Tezuka Profile

It would be safe to say that anyone [here] is  familiar or atleast heard of Osamu Tezuka or some of his most notable works Astro Boy, Kimba The White Lion, Black Jack, and Buddha.


As well as being one of [if not] the most popular Japanese comic book artists, Tezuka is undoubtebly one of the most prolific. His body of work reportedly lists 700 titles from in his 40 year career. His influence in the comic book history is indelible even after he passed-away in 1989 his work still garners praise and noteriety from readers - old and new- and peers, most notablly winning a string of Eisner awards from 2004-2009 for Buddha and Dororo.

Even in the light of his fame, Tezuka still sought out to challenge himself and probably the readers and expand the medium of manga. These are a few works that shows him trying to do just that:

'Adolf' known in Japan as Adolf ni Tsugu (アドルフに告ぐ Adorufu ni Tsugu?, literally: "Tell Adolf")
Original run: 1983-1985 in Shukan Bunshun Magazine

Set in a pre WWII world, it follows the story of Three men named Adolf and a Japanese reporter Sohei Toge. Adolf Kamil is an Ashkenazi Jew living in Japan. His best friend Adolf Kaufmann is of both Japanese and German descent, whos father is an member of the Nazi Party and would like his some to support The Third Reich . The third Adolf is Adolf Hitler, the dictator of Germany.

Ayako Original run: 1972-1973 in Big Comic Magazine

Ayako show the tensions in the Tenge family, a rich land owning clan, set in the years during the reformation  of Japan by the Americans after WW2 up to the late 60s. Ayako is also the name of the child born of an incestuous affair by the patriarch  of the Tenge family and his daughter-in-law.

MW Original run: 1976-1978 in Big Comic Magazine

MW follows the relationship between Japanese priest Father Garai, his connection to serial killer Michio Yuki who was effected by the MW gas which has lead to his criminal lifestyle. This manga while containing an explicit homosexual relationship is only one of the reasons for its infamous reputation. The art style was influenced by the gekiga movement dominant in the 1960s-70s, which was more experimental, and explicit mostly aimed at a much older readership.

The First Los Angeles Podcast Festival

If you are watching this now the Kickstarter Project has been funded, but it would be ok if kicked in a few shekels to give the guys of Comedy Film Nerds a bit more of a push.

The line up for the event include:

Marc Maron's WTF
Jimmy Pardo's Never Not Funny
Todd Glass's The Todd Glass Show
Graham Elwood and Chris Mancini's Comedy Film Nerds
Greg Behrendt and Dave Anthony's Walking the Room
Jackie Kashian's The Dork Forest
Mike Schmidt's The 40-Year-Old Boy
Al Madrigal, Maz Jobrani and Chris Spencer's The Minivan Men
Lynette Carolla and Stefanie Wilder-Taylor's For Crying Out Loud


Oscar Ramblings 2012: Best Animated Feature

The Biggest Awards for Cinematic Arts is showing on February 26 est/pst and I thought I'd shout out my ideas about it on to the internet. 

Best Animated Feature is always an interesting mix for the Oscars. It usually puts together the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed pieces with the more obscure -mostly not American, not Pixar- productions. It has  among the past winners is Hayao Miyazaki for Spirited Away.

This years nominees are:

Upon hearing the details of the production I was interested to at least give this movie the benifit of the doubt. Johnny Depp teaming up with another director that was not his usual collaborator to work on an animated movie. I enjoyed this film upon viewing. It is nowhere near what most people are used to expect from animated feature. Visually, it stands apart from all the animated films. The choice for the lead himself is designed to go against the grain of the cuddly colourful cartoon character. It took the realism and highlighted the grim and soot.  And it has an amazing action sequence choreographed that left me glue to the action and would have had me applauding in the cinema if  I did not think that was weird.  It is darker in look, tone, humour, I am happy that this got a nomination.

Puss in Boots

Now this movie I like though it did slow down a lot in between the movie. It took the everything the lead character had in the Shrek movie and surrounded him with other characters to interact with. While the idea I agree with the execution, not so much. I would have love to see more of Puss doing more in the movie because most of the side characters did not interest me at all. I am quite surprised that this got a nomination. 

Kung Fu Panda 2

People loved the first but seamed mixed on this instalment. I had the opposite reaction. I loved the visuals of this movie. I thought I could have done without the 3D honestly because some of it was lost on me. I probably didn't notice it or it wasn't that good to begin with. The artwork immediately hooked me. The character design and the colours the were used to ton full effect, to give mood to this movie is amazing. The design of the main villain Shen is beautiful and brought to life with the animation and Gary Oldman's voice work. The patterns of his colours and the way he moves shows great care in execution especially in the fight scenes. I just wish there was more of it.  

Chico and Rita

It is amazing what music does to a person, it had me loving this movie from beginning to end. The music actually is only a back drop to the story of the two title characters, a story we have heard many times before. The story its self is very grown-up for what most are used to in animation. It is sexual, violent and real. The animation moves to the music with organic camera movements and a very realistic movement for animation. I hope more poeple would see movies like this to show them animation is a medium not a genre only for children. 

A Cat in Paris

The last and by no means the least. Far from it, this is my pick to win the Award. The art is again something that most would not be easy to warm to. It has a hard edge, which most would compare to expressionist art. It's a film inhabited by humans but starring a Cat. The characters though drawn two dimensional are well rounded, except maybe for the antagonist who seems to have only one setting. The story never goes where you would expect, and then throw in a sequence in the dark. The movie is equal parts fun, suspenseful, funny and heart warming. I do hope this is a win, if not I have already been treated to a fun movie and will certainly  be watching this again.

All the other catigories in this years Oscars cab be seen here.

2012 02 25 Sketching Santo Niño Shrine

View of the sculpture between The Santo Niño Shrine. Tried practicing my soft pastels white stark contrast with the black paper.

Second attempt with the black paper. Needs more practice.

Last attempt on black paper, bit more like carving on this one. 
This was a little cute store at the right side of the Shrine. It was hidden behind a demolished façade. I did it in ink a medium I am more confident in to capture the quirkiness of this contrast.  
Took some time to interact with people around. Always nice.

All in all I cannot complain about the first Urban Sketchers Philippines group session in Tacloban City. I was able to coral  an old friend into drawing so that's a win in my book . I hope next time more would be able to join us. 


Review: Batman Gotham Knight

Originaly posted July 8, 2008 on Multiply

The Dark Knight swing into action on July 17, 2008. But along with the long awated sequel, DC and WB is releasing "BATMAN: GOTHAM KNIGHT".The release coveres six stories in the life of Batman[Bruce Wayne] in between the Batman Begins leading up to The Dark Knight. The project can be pralleled to the "Animatrix" [ the tie-ins to the the Matrix Trilogy.] The producers take the same route taken by the Wachosky bros. by taking different writers and producers ang giveng them free reign on their interpretaion of Batman. Marketing stunt or pure art...? Who knows, ill be putting in my two cents or 1000php when this comes out... id love to get this on blue ray[but i dont have a BR player so F*** that!]

Heres a Chapter-by-Chapter Synopsis of the movies to wet your appetite.

In “Have I Got a Story for You,” Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Josh Olson (“A History of Violence”) tells the story of how chance encounters with Batman by a group of youngsters leave each kid with a very different impression of the Dark Knight.

In “Crossfire,” acclaimed novelist/comics writer Greg Rucka tells the story of Gotham City police having to get over their distrust of Batman – while under fire from the mob.

In “Field Test,” writer Jordan Goldberg showcases the incredible high-tech arsenal Batman commands and reveals that there are some things even Batman won’t do in his pursuit of justice.

“In Darkness Dwells” takes Batman into the Gotham sewers to face “Killer Croc,” a deformed thug who seems even more monstrous after the Scarecrow, and his fear toxin, makes a resurgence, in a story by David S. Goyer, co-screenwriter of “Batman Begins.”

Award-winning comics writer Brian Azzarello explores an early chapter of Bruce Wayne’s training in “Working Through Pain,” showing how a mysterious and exotic Indian woman named Cassandra introduced Batman to techniques that would help him to conquer the physical and spiritual consequences of what he does.

Finally, in “Deadshot,” four-time Emmy Award-winning writer Alan Burnett ties together threads from all the Batman Gotham Knight chapters, as Batman must thwart an unerring assassin whose love of guns and disregard for human life lets him cross lines that even a Dark Knight shies away from.

That should get you going... heres the website, lots of fun.

Stay tuned for my review when this comes out!