Wednesday, August 28, 2013

End of August Auctions on E-Bay

THE MASK OF MORIARTY (9X12 pen and ink)

DARK SHADOWS: CREATURES OF THE NIGHT (9x12 pen and ink)

HOLMES AND WATSON (9x12 pen and ink)

DARK SHADOWS: THE HAUNTING OF VICTORIA WINTERS (9x12 pen and ink)

With August rapidly winding down, I thought I'd post a few special End of the Summer type auctions on E-Bay. Just like my previous auctions, until the calendar turns September you do not have to pay any shipping for items you bid on!! And even if a few of these auctions are still running after the change of the calendar, you STILL won't have to pay anything for shipping.

Click on the link below and Happy Bidding:

Sunday, August 25, 2013

The one thing that might help Ben Affleck as Batman


He kind of looks like he could have been drawn by Jim Aparo
.
I admit I'm not a fan of Ben Affleck. But to be fair, I wasn't entirely in love with the Nolan/Bale Batman trilogy. I enjoyed it in parts. Heath Ledger as the Joker stole the show.

But Christian Bale's Batman voice was embarrassing. And I confess, I found his performance to be somewhat boring.

That and the movies themselves got too dark and "real".

I'm not saying going back to the Kilmer/Clooney days. But something middle of the road slightly dark but more adventurous like the Neal Adams stint on Batman. Or some of the later episodes of Batman the Animated Series when they changed the character design.

We'll see.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Ben Affleck is Batman?

This is how I imagine Ben Affleck will look as Batman.
Yep!! Having trouble putting the two words together in the same sentence. Ben Affleck and Batman. Not saying Christian Bale was the ultimate Batman either. The Dark Knight voice immediately comes to mind. One side of my brain says, "Well, Michael Keaton was considered miscasted in the Tim Burton films at the time and now he's still remembered as Batman". However, the other side of my brain wants to kill that side of my brain and says "Remember Daredevil?" and this casting is Val Kilmer and George Clooney all over again. I don't know folks.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Peter Capaldi: The Twelfth Doctor

Now that it has been announced that Peter Capaldi will indeed take over the role of the Doctor in Doctor Who, now we have to wait several more months to find out just how his Doc will dress.

I thought I'd have a bit of fun and do my own little concept art of how I would design a costume for his Doctor.

The inspiration for my illustration comes from two different sources. One was a comment made by someone on Facebook that if you were to put a mustache on Peter Capaldi he would look remarkably like Peter Cushing's Dr. Who from the Dalek films. The other source is Capaldi's costume as Professor Marcus from a recent stage adaptation of the film THE LADY KILLERS.

So, I took elements from both those sources and put them together. The cravat, pince nez and fingerless gloves were inspired by Peter Cushing's Dr. Who while the grey button-up long-sleeve cardigan, long black coat and long grey scarf are inspired by Capaldi's Professor Marcus attire.

The walking stick, spats and classic series Sonic Screwdriver my own little additions to the look.

You may also bid on my concept art right now by clicking on the link below:


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Dream Project: Lost in Space


This will (probably) be the last stop in my short series of blogs of what I would I would like to do if I were given rights to do a television series based on the classic series LOST IN SPACE.

Although, the series always had that edge of campiness to it, the early episodes could be downright sinister and scary at time. In particular the character of Dr. Zachary Smith. 


The character started out as a complete bastard but kind of downgraded into more of a silly comedy relief who had a tendency of being naughty.

Although, I don't think the character should be played totally for laughs, I don't think the character should be a total villain either. Somewhere more along the lines of how the character was nearer the end of the first season would probably be the way I'd have Dr. Smith approached.

The character is a selfish coward looking out for his own best interest. But despite all that, and the rest of the crews initial dislike and distrust of Smith, the character of Will Robinson somehow sees something good in this silly self-centered man.

Much like who I had in mind for Barnabas Collins I really think actor David Hyde Pierce would be excellent in the role of Dr. Smith.

Although, another actor I think might be interesting in the role is BIG BANG THEORY star Jim Parsons. I haven't seen him much in dramatic roles (although Lost in Space isn't really necessarily a drama). I think he could pull a part like this off. But David Hyde Pierce would be my first choice.
Much like my previous blog on DARK SHADOWS, I think that the key to any successful revival is while it is always important to take any property in a new and exciting direction, it is also equally important to remember exactly WHAT made that show's original run a success.

Which is why many remakes fail. Two examples. Look at the remake of King Kong. Trying t be too innovative and exciting (not to mention Peter Jackson's habit of making his movies twenty-six hours long) made it fall flat on its face. Then on the other side of the coin, when they tried to do a remake of Psycho note for note, people just found themselves saying "What's the point? Why don't I just go watch the original?" which is pretty much what they did.

Again, I use the current series of Doctor Who as a prime example of a production team doing it right. When Russell T. Davies brought the show back in 2005, he moved the show forward with many of the modern trappings of fast-paced story-lines and special effects that a modern audience comes to expect.

However, he kept the core quality of the character of the Doctor the same as he had been in the series's classic run from 1963 to 1989.

But the current series of Doctor Who is a continuation of the original show rather than a reboot. But I think those qualities can still be used in a reboot of a series as well. Even the reboot of Star Trek didn't go out of its way to alienate the series's original audience. Although, I heard the last movie wasn't universally enjoyed by everyone, I think creating it as a parallel timeline was actually a smart move on the producers of the show.

I don't think parallel timelines are necessarily the way to go. But just remembering elements of what made the show successful while going in an exciting new direction with it can help in reviving a classic series.

Also to keep in mind, you're not trying to be better than the original. Just different.

Special Summer Auction!! Doctor Who: Fall of the Eleventh 16x20 Art Print!!



I thought I would do one more special art auction before the end of Summer. This time I am offering a 16x20 art print in anticipation of Matt Smith's departure from the role of the Doctor in this year's Christmas Episode.

Original artwork by Bret M. Herholz (Diary of the Black Widow/Sherlock Holmes). Originally illustrated in Deleter 
Black Drawing Ink on Canson Smooth Bristol Board. Colors added digitally.

Inspired by the cult British Science-Fiction series DOCTOR WHO. In anticipation of Matt Smith's final episode 
as the Eleventh Doctor before he regenerates into Peter Capaldi, I decided to do a 16x20 color print based on 
one of the earliest attempts at illustrating the Eleventh Doctor back in 2010. The image was based on Paul 
Cornell's concept that the Doctor's past regenerations still exist within the Doctor's mind which he used in 
the novel TIMEWYRM: REVELATION and the Seventh Doctor audio play SHADOW OF THE SCOURGE.

Although when I first created this image it was to represent David Tennant's Tenth Doctor handing over the 
TARDIS keys to his successor. Although, now I saw it fitting as a visual of the Eleventh Doctor joining his
 predecessors.

The image itself will measure 16x20 and be printed on high quality glossy cardstock. Shipping on this auction, 
much like many of the auctions taking place this Summer is free!!

This will be the only time I will be printing this illustration.  Once the winning bid is met, a 16x20 
print will be made on high quality glossy cardstock and signed and dated to the winning bidder. 
Then the original image file of the print will be deleted. Making this a one of a kind print.


And just remember gentle reader, nobody is forcing you to bid on this print. You may do that of your own free will. I am not forcing, demanding, bullying or even physically twisting your arm into purchasing this print. 

If you don't like the image simply don't buy it. Which seems like a pretty simple alternative if you ask me.

However, if you do choose to bid on the item, then click on the link above and Happy Bidding :-)

Monday, August 19, 2013

Dream projects: Dark Shadows


I have mentioned on my blog having the desire to do an issue or two of Dynamite Entertainment's DARK SHADOWS series. But I also have a dream of doing a proper television revival of the series DARK SHADOWS. 

I am well aware how the recent film version(which I admit I like) has probably soured many people in doing anything further with the program. But that has not deterred me.

On a recent day trip to Rockport Massachusetts, I thought to myself how it would make a great location shot for the fictional town of Collinsport.

The feel of the streets and the buildings just had the feel of Collinsport for me.


Also, my choice for the role of 200 year old vampire Barnabas Collins would be British born actor Paul McGann.
I think the casting would be ideal since Paul was born in Liverpool. The city which Barnabas is said to have been from.

If anything else, to hear him make this speech. Which I think is one of Jonathan Frid's best in the series.

I also would want someone like Kathryn Leigh Scott, Nancy Barrett or Lara Parker as Elizabeth Stoddard-Collins. Just to have that connection with the old series.

I'd also like to bring back the Carey Mansion as Collinwood again.


If it's unavailable, I'd also want to use Lyndhurst Mansion in Tarrytown New York which was the basis for Collinwood in HOUSE OF DARK SHADOWS.
I think my biggest problem with the Dark Shadows movie is that it kind of missed a great number of the great characters and story-lines from the show. A lot of that I'm sure due to time restraint.

Also, there was a helluva lot of plot twists and story-lines even before Jonathan Frid joined the cast. Many of them too good to simply just forgot. I feel as though I would try my best to incorporate them all into a new series as well as re-introduce characters like Burke Devlin, Jason MacGuire, Nicolas Blair and Professor Stokes.

I would probably also introduce characters such as Barnabas, Angelique and Quentin a lot quicker than in the series since all of them were introduced over time. With Quentin and Angelique it would be over the course of the first series.

I wouldn't do  the series for laughs. But at the same time, I wouldn't try to make it super dark. The one thing I've learned from Doctor Who's return in 2005 is try and maintain something that made the series popular with the fans. With Doctor Who, it's that level of camp that people enjoyed in the classic series. Despite the silly monsters and dodgy sets, it was always about the cleverness of the writing.

And the same goes for Dark Shadows.

Lara Parker, who has done so much at keeping the series alive with her books would be someone I would immediately contact to write episodes. It only seems right since she has written so much original fiction.

I know so many great writers who I  know to be fans of the show that I would also contact for a potential series.

But Dark Shadows is definitely high up on my list of pet projects I'd love to get my fangs into.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Dream projects: YOUNG MEN IN SPATS

 
We all have several projects we would love to adapt either into a graphic novel, film or television series. Right now I'm in the process of reading YOUNG MEN IN SPATS by P.G. WODEHOUSE and I would absolutely love to adapt it either into a television or web series.
 
YOUNG MEN IN SPATS revolves around adventures of the various members of that Diogenese Club for bright young idiots, The Drones Club.
 
I think the stories in the book would lend themsleves to either a web series of short episodes or a 1/2 television series. The stories are silly and the characters are blissfully idiotic. There's nothing but pure enjoyment in Wodehouse's work.
 
In an era where it seems like we're getting choked with more Kardashian and Honey Boo Boo type reality series's or sitcoms that just seem to be developing more and more of a mean streak with the only type of humor the entertainment industry thinks characters that just downright cruel is funny, we really could use Wodehouse's brand light-hearted whimsy more and more.
 
Mr. B's ALL HAIL THE CHAP would be the song I'd choose as the theme song:
 

 
But with Wodehouse's work, I'd have to see securing the rights from literary agent that handles his estate. But it is most certainly on the list.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Dark Shadows: The Night Whispers




The Night Whispers is an audio play written by Stuart Manning for Big Finish Productions Dark Shadows audio range. The play itself marks the final appearance of Jonathan Frid in the role of Barnabas Collins before his death in 2012.

Frid had been reluctant for many years to reprise the role he first made famous in 1966. Many of his fellow cast mates had appeared in Big Finish's audio adaptation of the television series. Frid finally came back to the role in 2010 alongside John Karlen as Willie Loomis for Manning's play THE NIGHT WHISPERS.

Frid's voice had aged a great deal when he took on the role again, but it sounded absolutely perfect for the story. You got the impression of an older graver Barnabas Collins. Long since freed from the vampire curse and living the remainder of his unnaturally long life in the Old House.

Stuart gave me permission to adapt a few of his marvelous play into comic book pages. You can see a few of the finished pages above.

Although, I didn't make Barnabas appear "older" because the opening dialogue mentioned him being "unchanged".

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Album you should check out: Tubular Bells

Some may scratch their heads until you say "theme from the Exorcist". But Mike Oldfields magnum opus TUBULAR BELLS is so much more than just those opening chords. There is so much more to this album which frightened the pants off of me when I was a child.

I came across this live recording Mike Oldfield did with a full band from 1973 for BBC Television. Basically, it was a live version of side one. It's really great to watch and listen to. Although, Oldfield primarily plays bass and acoustic guitar, he played practically EVERY intrustment on the original record. But that's very difficult to do live.

Oldfield did many other albums following this one. Two of them Ommadawn and Hergest Ridge were as good in their own right. Three of them he has recorded since 1992 were direct sequels to Tubular Bells and one of them in 2003 was a re-recording of the album. None of the Tubular Bells follow-ups were nearly as good as the original in my less than humble opinion.

If you like what you hear, I highly recommend you check out the original album. I own it on vinyl. Which I still feel is the only way to enjoy it. But if you don't own a record player, CD or download will do as well ;-)

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Special Mid-Summer Auction: WELCOME TO COLLINWOOD 16X20 Color Art Print SIGNED!!


A special Mid-Summer's Night Dream type auction. Bid on a 16x20 art print of WELCOME TO COLLINWOOD!!

Inspired by the cult classic television soap opera DARK SHADOWS. This particular image was inspired by the cast photo taken in the mid 1960's. I added a few other characters not part of the cast at the time or just not available such as Quentin, Angelique, Professor Stokes and Burke Devin.

The image itself will measure 16x20 and be printed on high quality glossy cardstock. Shipping on this auction, much like many of the auctions taking place this Summer is free!!

This will be the only time I will be printing this illustration at this size and in these particular sepia tones.  I will be only making one 16x20 print of this image.The winning bidder of this auction will have the print SIGNED PERSONALLY to them and dated. Once the winning bid is met, a print will be made and the original 16x20 image of the print will be deleted. Making this a one of a kind print.

Click on the link below and Happy Bidding:

Summer reading: PG Wodehouse


I have to be honest. I didn't originally intend to read PG Wodehouse for most of the Summer. It just kind of worked out that way. I actually started out the Summer reading Crime at Black Dudley by Margery Allingham and Whose Body? by Dorothy Sayer.

But then I decided to shift gears and pick up a couple the Wodehouse books that have been sitting on my shelf for a couple years. I thoroughly enjoy his books. I place him up there as probably one of my favorite writers of all time. He writes the type of books that don't require a lot of deep thinking and philosophical. But if you're in need of a good laugh, Wodehouse is the best remedy. I've really enjoyed A Damsel in Distress and I just finished up Summer Lightning to name a couple.

The latter is one of the tales from Blandings Castle and the former could have easily fit in as a Blandings tale. I'm looking forward to picking up Heavy Weather at some point. The direct sequel to Summer Lightning. A Damsel in Distress has actually been twice adapted. Most notably starring George Burns and Gracie Allen. I'm not sure how much resemblance it bears to the original book. Looking on Wikipedia It doesn't look like very much as far as characters are concerned.

At the moment I'm reading Young Men in Spats which is a collection of short stories concerning Wodehouse's fictional Drones Club. To which is most famous creation of Bertram "Bertie" Wilberforce Wooster is a card carrying member of. I've always seen the Drones Club as the Diogenese Club for rich young idiots.

But what is my favorite Wodehouse book? Hmmm? As much as I enjoy the Jeeves and Wooster books, I actually have two favorites. Laughing Gas and The Adventures of Sally. Two works I'd really love to adapt as either a graphic novel or movie someday. Those would probably be the two books I'd recommend.

However, if you're new to Wodehouse's work, I'd definitely recommend picking up The Inimitable Jeeves first. I really think that's a great book for anyone who is new to the World of Wodehouse.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Mr. B the Gentleman Rhymer

Good buddy, tweed enthusiast and Dr. Watson in my Sherlock Holmes production Devon Kurtz introduced my wife Syd and myself to Mr. B the Gentleman Rhymer recently. And I'm just wondering why we haven't gotten into his music sooner because we're pretty much hooked now.

What Mr. B does is referred to chap ho. Which is hip hop performed in a Received Pronunciation accent. The best way to describe it is think of Rap music written by PG Wodehouse and George Formby.

And it's a lot of fun to listen to. This is probably my favorite song by Mr. B which is sadly unavailable on any of the albums he has available currently. But if you like what you hear, I highly recommend you check him out on Amazon.com or on his website:


Saturday, August 10, 2013

New website in the works

Good buddy Andy Fish just set me up with a new website. I have to admit, I'm much happier with this page than I have been in some time now. It's easier to navigate with samples of my work and upcoming projects as well as a link to my blog. Check out the progress:

Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Queen of Hearts

Paul sent me his design for the Queen of Hearts and I have to say I am very pleased with the results. Especially how he's improved upon my initial design for the character.

I had envisioned the Queen of Hearts to be the polar opposite of Alice in this story. I wanted Alice in my story not to be all sexed up. I feel like there had been too many versions of the character that made her overly sexual and I wanted the Alice of my story to be fun and adventurous.

As I mentioned before a cross between Harry Potter, Doctor Who and a touch of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

The Queen of Hearts, on the other hand, I wanted to be the complete opposite of that. I just told Paul to have at it as far as designing her goes. She physcial form matches her mental form. Vain with a very large ego to boot. If you are familiar with the original story, the Queen was a short little toad looking character. Which is how she appears at the beginning of this tale.

I envisioned her character as someone who was overweight when they were younger but ends up losing all the weight. But instead of being humble about it, becomes just as bad as the people who probably picked on them.

Or a person who was probably made fun of by the "in crowd" in High School. But goes off to college meets a group of  "like minded" people in college and instead of learning from how they were treated in the past becomes just as unbearable as the groups of people who bullied and made fun of them in the past.

Progress on the book is coming along nicely. I will keep you all posted on everything going on.