Ink of Geek

by Bevianna Bones

It’s been a while readers, and while it saddens me that I was unable to bring you an epically awful horror movie to celebrate Valentine’s Day, or President’s day with, the reason for my absence is now to be unveiled to you, the geeky world.

For sometime, pretty much for as long as I could hold a pencil, I have been perusing my artistic endeavors. It’s all that I’ve ever really wanted to do with my life. Unfortunately, in the course of my life, there have been circumstances that have kept me from making that passion a reality…such as an unforgiving career in retail management and having to pay the nasty, nasty billsies. With a career change late in 2015, I was able to open up my time to persue the things that I’ve been wanting to do.

I am happy to say, that with a newly renewed drive to make this life what I want to be, as of January 31, I have opened an Etsy store to sell my art prints of all things geeky.  There isn’t a huge variety on there currently, but I am committed to adding more every week.  The ultimate goal of this is to be able to make and sale art full time, through not only the interwebs, but traveling to many of the annual Comic Cons and other geek conventions. 

I invite you to take a look at my shop page on Etsy at http://etsy.com/shop/InkofGeek
And to like Ink of Geek on Facebook and on follow me @jade_3101 on Twitter. 

I leave you now with some of my favorites of  the prints available so far. 

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It’s Tom Servo!…and he’s huge!!!

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Gizmo has had enough shit and it’s time to take it all back!

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‘Murica!!!

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Holy na-na-na-na na-na-na Batman!!!

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Oswald Cobblepot…I bet he gives great flipper.

If there are any ideas of characters you’d like to see, leave a comment on the blog, or on the Ink of Geek Facebook page.

Till next time!

BB

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Alamo City Comic Con – Day 3

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by Bevianna Bones

The third day of conventions is usually a shorter, more peaceful day. Artists and vendors generally start discounting their wares and the crowd is usually less than half it was the day before.  Day 3 at the ACCC was still serving up some great panels in Flash Gordon, Comic Book Men, Edward James Olmos, Villians of Arrow, and Guardians of the Galaxy. Sadly the later was overbooked and it was going to be standing room only; by this point in the con, my partner and I were pretty peopled out and decided to cut the panels from the itinerary. We spent the day visiting with some of the artists and vendors; knocking out about half of our Xmas shopping for the fam.  We ran into some of our pals and had a little fun with some cosplayers. Shenanigans!  We did get to sneak a pic of Stan Lee.  He was signing autographs and he literally looked like someone was propping him up. (How did you cast Ms Monroe in this picture, she’s been dead for years…she’s perfect for the part really, she’s lying on the floor, falling out of cupboards…) If anyone out there actually gets that reference, I’ll be most impressed.

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One of our great finds was this awesome Borg standee that we picked up for 5 bucks. What a steal!!

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And the hilarity ensued! While visiting with some of our pals, Darth Vadar enters the room with an entourage of Sith cheerleaders. People start snapping pics, and other people in Star Wars garb start joining the group. (Including some of our own Jedi pals)

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I’m laughing to myself about how some of these Star Wars fans are flipping their shit for this epic photo op, and realize I’m holding this Borg in my hand. I look over to the misses and mention how funny it would be to go put the Borg in the pic, since Wars fans generally have no sense of humor when it comes to Trek being better. The result, was this.

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Best part is, my friend that took that pic was telling me that everyone else taking the picture was asking why the Borg was there. Great stuff. And it became a bit of an ongoing theme for us the rest of the day. Photo-Borging other people’s pics.  Good times.

All in all, it was a great geeky weekend, despite my frustration from being around large swarms of people. Saturday’s attendance numbers were estimated to close to 100,000 people. (All wanting to see the Walking Dead panel haha) Oh, and the cheesey wristband did actually hold up for all three days, albeit a bit ragged by the end.

In it’s third year, it only has kept getting better, and if any of the powers that be are reading this, here’s these geeks request for next year: more retro panels and less current events. But maybe I’m just biased, after all 3G is all about the retro and fabulous.

To wrap up, I’ll leave you with some of my favorite cosplay pics we took. Imagine each photo fading in and out, with a soft Sarah McLachlan playing in the background as you scroll through.

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BB

Alamo City Comic Con – Day 2

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by Bevianna Bones

Holy cattle!! Call the sheep hearders, Batman! Was I ever wrong! If you read yesterday’s recap you’ll know that I had much hope for an avoided cluster fuck here on day 2. It is to laugh. The experience for us actually began on our way to the convention center, as the monitors above the freeway stressed how parking at the Almaodome (told you everything here had to represent the Alamo…remember the Alamo!! How could we forget at this rate…) was by permit only for the…game? For those of you not familiar with the downtown layout and parking situation in the Alamo city; the Alamodome is across the street from the convention center which is across the street from the rivercenter and riverwalk, which is across the street from Hemisfair park, which is next to the Tower of America’s, which is next to the precious Alamo.

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Top this off, that minus the tourists, San Antone is the seventh largest city in the nation with a population of nearly 1.5 million. To accommodate all of this, our current infrastructure and city planning accommodates approximately 1,000 downtown parking spaces, give or take 500 or so.

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(Truth be told, I was looking for my useless information picture, but unfortunately couldn’t easily find it. Insert new “joke” here)

So there we are, heading down to the convention center when it occurs to me that the opening of college football season was last weekend and our homegrown UTSA Roadrunners were in fact having their first home game. Texans love their high school and college football. Way more than any “normal” people should, but that’s a topic for another day. Just know, that the combination of the regular, everyday parking situation, the football game, and the comic con all at the same time lead to extreme frustration with the parking situation.  We parked around 11:15 or so, and by 11:40 were still in line to pay for the space at the terminal. The mate stayed in line to pay, whilst I ran to the convention center (about 4 blocks away at this point) to find a sea of people flowing it’s way through the doors to purchase tickets. The Legends of Wrastlin panel started at noon. I had zero time, nor did I have the patience to wait in line again. I had already waited yesterday to get my pass. I had purchased online a month ago. Look at all these people who waited until the last minute. Who, because of their procrastination, made my parking situation worse.

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I had to get in. So I cut across the crowd, flashing my wristbands, like I owned the place and waltzed in. By the time I got into the line for the ballroom I had a few moments to spare and made the wrastlin on time. The misses had to sit it out unfortunately, but I don’t think she was nearly as excited about seeing a group of once were superstars all washed up and wrinkly.

The line up for the panel was supposed to have included Jerry Lawler, Ric Flair, JBL, Chyna, Rob Van Damne, and originally Rowdy Roddy Piper (RIP). After waiting for another 20 minutes for the panel to begin, some WWE spokesman came out to to the stage and gave us some spill about how when they brought Chyna out, we all needed to chant “Hall of Fame” for some promotional bullshit they are making. After a few more minutes, the moderator finally came out and introduced us to the panel, Chyna and RVD.

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Wait, who? Are they bringing them all out separately? Is that why there is only a loveseat on the stage? Where are the Nature Boy and The King supposed to sit? Surely they will bring them out…wait, this is it? This is the whole thing? What happened to the rest of them? Oh well, I guess I’ll just listen as RVD acts like an STD and reaffirm my thoughts that he’s a total DB.

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Then, Chyna opened up about her Playboy shoot, and named it the highlight of her career then told us she likes to spend her time mediating in Japan. She reminded of the porn star sketch in Amazon Women on the Moon.

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After those thrilling twenty plus minutes of stimulating conversation, the panel ended and the crowd dispersed so the Walking Dead panel could start. My hopes that I could just go get back in line for the Walking Dead were soon crushed. The line to get into it was wrapped twice around the convention floor. The mate and I agreed that neither of us wanted to deal with it, and decided we would catch the Breaking Bad one instead, which started at 2.

We shopped, we laughed, we perused and took pictures of the cosplayers (which will be highlighted in a separate post) and at about twenty til 2, we decided it was best to get in line for Breaking Bad. When we got to the ballroom doors, there were still people filing in for the Walking Dead. What. The. Fuck. So we ask the people that are working the con, where the line for Breaking Bad was, and they tell us that the people lined up are for Sons of Anarchy and Walking Dead. I asked them politely a couple where the Breaking Bad line is and no one seemed to know; so, again channeling a young Debbie, I proclaimed to them that the line for it would essentially start in the spot I was standing, on account that no one knew what was going on.

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Be its that Walking, and Breaking were held in the same ballroom, by the time they got everyone in there, there was about 20 minutes left of the actual panel that was supposed to have been 45. Luckily the ballrooms all have private bars, so the mate and I got some much needed “refreshments” by the time our panel started.

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Breaking Bad ft. RJ Mitte, was to feature production stories from the set as told from the perspective of Walt Jr. And, while we got a few snippets of facts about Bryan Cranston, (Somebody brushed up on their Wiki before the show…) the majority of the panel felt like a motivational seminar about being handicapable. Alcohol definitely made this one go down easier.

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In light of the “Walking Dead Debacle”, we decided to skip Stan Lee. We we’re peopled out. We ate, shopped more, visited with some of the vendors, and some of our friends that were there and called it a day.  We are both looking forward to a quieter and more laid back day 3 today. Our lineup today includes Flash Gordon (the 80s tastic one), Comic Book Men, My Little Pony, Extreme Horror, and Guardians of the Galaxy.

Oh and here’s an aerial view I got of part of the convention floor. The crowd had died down at this point.

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Until next time.

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BB

Alamo City Comic Con – Day 1

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by Bevianna Bones

Day one of Comic-Con here in the Alamo city, otherwise known as San Antonio, (native San Antonians are very proud of the Alamo, personally I think it’s pretty overrated, just like their precious Spurs…however, don’t say that to anyone on the street for fear of getting shanked) has come and gone. It’s always a fun and interesting place to be, with artists, cosplayers, vendors, celebrities, and panels.  Day one is usually the best day to scope everything out before the mass of crowds get there over the weekend.  This year, it does seem as though they have made a better use of the space and separated out the artists, vendors, and panel rooms, to where there, hopefully, won’t be as much cluster fucking with the crowds. We shall see today when we embark on day two. One other thing however that need be mentioned, is the cheese factor of this paper wristband that is intended to hold up for 3 days.

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While it is better from the perspective that people can’t hand off their lanyard style passes to others (which has often happened in the past) it seems that they could have sprung for the plastic wristbands, at least for the 3 day pass holders.

Day one offered many panels, the two highlights for me were the Back to the Future panel, and the TMNT movie (original) panel. Let’s start off with the BTTF.  This featured Claudia Wells, and James Tolkan. Jennifer and Mr. Strickland.

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Where is Michael J Fox, Crispin Glover and Lea Thompson? Not here, nor were they ever mentioned sadly. Nor was there much talk about the production of the film. There was however, much discussion from Claudia about her men’s clothing store, website where she sells bedazzled save the clock tower teeshirts, and how much she loves real Texas men. James, on the other hand, did delight the audience with a couple instances of denouncing us all as “slackers!”

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As often seen in the panels, the audience Q&A was nearly unbearable and filled with too many, “thank you for being a part of this project and making such a huge impact on our lives”. The misses and I are going to bring a flask and turn these Q&As into a drinking game today. We’re sure to be faced two panels in.
Also, I really wasn’t aware of any major impact the role of Jennifer Parker had on pop culture, and apparently the lives of so many. Really though, the blame for this train wreck of a panel goes to the mediator, who had zero questions for the two guests, and at one point begged the audience to come up with some more for them, so that he wouldn’t have to think of anything to ask. 

In great contrast to the BTTF mess, was the TMNT panel featuring Judith Hoag and Francois Chau; the best April, and Shredder.

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This is actually the second Ninja Turtle discussion I’ve been to featuring them, and it was a pleasure as always. From the way they engaged the audience, the production stories and recounts, the mediator asked purposeful questions; the Q&A didn’t include, not even one, obsessed fan droning on about the impact the actors have had on their life; and April, well April is still pretty smoking after all these years.

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The personal recounts and stories really made for a great panel, and the one moment of sadness for me, is that I didn’t have the balls to ask Mr. Chau, in his best Shredder voice, to say, “They are…babies!” Although, there was some slight mockery of Vanilla Ice to make up for it.

Stay tuned to the blog for more coverage to come as day two begins. Included in the itinerary today are The Legends of Wrestling, The Walking Dead, Breaking Bad, Sons of Anarchy, and gasp…wait for it…Stan Lee!

EXCELSIOR!!!

-BB

TMNT: Coming Out of Their Shells

-by Bevianna Bones

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There are few things from my childhood that simultaneously were so endeared and so horrific at the same time as TMNT: Coming out of Their Shells. This was an amazing jammin rockin cassette that was put out by Mikey, Raph, Leo, and Don; and pimped out by Pizza Hut as a promotion. Because who else. It’s the turtles. There was even a song on the album, Pizza Power! No matter what challenges or problems life may hand us, just eat a slice of the “flying saucer food delight” and there isn’t anything these four ninja brothers aren’t ready to take on!!

Anyway, as far as I know, the only way you could get the cassette was to complete the Book It! Challenge at Pizza Hut. Basically, for every 5 books you read, you got a free Personal Pan Pizza, and after so many freebies earned you got the cassette. I could be wrong about this whole thing. It was 1988, and I was 8 years old.

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Or maybe it was 3.99 when you bought a pizza and my parents just told me that I had to read all those damned books. The details are a little fuzzy at this point. What I do know is that earning my turtles cassette was my life’s greatest achievement at that point. Even more than trying to earn my Enduro patch from Activision. That’s another story, but with this cassette in my possession I was the envy of all my classmates. Just one of the many times being a dork pages off in a big way for me. I listened to that album over and over until I practically wore it out. I loved it.

Imagine my bliss when many years later, I happened upon it on iTunes for a measly five dollars. I couldn’t resist. I had to have it. I still know all the songs by heart, and in truth I keep it in my playlist and listen to it at least once while I’m working graveyard. My newly rekindled romance of these four rockin turtles reminded of the rest of the story about this album, and this is where the horror comes in.

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Apparently, the turtles had gotten tired of taking down the foot and shredder and krang and decided to take their rock show on the road with, wait for it, you guessed it, a LIVE TOUR!!!! Thank the gods that technology has blessed us with YouTube, so that we all may relive the turtles’ message of peace and love through music. I emplor you to try and sit through all 93 glorious minutes. I can already see the quizitive look on all of your faces. Bevianna, you say, 93 minutes? I thought the album was only 30? And I say to you, yes, ninety-three minutes of what-the-fuckery stretching 30 minutes of turtle pun themed pizza advertisements into an hour and a half of your life you will never, I say, never get back. You have been warned.

The show opens and we see several equipment trucks and roadies coming in to set up the stage in that very early 80s vhs editing that oh so many music vids of the time used. And then again amazing vhs effects, we see a crowed venue and an empty stage. Then poof, and quick flash and the music starts and up out of the stage come the turtles decked out in quintessential 80s glamband rock attire. But no hair. After all they are turtles. To give them hairband hair would just be ridiculous. So Leo an Mickey are playing a flying v’s, and Don is on bass. Raph is on vocals. Although I have a memory of Raph on the keytar at some point. Oops, my bad, Don has the keytar, apparently they don’t know what the fuck is going on either. They can change instruments so quickly like that because they are ninjas.

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They open the show with “Out of Their Shells” so we all know that these are not the same turtles we once knew, and looking at them, they literally have no shells. They have come out of them. Next, after we had how totes radical and how much we all are loved, they decide to cut the talk and rock again!! Those instruments are amazing!!!! They love us!!! So let’s sing about it!! And hear much ancient wisdom from a very frightening Splinter. It’s Pizza Power bitches! Look at those moves, boy being a ninja really pays off when you are rocking out!!! There are even pizza delivery backup dancers.

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That is the power or pizza and music right there!!

AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

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My apologies to the readers, but I just looked up at the screen and caught a glimpse of the dead eyes of what once was a mouse that didn’t make the cut for the Critter Parade at Chuck’e Cheese. We are treated to more Splinter wisdom and his one and only song, thankfully, Skipping Stones. But just as shit is about to get really deep, an ominous voice comes over and we see Baxter Stockman’s lab, and surprise, we are told of an ominous plan by Shredder. Who hates music!!! Ahahahaaha!! End quote. I be cranky too, let’s just say this guy’s costume budget was minimal.

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Splinter and the turts we so moved by the music, they are literally knocked out, when they wake up, they have no idea what’s going on. Neither does the audience. Enter April O’Neal. She tells us and all the mindless children that in fact, Shredder was indeed there. So we sing some more. And dance awesome some more. Imagine the résumés. Donatello has this special skill apparently.

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Cowabunga!!! Its time to go Tubin’!! Don’t quite understand that last transition, neither does anyone else. Surfin song, surfin stock footage, and dancin…alligators??…crocodiles??…sharks?? Im not really sure. You be the judge.

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These are really some retro reptiles!!!

NEWSFLASH!!!!!

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It’s April and she has breaking news that shredder is indeed there in that very building!!! The Turtles spring into action with an amazing RAP!!! The funky four really showed the shred up with that one! Cowabunga dudes!!! The rap really upset Shredder and he unleashes foot soilder and prepares his Deharmomic Discombobulated Disembowler (or something like that) that’s going to suck away all the music. Thank you shredder. And then more filler as the turtles do impressions to pass the time.

Foot soilders attack the turtles and the turtles fight back with ninja power and puns. “Go Turtles!!!” April cries out, the foot is defeated and shredder finally shows up to the party. And more puns. Shredder sucks away all the turtles pizza power and the turtles are forced to retreat. Shredder taunts the audience and makes the children cry. He gets all pervy with April and she is dragged away by the foot and then the worst of all, Shredder tells the audience that they are all trapped in the building until such time as he see’s fit for their release…the horror, the horror!!!

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We find ourselves in an intermission of sorts and we are treated to several whiney small children in their turtle garb, talking to an obviously overwhelmed “journalist” (the term is used very loosely here) reporting and recaping the “situation”. Dear gods, what is to happen to April and where did the turtles go off to?! The suspense is killing me.

The reporter takes plastic weapons from the children and heads down to the “sewer” to try and find help. This goes on for five minutes. He finally stumbles on the turtles and tells them Shredder took April and they go back and forth for a while, and basically figure out that no one knows where he took her or what’s going on. Seems that is our recurring theme. The “interview” with the turtles and their plan of “I don’t know, but we’re gonna do something” goes on for far too long. They decide to send the reporter off to look for Shredder after he calls them weenies.

Back on stage, Shredder is getting a bone from upsetting the children and calling them names. At this point, I have to reflect just how much filler is going to be left in the second “act” since I think there is only two actual songs left. Shredder taunts the children some more and becomes eventually either tired or irritated. I find I identity with the way Shredder is feeling. So like all bad guys, he likes to talk too much and reveals to us how his giant music sucking vibrator works. To show us as an example, since he hates music so much, he and the foot bust into their very own awful rap and breakdance. Look out electric boogalo! What a surprise treat, and a shame this baby isnt on the album. Maybe there is a special editon I don’t know about.

The turtles commicate to the crowd via vidcam satellite link, and reassure everyone that they have a plan. Sure would like to know what it is at this point, but as there is still thirty minutes left, I’m sure we have to wait a bit to find out. Shredder is agitated that the turtles are still alive and he and Baxter set off to destroy them. Leaving April alone on stage with some lackeys who start dissing the turtles for ditching everyone. April gets pissed they are talking smack on her boys and wait for it…I think it might be April’s big moment…yep, time for April Ballad.

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The song that makes you feel safe. Because that is the power of peace and love and music. A turtle is a friend, a friend to the end. That, or it’s the song that makes one question the nature of the relationship between her and the boys. Just like that, the turtles are back on stage, lured there by April and her beautiful music. The power of peace and love and music indeed. This bitch bagged a Broadway gig from this pizza powered performance. No lie. April’s got it going on.

Splinter notices she’s got it going so much that she’s draining the giant evil vibratdron of its power. Shredder tells April to stop singing and steals her voice ala Ursula. He’s not only stolen her voice, but as reports keep coming in to tell us, music from all over the world. This is so heinous, Baxter lets out maniacal laughter…it is working… IT IS WORKING!! This is the day the music died…bye, bye pizza pie.

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Shredder leaves and the turtles come back out. Seems that Donetello has fabricated some protection from the vibratronic pulses. They notice that the vibrator is powered off of their bad boogie and they bust out into another rockin jam!! Now because they have the protection, they can really stick it to the shredder at last! Finally!!

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Just as I got my hopes up that we were to the climax, it appears that the protective sheilds Donny made not only protect the bad boogie from coming in, it protects it from going out. Great lesson learned here kids.

Seems all this negativity is pulling the boys apart and we are about to have a turtle throwdown. Those shields didn’t keep out the bad boogie after all…another important lesson.

Splinter deduces that the only thing that can really hurt them is their own fear and that they need to follow the music in their hearts. Awww. Acapella turtle action. Not sure why April is mean mugging them, unless she was already up for that Broadway role at this point. April and the power of fierce facials! Let those shoulder pads do the acting for you!

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The music has brought the four ninja brothers back together. How precious. They made up with the power of music and peace and love. Splinter figures out if the audience helps sing along, Shredder and his vibratronic transducer will be defeated and all the music will be restored. We are so ready for this floor show! The turtles and the audience bust into the signature turtle song, Count on Us! Because we can always count on them! Lots of stage effect went into the flashing lights and shaking cameras on them. Shredder is forced to escape to the technodrome, but wait, the turtles foil that plan and send the shred to another dimension!! Tubular dudes!
Go ninja go ninja go!

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-BB

Character Crush – Nate Grey

by Joshie Jaxon

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Did you ever wonder what would happen if Mr. Sinister succeeded in his mission to create a genetically perfect mutant? Well, in the Age of Apocalypse, he did. The product of a cross between Scott Summers and Jean Grey, the X-Man, Nate Grey, was created to be a weapon against Apocalypse himself. It wasn’t until Nate was a child that Sinister even bothered to give him a name.

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Wanting more for himself, Nate broke out into the world, and found friends that actually cared for him. He allied himself with Forge, who taught him to be a hero, and how to use his powers. Under his care, Nate not only gained control of his incredible psionic powers, he harnessed them to the point of being able to fly. His happiness was short lived, when Sinister killed Forge, and told Nate of the purpose he was created for. Avenging his friend and mentor, Nate surprised Sinister by mortally wounding him, and leaving him to die.

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I didn’t follow the Age of Apocalypse when it originally ran, so I missed the initial appearance of our dear X-Man. I was involved in the life of Peter Parker, aka Spider-Man. However, during the Onslaught storyline, I got exposed to Nate. I know he’s a comic book character, but Nate is gorgeous. Blue/gray eyes, depending on the publication, short to medium brown hair, with white streaks in the front, and that classic hero physique swimmer’s build. Plus he’s powerful. It was stated that he’s the most powerful psionic in any reality, and I’d believe it.

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Nate can read minds and it’s a good thing he’s fictional, cause my teenage thoughts were less than platonic. No, I never whacked it to his comics. Couldn’t risk damaging them. I kid, of course. Or do I? You’ll never know. Ok, here’s the T, he was cute, but not I’m about to ruin a perfectly good book for him cute. Besides, I was still in the closet back then, and knew I liked Nate but not fully understanding why.

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Like Nate, I too grew up without a lot of friends. Where I felt like a stranger in the world around me, Nate actually was. He was brought from his reality to Earth 616, where he eventually crossed paths with Peter Parker. Being a telepath, Nate was able to know Spider-Man out of costume. In fact, he got Peter out of his clothes faster than anyone. Lucky bastard. The two became friends, and had an adventure or two. They’re two of my favorite, and most crush worthy people in the Marvel universe.

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As the early 2000’s hit, so did adult hood. Comic book money was applied to things like bills, and rent. Slowly, I lost touch with most of my colorful tights wearing friends. I still retained my childlike love of fictional worlds, but it wasn’t until my life stabilized, as well as my finances, that I was able to play catchup on the stories I’d missed. I’m glad that the internet is what it is, and that trade paperbacks are as readily available as they are. While most adults forget the things that used to bring them joy, and resign themselves to the doldrums of life, I plan on retaining the sense wonder that helps make adulthood better. Though he may no longer be the subject of fantasy or daydreams, the X-Man will always be one of my first character crushes.

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-JJ