Monthly archives "March"

15 Articles

Robots Root – The Batgirl We Need 30 Mar 2017

Welcome to today’s edition of Robot’s Root, your 3,333rd source for standard nerd news of the moment!

Up top, in a surprise announcement via Variety, Joss Whedon is set to write and direct a Batgirl solo film. The deal isn’t done, but still, that we hadn’t heard anything about it until now is pretty impressive as far as Hollywood scuttlebutt goes.

Meanwhile, in space… this:


– I previously expressed some concern that the third prequel in the Planet of the Apes series looked bland compared to the first two… this trailer gives me more to chew on. I’m fascinated by Bad Ape and a few of the others. New trailer released today…


– Ladies and Gentlemen: Australian Sharknado!


Interesting read on the new MST3000 relaunch, starring a few familiar faces…


– Santa Clarita Season 2? CHECK!


– Here’s some largely unsubstantiated talk about Jordan Peele being courted for Akira, now. I mean hey, could happen.


– Welp, supposedly Brad Pitt was close to Cable for Deadpool 2, as evidenced by solid concept art and a quick takedown notice. But now Leitch said schedule issues pushed him out. However, Michael Shannon recently noted he wasn’t interested. Hm.


Silicon Valley in one month YAASSSSSSSSS!

ITS A ROBOT BUT ALSO A KRAKEN – Robots Root 29 Mar 2017

Welcome to today’s edition of Robot’s Root, where we touch on some current scuttlebutt that we probably won’t hit on much in the podcast itself…



Meanwhile, in space, these may be happening right now:


– Adi Shankar is rumored to be in consideration for the director’s chair for the Big Venom Film That Will Save Sony Srsly – though I have some doubts. He is a producer, but hey, he made a Venom fan film or something, so. Anyway, there’s that. I bring it up mostly because it dovetails nicely with odd news items coming out last night, mostly on Twitter, that Sony expects to pull Spidey out of the MCU after the Homecoming sequel, having been fatted up on the back of the Marvel juggernaut (well not the Juggernaut, can’t play with that toy just yet) and now able to stand on his own… which would suggest they still don’t understand why marvel films work and Sony films struggle. It’s not the characters. Link and Link


– Pixar have inexplicably named the Wreck-It Ralph sequel: Ralph Breaks The Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2. Because Wrecks the Internet, while making more sense in this context, isn’t as much a direct nod to the terrible memery we’ve lived through. I do like that they made a symbol suggesting an update to a mobile app , with the red circle. But it should have just been the number two and SCENE. Meh!


– I know a few player haters who would dig on this Method Man voice pack for COD. I mean, I don’t play enough to have or use such a thing but hey, step by step…


– Look, I can’t say that I’m particularly optimistic about Valerian. But here’s the new trailerIt looks like what George Lucas THOUGHT he was accomplishing with the prequels. But it also looks like what Luc Besson thought he was doing with Fifth Element. Le sigh


– Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio has joined the Punisher series. That’s only interesting, I guess, if you either liked her from Law and Order or Abyss or shudder Robin Hood, or if you are amused everytime two L&O actors join future projects together, as I am (D’Onofrio…)


– Paul Greengrass will apparently direct Ness, an adaptation of the true crime graphic novel Torso, one of Brian Michael Bendis’ early works, notable not only for the genre fusion (talky noir) but for him doing the art as well…


– Claus-Marc Hahn built a massive animated version of  the Red Keep using Lego and Mindstorms. See this is what I’ve always said about this awesome intro: they should have made it practical FX FFS.


– I was looking forward to less derivative material in The Last Jedi… I can accept Force Awakens as a homage or a ring or a retread, depending on your POV, but Rogue One showed that they can use McQuarrie as a springboard and design vehicles that look ‘Star Wars’ ish without just directly cloning and tweaking the previous stuffs. Not that I don’t love AT-ATs, especially Rogue One’s cargo variants… but here, supposedly for SWVIII they just doubled them in size and gave them klugey heads. We’ll see if this is legit. Pray not.


Finally… WOCHOWT!

Us You Me the Others US – 27 Mar 2017

Welcome to another edition of Robot’s Root, our update on standard nerd stuff happening right now, and mostly not discussed in our podcast in detail!
Up top: New Avengers movie! I mean Justice League…

I don’t hate the JL trailer… I struggled with the Batman dialogue though, as the header title suggests. ALso, I liked the mashup today of Avengers watching the trailer but it was a missed opportunity. They should have cut it off immediately and then ate falafel.


Meanwhile this:

Spidey on the sign is contextual and I like it. Spidey with a school jacket and earphone on while in costume is cute but makes no sense. The new trailer though looks pretty great. I like that he is getting the suit taken away, rather than earning it the first time through flashbacks or what have you. … homecoming


So Venom will be the ‘launch of a new cimematic R rated universe!’… sounds like Sony is doing what we thought Fox was doing with logan: reacting to the rating, and being overly optimistic in the property’s ability to create a franchise. Without Spidey? Hm. … c-universe


For those of you that follow the Weekly Planet podcast, or read the Mr. Sunday Movies youtube channel, the guys launched their Australia-based podcast network over the weekend, pulling together many of the region’s shows that i like, PLUS finally revealed Mr. Sunday’s secret identity, so to speak, as part of the culmination of their Movember charity event. Surreal to see his face, and his wife, and the peek behind the curtain overall. Very cool!


Nicolas Winding Refn is doing an Amazon series about underworld types trying to become ‘samurai’ in some meaning of the term, in LA… Miles Teller signed on, which might be an interesting fit. … -die-young


LOVE this shirt. Don’t love the exchange rate. Do love my local fabrics and crafts store. Actually, I hate those stores. But I love the price. Stay tuned on that!


Finally, all the character sheets for the American Gods adaptation are out. Looks so good. I’m into it! … the-series

Thanks for reading, support the Patreon!
This supports Deeply Dapper’s expenses in producing the two podcasts plus things!

Chief of Ninja Group


Long Live the Queen – 24 Mar 2017

As much as I don’t want to see anything more from Alien: Covenant, my blackout collapsed when this showed up. GREAT poster. And completely the opposite of most of the better Alien posters which are still, isolated, and claustrophobic. Well DONE!


1. Justice league promo posters and clips are Jack Blacking their way into you this week.

Flash and Wonder Woman have unremarkable posters.
But, isn’t Aquaman’s costume a hot mess here? All they had to do was give Jason Momoa some leather pants with a scale pattern and some trident and a weird crown and call it a day. link!

Meanwhile, Batman has a possibly inaccurate shiny chest symbol here, and criss-crossy arm bracer straps. The trailer comes Saturday, but in this little clip, you can see the Batmobile peppering a Parademon. link!


2. I was pretty down with the rumor that Brad Pitt was shortlisted for Cable in Deadpool 2. He’s got great comedic timing, even as a straight face role. Here’s some concept art validating how he could look, and it’s great. link!

Meanwhile the scuttlebutt is that Michael Shannon is in the lead. Who knows, really, but that works too, eh!

3. [Spoilers for the one lung I’m aware of that haven’t seen Rogue One] I love reading about alternate storylines or ending narratives for projects I loved… these are a few interesting variants on Rogue One. Earlier this week we read about versions where Krennic survived only to be killed by Vader, and another just rehashing the two-base scheme originally planned on the surface. But each of these has an interesting component to it. link!

4. The Terminator franchise is dead! Unless it’s not dead! link!

5. Here’s a short look at examples of country-specific changes to popular animated films. Pretty interesting! link! My favorite reminder of this is when I mis-rip a Blu-Ray of a film and the writing on objects like signage or what have you is in another language. I quite enjoy it.

6. Lego Collectors Edition Snowspeeder? YES PLEASE link!

7. Image
This IMAX poster for GOG 2 is coloriffic and I love it so.
And these character shots made to look like groovy bubble gum cards are excellent as well. link!

8. This posits, among other things, that Qui-Gon Jin was an unwise Jedi Master. It’s certainly my read, but I’m not convinced they felt this way when the scripts were written and the films were shot. link!

OK, back to reality. Civil liberties are being incinerated, and I need coffee…

Chief of Ninja Group


Six Seven Go To Hell or Go To Heaven – 21 Mar 2017

Tomenosuke PRO Blaster
Let me tole you: if I didn’t have kids in the home, and DID have $899 laying around…


– As much as I crave new Hans Zimmer soundtracks, this interview, reposted across various sites, warmed my heart a bit, because I share a devotion to the Nolan Batman films as well. It’s a very intimate and purposeful connection, the soundtrack developed for that trilogy and the material itself. Nolan and Zimmer work well together, thematically (witness Inception and Interstellar for examples outside of the superhero genre) and when Zimmer did the Man of Steel soundtrack, while it was excellent and distinct, it was lending some of that former world’s pedigree to the new films in a way I found disconnected. link!

– Sony wants to proceed with fast-tracking Venom, without a script or director… in the post-Marvel-deal era, what do YOU want from a Venom film? I can’t decide. I really don’t like the character outside of Spidey using the suit and then slowly going batty from the symbiote’s influence. Once it jumped to other hosts and became 90seriffic, I was out. I do like the black ops version from recent years in the comics, but I don’t see how it would translate. link!

– Similarly, WB / DC seem intent on keeping the Flash moving forward (heh) despite multiple issues with the pre-production. That’s not a good sign. link!

– RIP Bernie Wrightson. That escalated fast.
Not my artistic influence, and I didn’t read a lot of his stuff, but I always admired it from a technical level and enjoyed reading about his convention persona. link!

– We’re doomed. More. link! Mega-rich oligarches in powered armor!

– random Kraken-related jewelry for the day. AMAZING.

-I’m trying not to read anything about GOG2 these days… but I can’t get enough on Yondu’s cyber mohawk. link!

– Expanse has been greenlit for Season 3, so I can now relax.

– Alicia Vikander may be joining a new Ben Wheatley project involving kicking nocturnal underground beastie ass. His current project looks insane and awesome, so let’s be optimistic.

– Becky Cloonan’s poster for Ghost in the Shell is EVERYTHING. link!

– Reddit is questionable for a lot of things. But the AMA (Ask Me Anything) series is not one of them. Here’s Gareth Edwards… link!

Your random Mike Mignola block-rockin art used as a bossbot’s iphone screen for today.

– I’m generally not a fan of cosplayers photographed and then given a bunch of post FX. I like the craft of the costuming itself, and that’s as far as I go. However, this is really well done. link!

– Apparently Hela knows capoeira in the new Thor film. I appreciate it’s a gladiator road trip movie, but that’s quite a diversion from the comics. Then again, probably a welcome one. Stand around and glower megagod types are boring on film. link!

– Good news for this guy, having just finished Peaky Blinders S03… S04 is due to begin production, and Tom Hardy will return. link!

– So Fox’s X-Men show for broadcast TV? The one with a family on the run with a mutant child, which seems to have little to know recognizable X-anything in it except for Sentinels? Is it going to be called Mutants on the Run? MutantsSuxxxx? Mutant? Nope. GIFTED. Srsly. I was gifted. I had to do more homework. That is all. link!

Here’s your random Black Adam speculative rendering for today, by Chris Diem. Love it. Great proof of concept…

– Henry Cavill is on board for MI: 6. That’s interesting! I hope he’s a villain. Not a team member who betrays them, but a proper villain. link!

– How strange the wheel is… Matt Vaughn gave the X-Men franchise a brief moment of hope, before getting forced out by Bryan Singer. Now, after doing his own thing (Kick Ass, Kingsmen) he’s back in the big studio system’s favor for supehero tentpoles, being supposedly courted for the next Superman film. If true, that’s something to be modestly optimistic about, similar to what happened with batman. link!

Here’s your random Bill S. pic of the day: Dr Doom!

OK, that’s all for now. Fear not and be just!
Remember, and I’ll remind you a lot in the coming days, I suspect:

– visit for all your standard nerd news, as well as updates on the podcast itself
– visit Instagram for topical updates on TRDL art stuffs
– visit Facebook (the TRDL Page, the TRDL Art Jam Group, the Robot-Kraken Group) for all your facebooky news (including process pics and WIPS and the like, as well as jam updates)
– visit deviantArt for the latest jam action
– and as always, visit for your collectible art print and book needs!

Chief of Ninja Group


The Robot-Kraken Podcast – Episode 29: (March 2017)


The Robot-Kraken Podcast – Episode 29: (March 2017)

It’s March… or has been for two weeks now… In this episode of Robot-Kraken, Kris and Thom review Powerless on NBC, Legion on FX, and wax nostalgic, during our Shipyard segment, about how digital technology changed how we produce our art.

As always, you can stream the episode by clicking the button above or HERE and subscribe, listen and rate us on iTunes too!

0:00 – Introduction

2:00 – Milking Otters and the Pens That Hold Them

4:20 – Surviving the Existential Art Crisis
6:15 – Rogue One Round Two
11:00 – SUCKING THE MONKEY:  Back in piratey days, often rum and alcohol was forbidden on the ship, so buccaneers and sailors would smuggle alcohol aboard hidden in coconuts. Drinking from this undoubtedly delicious contraband was called Sucking The Monkey!
Kris: Leinenkugal Bavarian Dunkel
Thom: Olmeca Altos Agave Tequila (ruined with Mr. & Mrs. T)
16:20 a BB-8 Intervention
19:40 POWERLESS REVIEW (Spoilers)
39:30 In Which Thom Insists Ron Funches Was Replaced… But he Wasn’t. FAKE NEWS
41:30 [Wilted] Red Tentacle – the in-show parody commercial
48:45 THE SHIPYARD – Digital tools and how they changed our methods of making art
Kris: Traditional tools, lightboxing, inking rudiments, Wacom
Thom: Hypertext, MacPaint, Wacom and Cintiq in photoshop, now Ipad Pro/Apple Pencil/Procreate
Joao: Surface Pro and Manga Studio
1:34:00 Thom Attempts to Ascribe Kris’ Art to Another Cooler Tattoo Artist
1:35:00 Brush Pens but also Kris Proves it’s His Design; Foam Tips; Pentel Pocket Brushes; Kuretake
1:44:00 Thom has NO MORE NUMBER THREES
1:48:00 The TRDL ART JAM: Want to participate in the TRDL Art Jam? The TRDL Jam runs weekly but remains open indefinitely. The complete list of jam topics by date can be found here:
This month’s Jam: WEAPONS, all 4 weeks
1:49:20 MICRO-REVIEWS: VICTORIA on PBS and CROWN on Netflix
1:51:00 Can you Draw to it?
1:54:00 Dodgy Commission Art and Nude Layers
1:55:25  He-Man is Everything
2:00:30 Black Licorice Tea / Brew Free or Die IPA to Stave Off Consumption
2:05:00 LEGION REVIEW, but also Suicide Squad, the Oscars, and Things
2:07:00  Kris Scares Thom’s Children
Kris: Get Out
Thom: Peaky Blinders
This podcast may also be enjoyed on Youtube: Please subscribe!


ROBOT KRAKEN is a MONTHLY podcast by two indie artists, Kristopher McClanahan of Deeply Dapper and Thom Chiaramonte of the Third Rail Design Lab. We get together and talk about comics, movies, working the table at comic cons, life in this nerdy wonderland, and whatever mumblings from the deep we come across. You can find out more about us, contact us or follow along our journey at iTunes – Stream & Download –

Visit Deeply Dapper at FanX in SLC This Weekend

Chris of Deeply Dapper will be at FanX in Salt Lake City, Utah this weekend. He’ll have all of his usual nerdy goods like flasks, soaps, prints, metal plate appliques, etc plus he’s bringing a limited number of copies of his new Princess Bride poster! Check him out at Table GOLD 26


Ghost in the Book – 15 March 2017

Guess what arrived on pre-order, now waiting to be viewed AFTER I see the film with one lung? That’s like a month away… guh.


Anyone have $200K + a truck and trailer they can loan me? link! But srsly, tho, that can be towed on public roadways. It’s like a steroid version of taking the jetski out on the weekend.

I tend to think of each Pixar film from the perspective of what new tool they introduce with the project. I’m biased, having friends in that specific department at the studio. But man, on top of the rest of the imagery that I’ll be enjoying on this one… glowing underworld flower petal tool! link!

Weird robot hotel? Check.!

Hot damn I’m down: Becoming Bond, a semi-surreally-fictionalized-true-interview with Lazenby. Hulu, May. link!

The ongoing Big Hero Six animated series has been greenlit for S02 and S01 doesn’t even get released until fall. That Stan lee is involved, and life is short, may or may not factor. link!

I’m not a superfan of Neil Gaiman (there goes our podcast membership by 30%) and haven’t read American Gods, but hot damn, I’m on board. Plus, Crispin Glover big bad alert! link!

Dig this film short for Gernsback Continuum, from Mirroshades back in the day. Gibson adapted once again (or first) better than Johnny Mnemonic… link!

1:1 scale AT-ATs are the best AT-ATs. link!

“I didn’t have to worry about Graff. He was brown-nosing for a promotion, so he didn’t want me back anyway.” I still can’t believe that Olmos is coming back. I’m so stoked.

I’m sad to read that Chris Evans is [supposedly, verbally] intending to walk away after his contract is up, not because I’m not realistic, but because I love him in the role and would like to see more Cap focused content like Winter Soldier. But hey, RDJR was supposdly done several movies ago. Of course, when you are behind CGI armor, it’s easier to do that role longer and be less in shape, and the Cap role requires sizzlechest. link!

Other news to sadden some and embolden the optimisms of others, including this guy, is that Matt Reeves is having a full scale rewrite done of the Batman script. This should be expected: it’s the terms he negotiated. His world view, his baby now. Meaning very likely no Deathstroke… we’ll see. But again, i’m all for him having his vision. link!

Finally, Legion has been renewed, which is GREAT news. It was a short season and a complete story, meaning not stretched out to meet studio demands, meaning a story presumably feeling cohesive… meaning a new season will be a new self-contained narrative, one hopes. link!

Chief of Ninja Group


Vampire Road Trips and Other Things – 13 Mar 2017

Preacher Season Two is imminent!


– Well, I know these theme park events are supposed to be dramatic, but wow. Hope that doesn’t have a metaphorical connection to the quality of Skull Island (early reports are that it is in fact sweet-as) link!

– Zazie Beets has been officially cast as Domino in Deadpool 2, beating out (if they were ever truly in contention) many others. I think she looks neat, so. I haven’t seen Atlanta… link!

– WHAT. Check this out, but only if you’ve seen LOGAN: link!

– Generally speaking, I’m not the target market for the Belko Experiment. I don’t like pressure cooker dramas where people are forced to hurt their friends and loved ones in psychotic gamery (Saw) and I still feel like all of these Battle Royale knock-offs pale in comparison to the original manga and later film. However, a) James Gunn and 2) it’s gonna be awesome and d) THE MARKETING. link!

– This just in, from the “We Dont Deserve This Future – But We’ll Take It” department: a T-rex is running a D&D game on Twitter: link!

– This is a nice touch, for fans of the GitS OAV: link!

– This marketing promo for Walter (Weyland-Yutani) is enough for me to declare A:C 100% minimum awesome. I mean, sure the movie will be much worse, but this commercial alone, I just want to watch it on endless loop. link!

Read that fine print!

– oh, is it 2014? link!

– I tried to avoid watching this trailer, and I managed about 5 days… anyway, yeah, I’m INNNNNN: link! It’s like the Salt but more Salt THAN Salt.

– Vanessa Kirby may be in MI: 6 (! the name!) but on the other hand, seeing now that she is naturally blonde, I’m less enthused. I like her as a brunette on the Crown. link!

– Watched by my wife and daughter maybe 33 times this weekend: link! I’m in it for the shin skids, you know that.

– I’m of two minds on Baby Driver. I love the supporting cast, driving stunts, one last job, etc etc etc. On the other hand, Angel Elgort Ansel Upsnort or whatever it is, don’t like him, and also ‘And that’s what makes him THE BEST!” is the worst line ever to come out of Kevin Spacy’s mouth. And that includes that talking cat movie. link! Still, trust in Edgar Wright…

– Finally, they cleaned up the Tick suit. We reviewed the Amazon pilot on Robot-Kraken months back, and it’s good to see the show moving forward. The suit’s design was over textured, and I’m glad to see them simplify. It’s like moving from concept art to reality. link!

Chief of Ninja Group


Micro-Review: Blade Runner in the Wild and etc 9 March 2017

Micro-Review: Blade Runner in the Wild
A few weeks back I had the opportunity to see an outdoor showing of Blade Runner, accompanied by our own One Lung. It was pretty amazing. The cut was the director’s edition, no voice-overs, no happy ending.

I got their early, expecting it to be packed, being a small outdoor viewing area with limited seating, and a hipster neighborhood in a hipster town (SF)… what I hadn’t anticipated was the fear of FREEZING, as it was extremely (regional context) cold and very windy, and the previous night’s original showing date was canceled due to heavy rain.

As a result, I was sitting out there for about 40 minutes before Lung showed up, tucked into my blankets and snow gear, ha. The guys from Fort Point Brewery were on hand wth IPAs so I had one of those, and once Lung arrived I ordered a pizza from a deep dish place up the street.

The pizza time ran long due to Saturday night crowds, so I missed a chunk of the film, after Leon’s test and up until Rachel shows up at Deckard’s house. So no owls for me. However, in the meantime, my handy Dharma flask from Deeply Dapper kept me warm! The pizza was excellent, the film was especially immersive, being outdoors in a high traffic area, where we had a line of honking cars and yelling pedestrians, and lots of lights and activity, just at the peripheral of the screen. It was like a poor man’s Star Tours, but in an expensive city and with less intended motion.
So awesome.


– Who doesn’t need ALIEN tiki mugs in their lives?

– The first review of Iron Fist is in, and it isn’t… favorable. Wow. I’m still optimistic. I seemed to have tolerated Cage’s slow spots and dubious final boss more than most. But I think when you already have a street level martial artist (Daredevil) it is hard to make IF compelling unless you go WHOLE HOG with the asian mysticism… but from the trailers, and this review, it sounds more like another run at Stark, boardrooms, and whining. We’ll see. At least it’s going to be better than the ABC stuff.

– GREAT ‘Different Spider-Man Comic’ … 100% MINIMUM ACCURATE

– This is my kind of conspiracy theory!

– So this is what that Hulk-with-claws image was about. MEH. Make that Weapon MEH.

– The best Pez Dispenser (design) EVER. EVVVVVVARRR


This remains my favorite standalone Hellboy image ever. Ever ever? Ever EVER. I had a print of it years ago, long destroyed, and I had an original pen sketch of similar profile, which was also destroyed due to UV foolishness. Love it.

Related: The Mignola Appreciation Group on FB often posts ‘sound effect’ of the day… based obviously on the enthusiasms around Mignola’s choices of onomatopoeia… this is my current favorite example. Best Drip Drip Drip of the Day.

This manip still cracks me up.

Chief of Ninja Group