Showing posts with label Cartoons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Cartoons. Show all posts

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Episode 165: Chatting with Doc Wyatt about Alien Bones and Super Dinosaur

Geekerati Episode 165

Episode 165: Chatting with Doc Wyatt about Alien Bones and Super Dinosaur

We were lucky enough to connect with Television and Film Producer Doc Wyatt a couple of weeks ago to discuss a couple of his newly released projects. While Doc's producing credits include films like Napoleon Dynamite, our discussion focused entirely on his work in comic books and animation. 

His most recent comic book Alien Bones is an adventure tale in the emerging "Dim Dark" genre. Tomorrow's post will include a review of the book as well as role playing game stats for some of the characters, which should give a suggestion of what I thought of the book. HINT: I liked it and so did my daughters.

Doc's a busy content creator, who's work includes a wide variety of animated series. If you like super heroes and/or Star Wars, it's likely that Doc and his writing partner Kevin Burke have worked on your favorite show. He's currently working on a number of series, but Episode 165 highlights his work on the recent Super Dinosaur series, which is an adaptation of a comic book by Robert Kirkman of The Walking Dead fame. Super Dinosaur is a mash up of Science Fiction, Super Hero, and Hollow Earth tropes that is currently airing on Amazon Prime.

I don't want to reveal too much of the interview here, but here are a couple of things we touch on during the interview. 

Image result for warhammer adventures

The Dim Dark genre and books like the new Warhammer Adventures series. Let's just say that if you like Alien Bones, you'll like Warhammer Adventures and vice versa.

The Spelljammer setting for the Dungeons & Dragons role playing game, a setting of wild fantasy adventures in outer space.

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Season 20 of Doctor Who featuring Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor, and the Enlightenment storyline in particular.

The classic Vincent Price horror film Witchfinder General and the comic book of the same name by Doc Wyatt.

The short lived Jeph Hephner series Agent X that ran on TNT in the early 2010s.

The amazingly entertaining Disney Junior series Octonauts that my family loved so much I had to order toys from England as Christmas presents.

The old show Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, which is the live action adult equivalent of Octonauts, cool ships and all.

The Marvel comic book Death's Head featuring a character originally published by Marvel's British Comic book division in the 1980s.

Image result for deathshead comic 

It's a great conversation and we'd love for you to listen.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Checking out THUNDAR...No, Not THUNDARR, but THUNDAR.

I recently purchased a book that some claim was an inspiration for the THUNDARR THE BARBARIAN cartoon. I wanted to judge for myself if this was true and to read the story.

I've only read the first 30 pages, but I'll say that I think claims of inspiration are much overstated. The book is clearly a Burroughs pastiche that falls somewhere between the Thongor novels and the Gor books. That's not high praise. I'm not saying the book is terrible, but the storyline, world, and characters wouldn't lead me to create the post-apocalyptic world of THUNDARR and the "Thundar" name here seems more a riff on Lin Carter's Thongor.

It's an interesting look at other world planetary romance. Though better entries in that genre include THE DARK WORLD by Henry Kuttner, GUARDIANS OF THE FLAME by Joel Rosenberg, THE ARCHITECT OF SLEEP by Steve Boyett, and QUAG KEEP by Andre Norton, not to mention the entire John Carter cycle by Edgar Rice Burroughs.

I'll slog through the rest of the book to see if I can pull any good gaming material from it. I think there might be one or two good ideas here and there. If there are, I will share them.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

From a Gaming Perspective the MY LITTLE PONY MOVIE Adds a Lot of Material

The My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic franchise is moving from the small screen to the big screen on October 6th and as a gamer dad I could not be more excited. A quick glimpse at the new film poster the production released for #SDCC gives one hint why. The Mane Six and Spike don't have aquatic features just because it's cute, they have them because the new movie is adding new mythological creatures to the Pony-verse. A look at the film's trailer gives even more context to the additions. Give it a quick view.

Earlier this year, River Horse publishing published an excellent role playing game based on the My Little Pony IP. In that game, players can make characters based on the three types of ponies that are featured in the series: Earth Ponies, Pegasi, and Unicorns. The Alicorn, a combination of Pegasus and Unicorn, is mentioned in the role playing game, but is not allowable in play. Just based on the trailer of the film, I see two things that I want to bring into my roleplaying games. The first is a new kind of pony, called "Sea Ponies," are featured in the book Under the Sparkling Sea. The second is the existence of a Unicorn with a broken horn, which inspires the question of "what happens when a Unicorn breaks its horn?"

Given my daughters' love of the Percy Jackson books, I'm particularly excited about Sea Ponies. Of all the characters and creatures of the Percy Jackson-verse, the hippocampus Rainbow was their absolute favorite. Now hippocampoi are cemented as a type of pony. If River Horse, who given the company's name should, doesn't publish guidelines and traits for hippocampoi in the next couple of weeks, I'll be posting some here, but I'll have to read Under the Sparkling Sea first in order to see what traits need to be created. The great thing about the My Little Pony RPG is that the the system is very adaptable while also being easy to learn and run.

In fact, I'm going to commit to it. I'm also going to stat up some Savage Worlds versions of the Mane Six based on the way they are defined in the River Horse game. Given the similarities between the systems, it will not only be easy but fun as well.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Yay! The Return of Cel Shading! Transformers: Devastation is a Game that Looks Like a Cartoon

While the actual gameplay in the new Transformers: Devastation trailer looks less than inspiring, it looks like a mashup of Dynasty Warriors and Tekken, I'm extremely happy to see the return of Cel Shading in video games. There was a brief period in the 90s/early 00s when Cel Shading was all the rage, mostly in some poor games, but I always thought the concept was a good one. Who doesn't want to play a game that looks like the source material? It only adds to the verisimilitude and can create an immersive experience.

Kudos for returning to the format.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Just Showing Off My Wife Jody Lindke

From time to time, I like to add some of my wife's artwork to the website. She's a pretty fantastic illustrator and I am blessed to have her in my life.

Jody designed the above logo for use with some children's books we are working on. She wants "Underfut" to be the brand name, and I like it. The dog "Underfut" was a regular character in her Schulz award winning cartoon strip "Nicnup," and the character was based on Jody's real dog Oreo. Both Jody and I miss her very much. Oreo lived to be 20 years old and died the day I was leaving to go to my first Gen Con. We both wish that History and Mystery could have had a chance to meet her.

This is Jody's Steampulp rendition of our marriage. After seeing this, I have been very tempted to walk around with a tophat.

Jody drew this one for a book at work. I work at a non-profit dedicated to youth civic engagement, and this is one of my favorite exaggerated effect of campaign ads images ever.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Being a Parent Can Be Heartbreaking

Last night I spent a wonderful evening with my lovely 4 year old daughters History and Mystery.  They had spent part of the day coloring with Jody and had shifted from one creative activity to another, namely dancing.  Both of the girls had turned on their electric keyboards to play pre-recorded songs, neither in sync with the other, and had begun dancing with the free and unselfconscious joy that only young children can truly manage.

It was a beautiful scene to watch, and was one of those glowing moments when as a parent you feel on top of the world.  That natural high was about to take a severe you might have guessed from the title of the post.

As happens every night, and too quickly every night, the clock ticked past seven and thus initiated parenting subroutine 8.(e).D.7.1.(m).3.  That's right, it was bedtime.  It was time to take a quick bath, brush teeth, read stories, and sing a bed time song.  None of this was out of the ordinary.  There was also what appeared to be the typical groaning about how either History or Mystery had yet to finish some entertaining task, which usually amounts to "but Dad...Ironman needs to go defend the castle" or some similar activity.  This evening though, History was upset that she hadn't been able to finish coloring the pictures she had been working on earlier in the day.  Jody and I assured her that there would be plenty of time to color them tomorrow, maybe even when mom was working on some drawings of her own.

That's when it happened.  Mystery looked right at Jody and then at me and asked, "Why am I not an artist like mom?  I want to be an artist like mom."  I immediately felt as if, Mola Ram had reached into my chest, pulled out my heart, and left it burning in his hands laughing maniacally.  I was stunned for a moment as I tried to find a way to tell a 4 year old that:

1) Yes you can be an artist like mom.  You can be anything you want to be.
2) That some things take time to learn, and show her how she was more comfortable drawing and coloring now than she was a year ago.
        a) I'm not one to tell History or Mystery that they are now "better" at a task like drawing and       
            coloring at an age when they should be experimenting and feeling free. 

The books on parenting provide wonderful advice, but they don't do anything for the sinking feeling one feels in ones chest when a child expresses disillusionment at a perceived limitation.


Friday, August 31, 2012


Like the crew over at Tor books, I'm of two minds regarding the new Seth Green (and the Robot Chicken Crew) animated series STAR WARS DETOURS.  Basing my opinion solely on the trailer below, this show is either a humorous tangent from regular STAR WARS that I can share with History and Mystery or it will be yet another disappointing attempt at humor related to a franchise I have adored since childhood.

The people working on the project give one hope that the cartoons will be funny and entertaining.  Green, Matt Senreich, and Todd Grimes have a good track record, but I keep getting this nagging feeling that comedians who work well together when "edgy" might not quite click when doing more "kiddie" fare.  Just watching the preview, I have noticed quite a few pop culture references that are supposed to have comedic impact.  Most of them will have either History or Mystery turning to a chuckling father and asking questions like, "Dad...why are you laughing?  Is it funny that Han Solo put on a hat?  Are hats funny?"

We are currently in a golden age of entertainment for kids my daughters' age -- they are both 4 btw -- and this might be a great addition to a long list of great shows.  A long list that includes DOC MCSTUFFINS, GRAVITY FALLS, PHINEAS AND FERB, IRON MAN: ARMORED ADVENTURES, AVENGERS: EARTH'S MIGHTIEST HEROES, SUPER HERO SQUAD, and MY LITTLE PONY: FRIENDSHIP IS MAGIC to name but a few.  To pull two of the shows out for special consideration GRAVITY FALLS and MY LITTLE PONY manage to insert pop culture references for the adults while crafting interesting and entertaining narratives for kids, but STAR WARS: DETOURS seems -- once again just based on the preview -- that it will be closer in tone to SUPER HERO SQUAD.  This isn't a bad thing as the twins enjoy SHS, but what really gets them excited is EARTH'S MIGHTIEST HEROES.  They like the real drama and real emotion of that show.

When I examine why I feel any trepidation to this show at all, it seems to stem from something hinted at in that last sentence.  I'm torn between whether I think the next STAR WARS project should be comedic or serious, and I think I might be leaning toward serious.  Though I am always ready for well done humor, and adore shows I can watch with my twins...

You see the fanlema I'm facing?

Friday, November 11, 2011

[Cinerati Cartoons] -- Nicnup: Gesundheit

My wife Jody has a wonderful and visual sense of humor. In this Nicnup strip, she manages to capture how I have felt almost every time I've had a loud sneeze. They do sometimes feel earth shattering.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Jody Lindke's Pattie Kaiks and Changes in Perception

The image below has long been one of my favorite panels of my wife's "Pattie Kaiks" strip that ran in the Reno News and Review for quite a few years.  It combines our love of pop culture, with the culture shock that we had to share our love with an entirely new generation of fans.  Looking back at the strip now, as the father of twin girls, my perceptions of the comic have changed even more.  My heart leaps for joy when my 3 1/2 year old twins History and Mystery sing the Iron Man: Armored Adventures theme song, and I cannot wait for them to see the Star Wars films with me.  They just watched The Wizard of Oz for the first time yesterday, one of my favorite films all time maybe my absolute favorite depending on the day, and the wicked witch left a significant mark on History's sub-conscious.  Mystery, on the other hand, seemed unfazed.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Gaming*Mirth [Cartoon] -- GAMR GRLZ #2 "The Quests Begin"

This week, we have the second offering in my wife Jody's experiment with a gaming themed cartoon strip entitled GAMR GRLZ. She's still refining who the characters are, and what challenges they will face, but she is having a wonderful time discovering the young girls who will be featured in the comic. For those of you not familiar with Jody's work, she was the first woman to win the prestigious Charles M. Schulz cartooning award -- which she won for her fantastic Nicnup cartoon strip.

As usual, blogger being blogger and not a webpage optimized for cartoon syndication, if you click on the cartoon you will get a larger and easier to read image.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Gaming*Mirth -- GAMR GRLZ #1

After a one week hiatus, Gaming*Mirth returns with a three panel cartoon by my wife Jody. Please click on the image to see the cartoon full sized.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Gaming*Mirth -- No Fantasy This Week, Just an Awesome Jody Lindke Illustration

Since I am planning a major trip to Sacramento next week with 150 high school students, and since I have shared my "busy-ness" with Jody, she was unable to provide the next in her "Dragon Pranks" or other fantasy themed single-panel comics.

So...I thought I would share one of my favorite Jody Lindke political cartoons. A few years ago, I did a "Bridging the Partisan Divide" series of conferences for work and this inspired Jody to draw the following.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Well Shoot! -- We didn't win Angry Robot Books' "Steampunk" Kindle

Last month, Angry Robot Books ran an online competition where they solicited "Steampunk" themed artistic creations and offered a Steampunk skinned Kindle as a prize. I am a big fan of Angry Robot Books -- if you aren't reading their books you are really missing out on a wonderfully diverse list of SF/F offerings -- and thought that the Steampunk skinned Kindle looked amazing.

So...even though both Jody and I already own Kindles, and I already own most of the books Angry Robot was preloading into the prize offering, I asked Jody to draw up a submission to the contest. She drew up an inspired image of our cartoon doppelgangers dressed up in thematic garb. I loved the piece and immediately entered it. I think it is magnificent.

Sadly, our entry didn't win. I would scream "Sour Grapes!" except for the fact that the winning entry is pretty cool. I still like Jody's offering more -- they could have at least given her an Honorable Mention for goodness' sake -- but the winning entry is a combination of cute and original.

Congratulations to all the winners. And thanks again to Jody. It's hard to compete with Steampunk Guitars, Dirigibles, Weapons, and Pop-Up cards.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Gaming*Mirth -- Fantasy Odd Couples: Love and Gelatinous Cubes

Who doesn't remember their first encounter with a Gelatinous Cube? In my case, our DM misled the group into believing that a Spectre was floating down the hallway toward our group. Most of us panicked, as we lacked magic weapons, but our Paladin charged the foul "undead" creature. He had faith in his magic weapon, the only magic weapon in the group, it was his screams of "it burns, it burns!" that signaled that something else was up.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Gaming*Mirth: Dragon Pranks -- Pranking Prince Charming

For the past month, my wife Jody has been providing me with fantasy and gaming inspired cartoons that channel the old cartoons that used to be so prominent in gaming magazines like Dragon and The Space Gamer. This week's entry is the first that will be in color.

I'm happy to see that in the weeks since I have started these posts that Wizard's of the Coast has decided to start including cartoons on their website. I don't think I had any influence on their decision, but it is nice to see we are thinking in the same nostalgic way.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Wizards, Warriors, and Wedding Anniversaries

Jody drew this image a couple of years ago for a wedding anniversary card she made me. Last year, I used Cafe Press to put this image on mugs and a wall tile as an anniversary present for her.