Thursday, June 26, 2014

Prince Street News: Dick Grayson: Fashion Victim!

Another too-long hiatus between episodes of PRINCE STREET NEWS, but it's back in the new BACK ISSUE!, spotlighting Batman's partners in crimefighting, including Batgirl, Man-Bat, Commissioner Gordon, and of course, Robin / Nightwing. This installment ponders the often unfortunate costumes that Mr. Richard Grayson has been saddled with over the past three quarters of a century, both in the comics and in media adaptations. This one is sure to ruffle some fanboy feathers, because there are certain creators in comics who are above reproach, and I reproach one of them.

And Hey! Look! It's the second PSN in a row that requires almost no exposition for the uninitiated!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Barcade Blackboards I

In August of 2013, I started pulling the craft beer taps at Barcade in Jersey City. In addition to bartending, I quickly asserted myself as the house blackboard artist, embellishing the kitchen specials and event signs, trying to add to the establishment's already strong identity. I love doing this stuff, and when a customer told me that he has a friend in London who has made a career out of going from pub to pub drawing their chalkboard signage for cash and pints, I suddenly flashed on a new dream career...

Anyway. Here's a sampling from the past six months. Expect more periodically. And go to Barcade, located in JC, Philly, Brooklyn, and soon, Manhattan, where I will also be making drinks and (hopefully) chalking the boards....

Friday, January 31, 2014

Prince Street News: Hulk Smash!

It's been almost a half a year since I've had a Prince Street News strip in BACK ISSUE! Magazine, but the wait, she has come to an end (even if I was the only one waiting)... BACK ISSUE! #70 takes a long green gaze at the Incredible Hulk's Bronze Era, and for the issue, I reflected upon the iconic television show starring Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno: What was and what might have been!

Below the strip is the recreation of the cover of THE INCREDIBLE HULK #152 by Herb Trimpe and John Severin.

PSN returns in BI! #73 with a look at the mostly unfortunate sartorial choices of one iconic Boy Wonder.

TV Sound CD cover

Jersey-bred rock without the cheese! TV Sound returns with AMBER GLASS HIGH, their first album in over a decade, and it is SO worth the wait! My pal Jinglejeff Maiore and the fine folks as Killing Horse Records asked me to do the design of the CD, utilizing some photos from Jeff's archives (Tony Baloney!), and here are the results. Now go buy the disc. Do it.

My Three Nipseys

I worked with my pal, Beel Hamilton on the design and layout for the band Nipsey's new ep, AS SEEN ON TV, which incorporated some olde-timey TV GUIDE style graphics, including this ad for the legendary program, MY THREE NIPSEYS. Remember? Remember?

Désir Decir flyer

A found image flyer for the band Désir Decir's show (with the Money Shot) at the Keyhole in Jersey City, 2/26/14! Go!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Wax Darts / Overlake / Crazy & the Brains flyer

It's been a long time since I've done a show flyer. This one has a turkey skeleton. You're welcome.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Cereal Monsters!

All due respect to Fruit Brute and Yummy Mummy, the unholy trinity of General Mills monster cereals remains Count Chocula, Franken Berry and Boo Berry. Since the good Count was first introduced in 1971, these terrifying parts of a balanced breakfast have become as ingrained in the sugar-addled brains of kids as Crackle, Cap'n, Tony, and Quisp. And some others. Anyway. Here's my interpretations of them.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Superheroes ala Ben Cooper!

Anyone reading this who was a kid up through the mid-1980s probably spent at least a few Halloweens trolling for candy in a costume manufactured by the Ben Cooper company.

Founded in 1937, Ben Cooper, Inc. specialized in inexpensive Halloween costumes based on fictional archetypes, historical figures, and pop culture characters. Starting with Superman in the 1950s, expanding in the 1960s and '70s, the company produced dozens of variations of costumes based on superheroes.

But kids who wanted to pretend they were Batman, Spider-Man, Green Lantern, Captain America, or any other DC or Marvel do-gooder had their bubbles somewhat burst the second they took the cheap mask and costume out of the box. Rather than being miniature versions of the actual supersuits, the Ben Cooper costumes were vague approximations at best, almost always enhanced with the name of the character plastered at least once across the chest, or head (or both!) of the flimsy smock and plastic mask. Even more head-scratching were the costumes for characters like Green Lantern, Aquaman, or Daredevil that—rather than imitate their sartorial preferences—splashed an illustration of the hero across the chest. So, you were Green Lantern wearing a Green Lantern costume that... uh, had a picture of Green Lantern on it. As if the fun-size Snickers doler-outers didn't know who Hal Jordan was!

The drawings here illustrate what it would be like if the "real" superheroes actually dressed in outfits designed by the good folks at Ben Cooper, Inc. Some of these are an amalgamation of different elements from the variations over the years, and I still have to get around to doing that Green Lantern suit (because it's crazy awesome). Happy Halloween!

NOTE: For a companion gallery of dozens of the original artifacts, surf on over to Pops!

BONUS! As I was doing research for this project, I came to discover I was not the first person to do this. The amazingly exhaustive SPIDER-MAN COLLECTOR website includes among its many images this 1960s Woolworth's ad in which the artist did the same thing (much better than I, I might add).

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Prince Street News: The Rejected Team-Ups of The Brave and the Bold

BACK ISSUE! #66 is just on the stands, spotlighting superhero team-ups of the Bronze Age of Comics! And no discussion of that topic would be complete without a look at the bizarre, continuity-obliterating stories written by Bob Haney for the Batman team-up comic book, THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD.

Haney was the antithesis of today's writers, who feel the need to reconcile every story with everything that's come before. His Batman time-traveled, palled around with the cops, and behaved however the tale required, whether it was selling his soul to the devil to escape from a death trap, using a gun, or adopting a kid. But as much free reign as Haney seemed to be given, there had to have been some team-up ideas that were nixed by the editors at DC. This installment of PRINCE STREET NEWS speculates as to a few of those ill-fated crossovers (and, for once, requires very little exposition!). True, most of these proposed funnybook partners came either before or after Haney's tenure on B&B (and he did kinda team up with Cain in B&B #93, a comic I love to death), but like the works of the wild and wacky Bob, PSN cares not for continuity!

Following the strip as it appears in the magazine, I've posted the individual covers. For more impossible comic book crossovers, check out Ross Pearsall's website, SUPER-TEAM FAMILY: THE LOST ISSUES! The next PSN (slated for BACK ISSUE! #70 way off in February of next year!) takes a gander at what was and may have been in THE INCREDIBLE HULK 1970s tee-vee show!