Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 36

What boy out there didn't want to be Jonny Quest?

Monday, February 27, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 35

I hope that the complete Mr. Magoo gets released on DVD someday.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Don Knotts and Darren McGavin R.I.P.

I feel like the Grim Reaper has it in for my childhood. First, we lose Don Knotts, whose nervous manner made him an endearing, and hilarious goof ball in everything from "The Andy Griffith Show" to "The Reluctant Astronaut," "The Incredible Mr. Limpet" and "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken." His death came right on the heels of a small collage tribute I paid to him just over a week ago.

Now, Darren McGavin is dead as well. For me, he'll always be Carl Kolchak, and McGavin's performance as Kolchak on "Kolchak: the Night Stalker" is what made that show, and every paranormal phenomenon he stumbled upon convincing. It was what inspired Chris Carter to create "The X-Files," and no doubt had a hand in my own lifelong fascination with paranormal investigators.

May they both rest in peace.

Fun With Scissors - part 34

Rudy's like a school in the summer: No class.

I've mentioned Saxton Moore's great site before, but now he's got something special going on related to this post. He has a Fat Albert drawing contest open to all ages. The deadline is March 16, and there are some really cool prizes being offered.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 33

Yakky Doodle was a character I found annoying, even as a kid, but he was actually pretty fun to collage.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 32

This, I think, is actually the 35th character posted, and I'm reminded of how many possibilities remain. Spook, here, is the first cast member of "Top Cat" to get collaged here. I still haven't done any of the Jetsons, Superfriends, and many others. I have done a member of the Fat Albert gang, who will appear tommorow.

Fun With Scissors - part 31

Penelope Pitstop.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Big Week in Comics

This week, three comic books that i contributed to will be available in stores. Cartoon Network Block Party #18 includes a "Dexter's Laboratory" story I wrote.

The digest sized reprint collections Scooby-Doo vol. 5: Surf's Up! and Scooby-Doo vol. 6: Space Fright! include some of the earliest Scooby-Doo stories I wrote, including one of my favorites, "Three Shears for Shaggy."

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 30


Here, is Touche Turtle and his sidekick, Dum Dum.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 29

Today: Multi Man of "The Impossibles." Rock star, superhero with the ability to duplicate himself, voice of Don Messick, what more does he need?

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 28

Instant Martian. Just add water.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 27

The second member of the Mystery Inc. gang is Velma Dinkley. On the original tv series, there wasn't much to distinguish her character from Fred's, especially when it came to purpose. They were both the smart ones who put the clues together and had everything figured out. Sure Fred got to drive the Mystery Machine, lay the traps which never worked, and unmask the villain, and Velma had that schtick with losing her glasses and the catch phrase "Jinkies!" but that was mostly it.

In writing the comic book, I wanted to seperate them more. Fred is more serious, and Velma, while being serious when it comes to research and mystery solving, seems to have more of a sense of humor, or a tolerance for it, especially when pertaining to Shaggy and Scooby. I also decided to have Velma's bookish nature lean towards books, making her areas of knowledge more scholarly; history, folklore, science, biography, etc., while Freddie's knowledge was more practical, and worldly; languages, mechanics + engineering, and so forth.

Velma also ended up being more patient, no doubt stemming from her relationship with the group's two buffoons, Shaggy and Scooby, which is somewhat motherly at times, or more accurately school teacherly. She's willing to take her time gathering the information she needs to solve a case, whereas Fred likes to charge in and take it as it comes.

Stay tuned for more.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Illustration Friday - "Song"

I've started participating in when I gave time to do so. Fridays are usually pretty packed for me, so my participation will probably be sporadic at best.

This week's topic was "song", and the accompanying illustration was more of a collage sketch than anything else. I think there are maybe 8-9 pieces of paper there. I kept it very simple.

Fun With Scissors - part 26

This one taught me to not bother trying to collage while sick. I had a terrible sinus infection while making Mr. Limpet, and kept messing it up, and trying to correct my mistakes. I finally got it so it looked alright, but most likely I will revisit this character in the future and make a fresh attempt.

"The Incredible Mr. Limpet" was one of those movies I'd scan TV Guide for, and watched it whenever it aired. Don Knotts was a favorite of mine as a kid, and after recently rewatching "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken" I was refreshed to see that his unique manner of performance still holds up today. It also made me long for the days where movies were shot entirely in studios and we accepted them as being representative of the real world.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 25

Here's another one of my favorites when I was a kid. Space Ghost, in his incarnation on "Cartoon Planet", moreso than on "Space Ghost Coast to Coast" was my must-see viewing as an adult. I never felt any conflict between the two versions of Space Ghost, and enjoyed them both.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 24

Wally Gator is a swinging alligator in the swamp.
He's the greatest perculator when he really starts to romp.
There has never been a greater operator in the swamp.
See ya later, Wally Gator.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 23

Happy Valentines Day! I don't personally celebrate Valentine's Day. My feeling is you should be doing this sort of thing for your significant other on a regular basis, and not just once a year when greeting card companies tell you to. Not only that, but it's a day that makes people not in relationships feel bad.

Pepe LePew and La Femme Skunk Fatale (actually a cat whose official name, I believe, is Penelope) being the characters to fall on this day just happened to be a lucky coincidence. It was not planned. I'm about a week ahead, in terms of what's being collaged, of what's being posted. This seemed to be the wise thing to do in order to keep the daily posts daily even with intrusions such as illness, or real deadlines, which might keep me from my scissors.

Whether you celebrate the holiday, or not. These characters are my gift of love to you.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 22

Dino, from "The Flintstones."

Sunday, February 12, 2006

DRACULA turns 75

Sure, today is also the birthday of Abraham Lincoln, and Charles Darwin, both great men, but what of that undead vampire, also known by his last name? On this date, 75 years ago, the 1931 Universal classic starring Bela Lugosi, Dwight Frye, Edward Van Sloan, Helen Chandler, and David Manners, pre miered in New York City, just in time for Valentine's Day. It was a huge hit, launching the horror movie boom of the 1930s and 1940s, and paving the way for all of the classic Universal Monster movies to follow. When people think of Dracula, it is Lugosi that comes to mind, whether they've seen the movie or not. His was an iconic performance which has stood the test of time, even if Tod Browning's awkward direction of the film has not. All of the horror movie iconography that exists now has it's basis in this movie.

Celebrate by watching this classic tonight.

Fun With Scissors - part 21

Simon Barsinister was the primary villain in my favorite cartoon show as a kid, "Underdog." The tricky thing was finding the sickly, jaundice color to use for his skin.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 20

A double dose (or triple dose, if you count Ruff and Reddy as seperate entities) of classic cartoon offerings today, to make up for the lack of a post yesterday due to commitments of the income earning variety.


Fun With Scissors - part 19

Atom Ant was a favorite of mine, and many of my friends, in 3rd and 4th grade. I remember us carving portraits of the diminutive superhero into the hard earth of the playground, then covering them with dusty soil in the belief that, thousands of years from now, archeologists would uncover these reliefs and wonder at which strange figure in our mythology it represented.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 18

Okay, so Freddie's a little tan.

I received an email asking me a question I've been asked numerous times in the past, and ask myself often, and in fact, did so in one of yesterday's posts. "How can you keep coming up with new stories for "Scooby-Doo"?"

On the plus side, the formula makes certain aspects of writing "Scooby-Doo" pretty easy. I always know how the stories will end. I know that there's a high likelihood that Shaggy will say "Zoinks!" at some point, and Velma will say "Jinkies!" and so on.

The trick, of course is coming up with schemes for the villains, and when you realize that murder is not an acceptable crime for the young readership, you soon understand why there were so many real estate scams going on in Scooby-Doo.

I often approach the stories in roundabout ways, either by thinking of a title first, or a monster I want to use, then retrofitting a plot onto those. Being a writer who has always been more character oriented, than plot oriented, I've often chosen stories based on bringing out aspects of one, or more of the Mystery Inc. members. To do this, it became necessary to actually develop characters for them. They are pretty one dimensional on the TV show.

When I started "The Dragon's Eye" (an 8-part story which ran from issue #60-#66), each chapter was designed to focus on one of the main characters. The first character was Freddie Jones, and of all the characters he's the most superfluous. He's not physically strong. Velma's just as smart, if not smarter. All he has going for him is ownership of a broken down van, and the label "leader" because of it.

So I decided to give Freddie an obsession with winning. Every mystery was solvable. They always have been, and always will, and Freddie won't let a mystery go, until he does so. It's not some dark demon, which plagues him, but a compulsion to face and beat the challenge which drives him to drop whatever he's doing in order to solve anything he perceives as being a mystery. I'd hinted at this in prior stories, and used it since, but it was Freddie's finding a case that he couldn't conquer that fueled much of "The Dragon's Eye."

to be continued with the next Scooby-Doo character...

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 17

As a kid I was somewhat creeped out by Tweety's hydrocephalic, lighbulb shaped form, but as the years went by I grew to appreciate his true, malicious nature.

My 75th Scooby-Doo Story. Zoinks!

Today SCOOBY-DOO #105 hits comic book stores. It includes three tales that I wrote, including my 75th Scooby-Doo story to see publication.

With the possible exception of fellow Scooby scribe, Robert Pope, I don't think anyone else has written more mysteries for the Scooby-Doo gang. Just as mysterious is how I managed to come up with so many variations on the tried and true formula without repeating myself, or others, along the way.

Now to see if I can make it to #100.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 16

Hong Kong Phooey, number one superguy.

Monday, February 06, 2006

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 14

My favorite voice actor of all time is Don Messick. His voice, probably most familiar as Dr. Benton Quest, or Ranger Smith on "Yogi Bear" (he was also the voice of Boo-Boo), was also immediately recognizable in what seemed like every single cartoon produced at Hanna-Barbera. He also had quite a bit of range, voicing characters such as Scooby-Doo, Astro of "The Jetsons" and even the gelatinous shape-shifters, Gloop and Gleep, on "The Herculoids." He died in 1997, the result of a stroke, but his voice lives on.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 12

While I've written plenty of Scooby-Doo stories, I've not yet attempted to render any of the characters through collage. Though the Creeper, from the episode "Jeepers, it's the Creeper" is a bit of a cheat, he was still pretty fun to do. Perhaps I'll attempt one of the Mystery Inc. members soon.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 11

I think this one is my favorite so far, and one of my favorite cartoon characters. Daffy Duck was very simple to do. Essentially a black silhouette with two feet, some finger highlights, eyes and a bill glued onto it.

Seth Fisher R.I.P.

I have just been informed that comic book artist Seth Fisher has passed away. The cause of his death has not been revealed, but in any case he was too young. His artwork has a very unique look to it, and I was privileged to have him as a collaborator on THE FLASH: TIME FLIES.

We didn't always see eye to eye on some of the visuals, but he was the one nominated for an Eisner for his work, so I guess he knew what he was talking about. I only ever spoke to him a couple of times, by phone, but he seemed to be a bright, jovial guy full of ideas and enthusiasm. You can go here to see more about Seth and his work.

My heartfelt condolences to his family and friends.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Fun With Scissors - part 10

Betty Rubble - Easy on the eyes, easy to recreate with a pair of scissors.

Betty really was the simplest one of these to do so far, except for perhaps tomorrow's character. Stay tuned...

The 8th Wonder of the World

As today is my daughter's 7th birthday, I'm honoring her request to post some pictures she drew after watching Peter Jackson's King Kong Production Diaries last month.

The first one is Ann stealing an apple, a scene which launches her onto her encounter with King Kong. Note the attention to detail on Ann's authentically styled hat.

The second drawing is of one of the big V Rex dinosaurs suspended from vines in the gorge.

The final drawing is of Kong himself as he runs loose through Manhattan.


Fun With Scissors - part 9

You may think you know him best as the voice of Freddie, on "Scooby-Doo" but Frank Welker is probably more familiar to everyone for all of the animal voices he's done in countless movies, tv shows and cartoons. Monkeys seem to be his specialty, from Blip of Space Ghost, as seen here, to the monkey in "Raiders of the Lost Ark," Frank Welker's performed their vocals. He's also done lots of dogs, parrots, and monsters including those in the Harry Potter movies, and even the live action Scooby-Doo movies. It's possible that your perception of what an animal sounds like is actually the vocal skills of one man squeaking into a microphone.