Friday, March 03, 2006

The Many Handy Functions Of That Thing On The Demon Druid's Hat

Handy Hat

1. Mini-crossbow
2. Shortwave radio receiver
3. Nifty hood ornament for Texas oil baron's stretch limousine
4. Lifesize model of history's most evil pretzel
5. Bubble wand
6. Thighmaster
7. A common tool in the medical fields of orthodontics and gynecology
8. Interlocking Chinese puzzle sold exclusively at the Smithsonian
9. Wind chime
10. Dreamcatcher
11. Press one mouse skull eyeball, it plays "Nearer My God To Thee"; press the other, it plays "My Humps"
12. After Captain America defeats the Demon Druid, he can just hop on his back, grab the horns like they're bike handlebars, and ride his sorry ass to the jail

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Ladies, Are You Embarrassed By Unsightly Arm Flab?

Flabby Arms

Well, you could always try wearing Captain Marvel's costume.

I don't know what is going on with those goofy-ass sleeves, but they're ruining what is otherwise a classic costume design. Kudos, 1983 staff of Marvel Comics! Fun fact for those of you who are only familiar with Captain Marvel/Photon/Whatever The Hell The Poor Woman Is Being Forced To Call Herself These Days from 1984 onward: her costume is not miscolored on this Avengers cover. For her first few appearances, the silver part of her outfit was tinted pink, not blue. Thank God they changed it. But they kept the voluminous sleeves. And then they gave her a jheri curl. And then they depowered her. And then they changed her name. So it was like "one step forward, twenty gazillion steps back." Which, if I understand the nice folks at Television Without Pity correctly, basically makes Captain Marvel an honorary member of the family on "Good Times."

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Take Your (Grand)Daughter To Work (It) Day

Working It!

You know what the great thing is about being a bent, wizened sorceror who belongs to an Atlantean cult? The great thing is, you can convince the teenage granddaughter of the cult leader that she is vital to the destiny of all mankind and that she should drop whatever the hell she's doing and become your "apprentice." And you can also tell her that oh, just by the way, she needs to dress at all times in a metal bikini top and low-riding powder blue panties with a chrome-plated Ouija board pointer on them.

That's what Dakihm the Enchanter did to Jennifer Kale in some old "Man-Thing" and "Howard the Duck" stories back in the 70's. And sure, she fetched a magic tome from some otherdimensional netherworld and helped repel an invasion from the demon-realm of Sominus. But I think Dakihm mainly wanted to see Jennifer parade around in that outfit. There's something patently creepy about the whole set-up, if you ask me. And that's why I say God bless June Brigman for drawing Jennifer in "The Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe" #6 (May, 1985) like this:

Bikini Teen

Compare this image with the one of the voluptuous, big-bottomed gal posing on the edge of a table for Dakihm's decrepid amusement. ("Reading this scroll is hard!" *giggle, blush, coquettish head tilt*) Brigman's depiction of Jennifer is really kind of startling in its honesty. She doesn't look much like a stereotypical pulp novel character to me. Instead, it's like a candid shot of a confused, emotionally screwed-up teenage runaway who just happens to be wearing a way-too-revealing costume. It's not so much Frank Frazetta as it is Diane Arbus. Now, I have no idea if Brigman did this on purpose, since everyone she draws tends to look somewhat like a teenage girl. But still, my hat's off to her.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Yes, But Where Do I Put My Quarters?

Y'know, I kinda liked the costume worn by Chronos -- not the Atom villain, but the other one, who's dead now (I think).

Chronos Number One

Still, it looks like something is missing.

What could it be?

Aha! I have some scraps of colored felt I can use... And where the hell did I put my thread...?

This will take just a moment. Please, bear with me.










Annnndd... done. There we go.

Sorry there's no cherry

Now, isn't that much better?

Monday, February 27, 2006

Gender Reassignment Challenge: Saturn Girl To Saturn Boy

Here is the first of a series of costume design challenges I've set for myself. In the "gender reassignment" challenge, I reimagine a highly feminine superheroine costume for a male version of that character. To make it difficult, I try to make the new costume as manly as possible while still incorporating as many of the female aspects of the costume as I think I can. Up first is Saturn Girl. Let's take a look at her.

Saturn Girl

I've done preliminary sketches based on the costumes of many superheroines, like the Scarlet Witch, Storm, Ms. Marvel, and the Black Canary. Saturn Girl's outfit was by far the girliest of these, since it was essentially a one-piece bathing suit with opera gloves and pirate boots. I've found many ways around the confounding A-lines and bustiers of a lot of superheroine duds, but I upped the difficulty with "Saturn Boy's" costume by keeping the exposed shoulders and midsection. I worked a real long time on this design, and I'm still not totally happy with it but I freely admit the damn thing just stumped me.

Saturn Boy

I attached the gloves to the body of the costume to make the top all one garment. The cut-outs originally revealed even more skin but it was still too ladylike for my tastes. Since I absolutely loathe the combination of bare thighs and boots on male costumes -- as you probably know if you've read this blog for a while -- I made the bottom of the outfit baggy shorts. To balance them out and add a new-wave feel to the costume, I incorporated a high, wide collar. And to maintain the level of exposed skin, I shortened the boots considerably. They got cuffs, too, to match the collar. The whole thing's red, since I sure as hell wasn't going to keep it pink. At one point I had made it a really dark red, like "dried blood" red, but that felt like cheating. This still looks awfully fey. I dunno. I don't think it's a complete success. Ah well. I'm really excited about my designs for "the Scarlet Warlock" and the guy version of Storm, though. They turned out a lot better. And sexier! But I should probably keep that to myself. At any rate, you'll see them in the next few weeks.