Wednesday, May 31, 2017
Saturday, May 27, 2017
Secret of nihm is my favorite Don Bluth movie. While a number of his films cater exclusively to the youngest of kids, which I suppose cartoons probably should, secret of nihm is at times definitely not for children.
Secret of NIHM follows the adventures of Mrs. Brisby, the recently widowed mouse taking care of her sick child. Because her late husband, Jonathan, died a hero, Mrs Brisby is destined to save the field from an unknown danger. While many of the creatures in the field, the land surrounding a farmer's house, lead simple lives, the rats are far from ordinary rodents. Living within the farmer's rose bush, the rats have mastered electricity and even some form of magic. All thanks to NIHM.
The National Institute of Mental Health has a vested interest in the rats, calling throughout the movie and asking about their abilities. Abilities the received after they were captured on the streets and injected with untested chemical formulas. A number of rats and mice we subjected to the trials and found they were learning to read and figure their way out of their cages.
They escaped and while most of the mice were lost in an air duct (a character points out they absolutely died, just one of the dark tones of the movie), two survived, one being Jonathan Brisby, who earned the rats' eternal gratitude by opening the final hate to their freedom.
NIHM wants to clear out the rats for whatever reason and they know it, preparing for a move to a safer place. Before they can go, they pledge to help move Brisby's home from the party of the farmer's plow. She can't move her family because her son is sick with pneumonia, being treated by the other surviving mouse from NIHM, Mr. Ages, wise intelligence manifested in medical knowledge.
Secret of NIHM is an incredible movie, early one of the best to come out of the 80s. And like many others of this age, it had it's fair share of villains. Though NIHM is treated as the big looking evil threatening all of the rats, there's a traitor on their midst with Jenner. He wants to take control of leadership by killing Nicodemus, the eldest and wisest among them. He uses Brisby's relocation as the best opportunity, cutting the ropes holding the cinder block home aloft and crushing the old rat under it.
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Old School Evil hasn't made much progress, but I'm joining a Finishers critique group so I'm hoping to have the first book polished and ready to publish soon. I'm not sure when I'll publish it though, there are a few more things I want to have ready before I put it out there. I'm kinda wondering if I should set up a deadline, like the new year or something... In the meantime, I'm still researching how to do it, with the covers, the formats, and everything else.
Monday, May 22, 2017
I decided the only way to really find out is a tournament. Thirty-two villains step into the ring, two-by-two and fight it out. I created a bracket and randomized the entries. A few of the villains I've covered in my series won't be admitted here - Emperor Dark for not doing anything for his whole series, Dr. Claw for being mostly hidden through his series, and Baron Greenback for being a tiny toad. Unicron and Cobra-La are also out since they both kind top the charts. But the rest of the contenders can be seen here:
For each fight, I'm going with Death Battle rules - I'll be watching each show and take notes of each villain's powers and abilities. I'm limiting myself first 13 episodes of each show to be fair to those shows that didn't make it that far. Each round will be made in two posts - the first week will cover the villains' abilities through the episodes, and the following week will have the results, told in a short story since I'm not about to try to animate this. I wish I had some way to show it better, but I'm hoping to at least draw some picture of the winner triumphant.
Of course, I welcome everyone's comments on who they think should win, and I'm looking forward to hearing any disagreements, but please realize, this isn't going to be a popularity contest. If it was, I'd automatically make Megatron the winner. But I'm curious who really kicks the most ass here and I want to be as impartial as possible.
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Was this ever in question? There are good reasons why he's always been my favorite villain. He's extremely powerful, intelligent, and intimidating. Frank Welker lends him a threatening voice and one of the best maniacal laughs in cartoons. People may give him crap for transforming into a pistol that needs to be shot by someone else, but I have no problem with it. Makes more sense to me than a camera at least.
I've got to give this guy credit - he took over almost the entire country, turning half of it into his Spiral Zone and reducing its citizens to mindless zombies. He sees the Zone Riders's plans from a mile away, often times turning their tricks against them. It's not often you see a villain so capable and creating such a threat against half the population.
I understand why they made named Saw Boss like they did, but wouldn't it have made more sense to give him a different name since most of the time he doesn't have a saw? It's not like he turns into the bladed vehicle all that often, instead sitting on a chair, telepathically commanding his troops. Saw Boss is also in the odd situation as the villain hunting the good guys down in every episode, instead of them stopping the Monster Minds from some criminal act, so you'd think he'd have an easier time completing his goals, but no, he can't even catch them either.
I absolutely hate this guy. He's so incredibly bland! He's a mob boss, so let's make him fat and talk in a stereotypical mafia accent and give him a pet to stroke. But he's in the future so let's give him a metal hand and do the same thing to his pet. He fills the role of the villain who barely does anything, instead barking orders to others and yelling at them when they fail even though he did nothing to help out. Such a complete loser of a bad guy.
What do you think of the lists? Do you disagree? Maybe you think Big Boss kicks ass and Megatron sucks eggs. Leave a comment and let me know. And if I left anyone off the list, make sure to check out the Villain Retrospects page to see what other villains I've covered.
Sunday, May 14, 2017
Wednesday, May 10, 2017
I'm also working on a graphic for the Bad Guy Beatdown coming up this month and a few infographics for next week's post as well. Still trying to hammer out some art style to use for the combatants along with more Flashback Friday characters. It's an art-centric week!
Tuesday, May 9, 2017
I have no idea how I missed Dino-Riders as a kid. This show would have been so up my alley my head would have exploded. It takes all the dinosaur action from Dinosaucers and amps it up to 11 with people riding fully-armed terrible lizards! Up until this point, my life has been a lie, but now I finally see what's been missing this whole time.
The cartoon is incredibly well animated for its initial episode, including a lot of special effects and great 80s dinosaur anatomy (the Godzilla-like T-Rex stance). It looks amazing and is a fantastic way to start the show. While the following episodes have a bit of a drop in quality, I would say it still is a little higher than its peers - I didn't spot any animation errors or recycled animation.
Friday, May 5, 2017
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
The decision has been made to self-publish Old School Evil. The agent search, though short, has been extremely disheartening. I haven't come to this decision lightly, but I want to have creative control over the project, including cover and other art assets and I feel this is the best way to go. It'll still be a while before I'm ready to publish though - I've decided I want to go through another draft or two to clean things up and add some stuff in. I think in the end, the book will be that much better for it. I'm also hoping to get into a critique group that covers finished novels so I can make sure it's totally ready.
Because of the changes to the plan for Old School Evil, a few things have been cut as well. As I originally envisioned making a toyline and a webcomic that used the toys, I realized that was way too much work at this time and have put it on the backburner. I would still love to make the toys someday, but I think I'd prefer to wait and see if I receive any amount of success with the book before I try it. Maybe I'll do some Heroclix-type figures before stepping up to full-sized action figures, but that's still going to be a while.
I'm still planning to finish the show's various titles and logo images, but I think it'll be a little while before I finish any more of them. I need to rework a number of the logos I've already shared here. And probably redo that terrible Flashback page.