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127 Articles

Paupers Graves and Saber Waves – 14 Aug 2018

 

This Mondo poster is by Mark Aspinol. I’m not fond of how the ships are flying off of Kylo Ren’s shoulder, but there’s other compositional choices I really like: for example, the symbolic imagery of the figure placement (Kylo’s back, the fact that they are back to back as per the big scene in Snoke’s throne room) is rad, and it allows the glow of each lightsaber to shine on the opposing character, expressing their instability in the light/dark choice and the concept of balance. I loved the ships in Kylo Ren’s cloak’s negative space. I like that his lightsaber breaks the frame, which I feel expresses his surprise Act 2 choice… Anyway, fun with arts.

From the Shimmer:

  • By the end of S01, Hulu’s Runaways started to follow the beats of the comic, which is exciting. Of course, they haven’t dipped into the big gut-punch of the comic’s first series, but I don’t know yet if they will. That gives it some refreshing urgency. Anyway, S02 synopsis is out, and it looks like it’s diving into the titular on-the-run period we’ve been waiting for.
  • I don’t know what Tax Collector is going to be about (no one does) but I like Ayers overall, and I don’t mind Shia Lebouf the way others generally do. This was an intriguing image for me. I’m into it.
  • The other week I was saying I never really liked the Predator design, and of course there was pity and outrage. Anyway, not like I didn’t watch the movies. I’m a generational dudebro. But anyway, I remember even as a kid wondering how that mouth works. This article is pretty entertaining: no tongue? What the hell? How does it eat, let alone eat sushi
  • New Wes Anderson film is in production! What about? Don’t know, don’t care, take my money.
  • This is the first Venom image I’ve actually liked, in terms of the design. I like that he’s big, and the eyes and grin look better in profile (the eyes want to be farther apart like an animal to me, not straight ahead in the simian manner) and I like that the white sinewy veins are taking the place of the spider symbol. I said this on the podcast though: sometimes Brock’s head is in the head, and other times (like when Riot takes his head off) he’s down in the core of the torso like a mecha pilot. I wonder if this is just sloppiness, or f it’s by design, like he’s being shifted around in an egg sac to protect him. Late night, a couple of cocktails, and I was amused that it was like the same sort of mystery pilot jenga that puts Batman face down when he wants to shoot something in the Tumbler. HA. Meanwhile, Sony shoots itself in every foot it can find: now it is going for a PG-13 rating so they can better ‘integrate’ into the MCU if that ever becomes a possibility. GUH.
  • Ongoing highly speculative theories about what Disney will do in dismantling Fox are ongoing. Mostly about two key points: bringing X-Men and FF into the Marvel fold (let alone all those other properties ready to be strip-mined), and the status of the raunchy R-rated stuff. At least the ‘months of reshoots’ story seems to be hyperbole.
  • Josh Trank’s Fonzo: Al Capone by Tom Hardy who, when faced with perpetual criticism for his weird vocal choices, triple-downed and based Capone on Bugs Bunny with vocal fry. I’m actually into it. I hate his accent and slur as Eddie Brock, but I loved his Bane, loved his Peaky Blinders stuff, and I’m all for this. Capone DID have a weird nasally, highly regional accent. Hardy give precisely zero shits.
  • I don’t think anyone believes Chris Pine and Chris Hemsworth really walked away from ST4… here’s hoping the producers do, so they get their money. I’m not saying any of these actors deserve or necessarily NEED huge salaries that have so outpaced the scale of their work, but I do think the studios are generally stupid about these negotiations. They went to stars of major franchise work and just when you expect the battle will be about them wanting even MORE money (especially Hemsworth)… the studio scales the budget back and asks for pay cuts in violation of their contracts. I get this is how it works, on both sides, fighting to modify contracts… but seriously.
  • On the Robot-Kraken Podcast we talked about how it felt like a missed opportunity to not let Goliath grow in the third act of Ant-Man and Wasp… apparently there was a scene planned… but it was a flashback. I agree, though, that would have been narratively redundant.
  • Shane Black is all for a Nice Guys sequel… I don’t feel it is necessary. It’s a perfect standalone film. But I’d also 100% endorse it if he kept the vibe. Their charisma was electric. I guess neon, given the time period. Lazy incandescent?

Robot-Kraken Podcast Ep. 45 Now Available – When in Doubt, Goggins Out!

Robot-Kraken Episode 045 – July 2018 “When in Doubt, Goggins Out!“

Your regular host Thom ‘Third Rail Design Lab’ Chiaramonte and guest host Blake ‘Begin Again’ Simmons review and discuss Deadpool 2, Solo, Ant-Man and Wasp, current events and more!

:::

 

Show notes, for SCIENCE:

Sucking the Monkey Segment:

  • Blake: Chardonnay
  • Thom: Margarita

News:

  • Steve Ditko and Stan Lee
  • So Many Jokers
  • Neil Blomkamp and Robocop
  • Olivia Wilde
  • Sofia Boutella
  • Cara Gee
  • The Snapture
  • Doctor Doom on film

Monkey-Jacket Musing: What Characters Should Have a Solo Film Set Directly After the Snapture?

  • Blake: Jessica Jones and other street level heroes, Agents of Shield
  • Thom: Fantastic Four as a science-based alternative to supers

 

Review: Deadpool 2

Review: Solo

Review: Ant-Man and Wasp

(Red Tentacles and Black Octopuses… seem to have been lost to the cyber-seas)

 

Rum-Fueled Recommendations:

  • Blake: Cold souls
  • Thom: Luke cage

 

Planned plundering:

  • Blake: Annihilation
  • Thom: Night flyer

:::

Download this episode directly if you like!

 

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 robot-kraken.com

iTunes – http://bit.ly/RoboApple

Stream & Download – http://bit.ly/RoboDapper

Where Are You Now? – Robots Root 8 Aug 2018

Ruby Rose’s casting as Batwoman was of the most interest to me in the recent news cycle. I alternate between liking her and being cool on her… but I think she has chops and edge, and I like the LGBTQ element, even if it’s pandering to some. I guess it goes both ways though: casting a straight actor in a hugely prominent non-straight role is equally controversial, as we have seen before many, many times. I’m all for it. My one concern, and this is somewhat like how I felt when Gal Gadot was first cast as Wonder Woman: Rose is very, very wiry. They’ll make it work, but it’s going to be interesting. I just hope it’s not about burying her in armor. Bury her in a good wig!

 

Beyond the deepest of deeps, something emerges:

  • Endlessly pairing Star Wars characters together to rationalize a lineage for Rey is pretty boring stuff, and while I get the symmetry in having Rey’s folks be Q’ira and Han, MEH I says. What about Bossk? Lobot? Give me something more interesting, if they have to be anyone at all. Fuck it. IG-88!
  • When I first read possible news of Jon Favreau’s Star Wars series being set on Mandalore, I was B O R E D… but then I read that it would be post-Empire Mandalore, which becomes much more interesting. Maybe? $100M interesting, anyway.
  • In the ongoing fiction that Infinity War’s stakes mean something, Maria Hill and Nick Fury will appear in the next Spder-Man film. Sure, it could be flashbacks. Or whatever. Just show me a good film!
  • Well, Bruce Willis, man of a million low budget projects, WAS to star in a Moviepass feature film. HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAH. uh.
  • I was never convinced by this project. However, I held out slim hope that they’d somehow make it batshit crazy and therefore entertaining. Hiatus doesn’t mean dead, but they JUST cast the female lead and had a director on board. I smell a script problem.
  • This isn’t quite the LEGO BATMAN R/C car I was envisioning, but I’m still in favor. Go to hell, doggo!
  • My daughter will be interested in this.

MAH MAN – Robots Root 19 July 2018

Look, I’m as surprised as you are. I LIKE the classic colors here. What a (rare) successful update of a golden age look! The other statues show details from the costumes that I quite like as well. More, including the costumes on display at SDCC here.

 

Also, dig the BRINE KING yall.

 

Meanwhile,

  • Comcast, bless their cold, vindictive hearts, caved and dropped out of their bidding for Fox’s assets. They were mostly after the sports division, I think. But still. The idea of Fox and Comcast being connected displeased me. It was like a landfill filled with corpses. Metaphorically.
  • Shile ST4 having a female crewperson added, a female villain, and a female director, are all welcome things… I’m still not sure about dredging up Kirk’s pappy. Unless he were UNDEAD.
  • So stoked on the Umbrella Academy adaptation.
  • Remember when I was joking (so to speak) about how the Robin promo pic looked all grim and gritty, reminding me of the Snyderverse-version Robin uniform shown in B V S… well, it looks like they dove deep.
  • Meanwhile, the details about the Joker film sound pretty predictable to this guy. Fortunately Zazie Beatz will (presumably) be in it so thats a reason to see it anyway.
  • In this skit about Batman trying to join the cool kids Avengers table, I liked how the laughter from the audience dipped a bit once Andy as Robin started shredding the Marvel characters.
  • James Gunn being fired from GOG3 over his well-established early jack-ass tweets, which were previously cleared by Disney… this is beyond strange and frankly smacks of pandering. Especially given this was all known and resolved prior, and had been dredged up by conservatives in response to his political attacks on the Trump Administration. So, more to the point and less about politics, scandal was created to silence a voice. One more casualty of the current hypocrisy.

Finally, I leave you with a successful piece of targeted marketing for this guy:

Alfred Has the Moves – Robots Root 9 July 2018

Look, I’ve watched this about 33 times and it’s not old yet. It’s amazing. AMAZING.

Meanwhile, for science:

Legend of the White Tail Deer Hunter trailer

The Captain trailer

Captain Marvel and Avengers 4 merch sheets

and more (with jacket)

Doomed Mos Eisley movie

More grim and gritty Robin

How Infinity War should have ended.

Why a Baby Driver sequel?

Who is Captain America’s costume designer?

Tom Hardy as the next Bond?

Early concept art for War Machine and Black Widow

Here’s a Call of Cthulu game review. If you read it, you’ll start smelling colors, so beware!

MIA’s Paper Planes supercut with MUSKETS instead of gunfire. It’s a nearly 13 minute video, so high concept and pretty great. You don’t have to watch it. Just enjoy that it exists. Two minutes in and it wasn’t even done with the first volley in the main refrain, because the musket rate of fire is like 30s. The video is intercut with some Austrian 18th century recreationist group on a parapet somewhere. Hilarious. I appreciate.

Anime style fanarts of popular 80s action/SF movies activated!

7,000 degrees Kelvin. ha! Also I love both of those, though i’ve never tried them together…

Merpeople Attackeds! WOCHOWT, guy from Masterpiece Theater’s Victoria~

I just can’t wrap my head around the idea that there hasn’t been a live-action Gundam yet. Seems the technology is ready.

 

Thats all for now! Back to melting alive while your eyeballs implode!

Save it for Comic Con – Robot’s Root 12 June 2018

This Spider-Verse movie may be the best comic-related anything ever, film specific. I’m astonished at how good it FEELS. Also, i’m in it for the cop dad.

 

  • Doctor Doom looks less likely, meaning even more likely a wholesale transition to Marvel’s stable.
  • For this guy, the Hit-Girl and related properties have lost their luster, but Millar and Vaughn have plans for more. Meanwhile, there’s another Kingsman movie in the works (I’m OK with it I suppose) and a turn of last century prequel (that’s what caught my eye, obviously)…
  • How about a GoT prequel set millennia earlier? You got it. Add it to the flaming pile…
  • I’ve got a fever, and the only cure is more Predators in my Predator. I guess.
  • Geoff Johns is out, but is he down? He’s still writing Green Lantern Corps, and now rumor has it Jim lee is stepping up to try and right the DCEU ship.
  • Kidding looks A M A Z I N G.
  • Bad Times at the What i TOLE!
  • Here’s a summary of all the supposed DCEU films in development. It’s stir crazy.
  • I admit I kind of want to draw all these heroes killed in Incredibles 1… or already dead… or what have you. Capes, bots, etc.
  • A well-reasoned and thoughtful consideration to the question: Is is disrespectful to drive around a dead Autobot as a car?
  • Tran leaving social media was probably good for her mental health, but sucks for all of us. She was an awesome celeb to follow, and really loved Star Wars fandom, the same crew that ate her alive and then complained about the taste.
  • I don’t know why, but I like when supers costumes are damaged or modified, as if purpose built and then evolved as circumstances change. Like Captain America’s main suit transitioning to a ‘covert ops’ version, in turn basically debadged and worn down by the time Infinity War happens. Or, as we see in this pic of Janet Van Dyne, layered.
  • So stoked on the new Hellboy film. Mignola nails it.
  • These games continue to fascinate me, even as I have no time to play them. The societal evolution in the worlds and the mechanics that allow for it is good reading.
  • I haven’t even CRACKED Star Wars: Battlefront 2 yet, but the Han Solo packs look good.

Thats all for today… still decompressing from SFCC and preparing for Fandemic!

Cheesesteak Cheese Sauce Gumming up My Bricks – Root 5 June 2018

 

  • BRICSBURGH. That’s inspired.
  • I was expecting to dislike the VANS X MARVEL collaboration, because I was a Vision kid, basically, so how could we not have the synchronicity of Vision Visions?! But anyway, the Black Panther ones are cool, and I’ve seen the Captain Marvel hi tops (apparently for women but you could size them up if you are not one) and those are probably my favorites, with the star symbol wrapping around the heel.
  • It’s astonishing how good a Transformers movie looks when stripped down and non-Bay’d. Lots of wonder here. Also, Starscream (or whichever) steals it for me.
  • This new Jurassic World poster is some of the worst Photoshop Disaster material in recent memory. That Stegasaurus with flailing legs and an expression like it sat on a spear is killing me. Also that mutated goat dino or whatever at 2:00. I mean, wait, maybe this is the best poster ever.
  • This is designed for the smaller GoPro Sessions model, but at $1.09 for the car chassis itself, it’s a no-brainer. I’M ON IT. And by on it, I mean I’m taking an existing car from the bin, pulling the body, and mounting my own Go Pro 4 onto it, as this one is designed for the Session (discontinued) and looks, and I care about neither. Still on it.
  • I’m stoked about the Wreck-it Ralph sequel, especially the Disney Princess situation. I can’t help but wish that disastrous Emoji movie hadn’t come along and burned through these concepts like a really rough trade shitty pr0n to this film’s high budget ladyerotica. If that makes sense.
  • I’m very interested in Widows, from the cast to the director. And of course, the subject matter… in three years we’re going to see Disney/Marvel production artists trying desperately to come up with a sufficiently interesting logotype for the Widow movie of course…
  • This is old, but I still go back to it. We’re a BB-9E household (BB-H8) so the kids love this video. I personally adore pissy robots.
  • This is a GREAT concept for a Boba Fett film. Legacy, not the man. Especially given how lackluster the man actually was. Focusing on the armor passing from guy to guy with different roles is a neat nod to the fact that all any of us of the ESB generation really care about is how the figure looked, anyway.
  • Great treatise on what makes a good action movie. It’s heavy on the DCU criticism, but the points are sound.

Apropos of nothing, I spotted this really bad CGI WW face in that video. Makes the mustache-removal look great!

 

Miscellaneous Bits and Pieces:

  • Before Expanse was saved by Amazon, someone sent up a model of the Roci into the upper atmosphere. I MEAN.

 

 

  • This remains my favorite Mondo poster EBAHHHHH. The skull, guise.

 

 

  • On the Robot-Kraken Podcast I referenced the quote that Wakanda looked like Jet Magazine from the 90s (Honest Trailers) … evidence!

 

 

  • When writing the TRDL character origins, i do a lot of research. I stumbled across this very interesting Aztec deity. My new neck tattoo!

 

THOM OUT!

No Good to Me Dead – Robots Root 25 May 2018

Mangold… on board Boba Fett?!? I mean, look: I’m part of the generation of fans that irrationally LOVES Boba Fett, but not part of the generation of fans that loves all those clone business. But if they took the right approach, this could be a pretty innovative piece of the extended SW saga. I want a heist and hunt film, come on!

Meanwhile, these items:

  • Regina King leads a new cast for the Watchmen series on HBO, and while the interwebs seem upset that they aren’t just retelling the same story as the film (and book) I’m looking forward to a story set post-Manhattan in the same continuity. Optimism alert!
  • One of my favorite touches in Deadpool 2 was the inclusion of queer characters where it wasn’t a thing. It wasn’t NOT a thing, either. It was about as controversial as Negasonic moving from one hawt haircut to another, as it should be. More on that when we release the Robot-Kraken Podcast, but look, none of it matters, as far as the haters go, and it REALLY matters, as representation for others, so I’m down.
  • ZOMBIE ALERT!
  • Matt Groening’s Disenchantment. What do you think?
  • Predator = Iron Man 3 + Dark Knight
  • The music is a departure, but everything else is spot on. Preacher S03!
  • Nothing is confirmed until its confirmed, but supposedly non-Batman may be joining previous-Batman in Spidey 2
  • Thanks Comcast. Thanks again. And for SPORTS.
  • One half of this John Wick 3 news is acceptable.
  • OK no joke: the finale of Six Feet Under’s final moments still haunts me. It just wrecked me. Somehow the Simpsons parody STILL has an effect.

Reminder, the latest episode of Robot-Kraken is available now: Legion, Expanse, and more! Please do rate and review us on iTunes…

 

Get this Man a Facet Tool – Robots Root 11 May 2018

Disappointed at the lack of attribution, but this is my current desktop, and I used it in our latest Robot-Kraken Podcast. So good.

  • Looking forward to American Animals, as one does.
  • I’m 100% on board with whatever regarding Birds of Prey, honestly.
  • Thinking about the future of the franchise, what ‘big event’ could replace Avengers movies? I think this is a maguffin, because the narrative had bled into other films already, such as the last two most amazing Captain America films. I was thinking about this last night. Maybe ‘Secret Wars’? Not the stitched-together battle planet, but rather the idea that the heroes and villains would be shunted into an environment forcing them to organize and fight their way out. I can see this fusing concepts from the original Secret Wars, Champions, and frankly, a good dose of what we got from Thunderbolts and Exiles: versions of characters pulled from the multiverse. Makes sense to this guy!
  • This is HIGH TREASON.
  • Donald Glover got wonderfully weird on SNL. But this novelization of the backstory of Lando is even weirder.
  • Captain Marvel already has a very intriguing cast… but they just added Annette Bening, and I’m even more intrigued.
  • Look: I’m horrified by the project, but I LOOOOVE her honesty. Legit.
  • Ron Howard + Arrested Development + Star Wars. Gold! Marketing at its best.
  • Listen, I have too much stuff, and I’m trying to get less stuff. But I’m really having trouble resisting this.
  • TAKE MY MONEY (that I don’t have)
  • I haven’t finished Clone Wars and haven’t started Rebels (kids too young) but this is very interesting to me, stylistically.
  • Everything about this. EVERYTHING. Thanks to C Ferrren for finding it…
  • Jon Favreau’s new SW series will take place during the first years of peace in the New Republic. Interesting territory for the show, I think.
  • While I understand WHY Syfy is dropping the Expanse (bad deal they made) I will just say that this better get picked up by Netflix, fast.
  • Here’s that teaser for Predator that came out yesterday. Optimism abounds, more on Kris’ side than mine. But still, love the cast. Here’s a snap of the current Predator design, in all of it’s sizzlechest, tall headed glory.
  • All the behind the scenes business is done, and Rick and Morty will be back for… 70 EPISODES… FFS that’s good news.
  • 355 is an all-female spy thriller, which is 100% better news than whatever was happening the day before it was revealed to be happening. The cast.
  • LEGO car building factory awesomeness…

And with that, a reminder to listen to our latest episode of Robot-Kraken, and in general, you know, fear not and be just…

Mount The Curb – Robots Root 9 May 2018

This is what the internet is for. STOP LYING, BATMAN.

 

Meanwhile.

  • I cant make heads or tails of what’s going on with TJ Miller’s implosion, but he won’t be in Deadpool 3, apparently. I do miss his energy in Silicon Valley, though. Not talking about behind the scenes value, just the finished products…
  • I’d be down with an all female Knights of Ren. This is like the rumored post-Avengers all-female supers team-up. You don’t even have to market it that overtly. Just DO it. Such as with Annihilation.
  • Let me just day, for the 333th time: I want a Bucky Barnes Cap. I mean, i NEEDS it. It was great in the comics.
  • So here’s the magical photo full of unicorn sparkles that apparently convinced Snyder to cast Cavill as Superman. And it’s… yeah… well, maybe I’m biased by how bulked he was later, but this isn’t thrilling.
  • I didn’t watch this AD S05 trailer, as I’m just going to dive right in and watch the show directly… but here you go.
  • The amount of misdirection in the Avengers: Infinity War trailers was peak. It does beg the question of how are they going to market the 4th Avengers movie… I’m of the mind they have all the actors do promo and press anyway, because come on… just don’t tell us HOW they come back. It’s like that hot mess of Superman/no Superman in the JL ads.
  • Super into what I’m seeing of Luke Cage S02. TOO much charisma. “They have to know we tried.”
  • As if the Infinity War situation couldn’t get more brutal.
  • Black Widow has gone through some hyperbolic number of director interviews, according to the supernet, so it must be true. More important subtext is the concept that they are looking for the right voice, not JUST an indie, or female, or controversial, voice. Hopefully, though, all those things in the end.
  • Sherlock Holmes 3 is coming, and I’m delighted.
  • It will be interesting to see how the original Wasp suit looks in motion. That helmet and the coat design were always something that barely made sense even in the comics.
  • Good to hear that Artemis actually has some old-school bite to it. The trailers were cut so as to look like every other post-John Wick project. Neat to hear it’s more 80s action movie…
  • Beautiful Last Starfighter art…
  • GUISE: MUTATIONS! ALIENS! DEATH FROM DUST! I mean, not like we ever went to the moon, but still.

OK, go to itunes now and check out or latest podcast which was released yesterday: Black Panther, Jumanji, insouciance…