloween- I was going to put up some pictures of ours, but I can't find the camera at the moment. Maybe after I stumble across a triple Americano I'll have the focus to realize where that device is. It was really cool to have so many trick or treaters here in our new neighborhood. My theory? Kids like candy.


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