Alex Ross Spotlight: Spider-Woman

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Last week was a big one for Jessica Drew, a.k.a. Spider-Woman. Her new #1 hit the stands. A quite enjoyable start to a new volume, if you ask me.

As you can see, Alex Ross is no stranger to Spider-Woman. In Marvelocity: The Marvel Comics Art of Alex Ross, he offered a bit of insight into the character, as well as the history of Marvel’s other female heroes…

“I love Spider-Woman. Marvel’s lineup of heroes in the 1960 was not strong on female leads. There was the Wasp and Invisible Girl and Marvel Girl, but they were reflections of their male counterparts. … Spider-Woman and She-Hulk were created in the 1970s simply to establish the copyrights to their names, but I think the characters have gone on to transcend that.”

Apparently, the Spider-Woman costume is one of Ross’ favorites to draw.

“Even though I felt her costume design was largely unrelated to Spider-Man’s (aside from the eyes), she was so attractive to me as a kid.”

Email Rob at at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Toy Chest Theater: Woody, Jessie, and Social Distancing

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This one kinda speaks for itself, doesn’t it?

Once again we’ve got a shot from Simon Hill, a.k.a. plastic_snaps. Who we’ve previously seem deliver an amazing old school NES inspired Raphael image. Now he comes to us with a pic from the world of Toy Story that’s got an eerily timely feel to it.

Given Woody’s mask, I’m assuming Jessie and the soldier are the ones in isolation, while our favorite deputy is the one protecting himself. I can’t be the only one getting a Wrath of Khan vibe here, can I?

Email Rob at at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

The Joker Played By…Boner?!?

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

You know what I’ve been binge-watching lately? Especially now that we’re on quarantine? Growing Pains. Yup. Been takin’ a trip back to the ’80s, when America had Mike Seaver fever. At least the ones reading Tiger Beat.

Those of you who’ve seen the show might remember Mike’s best friend Boner. Yes, Boner. A name you could totally get away with today…

On a seemingly unrelated note, let’s talk about the Batman movie franchise. Nowadays, we see the Dark Knight on the big screen every few years. The novelty is hardly even there anymore. But there was a time, specifically between 1997 and 2005, when Batman was absent from the movies. This was the post-Batman & Robin pre-Batman Begins era. For awhile, the closest thing we got were the famous OnStar commercials with Michael Gough. They don’t make ’em like that anymore…

Then in 2003, a fan film came along that presented Batman’s world in a different light. This was a darker, grimmer Gotham City than we’d seen even in the Tim Burton films. Directed by Sandy Collora, it sees the Dark Knight chase after the Joker. Naturally, he’s just escaped from Arkham Asylum. Suddenly the Joker gets nabbed by, of all things, a Predator.

So why the swerve from Growing Pains to Batman? The actor playing the Joker? Andrew Koenig, a.k.a. Richard “Boner” Stabone.

Check it out…

You know what the real kicker is? Fans still go crazy for 1951’s Batman #66. The story is called “The Joker’s Comedy of Errors.” But it’s probably best known by fans as “the one where the Joker says ‘boner’ a lot.”

It took 52 years. But it all came full circle.

Contact Rob at PrimaryIgnition@Yahoo.com or @Primary Ignition.

Alex Ross Spotlight: The Legacy of Neal Adams

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

If you’re a comic book geek and haven’t heard the name Neal Adams, you haven’t been paying attention in class.

Alex Ross credits Adams as one of his early influences, and it’s easy to see why. Adams is widely credited with revolutionizing comic book art. Specifically in the late ’60s and early ’70s when he worked with writer Denny O’Neil on characters like Batman, Green Arrow, and Green Lantern.

As Ross tells it…

Alex Ross Spotlight: Wonder Woman’s Origin

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Today is a big day for our favorite Amazon princess. Wonder Woman #750 has all the makings of an amazing tribute to the character and her legacy. It promises tales from various points in her career, featuring epic talents like Greg Rucka, Gail Simone, Marguerite Bennett, Jesus Merino, among so many others.

For Alex Ross, the classic never dies. Not just in terms of their looks, but their origins. So it’s no surprise to hear his enthusiasm for Diana’s classic origin in the video below.

I’d also like to note this is the first time I’ve heard this sculpted-from-clay story referred to as a “virgin birth.” I don’t think he’s intentionally trying to evoke a comparison to the birth of Christ. But they do have that element in common…

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Alex Ross Spotlight: Why is the Joker So Skinny?

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

A friend of mine recently introduced me to Quora, which is a fun little way to kill time.

I recently came across the simple question of, “Why is the Joker so skinny?” No doubt, it was inspired by how Joaquin Phoenix’s body looked in Joker.

But it certainly didn’t start there. More often than not, the Joker we see in the comics is drawn as a skinny dude. In that sense, if not many others, Joker followed its source material.

I’ve previously mentioned what I refer to as the Alex Ross Theory of the Joker. I base it on a quote I plucked from Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross. On the very same page as that quote comes this bit of insight into Ross’ take on the character, which he tries to keep somewhat consistent with the original Bob Kane/Jerry Robinson version (shown below).

“…he didn’t start off in the comics as this stick-thin anorexic guy – I wanted to give him the appearance of being long and lean, but also physically powerful, not underweight. He was originally based on Conrad Veidt in the 1928 silent film The Man Who Laughs, and that’s what I’m seeing to capture – the true face of Joker.”

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Meet the Umbrella Academy!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Netflix’s new superhero series, The Umbrella Academy, offers a…shall we say, unconventional take on the genre. That’s not necessarily unexpected, as it comes from the mind of Gerard Way, lead singer of My Chemical Romance.

The folks at Fandom have some nice appetizer vids set up for you. Once again, they’ve enlisted yours truly for the voice work. You can find them at “Meet the Super Dysfunctional Family of Netflix’s ‘The Umbrella Academy.'”

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