Friday, July 23, 2010

john byrne is awesome! and captions


so, when i was a kid and first got into comics, there were LOTS of artists who were wowing me on a regular basis. mostly a dc boy at the start (i would embrace and immerse myself in marvel soon enough, don't worry...), i was drooling over the talents neal adams, jim aparo, dick dillin, mike grell, and, uh, let's not forget, nick cardy. over at marvel a at the time was this young guy who had this cool style who was working on iron fist and the odd issue of marvel team-up and, though i didn't buy all of them, i picked up a random issue here and there and kept my eye on this guy. his name was john byrne.
well, needless to say, his career exploded shortly after that and his first issue of the uncanny x-men was the first issue of x-men i bought. i loved his style, his storytelling, the acting, the drama, all of the crisp elements he brought to the story. (that he was working with one of the greatest comics writers at the time didn't hurt...!) john byrne fan for life!=me.

as i got into comics myself, i had the opportunity to meet john and gush all over him, and that's a story for another time. i have also watched him gradually extract himself from the comics industry and, while i am frustrated that we don't get to see his wonderful work on the characters that we all know and love--that i know HE knows and loves!--i can certainly understand and respect his choices and decisions not to be drawn into and manipulated by the machines that now churn out the sales-driven, corporately-conceived crossovers that litter our shelves each month. (look at me. i am so happy--and lucky--to be operating under that radar, working on super hero squad! and not having to be a part of alla that...)

so, okay, that's why john stays away from the big two...but how then, does a true-blooded, dyed-in-the-wool, card-carrying comics fan get his marvel on? or his dc, for that matter...?
he does commissions.

i don't surf around the net all that much (i'm so easily distracted that if i went anywhere, it'd be all day. really. it happens.) so i count on matt and craig and christian and rich and warren--and my nephew for silly stuff--to hook me up with articles, photos, movie trailers, you tube clips, news reports, etc. so that i know at least a little of what's going on out in the real world.
when matt sent me this the other day--under the subject title, "HOLY CRAP!!"--i was speechless.

still am.

this falls under the commissions category of "re-imagined covers".
this is the cover to fantastic four 134.

this is john's newest version.

you know how i love dragon man.
i can't stop saying awesome.
and meaning it.
i mean, the meaning of awesome. full of awe.
i am full of awe.
i can't stop looking at this.
john byrne is awesome!

to see more of john's awesomeness--and especially more of his commissions--head on over to his website at; and spend a day. you could. you will.


over at another favorite website, ebaum's world--where i go to play a few favorite old-school on-line games--they present a series of random pictures each week that are either funny, curious, thought-provoking, or sexy called monday morning randomness. i grabbed a few images from there and put a couple captions on them and here they are. nothing fancy--add your own captions if you like...

...and burger king wins.

"curse you, steve jobs!"

shouldn't they BOTH be in car seats?

3-D escher

take LITTLE bites!

okay, that's it for me!
have a great weekend, gang!
smell ya later!


Brian said...

I was a big, big fan of John's run on the X-Men back in the day and he was right up there with Neal Adams in my pantheon of art gods.

As for the caption contest: here is my entry for the kitty one.

"Hey, this sure don't taste like mouse!"

Warren said...

I remember joining FOOM and getting the one or two issues of FOOM fanzine that Marvel put out. One of them had a drawing he did of Namor and it was just full of awesome.

A year or so later, he was doing Iron Fist and soon he was doing X-Men. He had big shoes to fill after Dave Cockrum, and he did the job.

You could kinda tell when he lost the spark on the Big Two's superhero books. But in his prime, he was as good a comic book artist as there has ever been, and one of the best storytellers ever.

Matt Wieringo said...

Omigod, I can't stop laughing at that owl! Awesome.

If Marvel was smart, they'd give Byrne a book in which he could do stories about the Marvel characters, free of modern continuity and set circa 1976. Single standalone issues, different characters each issue. Inked by Joe Rubenstein or Mark Farmer. I'd buy the hell out of that.

Leonel Castellani said...


Cooper said...

Man, those cats and their cheezburgers...

With Marvel doing their "...Forever" experiments, I would totally plotz to see a Byrne "Fantastic Four Forever" title. *sigh*