Baltimore Comic Con ’13: 7 Artists I Want To Give All Of My Money To

Normally I would narrow my list down to the top 5 artists I’m excited to see, but Baltimore Comic Con is an exception to all conventions.  It was my favorite show I attended of 2012, and it’s always full of the industry’s top talent.  Unlike SDCC or NYCC, it’s a much smaller scale convention, and it’s one of few that feels like everything about it is planned for fans.  Many creators I’ve talked to have said that Baltimore Comic Con is one of the shows they do the best at, so it’s beneficial for both attendees and industry folk.  But enough about the convention! Here’s a list of the top 7 artists I’m dying to buy prints from this year!

1

Mike Maihack

Screen Shot 2013-09-04 at 6.39.26 PM

Brian Bolland

1

Mark Buckingham

1

Cliff Chiang

1

Amanda Conner

1

Sean Gordon Murphy

1

Art Baltazar

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Kidrobot x Marvel Labbit Mini Series

At San Diego Comic Con this year I was hardcore coveting the exclusive Wolverine and Venom Labbits by Kidrobot, but sadly, I didn’t get them.  Call me crazy, but I was unable to choose just one.  I had to have both or neither, but with limited suitcase space, and my Super Best Friends Forever exclusive, the Hasbro My Little Pony, and a vast selection of new prints, I wasn’t going to be able to carry them back with me if I tried.  Since I’ve gotten home, both Labbits have appeared online (and on my Amazon wish list) but then I heard about the new blind box mini Labbit series that Kidrobot is producing and I nearly lost my mind.  The line includes miniature versions of the aforementioned Labbits, as well as Galactus, Doom, Loki holding Thor’s hammer, Deadpool, Red Skull, Doc Ock, and Punisher.  But Kidrobot’s site says there are 10 in all, so there must be one more that hasn’t been revealed yet!  The figures are 2.5 inches tall, retail for only $9.99, and they’re being released on September 12th (online and in-store).  Needless to say, I’ll be making a trip to SoHo so I CAN BUY THEM ALL.

Screen Shot 2013-08-22 at 8.44.36 PM Screen Shot 2013-08-22 at 8.44.45 PM Screen Shot 2013-08-22 at 8.44.51 PM Screen Shot 2013-08-22 at 8.44.59 PM

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

TRILLIUM #1 By Jeff Lemire Review

It’s no secret that Jeff Lemire is one of my favorite writers and artists currently producing content in the comic book industry, which is why I had been looking forward to reading Trillium since the day it was first announced at NYCC in 2012.  Trillium is an 8 issue miniseries written and painted by Lemire centering around two characters; Nika Temsmith, a botanist working in space 1,000 years in the future in search of a rare flower, Trillium, needed to cure a virus from 3739, and William Pike, a WWI veteran journeying through the Amazon while experiencing PTSD.  The series is a science fiction love story, subtitled The Last Love Story Ever Told, which takes place across time and the universe.  Intriguing, am I right?

In typical Jeff Lemire fashion, the first issue completely exceeded all of my expectations.  The issue is divided into two 14 page sections which tell the stories that lead the main characters to meet each other from each of their points of view.  There’s something poetic about two characters who’re meant to fall in love with one another literally meeting in the middle of the issue (similar to how all relationships require compromises, and for each person to meet the other halfway).  Lemire has taken the typical story structure of most literature (exposition –> rising action –> climax –> falling action –> denouement) and recreated the story chart for Trillium by applying it in a way where the end is directly in the center of the book.  Technically speaking, there is no falling action or denouement in the first issue because both sides of the climax constitute the rising action for one of the characters.   The way Lemire is able to revolutionize storytelling never ceases to amaze me.  After reading the first issue, I watched this interview with him on CBR, and learned that each side of the story not only has an equal number of pages, but it also has an equal panel count on each page, and the exact same page layout for both character’s stories.  Lemire is correct in stating that he “created the perfect mirror.”  He also informs CBR that the second issue, which comes out this Wednesday, is going to be all about language.

I would be remiss in ending my review here without mentioning the beautiful artwork that enhances the narrative, and takes on a burden equal to that of the prose in conveying Trillium’s story.  Flipping through the painted panels is reminiscent of what it must feel like to experience a lucid dream in Lemire’s head.  The book is water colored by Jose Villarrubia who previously worked with Lemire on his last Vertigo series, Sweet Tooth.  There’s a clear shift in the style of art used in Sweet Tooth to the style used in Trillium (which is similar to the art in Lemire’s original graphic novel Underwater Welder), and there’s no doubt that the pair have certainly grown and matured together in their progression from series to series.  One of my favorite aspects of all of Lemire’s artwork is that the way his character’s are drawn allow the reader to grasp the experience and stress behind the character’s journey up until this point in time.  So far, we’re aware that William is a war veteran, but it’s his physical features and flashback panels that give us a hint as to how traumatized his character truly is.  If you haven’t read Trillium #1 just yet, I highly recommend purchasing the issue as a physical comic.  You will reap the rewards of the flip book element of the story and the mirrored panels will be more easily appreciated than if you were to read it digitally.

Trillium #2 debuts in comic shops this Wednesday September 4th.

1 2

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Candy I’m Obsessed With This Week: PUMPKIN SPICE M&M’S & My Quest To Obtain Them

Seeing as how this is a holiday weekend and all, I had a little extra time this morning to lay in bed without feeling guilty and while I was browsing through my twitter feed, I happened to see a tweet by my internet friend Jen, alerting me to the fact that Target is now carrying Pumpkin Spice M&M’s.  I leaped out from under my covers with a kind of motivation on par with how Captain America must feel when Nick Fury gives him a new S.H.I.E.L.D. assignment.  I threw on the closest t-shirt, pair of shorts, and Converse sneakers I could find, all the while having daydreams about how the rest of my day would play out.  I stopped only for a second to visit the Target website, and make sure that my precious pumpkin spice M&M’s were in stock at my preferred Target location.  I can’t remember anything from my drive over.  Did I listen to music? Probably, my mind was 100% focused on the end goal.  I parked my car, ran into the store and bounded down the M&M aisle.  Peanut M&M’s, Peanut Butter M&M’s, Milk Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Coconut, Almond… OMG THERE AREN’T ANY PUMPKIN SPICE.  I immediately began to freak out.  I had flashbacks to last year and began feeling a pit form in the bottom of my stomach.  It was going to be Candy Corn Oreo’s all over again.  “Douglas Adams would tell you not to panic,” I told myself.  I began to breathe.  I looked for the closest Target employee and told him I NEEDED pumpkin spice M&M’s but they’re not in the M&M aisle. “Hmmm, I saw those earlier today,” he said, “Give me a minute.” I paced and paced until he returned from customer service with three packages in hand!  I became so excited that I nearly jumped up and down in the middle of the store.  Achievement unlocked!  “Here you go!” he said, handing me one bag.  “I think I better get at least two packages…” I thoughtfully countered.  So yeah, now I am the proud consumer of Pumpkin Spice M&M’s.  The second half of my quest, the return home, is anticlimactic compared to acquiring my precious, so I’ll go right ahead and describe the taste to you.

IMG_8919

Pumpkin Spice M&M’s are manufactured in the exact way as peanut butter M&M’s.  If you bite into the shell leaving half of the M&M in tact (similar to a diagram of the Earth’s core, except, you know, with chocolate), you’ll see that just beneath the shell is a thin layer of the pumpkin spice flavoring with the milk chocolate encapsulated in the center.  The pumpkin spice flavoring compliments the chocolate and sugary shell surprisingly well.  I’ll buy just about anything that is pumpkin spice flavored, so I’ve had my fair share of disappointment in the past, but these delicious pieces of candy exceed all expectations.  They’re spicy and sweet all at once which gives your tastebuds an incredibly satisfying experience.  I’m almost kicking myself for not purchasing more packages because these have become an instant favorite of mine.  I’m considering using my second package to make a batch of pumpkin spice M&M cookies, but we’ll see if they last long enough for me to get around to actually baking them!  If you’re considering buying some of these, I would suggest getting them ASAP.  They’re bound to sell out quickly once other pumpkin spice aficionados such as myself become privy to their existence.

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Batman ’66 By Jeff Parker & Jonathan Case Review

A few nights ago I read the first two issues of Batman ’66 and for lack of a better phrase, I’m completely obsessed.  In just 50 pages (30 pages in issue #1, and 20 pages in issue #2), we’ve already been introduced to Batman, Robin, Riddler (the Frank Gorshin version), Penguin, Mr. Freeze, Catwoman, Commissioner Gordon, Alfred, and Circe.  And we’ve already gotten some classic Boy Wonder exclamations such as “Holy Evil Alliance,” “Holy Tightrope,” and “”Should I enter it into the Bat-Computer?”  The first two issues each contain one main story, and a backup story.  Jeff Parker, who writes the series, told the NY Post that he listens to the characters speaking while he creates their dialogue, which you can easily tell while you’re reading.  Parker has a much bigger opportunity to tell grander stories since there’s no budget for effects in a comic book, and it comes through in his writing that Parker is basically telling dream Batman ’66 stories which wouldn’t have been able to be told on the television series due to monetary restrictions.  We haven’t seen a full blown Batusi yet, but hopefully Parker was foreshadowing in the first issue when a bar patron asks “Batman, I was hoping to run into you! Can you show us how to do that dance we heard about?”  Sadly Bats doesn’t have the time because he and the Boy Wonder are investigating a serious crime.

Jonathan Case, who illustrates and colors the series, created artwork which perfectly captures the overall tone.  He uses bright neon colors which pop against contrasting backgrounds, and in the first issue with the Riddler, he outlines all of the landscapes with blue lines which creates a kind of 3D effect in a much more attractive version of Gotham.  Case perfectly captures the likeness of the Adam West, Burt Ward, and Julie Newmar’s ’66 characters, using smooth rounded lines, and hairstyles consistent with the decade to depict the cast of the comic.  And I just have to say this – Case’s Catwoman is purrfect.  I’m also loving the use of the exaggerated sound effects within the comics’ panels.  And the covers are drawn and colored by Mike and Laura Allred, who just so happen to be two of my favorite artists.  I can’t even begin to count the number of times I have flipped through these issues.

According to Comics Alliance, a very classy Mad Men-like version of Harley Quinn will be appearing in issue #7.  If you’re reading the comic digitally, you’ve already seen Harley’s introduction, but since I’m reading in print, I’m only up to issue #2.  Batman ’66 is part of the DC2 initiative to convert readers to digital comics.  I’ve been reading the physical printed copies, which are released on a very delayed time schedule compared to their digital counterparts, but since I loved the first two issues so much, I think I’m going to finally cave in and start buying the series from ComiXology… as well as the print issues… and the trade.  *Makes fist* damn you DC Comics for monopolizing my bank account!

2 3

 

1

 

1

 

2

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Customizing Vinyl Toys & My New Robocop Army

This past weekend was arguably one of the best weekends ever.  My best friend, Melissa, came over Friday afternoon, and we ended up having so much fun that she didn’t leave until Sunday evening!  Anytime Mel comes to visit me, we always end up shopping at Barnes and Noble, Hot Topic, the comic book store, and several other locations, but this time, we were shopping with a purpose.  We decided it would be fun to customize some vinyl toys so in addition to all of the books, clothes, and collectibles we usually purchase, we were also in the market for art supplies.

IMG_0076 IMG_0085 IMG_0087

We spent about 13 hours painting toys while we watched Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles I & IITerminator 2, and Robocop.  The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movies led to us ordering a pizza (obviously).  There is probably no food in the world that’s better than a New York pizza with extra cheese.

IMG_8718

But back to toys!  Melissa and I basically made our toy dreams into a reality this weekend.  We’re both really into pastel colors, and if it were up to us, there would be a lot more pink in the world.  So we took that dream and applied it (almost literally!) to our new collectibles.  I’m so thrilled to be the proud owner of a rainbow Robocop army, a pink Batman with a gold sparkly belt, Tinker Bell’s twin sister who prefers pink, a glittery Silver Surfer, and the sparkliest Spider-Man bank you will ever lay eyes on.

IMG_0090 IMG_0092 IMG_0094 IMG_0096 IMG_0098 IMG_0104 IMG_0101

My absolute favorite toys that Melissa customized are her lime green Terminator figure, and her pink Hulk.  If I saw either of them on a shelf at a store or convention, I would totally purchase them immediately!

IMG_0100 IMG_0102

Here’s a photo of what all of our toys looked like before…

IMG_8697 IMG_8708

…. and after!

IMG_0105 IMG_0106

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Tea & Manga Chat: Paradise Kiss by Ai Yazawa

Paradise Kiss by Ai Yazawa is a series that feels as if it were written for me.  Having gone to fashion school myself and spending the majority of my years in high school focusing more on my career than studying for tests, I completely relate to Yukari (aka Caroline, aka Carrie).  In the beginning, Yukari is a shy student with little confidence and direction, but everything changes for her when she meets Arashi, Miwako, Isabella and George (students at Yaza Arts, a fashion institute).  Arashi bumps into Yukari on the street and asks her to be a model for their fashion show.  At first, Yukari has many reservations about modeling, but once she visits their atelier she sees how serious the group is about producing and selling Paradise Kiss label clothing.  She waits several days to give them her final answer, but she ultimately decides to lie to her mother, skip out on cram school, and help out at the atelier as much as she possibly can.  Infatuated by the brands designer, George, and driven by a a newfound career passion, Yukari’s character becomes way more dynamic.  Throughout the series she continues to grow and push her sense of free will to the limit.

Screen Shot 2013-07-13 at 4.58.59 PM

Yukari immerses herself in the world of fashion.  She becomes best friends with Miwako, who is constantly comparing herself and trying to measure up to her older sister, the designer of Happy Berry clothing.  Miwako helps Yukari with girly things like picking out clothing and acting as a makeup artist as well as offering her comfort in times of need, and a place to stay when things get rough.  Yukari also ditches her childhood crush on a fellow student in high school and gets involved in a twisted and confusing romance with the irresistible George.  It’s questionable whether George’s antics are helping or hindering Yukari’s development, but it’s a storyline you’ll be clinging to until the very last word.

Screen Shot 2013-07-13 at 4.56.22 PM

One of the most fascinating aspects of the series is how self aware the characters are, and their constant habit of breaking the fourth wall.  The majority of Yukari’s communication of her innermost thoughts to the reader is primarily through monologues, while the other characters will turn their heads to the read and blatantly express a thought, apologize for jumping around, or clarify which type of chapter this will be.  Also, it would be impossible to fully express my love of this series without mentioning the amazing artwork.  Each character is drawn flawlessly!  They’re just the right mix of cute, chic, and youthful. Obviously their clothes are to die for (as this is a tale about fashion), and the atelier looks like my high school dream hangout.  Throughout the series I felt connected and invested in each character’s life.  I will forever be grateful to Betty Felon who enlightened me with her recommendation (for those who don’t know, she’s pretty fashionable herself ^_^).  Paradise Kiss is without a doubt my favorite manga series, and I would go so far as to say that it is also one of my favorite series I’ve ever read in any form of literature.

13

You can pick up all three volumes of Paradise Kiss on Amazon, or at a bookstore near you that sells manga!  If you decide to indulge yourself and read the series, I’d love to hear your thoughts on Yukari and the Yaza Arts kids!

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Geek Girl Blogger Brunch #1

To me, one of the most exciting things about being a blogger is the opportunity to meet a community of other likeminded women who are also interested in blogging about geek culture.  I met two of my best friends Melissa and Cassie through blogging and tweeting and such and since then I’ve been rapidly expanding my network!  My friend Jamila and I previously had a blogger brunch and it was so much fun that we wanted to have another one, but include more of our other friends.  Both of us have a “the more the merrier” type mentality!  After coordinating our schedules on a google calendar we decided to go to a Mexican restaurant in the East Village that serves delicious food and a plethora of strong and unlimited drinks.  All six of us (Me, Melissa, Cassie who writes for Bibliomantics, Jamila who runs Girl Gone Geek, Leslie who created the International Geek Girls Pen Pal Club, and blogs on Darling Stewie, and Yissel), woke up extra early and traveled downtown so we could discuss things like which Game of Thrones house is our favorite, who our fictional crushes are (my first one was Link from Zelda), and tweet about it using the hashtag #GGBrunch.  After brunch, we headed over to Big Gay Ice Cream Shop (I had another Mermaid), Toy Tokyo, Forbidden Planet, Barnes and Noble, Kinokuniya and Midtown Comics.  We had so much fun that we’ve decided to plan monthly brunches and give them each a theme.  Here are some photos from our lovely day!

IMG_8460

The Girls

IMG_8445

Our first round of frozen Rosalitas

IMG_8532

Goodies From Leslie’s Etsy Shop!

IMG_8476

Geek girls always accessorize

IMG_8457

Cassie whispers Game of Thrones spoilers to Melissa

IMG_8527

Outside of Toy Tokyo

IMG_8475

Mermaid from Big Gay Ice Cream Shop

IMG_8473

The $1,000 Boba Fett I need in my life (From Toy Tokyo)

IMG_8536

And surprising no one, I bought way too many books!

As you may be able to tell, I acquired quite a few books during our after brunch shopping spree and I could barely feel my arms as I was running to catch my train.  My Saturday haul included 1)Books – Fablehaven by Brandon Mull and Brandon Dorman, and Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl, 2) Manga – 5 Centimeters Per Second by Makoto Shinkai, Cardcaptor Sakura by CLAMP, Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa, and Is This a Zombie? by Shinichi Kimura & Sacchi, 4) Graphic Novels – Saga Volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples, The Sixth Gun Volume 1 by Cullen Bunn & Brian Hurtt, The Amazing Spider-Man Volume 3 (Marvel Masterworks) by Stan Lee & Steve Ditko, and 5) Comics – The Wake #3 by Scott Snyder & Sean Murphy, Trillium #1 by Jeff Lemire, Infinity Part One by Jonathan Hickman, and Li’l Gotham #5 by Dustin Nguyen & Derek Fridolfs.

So now I’ll be hiding in my house all week and spending time with my new books! How was your weekend?

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

FANGASM Or How I Spent My Summer

It’s been quite some time since I’ve written a personal blog post about my latest adventures so I thought now would be as good a time as any to fill you all in on what’s been going on.  As you may have noticed I’ve been tweeting and Facebooking about a new television show on Syfy called Fangasm.  Fangasm is responsible for my internet hiatus earlier this year, and as much as I knew I would miss the interwebs, I also knew that I would have to be crazy to pass up this opportunity!  I spent the beginning of my summer moving clear across the country to intern for Stan Lee’s Comikaze and move into a house with five strangers and one of my very best friends, Molly McIsaac.  I can’t even begin to capture in words how excited I am to have been a part of show that celebrates geek culture instead of exploiting it.  I posted the full press release on my other website and you can also check out some of cast photos and promos on Syfy.com.  I can’t wait to be able to speak more about my wonderful roommates, my incredible boss Regina Carpinelli, and of course, the legend himself, Stan Lee.  Until then, here’s the newest promo for Fangasm, which is two whole minutes long!  And just to fangirl out for a moment, I’M ON A COMMERCIAL WITH STAN LEE!  If anyone ever says that dreams don’t come true, I will show them this trailer as proof of their fallacious claim.

3

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

Sailor Moon & Sailor Jupiter

Sometimes it’s fun to just impulsively cosplay on an afternoon for absolutely no reason.  In between SDCC cosplay prep, Melissa and I decided to dress up in these Sailor Scout outfits because we had to wait about 30 minutes for our first coat of modpodge to dry.  Here are the resulting photos. Moon Prism Power Make Up!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Bloglovin ♥ Twitter ♥ Instagram ♥ YouTube ♥ Goodreads ♥ Pinterest

Screen Shot 2013-04-21 at 3.03.26 PM

 

(Photos by Robert Hackett)

Page 78 of 84« First...102030...7677787980...Last »