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Flash Gordon

Secret Agent X-9 Returns

The April 19, 2020 Flash Gordon Sunday features the return of none other than Dashiell Hammet’s Secret Agent X-9!

Fast forward and Secret Agent X-9 (aka Phil Corrigan) is a member of the I.I.I.

Returning to Dale and Secret Agent X-9 (following Flash Gordon’s adventures in the kingdom of the Sharkmen) we find…

Also unbeknowst to Corrigan, Ming the Merciless has initiated his nefarious plot to conquer planet Earth.

So strap yourself in faithful reader, things are kicking into high gear…

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Sally Forth

Responding to a Pandemic.

Jim Keefe and I decided pretty quickly to address the “new normal” and dump a month of already-penned scripts. (This week you would have been seeing the school dance if the world was the previous world if that world can still be recalled). That said, any strip that chose to do otherwise is also correct. We just get through this day by day, clinging to our insanity like a dear friend.

– Francesco Marciuliano

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Ramblings & Reviews

Comic Piracy

Pet peeve:
People substituting their own joke over someone else’s cartoon.

As a meme it’s lazy, and adds the insult of disregarding the original artist as they always crop out their signature.

-Jim Keefe

Categories
Ramblings & Reviews

Intro to Anime

When I was in my 20s the groundbreaking anime film Akira was released here in the States. It pretty much blew any American made animation that was being produced at the time out of the water.

That said – this got me to thinking about how woefully ignorant I am in regards to anime, so I put together the following as a tutorial…

For this first part I deferred to my daughter Tessa (who was thirteen at the time this post was originally written). She loves manga and took Japanese as a language in Middle School.

Tessa_Mangacolor

Note: Tessa wouldn’t let me include a photo, so I posted a manga style drawing instead. And yes, her volleyball team was district champions.

As far as a kid-friendly intro goes, Tessa gave Shawna Howson’s intro to anime videos a thumbs up, and ads that her explanation of Shōjo in the following installment is especially dead on.

And for those who slam Shōjo,
here’s Howson’s rebuttal…

Shawna-Howson-Knows-Its-Okay-Not-To-Like-Things
Shawna-Howsons-Dont-Be-a-Jerk-About-It-Dance

An American animated series (with definite anime roots) that Tessa recommended highly is Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Avatar-group

This is NOT to be confused with the movie by M. Night Shyamalan. The strengths of the animated series are actually best made in this episode where the Nostalgia Critic compares the animated series to the movie.

The following recommendations are from MCAD alum Allison O’Brien. In addition to being a fantastic artist she was also President of the MCAD Anime Club back in the day.

Allison

From here on in, all comments in italics are from Allison.


These are the ones I can think of off the top of my head, but it seems about right.

Princess Mononoke


Ghost in the Shell


Spirited Away


Grave of the Fireflies


Perfect Blue – Personal preference.


Tokyo Godfathers


Paprika


Redline – For sheer style ALONE.

Kid-friendly picks. Spirited Away (listed above) was one.
Here’s more…

Castle in the Sky


The Cat Returns


My Neighbor Totoro


Kiki’s Delivery Service – Really just anything Ghibli are quite good.


Maybe add Summer Wars, though it might be pushing it.


The ones listed in my previous list are pretty violent/psychological in nature (ESPECIALLY avoid Perfect Blue and Grave of the Fireflies).
Princess Mononoke may also cut it, but it does have some decapitations/similar violent imagery.

Manga Recommendations:
Note: Among Westerners, “manga” refers to Japanese comics.

Most of what I gave you previously were movies, so here’s a few series that are great to get into. I mean clearly I could give more, but I figured some series to balance out the movies would be good.

Monster – Psychological drama, very intense.

key_art_naoki_urasawas_monster

Mushi-shi – Cerebral/spiritual, emotional experience.

mushishi_900x350

Hunter x Hunter – My preference is the 2011 version, but the ’99 one is still great, incredibly smart and influential.

hunter

Baccano – Colorful cast, unique storytelling.

baccano_900x350

Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood – Known as one of the best shounen series, for good reasons.

fullmetal_alchemist_brotherhood

Mononoke – Insanely gorgeous.

mononoke

This is the default chart that tends to get sent around when people ask for recommendations.

manga

-Allison O’Brien

So there you go. This at leasts gives you a starting point if you’re new to all this. And if you’re not new to it, titles you may be unfamiliar with to look out for.

Before signing off I’d like to thank Allison for her recommendations. To see more of her work, check out her portfolio at cargocollective.com/allobrien

Also check out her progress blog at allobrien.tumblr.com
Fun stuff!

tumblrAllison
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Flash Gordon

USE CLOTH FACE COVERINGS AGAINST COVID-19

Use a cloth face covering to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

For more info go to cdc.gov