Friday, September 28, 2007

that's rich!


the other day, when i did my little dissertation on our run of sensational spider-mans, i (purposely) neglected to mention the third member of our web-thwippin' team, my pal, rich case.

i, of course, knew rich's name even before i got into the biz, having LOVED his wacky, quirky art alongside grant morrison's wacky, quirky stories in doom patrol! it was, i have to say, a very rich and fertile time in my life--and, i think, in comics--and the doom patrol was way out there on the edge...and yet, everyone i knew was reading it! (the early 90's was a time so rife with potential in comics, and especially karen berger's new vertigo line. man...some great books...) i remember thinking that it was one thing for grant to come up with this bizarre, insane stuff, but it was rich who had to literally draw the undrawable! (if you get a chance, check these books out--they're all available in trade. they'll bend your head!)

and so, with mike and i hired on to write and draw sensational spider-man, it was rich, mike's studiomate, who was lured in to be the inker. a power trio to be reckoned with--we had fun!

well, mike and i did.
i can remember thinking that rich was gonna hate us our third issue in when the villain was the bee-colony, hive mind known as SWARM! i had all of new york infested with a plague of bees, there were bees everywhere!...and rich had to ink them all! hundreds and thousands of little, tiny, buzzy bees...!
mike called me one afternoon and said that rich was crying....

as mike would need a break now and then from the monthly grind, rich grabbed me at the end of one of our group phone calls to ask if i'd wanna do a fill-in issue with him? that he had an idea and maybe we could spitball it a bit. now, i'm thinking, i'm gonna be able to work with rich as a penciller?! man! too cool! what weird, bizarre, guy-with-a-chandelier-for-a-head, wackiness could i come up with for rich to pit against spidey?
fortunately, rich had much more than just an idea. and one issue became two, featuring spidey versus the new living pharaoh, and the creation of a girl named akasha. rich and my friend, andrew hennessey, and i even took a trip to the metropolitan museum of art to get some reference photos for rich and absorb as much of that ancient egyptian flavor as we could get.
the issues turned out great!

currently, rich is working in video game design and doing some of the coolest stuff i've seen in a long time! i have to say, i'm fascinated by the whole process, seeing these things go from sketches to drawings to 3d art to actual buildings and landscapes and worlds that you can walk around in!
here are a couple pieces that rich has conceptualized, but check out his blog at

as he takes us through the process and shows how it all comes together!

sweet stuff, rich!

here's "five for friday"

1. what was the name of the arcade video game that featured a spy traveling from floor to floor in a building shooting counter spies?

2. what were the names of the ghosts in pac man?

3. what was the name of the sequel to nintendo's banjo and kazooie?

4. who is the hero in the legend of zelda?

5. what does tetris mean in russian?

that's it!
smell ya later!


Heywood Jablomie said...


That article from weds. was really interesting, hopefully it pans out, but who knows really.(I didn't get to post this there so I'll post it here cuz I'm LAZY haha!) I didn't get to listen to that other thing yet, this weekend though!

Rich does some amazing stuff. I have some of his stuff from back in the day, and it was damn good to look at! I try to pop on his site every now and then and the new stuff he does is fantastic. But I feel for him with the bees, that must have been holy hell! I would have to smack someone if they ever did that to me, just kidding haha!

And for the 5:

1. DAMN YOU! I should know this and it's on the tip of my tongue but I can't remember it! haha Good one!

2. Blinky, Pinky, Inky and Clyde. Ugh had to wrack my noggin on that one!

3. Banjo-Tooie was the sequel name.

4. Link

5. No clue that's a good one right there!!

Brian said...

We are losing more and more great talent to video land every year. Promise not to leave us Todd.

As for the five on friday,

I got nothing.

Heywood Jablomie said...

I also want to go on record as saying 'Thanks Todd!' as I've had the damn music from Tetris in my head all day! hahahahahahahahahaha! =)

Rich Faber said...

I tried typing this twice before and each time it wouldn't submit the text, so here's the short version:

Rich is great. Love his name! ;-)

Elevator Action

Inky, Pinky, Blinky, and Clyde.

No clue about the rest, as I'm not a video game guy.


A. Neal said...


Elevator Action.

Inky, Pinky, Blinky, and Clyde.

Banjo Tooie.


As far as I know, it just means "four," or something close to it. It's a reference to the fact that the seven pieces are each made out of four squares.


Hope you're doing well.

Andrew Neal
Chapel Hill Comics

Colin said...

1. Dunno

2. Inky, Blinky, Winky, and Dot

3. Dunno

4. Link

5. Obsessive-compulsive

Matt Wieringo said...

Rich's stuff is indeed the "mad notes" as Leaf would say. Those latest posts of his have blown me away.

I can't answer any of those questions but when we were playing LEGEND OF ZELDA on the NES when we were in college, we used to make up names for our saved characters. Only rule was it had to start with "Sir". I was "Sir Viss." Our friend Quenin was "Sir Loin". Get it?

Brian said...

You forgot their good buddy, Sir Lee.

Adam Hutch said...

1) I think it was Elevator Action, but I always get that one confused with "Impossible Mission."
2)Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde (was there a girl one too?)
3)I haven't a clue
4)Link, man those games were great on the NES and Super Nintendo
5)Does Tetris mean Addiction? Once I get going I can never stop playing that game.

DonKelly said...

Sir Cuss would have been good too.

I thought the first one was Spy Hunter but hey I may be wrong. I knew the others except the Tetris Questions and Banjo Kablooie..since I never really played Banjo and I don't know any Russian.

todd said...

the answers to your "five for friday" are;

1. elevator action

2. inky, pinky, blinky, and clyde

3. banjo-tooie

4. link

5. tetris means nothing in russian
(but is a conglomeration of the word 'tetra'--meaning four--and tennis--which the inventor really dug).

Unknown said...

Hey Todd,

Hah! What you guys didn't realize was that it was kind of fun to ink all those bees, in a sick way. It was the ultimate mindless part to ink (short of filling in blacks), so I got lots of listening to books on tape time in.

And I want to thank you again for the opportunity all those years ago to put that Living Pharoah story together, 'twas truly a blast collaborating with you on it.