Harry Partridge is the brainchild behind this clever spoof of what could have been a late 80s action/adventure cartoon. Hailing from the UK, the Swindon native has cultivated a strong following on his YouTube channel, Happy Harry Toons, with nearly 16,000 subscribers to date.
A renaissance wunderkind, the 21-year-old has written, directed, scored, acted, et cetera all of his cartoons; lulling viewers into a false sense of security with a clean exterior and friendly characters, then beating them senseless with sledgehammer punchlines. Currently, Happy Harry Toons has fifteen of Partridge’s unique animated sequences online for viewing; ranging from 15-second blips to two and half minute shorts.
You can read about the talented indie-animator’s current projects on Newsgrounds. Partridge gives a candid interview with KittySneezes.com on his artistic influences and work process. His devientART profile is a great source for his still work and concept art for projects in development. And if his blog ever starts up, his first and only post from January 2008, can be read here.
How can it be anything other than a great week when the internets are packed with Malin Akerman swimsuit pictures, an appreciation of classic Superman artist Wayne Boring, a look at best and worst futuristic cop cars, British comics legend Leo Baxendale talking about himself and Bash Street, and Shaolin Robots? Well, it just doesn’t get any better. Read and click your weekend away!
WATCHMEN’S MALIN AKERMAN: The boys (and girls) over at Short List know exactly what fanboys want. They’ve put up a five-click gallery of Malin Akerman (you might know her as Silk Spectre from Watchmen) in the latest swimwear. She looks like she eats right, gets her precious eight hours of sleep, and exercises. It’s the next best thing to Watchmen 2.
The many tubes of the internets are always clogged with great stuff. Here’s a few pleasant time-killers to take the edge off a long work-week (for those of us still hanging onto a job) and ease us into the holiday weekend.
WATCHMEN: Still can’t get enough Watchmen linkage from all over the internets? Here’s one more: Doug Atkinson – whose last name means “too much time on my hands” in Esperanto – has gone through and footnoted/annotated all 12 chapters of the graphic novel (or issues, for you original serialized readers) in a highly detailed and analytical fashion. Debate on, you funnybook fanatics.
MORNING WOOD: Over at his blog, My Delineated Life, Tom Buchanan has a great post about Wally Wood’s tryout for Prince Valiant. King Features was looking for a replacement when Hal Foster retired and Woody was one of the applicants (as was Gray Morrow and the winner John Cullen Murphy). Tom’s got the facts and the samples. A must for fans – Wood would have been a great choice to carry on.
(h/t Booksteve’s Library)
WHAT’S UP, CHUCK?: Cartoonist Mike Lynch has a short but fascinating post about the time he met Chuck Jones, the great animation director.
GREEN HORNET I: Writer/Editor/All Around Good Guy Bob Greenberger has a knack for finding the most interesting projects to work on. I missed this post, but Bob Greenberger has announced, some time ago in fact, that he’s writing some new non-comics adventures of the Lone Ranger’s relative (no really, they are related) for Moonstone Books. You can find all about it at Bob’s blog and a little bit more at the Moonstone website.
GREEN HORNET II: Meanwhile, blogmeister Dave Olbrich, an old friend from the Ultraverse, has finally weighed in on the whole “Seth Rogen as Green Hornet” debate. I reserve all judgment – Mr. Olbrich went on record like this once before when he brayed that Michael Keaton was a bad choice for Batman. Casting decisions are always a fun debate – I cringed when supposedly-clean Robert Downey, Jr. was announced as Tony Stark but wasn’t he ten shades of awesome? So it’ll be interesting to see where a Green Hornet movie goes. Besides, true GH fans know that the real star of anything GH is Kato.
GREEN HORNET III: So he’s back in book form, and he’s coming back in comic book form, now what’s left? Oh, yeah, he’s coming back to comic books, too. The Scoop has the, well, scoop.
MARVEL COMICS: Why is Marvel Comics making it so hard for this guy to read and enjoy Marvel Comics?
That’s it for this weekend. If you’re celebrating, enjoy your holiday, and try to bite the heads off as many chocolate bunnies as you can, and then see how many Marshmallow Peeps you can stuff into an EC Comics hardcover slipcase. (My guess is 176.)
It’s April 1, and I think everyone knows what that means…
MARVEL COMICS will introduce a new Spider-Man one-shot: Spider-Man: Hedge Fund, a comic book that you don’t actually own, can’t read and will actually decrease in value.
DC COMICS will continue their corporate policy of not allowing their employees to comment on blogs or engage in internet catfights. DC employees are, however, still encouraged to dictate letters to their secretaries who will type them up on their IBM Selectrics and mail them to the local newspaper.
To compete with Zuda, MARVEL COMICS will launch a new online initiative for creator-owned comics. It’ll be called Epic Fail.
PLATINUM STUDIOS has announced that they have entered into a joint venture with a pr firm to send out more press releases.
In an attempt to reach out to the digital generation, Marvel Comics will release a new X-MEN title: X-Men: Tech, which will introduce their new heroes: Twit’r, Phacebook, iPhoner, Mashed-Up, Avatard, and Utoob.
On the publication of the 39th annual edition of THE OVERSTREET COMIC BOOK PRICE GUIDE, Gemstone will publish The Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide Price Guide.
In an example of a growing trend in COMIC BOOK PIRACY, kids are illegally downloading comics from the Internet…and printing them.
STAN LEE MEDIA has announced today that they are suing everyone named Stan, Lee, Stanley, and Stan Lee.
WARNER BROS. has officially announced the Watchmen sequel: “Watchmen II: Another Thing We Do To Piss Off Alan.”
A new villain based on NADYA SULEMAN will debut in Amazing Spider-Man: Doc Octo-Mom.
Don’t forget to tip your waitress!
Welcome back! So many good things all over the internets, that it’s hard to know where to begin. Ivan Brunetti talking about anthologies, bits and pieces of historical interest on George Carlson and Percy Crosby or even the obligatory Watchmen link, there’s enough here to fill a few of your weekend minutes. Click away!
IVAN BRUNETTI: Bryn Evans over at Bookslut has a nice interview with cartoonist, editor and New Yorker cover artist Ivan Brunetti (Misery Loves Comedy) He talks a lot about editing his Yale University Press book, Anthology of Graphic Fiction, Cartoons and True Stories and the choices he had to make for the second volume, including leaving himself out. Says Ivan: “There must be 3,000 cartoonists in North America. I included 85 in this book, and if I count the first volume, there are probably a total of 125 artists represented. That leaves 2,875 artists who are probably mad at me. What can I say? I’m sorry. I wish I had more pages and we could have made an infinite anthology.”
Brunetti doesn’t talk about it in the interview, but he does have a new book coming out from Fantagraphics in May: HO! It’s a collection of “the vast majority of his morally questionable, aesthetically confused — and absolutely gut-busting — ‘gag’ cartoons.” I vote yes by waving my credit card at the Amazon link.
GEORGE CARLSON and PERCY CROSBY: Brian Cronin writes the kind of column at Comic Book Resources that makes you think: “I’d totally read this if someone collected it in book form.” And now Plume books has delivered on my printed dream. Was Superman A Spy? And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed collects Brian’s column Comic Book Urban Legends Revealed from CBR. The book is due at the end of April but you can pre-order it at Amazon. If you’d like a taste of the book, you can check out the current column. He has a ton of great info and graphics about two no-longer-tip-of-the-tongue comic artists who deserve a fresh look: George Carlson and Percy Crosby. Carlson is primarily known as a major contributor to Jingle Jangle Comics and for – well you’ll see when you get there. Crosby is the creator of Skippy, the wonderful comic strip character who became a licensing phenom and had something to do with peanut butter…at the link. Someone out there should publish a collection of Carlson’s Jingle Jangle Tales work – I’m looking at you Drawn & Quarterly, Fantagraphics, IDW. There’s probably a limited market for it but I’m down for one copy, guaranteed!
R. A. JONES: I have a double connection here. In the past, I worked for a company that published comics by both the interviewer Kirk Chritton (Velvet) and the interviewee R. A. (Dark Wolf, White Devil, Scimidar). Check out both over at Comics Career.
OBLIGATORY WATCHMEN LINK: Over at Forbidden Planet International’s blog, Tom Crosshill has an interview up with Clay Enos talking about his book, Watchmen: Portraits, which features “gorgeous black and white portraits in the book, ranging across a variety of subjects, from the film’s stars to background extras and crew members, all given equal treatment.” Must reading, if only because it’s illustrated with some of the sample portraits.
OBLIGATORY WATCHMEN NON-LINK: Despite David Hayter’s heartfelt and well-written plea, I have yet to see the movie. Does this make me a bad person? (In my defense, I am reading the graphic novel again, as a 12-step program.)
Have a great weekend and check back with all of us again!
(artwork: cover to Was Superman A Spy? by Brian Cronin)
Since its trailer debuted with “The Dark Knight” we have all been waiting patiently for the big screen adaptation of the greatest graphic novel of all time. So, does it live up to its hype? When I first read Watchmen over the summer before my junior year of high school, I thought it was very cinematic and would translate well into a film. Obviously edits would have to be made, but still in the right hands it would be good. Zack Snyder is the right hand. Snyder’s adaptation is extremely faithful to the source material, some might say too faithful at times. Some scenes are lifted directly from the comic book, while others, though faithful, have some modifications. But I’ll get to those later.
Hey, Zack Snyder! You’ve just won the film grossing sweepstakes with two hit movies (300 and Watchmen). What are you going to do next? Nope, it’s not a trip to Disneyland, but Mr. Snyder will be bringing his manly action movie skills to bear on the Guardians of Ga’Hoole, the popular children’s book series by Kathryn Lasky. It’s a 15-book series, published by Scholastic Books, and features an owl as the main character. The Guardians of Ga’hoole are mythical owl protectors and their legend helps a young Barn Owl named Soren escape from his captors to warn his family of impending danger.
The screenplay is credited to John Orloff (The Mighty Heart) and a release date is tentatively set for 2010. Village Roadshow and Warner Bros. are producing with the gang from the CG animation studio Animal Logic which also did “Happy Feet,” the dancing penguin movie.
The CG film will feature the voices of Geoffrey Rush, Rachael Taylor, David Wenheim and Jim Sturgess. If you don’t want to wait for the movie, you can get a peek at it by reading the books. The first book in the series is called The Capture.
Writing on her blog, author Lasky says, “I am thrilled! Warner Brothers has been wonderful. They have listened to me, and I feel that the screenwriter and director will remain very faithful to the spirit of the books.” Mark it on your calendar.
(Cover illustration from Book 2, The Journey)
If you missed some of our Watchmen Week thus far, there’s still time to catch up with the previous posts:
WATCHMEN WEEK Part 1
WATCHMEN WEEK Part 2
WATCHMEN WEEK Part 3
WATCHMEN WEEK Part 4
When Malibu Comics’ Ultraverse was pulling itself together in 1992 and 1993, co-founder James Hudnall’s concept for Hardcase was to go back in time. Specifically to 1938 and Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster’s original idea for Superman – a guy who was really strong and could leap tall buildings but wasn’t necessarily indestructible. Then take that basic idea and mix it with the show business elements; more like The Player and less like The Fall Guy. Hardcase would be based in Los Angeles, move in show biz circles, have an agent, and pound a few people into the ground. Hardcase was once a member of a team known as the Squad, but by the time he debuted in the Ultraverse, everyone in The Squad had been killed except for him.
When putting together the character designs for Hardcase, Editor-In-Chief Chris Ulm (the guy who thought up the original Ultraverse idea in the first place) had only one artist in mind: Dave Gibbons. That’s because of Ulm’s long-standing love of Watchmen and Gibbons’ designs for all those characters. In the Comics Buyer’s Guide #1010, Ulm said that Gibbons had a strong design sense and was chosen to get the character’s looks firmly established for subsequent artists. Gibbons had other commitments that prevented from a regular stint on Hardcase. To the right is the finalized b&w version of Hardcase, scanned from an old photocopy from a Malibu Comics press kit circa 1993. I used to have a whole stack of photocopies of Dave’s original pencil sketches but much like Mad Max, they live on only in my memories. (I do have a couple of odd color pieces that I might post in subsequent days.)
Yes, it’s time to go all out and turn today into a linkfest in honor of Watchmen, both the graphic novel and the upcoming movie. Some of this stuff has been linked to from elsewhere and some of you may have already seen it and read it. But there’s good stuff here and it’s worth seeing again and again.
WATCHMEN TICKET SALES: Nikki Finke at Deadline Hollywood Daily has the latest stats for the upcoming Watchmen movie, including this gem: “purchases for 124 IMAX screens now account for 1/3 of all Watchmen online ticket sales.” When you click over there, be sure to read the comments for the obvious geek haters and their funny prejudices.
BLOTCHMEN: Kevin Cannon created this as his 24-hour comic in 2008. Blortshack wakes up…hungry for plums. Not an actual Watchmen parody…that’s what makes it fun.
WATCHMEN = POPEYE + RORSHACH: Oh Scott Kurtz, you are The Genius Who Makes Me Laugh.
Hey, Welcome back! If you’re just joining us we’re in the middle of Watchmen Week, celebrating a case of Watchmen Fever now that the movie is finally coming out. I took a little survey among my longtime friends and acquaintances in the comics industry about where we all were in June 1986 when Watchmen #1 by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons went on sale. If you missed part 1, it’s still available right here along with a much better introduction that I encourage you to click over there, read it and come back here.
If you remember where you were and what you were doing back when Watchmen #1 debuted, feel free to leave your story in the comments. And now, here’s Part 2 of Where Were You in 1986:
FRANK MANGIARACINA: I remember 1986 as an exciting–maybe even turning point–year in comics. The guys at my warehouse and stores, and me, were all already excited about the Dark Knight, which had come out earlier that year. Besides the book itself, we were also gratified by the reception it was receiving: the Chicago Sun Times had put the cover of Dark Knight #2 on the front page! Though we loved Frank Miller, I think most of us were even bigger Alan Moore fans, and I remember the early looks at Watchmen were exciting – we’d never seen anything that looked like this before. As #1, and subsequent issues, came out we all read them the day they came out, and would talk about ‘em on smoke and lunch breaks. You have to remember that in the ‘80s comics weren’t respectable.
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