Newest issue of the Podcast is up! The Randolorian! And before you think that’s a typo and it’s supposed to be Mandolorian – don’t worry faithful listener, I know what I am doing… usually! It’s titled The Randolorian because while we were originally going to begin discussing the first four episodes of Season 2 of the Mandolorian – we ended up discussing The Mandolorian, Star Wars Rebels, Star Wars Clone Wars, Original Star Wars Trilogy, Star Wars Prequels (to some regard), Star Wars Sequels and even talk about how selling and working with LucasArts and Disney works. So there’s just a little bit of everything.
You can stream it below – or you can download it here.
So, I finally read Hellions 1 through 4. Primarily because it had Havok, Wildchild and Scalphunter in it. Scalphunter, originally one of the murderous Marauders, who went around killing mutants during the Mutant Massacre event was probably the one character from the Marauders who got the most development (aside from Vertigo and Sabretooth, both of whom were existing characters before the appearance of the Marauders). He appeared in the Gambit series a few times. So the fact that they were were trying to do something with him made curious. Apparently for sensitivity purposes, he’s adopted just using his last name as Greycrow.
So I have to disclose – I’ve not been following the X-Men for a long time. (Since a little before this whole Krakoa thing; but I had the general gist through Twitter, about the state of things). So Havok having mental instability (that’s such a new idea – using Sarcasm font) and feeling a little “evil” wasn’t a surprise. Then the dialogue between Exodus and Sinister, as a part of this Quiet Council (they’re anything but quiet) with Apocalypse there… I mean, these are villains that tried to kill the X-Men and humanity hundreds of times… and they’re OK just sitting there?
But, what I did enjoy seeing was the Hellions (the original ones; the ones that were a part of Emma Frost’s school) – namely Catseye. That makes me happy, because I felt they all perished uselessly (to make room for Generation X eventually). I also enjoyed seeing several of the dead Morlocks confronting Scalphunter, including the very first mutant to die – Tommy. Which, I was always confused about – they referenced it the character as Tommy, but she was drawn as a female (and again, female in this).
By the end of this issue, Sinister comes up with the idea of using these “bad apples” (Havok, Scalphunter, Wildchild, Empath, Nanny, and Orphan Maker) to use them as a team – and their first mission is to head to his old base (hidden under an orphanage) to take out the other Marauders who have refused to go to Krakoa. Cyclops assigns Psylocke to keep an eye on the team and to keep them in line, by any means necessary. The issue ends showing Madelyne Pryor in the form of the Goblin Queen.
The team shows up to the orphanage and speaks to local authorities, and Wildchild takes issue (since he’s far more feral than anything) and Greycrow puts him in his place (as he did the last issue, so this appears to be an ongoing theme). In the previous issue, Greycrow also warned Empath that if he mentally messes with anyone, he’s going to put a bullet between his eyes; and Empath manipulates Nanny, and so Greycrow keeps his word and kills Empath (but this isn’t a big deal, since they can be resurrected on Krakoa).
Shortly after, they find the Marauders, dead, hanging upside down. And the Goblin Queen reveals herself. The team fights the undead Marauders, with Havok taking off with Goblin Queen and being manipulated by her. Here’s where the dialogue again, just feels bland. Her rambling, I get it – is supposed to sound crazy – but it sounds so over the top and sometimes doesn’t even make sense (again, I get it, she’s crazy) – but it just doesn’t flow.
The team is defeated by the undead Marauders, but Psylocke and Wildchild escape, stepping into the shadows. This leads to Wildchild attacking her because he believes in his feral mind that she’s not strong enough to lead the team.
This issue has Goblin Queen sealing Havok’s mouth and he cuts it open with a broken shard of a mirror… I feel like it’s just trying too hard to be edgy. (And this coming from someone who loves the character Adam-X who was edgy defined in the 90’s).
Psylocke and Wildchild fight, and eventually Psylocke is forced to snap Wildchild’s neck, realizing his healing factor will save him from dying. When he does recover, he accepts that she’s strong enough and willing to do whatever it takes – gaining his respect and viewing her as the alpha of the team.
The issue starts with Wildchild and Psylocke showing up and fighting the undead Marauders to save Greycrow, Nanny, and Orphan Maker. Greycrow tells Psylocke to take the rest of the team away and he will take care of his people (the Marauders). He does so, by putting them out of their misery and shooting each of them. He then tracks down the Goblin Queen and the demons she summoned, suddenly flee – and Greycrow shoots her with a critical shot. As she dies, she mentions she just wanted to show the world she was a real person. Havok then freaks out and destroys the orphanage in fit of rage.
By the end, the team arrives back at Krakoa, where Psylocke tells Greycrow that the legacy Marauders (Prism, Vertigo, Riptide, Blockbuster, Arclight, Harpoon, and Scrambler) are approved for resurrection on Krakoa. On the flip side, Cyclops tells Havok that resurrecting Madelyn on Krakoa was not approved. But Cyclops turns out to be Sinister who’d taken form of Cyclops – and Nanny catches Sinister.
Overall thoughts –
I enjoyed seeing the Marauders, even if they were undead. I thought Greycrow had the best moments (slamming Wildchild’s face into the ground) and then shooting Empath in the head. But the dialogue is rough, for me. I just don’t feel like it flows.
It’s not absolutely horrible, but nothing I’d continue to collect.
Another time coloring; did this one in just under two hours. Just trying to get faster and doing things and not over think things. Didn’t turn out too bad, considering the original B&W image I had to work off of.
Turned into this with some brain relaxing digital coloring…
Some time late 2013 (after October) or early 2014, DC Comics was relocated from New York, New York (where it’d been since it’s inception back in 1930) and moved to Burbank, California, to be closer to the parent company, Warner Bros. This, when announced, apparently wasn’t a big surprise to many who worked at DC – it seemed there’d be some rumblings before the official announcement made by DC Entertainment president, Diane Nelson. In 2018, she would eventually resign.
So as employees of DC Comics, who’d lived in New York; some of which packed up and relocated to the other side of the coast for work – life was a drastic change (going from New York to California, is like being in a hot shower and then jumping into a cold pool – in that life and the way things move and work, can be drastically different).
Now, here we are in 2020 – the year of Covid-19 and everything else horrible; and as if that wasn’t bad enough, with everyone struggling – Warner Bros had to make a business decision that would, naturally, impact personal lives. Warner Bros has done “some reorganizing” and by doing so, laid off over 600 people.
Among them, pretty much the entire DC Universe Streaming Service – the fate of those shows? Who knows. Probably go to HBO Max (where some of those shows are already streaming) – so those shows can continue in some way and the actors can continue to be employed…
Surprisingly, at least to me – because he’s a name I’ve always known in comics – Bob Harras was one of those who was “let go” due to the reorganization. At DC, Bob Harras was Editor in Chief. Another big name I saw, impacted was Bobbie Chase. Not impacted, was Jim Lee, who remains CCO at this time. From what I’ve gathered, they’re saying one third of DC’s editorial ranks are being laid off.
It’s a terrible time to be laid off right now; finding a new job in this current, Covid-19 world is next to impossible, as most businesses are on pause; waiting to see when and if this Covid-19 thing comes to an end. My thoughts are with those who have lost their jobs. As someone who has been laid off before, with a company shutting down, I am hoping these people can somehow land on their feet.
Using the light/dark trick is much, much, much more difficult on Marvel black and white images, because the artist tends to overly shade everything – making it a very cluttered picture to try and do the light/dark trick. But I think – while on Wolverine, it was messy – it actually looks nice in the Brood/Sleazoids and the background.
I thought this one would be easy; but Petalwing’s webbing proved difficult. This could use a lot of touching up (fine tuning the coloring of the leaves, and really a lot less “coloring out of the lines”) – but this time, I timed myself to give me just two hours to see what I could produce. It ain’t so bad.
I owe Vaeri over on the Father Tree Holt, for turning me on to understanding using the Dark/Light shading. Before, I’d just color black and white images with one base color; she showed me how to use the light/dark tool to really give an image a 3D life. I’m still learning (she’s incredible at it). But I feel like it’s really helped.
Here’s a black and white ElfQuest image I colored.
Black & White version:
And my color version:
I clearly got a ways to go; there’s some stuff I could improve on (obviously), but I am proud of how her tips helped bring this image to life.
Edit: Wasn’t happy with how light it was, so I touched it up, darkened it, brightened up some of the colors, and am much happier now.
So if you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, you know I’ve been re-reading West Coast Avengers. These days, I’ve not really enjoyed the newer comic book market – let’s be real, it’s been like that for years, with a few exceptions. I understand that the market has changed, and if anything, through Twitter, the new generation of comic book readers are wildly enjoying what’s coming out – and that’s all that really matters.
But in the meantime, I have thousands of comics that I could go back and re-read, because it’s been forever.
I’ve been recently re-reading West Coast Avengers and not at all surprised that it has managed to hold up all these years.
If you’re looking for issues of West Coast Avengers (or any comics), we have an Affliate link with MyComicShop’s website that tosses a few coins to your Witcher (that’s me) for every purchase. It’s not much, but it helps.
For the West Coast Avengers Limited Series click here. For the West Coast Avengers Ongoing Series click here.
Note, if you click either of those links and just continue to surf other comics, and still purchase while you clicked the link, it sets a cookie that still grants us the benefit. So for example you click one of those links, but then search the site, look up Uncanny X-Men and buy issues; as long as you didn’t close the browser (or click someone else’s affiliate link), it should still register for us.
I am absolutely addicted to the art Twitter user, BeefCakeBoss2 has been kicking out. Here’s just a sample of some of them – so I would strongly suggest giving him a follow, and he does these as commission art now, after being released from his job (Covid strikes again). So if you’re looking for a hero or villain that he’s not done yet; or maybe he’s done one but you want something different – hit him up.
I’ve even used Adam-X, Dazzler, and Gambit for the banner on the Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram page (to represent each of our favorite characters as us) –