Table of Contents
02 March is Comics Month
03 Comics and Video Games
04 Top Ten List
05 Overlooked Gems
06 Classic Commercial
07 Question of the Month
09 Why No Dealers?
10 Bargain Bin Bonanza
The readership continues to grow at a
slow, but steady pace. A first this issue is a submission from Andrea
Wilson and a press release from Arch-Type Studios. So you can finally
read something from someone other than myself. As you saw last issue, I
added a table of contents. As the issues get bigger and bigger, this
will become more useful. Well, this is the tenth issue and I for one am
impressed to have made it this far. I hope that the next ten issues will
be bigger and better! Enjoy!
March is Comics
That's right, this March is going to
be an all comic month for Tomorrow's Heroes. After looking over the web
site, I realized that it is much more slanted towards video games than
comics. Well, I want to change that and one of the ways is by increasing
the amount of stuff on the site. So here is a quick rundown of some of
my projects for this month:
1. Increase and improve the Marvel Team-Up
2. Finally put some stuff in the Marvel Two-In-One section.
3. Finish the list of addresses for all the major comic companies.
4. Add alot of comic ads
5. Some new stuff!
I want this site to become as popular with comics
as it has for video games and I realize that I must put more effort into
it. So this month will be the month I really put the effort in. Check
back often and see all the additions!
(Superman in his
first video game adventure)
Comics and Video Games
While these two have always mixed, the
results were usually less than expected. From the early days of that
Atari when Superman and Spiderman made their first video game
appearances to the new systems with the many comic formats, the games
have yet to capture the essense of comic books. That certain special
magic found in comics couldn't seem to be captured in video games. Why
is that? I am going to try and explore some of the reasoning to why
comic related video games keep falling short. This month we will take a
short tour of the history of comic characters in video games. We will
look at the changes that have gone on.
The first superhero to have a video game made
after him was fittingly enough, Superman. Since Superman was owned by
Warner, who also owned Atari, it was pretty easy to do. He was among the
early games that appeared on the Atari, back in 1978. As far as I know,
he was the first licensed character to appear in a video game (other
than arcade translations). But for some unknown reason, he was the only
DC superhero to have a video game made after him. It is unknown why
Batman, Flash and other never followed in the footsteps of the Man of
Steel, especially since the game was a success.
(Check out Spiderman as he climbs up
It wasn't until 1982, that a second comic book
hero made his way onto a video game. This time it was Spiderman who also
appeared on the Atari 2600. The company Parker Brothers made the cart
and surprisingly, they only released it on the Atari 2600. What makes
this so surprising is that they were famous for porting their games onto
every system. Frogger and Q*Bert, two of their biggest home ports were
found on virtually every system, including many computers. But
Spiderman, another good selling game, only had one port. Too bad as it
would have been nice to see this game updated on the Colecovision or
Overseas, it was much better as a few games came
out; Asterix and Obelix to name two of them,
but not much else. This is surprising, especially considering how much
more popular comics are in other countries.
While many other licenses enjoyed success in video
games, comics were generally ignored. Many
movies, including some obscure ones saw games made about them. From the
popular Star Wars and Tron to the less popular Attack of the Killer
Tomatoes and even Texas Chainsaw Massacre. But there were some games
mentioned that were never made. The Incredible Hulk was supposed to get
a game, but the market crash ended that possibility.
(Punisher for the Nintendo, the games
was as one dimensional as the book)
With the market crash, video game consoles pretty
much died off in America. At least for a few years. Then the Nintendo
came and with it a whole slew of video games based on superheroes. You
had Spiderman, Superman, Silver Surfer, Punisher, Batman and more!
Granted most of these games were the same thing, side scrollers that had
you walk along and fight dozens of henchmen before the boss character,
usually being a popular super villain, would pop up. Even a few games
were made about characters who weren't from Marvel and DC. Two of these
were Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Bucky O'Hare. Granted, these both
had popular cartoon shows that helped pave the path for them.
When the 16 bit era came about, it brought out
more and more games featuring comic book characters. Once again, Batman
and Spiderman led the way with numerous games on the Genesis and Super
Nintendo. But there was also room for some not so known companies. From
the Spawn game from the up and coming Image comics to Chakan The Forever
Man from the completely unknown R.A.K. Graphics, you had comics
everywhere. Once again, side scrollers were the popular choice. We did
see a few changes as fighting games began to appear with superheroes.
The Justice League and the Ninja Turtles both had these.
Into the 32 bit and beyond era, we have seen comic
characters take even newer roles. Sure there are still side scrollers
like the awful Fantastic Four for the Playstation, but you also get 1st
person exploration games like the well done Turok for the Nintendo 64
and 3rd person games like the poorly done Spawn for the Playstation. But
the game of choice is the fighting game with Capcom bringing out a
plethora of Marvel fighting games.
Now that we have a basic history of the evolution
of comic book characters in video games, we will take a look at why the
gameplay has yet to really capture the feel of a comic book. We will
also look at some possible ideas for characters and games that may do
well. Tune in next month for the second part of this article.
Top 10 List
This month's top ten is going to deal
with something a little bizarre. We are going to list the top ten most
interesting speaking people in comics. By this I mean characters who
have unique accents or talk in a peculiar way. So sit back and see if
you agree with these picks and know full well that people like Superman
and Batman will never make this list.
his well educated language that is littered with long words, he made us
all break out a dictionary to find out exactly what he was saying.
09. Any snake
character-From the Serpent Society to Cobra and on,
any character who was a snake or a lizard almost always spoke with a
"sss" added to the back of a word.
08. Luke Cage and
Black Lightning-They both possessed that street talk
filled with 70's slang. Terms like "Jive Turkey" and "Sucker" gave them
that hardened on the streets mystique.
07. Silver Surfer-His
brooding almost ethereal way of talking made us feel his anguish and
loneliness. He was soft spoken and his thoughts were very deep and very
Grundy and the Incredible Hulk-Both spoke with that
first person "Solomon Grundy/Hulk smash". It made us make no mistake
that they were brute strength and brute strength only. Plus, the Hulk's
unique names he made for all the heroes and villains were priceless.
she threw a spell, it was time to break out the mirror. Must have been
fun for the writers to have to write all of her spells backwards. A
regular chore, but us readers enjoyed it!
his constant wisecracks and confidence, it made the character a fun
read. You really never knew what he would say next and many times I
found myself on the floor laughing.
came from a strange world and his language reflected that. Much like
that world, what he said and what he meant were not always the same
02. Creeper and
Underdog-Let me know if I am wrong, but I am almost
positive these were the two characters who used to rhyme everything they
said. Another major chore for the writers. I still remember the issue of
Underdog where he spent it trying to find a rhyme for "orange" while the
bad guys ransacked the city.
his very eloquent way of speaking, he was both romantic and confusing.
It took a few issues to truly understand Thor, but once you mastered it,
it was quite enjoyable. Really added atmosphere to the book.
by Andrea Wilson
(3rd Series): This incarnation of Strangle Tales ran
in the late 80's, and featured Cloak and Dagger (another underrated
team) and Doctor Strange. What makes this series particularly appealing
is the Doctor Strange story that runs for the first third of the series.
In it, the Sorcerer Supreme must battle an all-encompassing evil.
Unfortunately, his normal methods are ineffective, and he must either
use the "black" magic he usually avoids (and risk losing his soul), or
keep his morals intact and watch the world as we know it end. When I was
first introduced to this series, it still had some value (stemming from
a Punisher and a Spiderman appearance), but now it lives in the bargain
bins, waiting to be rediscovered by those who really appreciate a good
This horribly underappreciated black-and-white series was published by
Aadvark-Vaneheim (Cerebus) in the mid-80's. The story was set in some
near future time, and showed in grim detail a vision of what the world
would be like if we did not care for it. This vision was brought to life
by the exquisite talents of Michael Zulli (Sandman: The Wake). Michael
Zulli is one of the few contemporary artists in comics who remembers
that a scene is more than the foreground. His attention to background
detail draws you into his world and keeps you there until you grasp his
vision. Plus, he has a great knowledge of anatomy, enabling him to draw
animals (and people) that look ready to walk out of the page and into
your room. I have never seen anything else like it. In this area, the
book is painfully hard to find (I only have found about half of the 23+
issues run), but I understand that it can be found in bargain bins,
especially in Canada. It is well worth the effort it takes to find it.
(Click on the
picture to see a larger sized ad)
This month we take a look at a
commercial we all know and love, the darling Sea Monkeys. I don't know
about you, but just seeing how much fun they appeared to be in the ad
was enough to make me order them. I was all set to teach them tricks and
raise them for profits. Well, when they came I was a bit disappointed.
They are possibly the only things smaller than the toy soldiers you see
in the comics. You need a magnifying glass to see these specks. As far
as tricks, keeping them alive was enough of a trick. Forget the hoops
and all the other stuff.
Well, mine lasted about a week before the disaster
hit. While a meteorite may have ended the dinosaurs and a nuclear war
may kill off mankind, my poor sea monkeys died from a less monumental
disaster. While playing catch with a football (something my mother
warned me about repeatedly), the ball hit their bowl and sent them to an
early grave. I would tell you how they clutched on for dear life or how
they valiantly battled to stay alive in the face of death, but since
they were so tiny, I could barely see them. There were cleaned up and
sent to the great sink to move on to a greater existence. Brings a tear
back just thinking about it.
Question of the
Last month we had five people respond!
While not monumental, it was some response. Here are the movies they
would like to see:
JLA (Keith Giffen)
Cerebus (he said he would prefer animated, but live action would be
cool) and the most interesting one of the month was the DC/Marvel Access
story. The very thought of all the different characters and legal
constraints is enough to make one cringe. But it would be cool!
This month's question is what character would you
like to see an action figure for or which character who has an action
figure would you like to see a new and better one made of? I personally
would like to see an action figure made of the Flaming Carrot. His first
dozen or so issues were legendary and it would be great to see an action
figure of such an interesting character.
Work and Having a Chance
(reprinted from Tomorrow's News)
Have you ever wanted to work in
comics? If you're anything like the average comic fan, the answer is a
resounding YES! Whether you're an artist or a writer, getting into the
business can be tough. Sure your friends and family think your art is
great or feel you have a gift for writing, but do you know how to show
your talents to the big boys? Well, I'm here to help you out. I have
customers constantly telling me about their story ideas and showing me
their artwork (even more often since we put the Colt story in the back
of the newsletter). So I thought about doing a column on the proper way
to submit your work to the major comic companies. While each company
will have slightly different guidelines, most are the same. To get the
official way to submit I asked Ruben Diaz, editor of the Justice League
from none other than DC Comics. Ruben gave me many great tips to pass
along to all of you comic creators in training. I will break it into
three parts; artists submissions, writer submissions, and general
information. I did this because both are done completely different. I
hope this information will help you out.
Of the two, submitting work as
an artist and getting feedback is easier. Unlike a story where it takes
considerable time to read and evaluate, an artists talents are
immediately apparant. "One of the most important things to remember when
submitting artwork is to send xeroxes" states Ruben. "Plus if you
include a self addressed stamp envelope, we can send a response" he
adds. If your artwork isn't accepted, this response will usually be a
rejection letter, but depending on how busy the editors are at the time,
you may get some professional tips on how to improve your artwork.
The second most important thing to do is to send
in sequential artwork between three to four pages long. Don't send in
pinups, as these don't show a true representation of your abilities.
When I asked Ruben why they want sequential art he answered "We need to
see the artists ability to tell a story without words. You cannot see
this with pinups. Plus we want get a good look at their style, ability
to draw heroes like normal people, their grasp of perspective and
knowledge of anatomy".
As far as what to submit, you can write to DC
Comics or whatever company you want to work for and they have submission
stories that are available. Again, send a self addressed stamped
envelope to receive this. If you cannot wait for a submission story,
Ruben has a suggestion "Get together with a friend and get a copy of a
comic. Have your friend describe some pages to you and then draw your
own interpretation of the story". Make sure that it is a story that you
haven't read, as you want your approach to be just that, yours.
Another important fact to consider is that if you
are looking to be a penciller, then only send in your pencils. Same goes
if you are interested in being an inker. An editor cannot see how well
your pencils are if you covered them up with inks. If you want to show
both, then do the pencils and xerox them. Then ink over them and xerox
it again. This way the editor can see the full scope of your talents. If
you are trying for an inking job, it would be a good idea to first send
for a submission story. This way the editor is already familiar with
what the pencils look like.
When you have finished your work and are ready to
submit it, where do you send it? There are a few approaches to this.
First off, you can send to the submission editor. You could also send it
to the editor of the book in which you are interested in. Before you get
your heart set on doing Batman or Superman, you should expect to start
lower and work your way up. Once you make a name for yourselve, you can
be selective as to what projects you want to work on. Right now, the
most important thing is to get your foot in the door.
Check back here next month when we will look into
how to break in as a writer. Listed below is the address for the
submissions editor for DC.
Dean Motter (I am not sure if he is still the
New York, NY 10019
(I would like to thank Ruben Diaz for his time and
input into this article. His contributions were invaluable. I would also
like to the Shira LeVine, who helped me get the interview. You're
Why No Dealers?
One of the most asked questions I get
is why don't I deal with other comic dealers? If you look in my
purchasing guidelines, you will see that I specifically have a rule in
there that I will not sell to dealers. Alot of people ask me why I am so
harsh towards dealers. Here is the whole explanation.
While I don't have anything against dealers in
general, considering I owned and ran a comic store for 13 years, but my
experiences on the net have been less than pleasant. First let me state
that all dealers are not this way and there are many good dealers and
ones I have had successful dealings with. But the a fair amount of the
ones I have come across on the internet are arrogant, obnoxious and
downright rude. They come to my site and tell me what I am going to sell
my comics to them for. They make demands and expect me to practically
give my books away. When I tell them that the prices on the site are the
price I sell them for, whether they are a dealer or a collector, they
get upset and demand a lower price. There has been some dealers I have
dealt with and had no problems. But they are unfortunately the
exception. Here are a few examples of some of the stuff I had to deal
Example #1-One dealer
wrote me (his actual words) and said "Your prices are fine for the
common man, but I am a dealer and so I expect, no I demand a much lower
price." If I wasn't a gentleman, I would have told him where to go.
Example #2-A dealer wrote
me and said he wanted a stack of comics from me at half the price marked
(he said he usually wouldn't pay that much, but he was feeling generous,
oh lucky me). If this wasn't enough, he then told me he needed the books
by Friday for a show he was doing this weekend and that I was to pick up
the tab for shipping them to him. He emailed me on Thursday and lived
halfway across the country (meaning they would have to go our next day
air, which starts at $11.00 for a one pound package and quickly goes
up). To add insult to injury, he said that he would pay for the books
after he got back from the comic show. I was not so polite with this guy
and promptly told him to get lost.
Example #3-A dealer
emailed me and said he was willing to pay me a quarter each for comics I
had listed under $5.00 and fifty cents each for comics I had listed over
$5.00. Of course he had listed books like Astro City, Wolverine
miniseries, X-Men and Kingdom Come. When I emailed back and told him the
prices listed were the prices and his offer was unacceptable, he sent
back an email calling me every name in the book. When I inquired about
buying books from his site for the same amount he quoted me, he told me
that I was insane.
I can list numerous other such incidents, but I
think you get the point. As I stated above, I have dealt with some
dealers and had no problems. But the fact of the matter is that I have a
certain way of doing business and set prices and it seems fine for the
hundreds of customers, including many repeat customers that I have done
business with. So I would rather deal with someone who wants the books
to read and appreciate them. They are more understanding and much easier
to deal with.
Bargain Bin Bonanza
This month I will look at one of my
favorite comics. It is one of those overlooked books that is a very
worthwhile and I for one cannot figure out why it never caught on. The
book I am talking about is the Southern Knights.
The Southern Knights started out as the Crusaders.
But a cease and desist forced them to change their name (turns out that
another comic company had the rights to that name for a super hero
group). The funny thing is they even worked this into the story. A very
The group consisted of four members;
Mark Dagon who was a dragon who could change into human form.
David Shenk who is Electrode and has electric powers.
Connie Ronnin who can create a mental sword
Kristin who is really, really strong and nearly invulnerable.
They came together as the dragon was trying to
stop a kidnapping when the others try to stop him. Everything is figured
out and they end up forming a team. As the name suggests, they are
located in the south, Atlanta, Georgia to be exact. The stories are
quite good and after the first few issues the art improves and is quite
good. But the best part of the book is that there is some great
character development and you really get to know them. After a few
issues you really feel for them and want to know what happens next. This
is the mark of a great book and the Southern Knights were this.
The only real letdown of the book was that it was
short lived. There were 24 regular issues and a few specials. The dragon
had a miniseries and there were a few annuals and such. Too bad as they
PERIPHERY #3 --
"WE'RE NOT DEAD YET!"
Arch-Type Studios and Dreamriders
Workshop once again unleash PERIPHERY
upon an unsuspecting public. Issue #3 is a stellar
creation, jam-packed with swarms of aliens, a plethora of demons, a
gun-toting duck, a healthy dose of pseudo-scientific psycho-babble, and
some Roman gods who've watched one Robert De Niro movie too many.
PERIPHERY is a bi-monthly b/w comic anthology
containing 48 pages of twisted fantasy for under three bucks ($2.95US).
PERIPHERY #3 will be in the February issue of Diamond Previews on page
232, under the Dreamriders Workshop listing.
Help keep us from becoming an endangered species,
and order your copy in advance. (Previews Order # : FEB991247).
Periphery #3 Teasers
Shadows On A Star
The siren song of lost souls tempts unwary astronauts into the deadly
embrace of a Pulsar, where shadow demons offer torment giftwrapped in
immortality. Shadows on a Star, by Doug [Para Troop] Miers & Matt
Mafia Gods [Part I] :
The Roman gods aren't dead - they've just discovered capitalism.
God meets Godfather in this multi-part tale by Derek M Koch and Shawn
Quack, Duck Of Doom : The Devil Wears
AS Seen at
http://www.comicresources.com ! The harrowing climax to our
pulse-pounding tale of anthromorphic adventure! Will Quack triumph over
evil? Will Jimmy get a proper burial? Will the Devil's suspenders hold?
And how do they keep from burning up anyhow? All these questions
answered [except maybe the last one], courtesy of Andrew Dabb and The
A Woman's Prerogative [Mordechai
Behind every great man, there's a woman. Well, most women aren't happy
with the whole "behind men" concept, and one in particular means to
change it, even if it means doing a little retroactive editing on the
Book of Genesis. Change is, after all, A Woman's Prerogative.
The Half-Life Chronicles [3/3]
A pint-sized grim reaper with an attitude, a hellhound that's cute as a
button (but dumb as a bag of hammers), and a heaven-sent scientist who
just won't stop talking -- what do they have in common? They're all
trying to locate a misplaced cadaver, and they only have EIGHT pages to
do it in before the series ends!
For more information on Arch-Type Studios or
Dreamriders Workshop, feel free to visit our webpages at
The tenth issue has come and gone, but
it marks a milestone. With our first submission and more, we may finally
be turning the corner. While this newsletter will never reached the
readership of some of the other ones out there, especially ones that
deal with news about new comics and such, I do feel there is a fair
amount of people who want a different kind of newsletter. One that
doesn't take itself or the comics it covers too serious. One that will
take a look at books the others overlook. I hope this newsletter can
continue to do this and hopefully as the issue numbers rise, so will the
readership. So you can rest assured that it will keep coming out and I
will continue to try and increase the size of it. Please keep sending
that feedback, positive or negative and I will try and keep improving