Comics

Moon Fan Art

One of the things that really amazed us about Moon is how much people love doing their own doodles of him. Almost no convention goes by without some exhibitor or other handing us a sketch of ol globehead and over time we’ve amassed a small but wonderful collection of them. Since we’re having a little summer break from conventions we thought it was high time to share a few of our favourites from the last few months.

Sketch given to us at Kapow! Comic con in April. To my shame, I can't remember who it was that drew it, but I love the scruffy look of the shirt.

A somewhat vintage looking sketch from the stunningly talented Nusha Amini

Matt from Moo & Keo was drawing superhero themed lion cubs at LFCC and decided to add Moon to the lineup

This one's actually by Steve, just to prove that he does do convention sketches from time to time.

We’ll try to throw up another collection of fan art later in the year. If you have a pic of Moon that you’d like to share, send it to us at btbcomics@gmail.com and we’ll do our best to post it up!

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Possible Moon Poster Incoming

Not going to lie to you – trying to come up with a weekly Moon update is quite tiring. Frustrating to as we don’t wanna give away things that are going to take place in Issue 2 just yet. So here is the 25,000 image posted on Friday, today but with Moon at the top. This miht well develop at a later date into a major poster with significantly more detail – in fact I hope it does. And with each extra detail I will post up. Once (if) we’ve figured out how to get it printed it’ll be made available to you good selves.

Dan and Steve Interviewed by Liberation Frequency

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SLI6WJ9ah2Y&w=560&h=349]

We did a fair few interviews at the London Film & Comic Con but since this is the first video interview we’ve done I thought it was worth a quick share. In case you’re worried, no that’s not me in the Black Cat costume (though I would dearly like one) rather our interview can be found be found at around the 4:50 mark.

Considering that we were half dead from exhaustion by that point in the show, I think we just about managed to not seem like total idiots. Small victories.

LF should be posting a review of Moon #1 fairly soon, so I’ll throw up a link when it goes live.

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(for more interviews check out the wonderful Liberation Frequency site HERE.)

Comics Did A Good Thing

Those of you who are into both comics and twitter may well have seen the hashtag #comicsdidagoodthing floating around your feed as of late. This will especially be the case if you’re a follower of Gail Simone (Wonder Woman, Secret Six) and frankly if you’re not then you need to stop reading and go follow @GailSimone right this second. Essentially this hashtag is a collection of stories from individuals for whom comics have had a profound and meaningful effect on their lives.

I’ve been utterly engrossed by this topic since it first appeared a few days ago. Both by the candour of the people writing and the range of emotions encapsulated in the stories themselves. As a writer, you’re always trying to find the shortest way of expressing something important and on that front some of these tweets are staggeringly powerful. Unique, deeply personal stories of hardship and hope, encapsulated in under 140 characters and laid bare for all to see.

From the inside of comics I think it can be incredibly easy to forget just how important these books can be to the people that read them, often far more so than to the people that make them. It’s for that reason that I wanted to share a few of these stories. After all, it’s for people like this that we write.

thewolverina Wolverina
Comics kept me sane & able to cope after a motorcycle crash left me injured & unable to hold a normal book open. #comicsdidagoodthing
As a child without a good male role model in my life, I am glad I had Clark Kent and Peter Parker. #comicsdidagoodthing
theisb Chris Sims
One of my favorite things I have to remember my father by are Kirby-inspired drawings of the Silver Surfer and Odin. #ComicsDidAGoodThing
BJLG Bryan J.L. Glass
Daredevil showed me that you get back up no matter how hard or how many times you’ve been knocked down. @GailSimone#comicsdidagoodthing
hangofwednesday Brian Williams
When I spent a lot of my early years of childhood in oxygen tents in hospitals comics gave me joy when my life had none #comicsdidagoodthing
David0Monroe David Monroe
I was 9 white, privileged & isolated. O’Neil/Adams’ GL/GA run opened my eyes & set me on my path as a Social Activist. #comicsdidagoodthing
eris404 Gaia Gardner
@GailSimone Comics, specifically Sandman issue 8, helped me deal with the death of my mother. #comicsdidagoodthing
IliasKyriazis IliasKyriazis
X-men is the ONLY reason I didn’t grew up a bigot #comicsdidagoodthing
Paul_Cornell Paul_Cornell
And let’s not forget Stan Lee’s effect on children’s reading ages. @GailSimone#comicsdidagoodthing
ryanoneil ryanoneil
Thinking about Wally West pushing beyond exhaustion as he ran has kept me going on more than one training run. #comicsdidagoodthing
emcgillivray Erica McGillivray
Comics got me to go to the first @GeekGirlCon meeting & now I’m running the org #comicsdidagoodthing
Highball2814 Buck Rowlette
RT @monksp@GailSimone A buddy used my Green Lantern trades to help bridge the gap between him and his stepson. #comicsdidagoodthing
777damm Steve Damm
Gambit showed me redemption is not free, the past is not permanent and mistakes are natural. #comicsdidagoodthing
gamoid Matt W.
@GailSimone Secret Six helped me distinguish sharks from not-sharks. #comicsdidagoodthing
loveandcapes Thomas Zahler
@GailSimone Comics helped me get the $32,000 question right when I was on “Who Wants to be a Millionaire”.
pcvis Pat Vis
@GailSimone They made me happy. #comicsdidagoodthing
There are literally hundreds more examples that you can find by clicking on the hashtag. I hope that by recording a few of them here we’ve helped to retain some of this fascinating topic for the future. If nothing else, it’ll give me something to look back on any time somebody says “they’re just comics”.
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Band of Butchers Colours

A couple of weeks back I posted up Rob Carey’s pencils & inks for page one of Clancy Wallencheck: Band of Butchers. Well, since that time the very talented Vicky Stonebridge has been hard at work on the colours and it is now my great pleasure to show off a little of her work. I continue to be blown away by the talent of everyone involved in this comic and I really can’t wait for you dear bunkerites to have a chance to read it. Head over the the UNSEEN SHADOWS OFFICIAL SITE for some more colours as well as details on how YOU can be involved in the upcoming Unseen Shadows Audio Drama.

Band of Butchers is out in November.

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(I’m afraid that there is no Monsieur Poppaleux this week. Charles Crimpsphincter has been arrest on allegations of phone hacking and the Poppaleux archives have been seized as evidence. Oddly enough Monsieur P himself remains at large.)

Practitioners 33: Ivan Reis

Born in 1975, Rodrigo Ivan Dos Reis was born in Sao Paolo, Brazil and is a penciller with projects under his wing for Marvel, Chaos! but most prominently – and most recently – DC.

Blackest Night

For three years, Reis worked under Mauricio de Sousa in Brazil. De Souza is a prominent cartoonist who has created 200 characters for his popular series of children’s comic books. His characters are more Jeff Smith than Alan Davis and Neal Adams (as recent collaborator Geoff Johns described Reis’ drawing style) but clearly this time under the tutelage of such a prolific cartoonist taught the young Reis lessons in productivity.

He began his international career for Dark Horse working on titles such as Ghost, starting with Issue 17 and acting as regular artist until the title ended at Issue 36. During his tenure working on Ghost, he also worked on The Mask, Time Cop and Xena. Later, he worked for Lightning Comics (a fairly shameless comic company from the mid-nineties that offered nude variant covers for their female character titles; Hellina, Catfight and other female heroines).

For Vertigo, Reis pencilled an issue of Grant Morrison’s The Invisibles. He became better known for his work on Lady Death for Chaos! Comics. Written by Brian Pulido, Len Kaminski and Bryan Augustin, Reis drew for the title for three years (from 1999 to 2002). Lady Death was a Previews favourite, enjoying large scale pre orders and carrying a lot of popularity from the success of the nineties. It was from this good girl art that Reis enjoyed popularity, however it would be in working on much more unconventional artwork for a mainstream title that Reis would find legendary fame.

For Marvel, Reis worked on the Thing & She-Hulk: the Long Night, Avengers Icons: Vision, Captain Marvel, Iron Man, Defenders and Avengers. It was on Avengers Icons: Vision that Geoff Johns worked with Ivan Reis for the first time and formed a partnership that would literally turn a major publisher on its head and redefine the popularity of a 60 year old character.

It was with DC, after a series of short stints on a number of titles that Reis arrived at Green Lantern volume 4. A well known but slightly unnoticed character in the DC Universe, the number of Volumes was indicative of GL’s troubled past as a title. Consistently reinvented and repackaged, the story of Hal Jordan; test pilot and interstellar police officer with a magic ring had been transposed regularly. Driven nuts and killed in the 90s as part of the Return of Superman storyline and replaced by another character entirely noone was expecting great things from Green Lantern. However, under Geoff Johns the title was beginning to pick up considerable pace. The scope of the burdgeoning conflict and the introduction (after 60 years!!) of the idea that there might be other rings of alternative colour out in the universe that represented danger broadened the scope of the title considerably. Reis worked from Issue 11-38 alongside Geoff Johns, presiding over the introduction of the now famous Sinestro Corps storyline that kicked off the enormous Blackest Night storyline.

Throughout all of this Reis maintained an even tiller at all times. As Johns clearly became increasingly convinced of Reis’ capacity to produce highly detailed and dramatic artwork at incredibly short notice the scope of the title gained considerable pace. More than pure talent, Reis offered Johns a reliable and dependable creative crucible from which to expand the embryonic saga that would incorporate the entire DC Universe.

Not only in Green Lantern but in the Rann / Thanagar War mini series (written by Dave Gibbons) Reis demonstrated an incredible eye for detail, composition and anatomy. His grasp of an empty page allowed him to fill the page with hundreds of variant starship of a multitude of designs, realise the designs of almost limitless alien characters and still maintain scale and scope as a hole in the size of the universe was torn open by giant hands. The requests placed on Reis in the Rann / Thanagar war show a resolute faith in Reis’ capacity to complete the storyline and present it effectively. The complexity of what Reis has been continuously asked to do on behalf of multiple DC writers suggests that writers, if told that Reis is the assigned artist, know that they can let their imaginations run wild. In an industry that still relies on deadlines, even with increasing expectations being placed on artists in terms of quality and precision – that truly is priceless.

Reis simply makes it work. Whatever the script demands appears and is perfectly well realised. Features are precise and emphatic, representing the thoughts and feelings expected in any scenario. If thousands of figures are required they are provided in bold detail. Increased objects on a page in no way denotes how much or how little detail is applied either. In Reis’ work there are no shortcuts.

Green Lantern threw up yet more challenges. In order to create Red, Orange, Sinestro, Blue, Indigo and Violet corps/tribes each had to have all original characters, each with their own specific designs and detailing. Reis not only designed his own but then enhanced the work of others, adapting them into his own naturalistic style without losing the dynamism of the work being done in GL’s sister title, Green Lantern Corps. As the title that centred the epic, Reis was handling hundreds of different alien designs, at least 7 variants of uniform and insignia design which was then extrapolated and different for each different character of any shape in any Corps, as well as the introduction of DC’s Hall of Heroes as well.

It was with Blackest Night, the final part of the epic that Reis came into his own. 7 Lantern Corps, the entire frontline cast of DC, alien entities, dynamic twists, almost unlimited environments, all colliding on Earth. Reis didn’t miss a panel. Consistent, epic, engaging and faultless – cities collapsed, Lanterns were born, literally thousands of dead aliens fell from the sky, people turned to salt – all of it was incredibly realised at the hands of Reis. Whether it was stormy coastlines in battles against undead merpeople and sharks or porting into a Telephone call centre, Reis struck the right chord in every single scenario.

In Blackest Night his lack of ego and professionalism was there for all to see. It was never about quick tricks or advertising himself as artist but realising as perfectly as possible the best way to present an enormous, sprawling epic, incorporating literally hundreds of characters and incredible events. Reis proved himself a true Practitioner by being put in the spotlight and never missing a beat. His art is so advanced, every aspect of it so precise and well realised that it is impossible almost to fathom how he achieved it in the short time available to him. That is the mark of the true artist, to move beyond what can be done and instead extend to what is needed.

The cast of Brightest Day - Geoff Johns' and Ivan Reis' follow up to Blackest Night

Ivan Reis could’ve come from nowhere (as his Wikipedia profile suggests). His pencil work is now synonomous with the most prominent work being put into the public eye. Seemingly without faltering he has drawn every member of the DC Universe and incorporated a thousand different species into the Green Lantern Corps, a feat that the Green Lantern movie with literally hundreds of technicians and special effects experts are struggling to bring to the big screen. Ivan Reis is the epitomy of big thinking artists.

Moon 2: Sketch post


One of my main worries about drawing several books at the same time is stylistic. Moon and Fallen Heroes look very different in style. My intention is that The Reverend will also be a little different as the focus on its central character sort of asks for a more naturalistic style. Just to brush off the cobwebs for each project I try to sketch the characters just to get them clear in my head again before they start going back onto the full page. Who am I telling? No one. Its not very interesting but frankly a picture with no blurb underneath looks well weird. With Iv and Gat waiting in the wings Moon and Fallen Heroes pages will begin to appear inevitably before the end of this week. Check back here Thursday for FH updates and Monday for more Moon.

Please Stand by… Normal function will resume soon….

Beyond the Bunker has been a little bereft this week we admit. There is a simple matter as to why… and we ask you to bear with us. The simple reason is this – things is beginning to move. We can assure you that in the background mighty cogs are finally beginning to heave into crotchety life and I can assure you that your good selves – the intrepid Beyond the Bunker adventurer will be the one to benefit. As things have progressed the existing content for Beyond the Bunker seems a little below par so myself and Dan will be reviewing the situation, reorganising and a new, brighter, sharper future for Beyond the Bunker will become clear very soon.

Things are moving quite dramatically with Moon (particularly following the success of the Moon Launch 2 weeks ago) and in particular Fallen Heroes which is expanding dramatically (more news about that here very, very soon) plus there is more as new concepts and scripts are being written and developed in the background. Its just that me and Dan haven’t sat down to discuss how best to showcase all this yet and as soon as we do I assure you you’ll have something really special to look at.

Semper Procedens, Bunker Lovers. Semper Procedens.

Steve P

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