Although, as I mentioned in that post, Velma has been getting gradually hotter in the 21st century, thanks to Linda Cardellini's casting of her in the two feature films, Kiyoko's portrayal of her in two TV films and the the Cardellini-like character design in current Scooby series, Scooby-Doo: Mystery Incorporated.
Lan Pitts, who was part of the old "Best Shots @" crew of comics reviewers at Newsarama that I used to run with, collects sketches and original art, and one of the subjects he often solicited is Ms. Dinkley herself. The above is by by Joe Eisma, and is one of the more consciously pin-up-esque in his Velma collection; all 18 pieces of which can be seen here.
The many Velma's come in various shapes and sizes, with skirts of various levels of shortness. I think I like Robbi Rodriguez's the best; it doesn't really say "Velma" to me at all, but it's an awesome drawing.
You can see more of the work Lan's commissioned and collected in the various galleries here.
Tom Spurgeon's superior link-blogging, I came across this post by Martin Wisse slamming a Milo Manara drawing of The Scarlet Witch, which Marvel is using as the cover of the upcoming Uncanny Avengers #2.
I don't want to quote Wisse's post at length, because it's only a few sentences long, but his main contention, if you're too lazy to go read his few sentences (don't be so lazy; go read them) is that the image in question? "That’s not the Scarlet Witch, that’s the bog standard Manara woman cosplaying her."
Wisse is right, of course, but then, do any characters look like themselves anymore? Close your eyes and imagine just about any superhero character, the Scarlet Witch is a fine example to do with.
Okay, what does that character look like in your mind? Does she look like a particular artist drew here? Does every artist drawing her make her look the same?
Hell, if Batman and Spider-Man, whose costumes cover somewhere between 90% and 100% of their bodies, look completely different depending on which artist is drawing them. Neither DC nor Marvel use style guides or character bibles or character designs of any kind to dictate how characters look anymore. The Hulk can be anywhere from six feet tall to 20 feet tall, a foot across or eight feet across. Sometimes Spidey's built like a praying mantis, sometimes like a runner, sometimes a swimmer, sometimes like a competitive body builder.
Namor can look like Robert DeNiro or Phil Collins, and, in fact, is more likely to look like either of them than he is the character designed by Bill Everett, or slightly redesigned by Jack Kirby or John Byrne years later. These days, Namor is really just a guy wearing one of Namor's costumes, who will more likely than not have black hair (although he might have brown hair, if the colorist prefers) and who will be referred to in the dialogue as "Namor," which is how readers will know who he is.
So is that the Scarlet Witch? I don't know. She's wearing the Scarlet Witch costume, so I guess so...? She doesn't look like George Perez's Scarlet Witch, the only one I've spent much time with, but then, I don't suspect anyone else on the insides of that book or the covers of that book are going to look a whole hell of a lot like Perez's versions of the character.
At least Manara drew his way off-model Scarlet Witch, rather than just photo-traced some poorly selected photo-reference (which Wisse alluded to in his post, as you know, as you read that before getting to the end of this bit of mine).
Speaking of which this is a pretty nice picture, but it does just kinda look like J. Bone plopped Michelle Obama's head on top of Wonder Woman's body, doesn't it...?
I was really happy when I heard that Get Your War On had returned (in the animated format). And then I was kinda pissed that I didn't hear about it sooner. Here are the latest ones.
GYWO was the only good thing about life in America during the first decade of the 21st century.
Okay, I'm exaggerating. A little.
I read Don MacPherson's review of writer (?) Dan DiDio and artists Bren Anderson and Scott Hanna's Phantom Stranger #0 with
There's even a mention of Judas' coins in it!
Is that weird that DC released Phantom Stranger at about the same time that they released Walt Simonson's The Judas Coin, which follows one of the cursed coins of Judas through DC Universe history...?
To bad DiDio didn't tie his work closer to Simonson's, and have DC sell it that way—they maybe could have moved some more Judas Coins by saying it was a keystone of the secret of the New 52iverse, revealing a portion of The Phantom Stranger's origin.
I was pretty surprised to hear DC announce a new comic set in the JSA: Liberty Filess Elseworlds setting. Mostly because I don't remember anything at all about the comic. I read one of those series, and all I remember is that they called the superheroes by different names (Exmaple, "The Clock" instead of "Hourman") and that...Martian Manhunter was in a tent, I think...? (Oh, spoiler! I think it was a surprise that it was Martian Manhunter in the tent and not, like, someone form the JSA...?) Seriously, I don't remember jackshit about those comics, which is kinda weird. Like, I know I read them, and I know I didn't dislike them, but they weren't so good that I remembered much of anything about them, for whatever reason.
Weirder still is that DC is doing a sequel series, like, a million years later, so long after they've done away with Elseworlds.
I have only a passing familiarity with the Buffy The Vampire Slayer universe—I know the characters names and some of the primary actors who played roles on the series, basically—but it was my understanding that all of the slayers had to be female, for some reason.
If this is true, then that means either a) males can be slayers too, or b) only gay males can be slayers too, and then things get, really, really weird.
Like, if the slayers have to be female, what is it about females that qualify them to be vampire slayers? It's not something biological or physical—like, you don't need two x chromosomes or a vagina to be a slayer—but you have to have that certain something that most females and some men, specifically, gay men have in common? Do you have to be sexually attracted to men in order to be a vampire slayer, not necessarily be female? (And does this mean there aren't any lesbian vampire slayers?)
Basically, I just don't get what a gay man would have in common with women that would qualify him but not qualify a straight man.
Damn, I've already thought way more about Buffy than I need to.
Also, it's kind of depressing that we're still at a point in comics history where "Hey look, a gay character!" is a send-out-a-press-release and successfully score coverage kind of event. Like, I would have hoped by 2012 the presence of gay superheroes, Riverdale teens, barbarians, X-Wing fighter pilots, Predators, whatever would be commonplace enough that it's not even worth pointing out.
That was, as it turns out, a naive hope. Oh well. Maybe next decade...?
A whole lot of X-Men comics came out this week, apparently.
Finally, here is retailer Brian Hibbs on the pox that is variant covers, a piece entitled "Don't Shit Where You Eat." I agree with almost every word of it, despite the fact that I see it from a different perspective than Hibbs does (I'm not a retailer, but a comics consumer/worrier about). I've long suspected they do much more long-term damage than they do short-term good, and what little short-term good they do seems to be somewhere between shady and scummy.
The saddest thing about variants is that the smaller publishers who seem like the greatest offenders are apparently forced into that corner by the big publishers (that is, Marvel and DC) also vigorously pursuing the variant cover strategy, and that either publisher feels they have to go crazy with variants is about a strong a statement about how fucked up the direct market is that I can think of.