Saturday, October 18

It's a mall world after all.

Despite my resolve to NOT join the crowds that will surely clog the insides of Megamall this weekend... I did. Well, at least today I did. Anyway, it was on the way and... well... I at least resolved to NOT spend any of my hard-earned cash on this blatant scheme to sell. But withdraw I did and when I walked through the doors of the climate-controlled inner world I was at once a SHOPPER. Darn.
Anyway, I got myself a couple MORE T-shirts from Spoofs Inc. (Mahahaha), a new belt and FINALLY the new stocks from Comic Quest. Got the second issue of Street Fighter by Udon Press, which is still good but DAMN it really IS the same old storyline Capcom has been telling for the past ten years. Street Fighter I guess can never outgrow Ryu, Ken, Akuma, Bison and Shadaloo, Chun-Li's quest for her father, Guile's quest for Charlie, yada-yada-yada... Sigh. At least the art's great and there's a cool (albeit indecisive) fight between Chun-Li and bad girl Cammy drawn by Adam Warren. The other comic I got was the latest issue of Blade of the Immortal (probably the only real series I am still collecting these days). Also got a Slayers Special comic, which is pretty cool.

I have resolved to try and spend most, if not all of tomorrow at home to finish Project 100. Perhaps on Sunday I can go out and check to see if there are any new DVDs (PLEEEEAAASSSE have a Kill Bill disc ready...) or anime and gaming. Have to keep the ol' instincts in check if I wanna get things done though.

Too bad The Sanctum doesn't have a mast to tie me up against. AAARHH... I hear the mall calling...

Friday, October 17

Busy Weekend Ahead

It's going to be crazy tomorrow, and it's not just because the US President's coming to the country to spend 8 hours or so under the Manila sky. It's not just because all the major malls in my regular haunts are having HUGE SALES.
I have to try and finish the pages for Project 100 this weekend. It's a daunting task, though not impossible. I still have about fifteen pages to go, both for Nikki's story and my own entry. And when I say finished, I mean everything from pencilling, inking, rendering and lettering. Burn it onto a CD and send it out to Carl next week. Only when this thing is over can I totally concentrate on my own personal baby, Angel Ace Next, of which I have at least 30 pages to render and letter, and covers to conceptualize and execute.
And I still have to do some work-related stuff (perhaps on Sunday) which suddenly popped up out of nowhere (GAH!).

Tonight I get my stash of comics from the Blood Bank (AKA Comic Quest), and provisions (Junk food) to stash in The Sanctum. Then it's on to pencilling and inking panels till dawn. That is, if I can resist snoozing the whole time or playing Xbox games. Yipe.

Crazy. Crazy. Crazy. CRAZY.

Thursday, October 16

Pow Wow

Last night the guys (Nikki abandoned us in favor of Alias), including me, Dean (whom I dubbed "The Yoshinoya Kid"), Carl, Jason, Vin and Andrew talked about stuff ranging from Project 100 to a projected Christmas party where we're all supposed to get plastered with alcohol. Ah, Christmas. If all our projects push through- Project 100, Angel Ace NEXT, Cherry Blossom High (Psicom) and the Zsa Zsa Zaturnnah compilation, this will be a GRAND comic Christmas.

Crossing fingers and praying that all goes well...
Cut me some slacks!

My mom went to a tiangge (Hi, Mom!) and got me some Dockers 'mobile' pants, which I am told is in fashion these days. I think they're so named since there is a special pocket at the side along the thighs of the pants for your cellphone. Now, I really won't ever put my phone in there, but I can put keys, little knick-knacks and other stuff quite snugly. For a while we troubled over how long or how short we should have the pants cut; I really didn't like having it too long and have me step on my own pants-legs. Then again, it shouldn't be too short that you can see too far up my leg (always a horror) when I walk or sit. I'm just hoping I don't look silly in them, 'cause after wearing almost exclusively denim jeans all these years, I feel pretty naked in them... My only other gripe is that the pants I have aren't the special 'water proof' ones that have tiny particles embedded in the fibers that repel liquids like rainwater off glass. That would have been cool to see... Heh...

Wednesday, October 15

Angel Ace Guest Art

A refreshing new take on Angel, by Jeremy Arambulo.

Kai looks like she's going to do something naughty...

Here are some pieces of Angel Ace character art done by US-based indie comic artist Jeremy Arambulo. These and several others (along with a 12-page story) will be coming out in the upcoming Angel Ace Next this December. I think both pieces really show off the characters excellently, and I just LOVE Kai's somewhat naughty expression and pose. My only disappointment is that Jeremy's story, The Gift doesn't have much girlfighting action; perhaps in a future Angel Ace issue... or the projected KAI:KIA comic... Hmmm...

Tuesday, October 14

Killer Schoolgirl

Despite being able to look thoroughly cute AND evil in her films, Miss Kuriyama is a normal teen who loves videogames and anime. DAMN I love her.

I LOVE Chiaki Kuriyama, aka Go Go Yubari from the recent no. 1 blockbuster film by Quentin Tarantino, KILL BILL. And I think so do a LOT of other people since my blog's hit counts just went up about 200 percent thanks to searchers looking for info on this Japanese sweetie.
Anyway, Miss Kuriyama got the role for the schoolgirl assassin/bodyguard to Lucy Liu's O-ren Ishi character thanks to her previous performance as the lovely but dangerous Takako Chigusa in the critically-acclaimed Japanese film by Kinji Fukasaku, Battle Royale. I found a cool, lengthy interview which relates her preparations for Kill Bill, experiences on set (she clocked QT with that ball and chain!), friendships with the other actors and plans for the future.

THE scene to watch in Kill Bill.

Some extra bits: Miss Kuriyama turned 19 last October 10, on the same day as the Kill BIll premiere in the States (What a coincidence!). In her role as Takako Chigusa in Battle Royale, Chiaki wore a yellow tracksuit similar to what Uma wears in KB. In the original Kill Bill script, there was another character named Yuki Yubari who was Go Go's younger sister. The younger girl had a whole chapter in the film to herself as she goes after Uma Thurman's Bride character with a submachine gun. Unfortunately, the whole character was taken out since the film was already too long at that point (besides, who can top Chiaki?). Battle Royale fans will no doubt notice the 'reenactment' of Chiaki's killer scene in BR in Kill Bill, Tarantino-style.

Oh, and one last bit of trivia: Her name translated into english means, get this... "Chestnut Mountan filled with Brightness". Hoho...
You can read a long and cool interview with Miss Kuriyama here.

Hacking away in the Sanctum

Take up a heroic quest and kill a LOT of monsters. And defenseless crates.

Last night I hurried straight home after work with the goal of devoting the whole night to Project 100. Let me just say that the commute really drains strength from a body, so even though I got home at just a little after 6 PM, all I could do was just flop into bed after turning up the climate control to frigid. Ahhh...
Anyway, after a nice dinner of spicy tuna, rice and corn soup (NEVER underestimate the power of soup), I hunkered down to doing the pages of our group's 'mercenary' endeavor. And gladly, I was able to pencil three pages, which all boils down to four pencilled pages and one totally finished page.
After which I decided to take a break and play my new Xbox game, Dungeons and Dragons: Heroes! Yay!
DnD:Heroes is a pretty straight hack-and-slash dungeon crawler in same vein as Diable, though it is far closer in look, feel and play to the console-only Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance game (which is itself an excellent game).
The story is pretty basic; 150 years ago in the fantasy kingdom of Baele, an evil force threatened to extinguish all life. This menace was confronted by four valiant heroes, and in a climactic duel to the death, they managed to defeat their enemy. Unfortunately, this victory came at the cost of their lives as well.
Now, a century and a half later, the ancient evil stirs once more, raised by a group of misguided, ambitious clerics. In order to save the kingdom, the heroes who fought the evil have been resurrected to fight once more.

Predictably, the elven wizardess is a hottie.

A game for one to four players (taking full advantage of the Xbox's 4-player ports), DnDH puts you and your mates in the boots of a bold human fighter, a rock-hard dwarven cleric, a beautiful and powerful elven wizardess or a stealthy (and cute) halfling rogue. After you get used to the controls (which is pretty easy), you're off into the monster-infested dungeons, killing monsters, throwing spells, using special powers and feats, trying on armor and weapons you find and steadily working your way to the final Boss.
DnDH is a pretty game, with quite nicely-detailed character models, settings and monsters. The spell effects are pretty cool and the sounds are well-done. There are some CG cinematics and the story is just enough to keep you hacking away. The controls are excellent, and you'll be customizing your character in weaponry, armor and skills to make your own badass hero/heroine in no time. It's really not that far away from Baldur's Gate, which itself is getting a sequel that's due out very soon as well. Action fans will do well to sign up for this exciting and addictive hack and slash adventure.

Okay, back to Project 100. REALLY! Heh...

Monday, October 13

Sand through my fingers...

October is almost halfway gone and I have only done ONE page for Project 100's 20-page quota.

Well, actually, I really think that if I cut down on the downtime and just hunker down in The Sanctum and work on them, I can finish the stories within the week or so.

That still leaves about 30 or so pages to be done for Angel Ace Next. This includes colored covers, character art, pinups and layouting.


Damn! Gotta speed things up!!!
Dragon Flick

Last night I watched the movie Dragonheart on Star Movies. While HBO showed a bad sequel (TV movie crap), I stuck with the original firebreathing adventure starring Dennis Quaid as the valiant knight Bowen, David Thewlis as the evil King Einon and the voice of Sean Connery as Draco the dragon.
To all those unfamiliar with this title, the story is set in a midieval-type world where dragons and fantasy are waning; an evil king is slain by rebel peasants, leaving his son, Einon, on the throne. Though mortally wounded, Einon is saved when his mother asks a dragon for a favor. The favor entails that the dragon share his heart with the dying prince, hereby granting the human immortality as long as the dragon lives. Unfortunately, the new king proves to be more evil than his father, starting his own evil reign. Bowen, once the young prince's fighting mentor and bodyguard, vows to find and kill the dragon, thinking that the reptile's heart caused Einon's turn to the dark side.
Anyway, years later, Bowen has become a wandering dragonslayer, killing the wyrms for money. He has apparently killed the last, save one- a shrewd and wise dragon named Draco who soon teams up with his hunter for mutual survival. Eventually though, the two join up with rebels to once again clash swords with King Einon, and meet their respective destinies.
Now, Dragonheart came out with fanfare years ago thanks to the participation of Mr. Connery. To be fair, it's a decent fantasy-flick, though magic and fantasy elements are limited to Draco and the whole heart thing, and some subplot involving knights and Avalon. That means no spells, non-humnan races or other D&D trappings.
What you have though is an entertaining action flick, with lots of swordfighting, some cool peasant vs. soldier battles, and some nice dragon-fighting stuff. I still think to this day that Dennis Quaid is a bit miscast (he seems young for the part of a veteran, older warrior), and David Thewlis' King Einon really really strikes me as looking like an evil, bratty Rod Stewart,, with a thoroughly irritating look (which is not bad since he is the villain). Aside from them, the rest of the cast is pretty forgettable, though there's a monk/priest character played by Peter Postlewaitt who interestingly becomes a master archer (predating Legolas) who's pretty hilarious. Another thing I realized watching the movie again is that Jason Isaacs, who played the lead baddie in Mel Gibson's The Patriot and Lucius Malfoy in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets appears in DH as a snivelling evil vassal. Heh. He's movied up in the world since then.

Watch the original Dragonheart for some not-so-draggin' fun. Forget the sequels though; they'll burn you to no end. Heh.

Sunday, October 12

Modem Madness


Darn, I seem to be saying that a lot these days. Anyway, I wasn't able to log in for most of this weekend since a freak lightning storm on Saturday apparently fragged my old internal modem. Today, I went off to Greenhills with my friend Pot. We walked around looking for our own stuff; I eventually got an external USB modem instead of another internal device. We met up with Alex and retreated back into the Sanctum to have pizza (courtesy of birthday-boy Pot) and just chill out with a DVD movie or two.

Over the weekend I also got myself the whole Onegai Sensei anime on DVD; it's a really sweet romance-comedy series between a short guy and a tall, beautiful and utterly loveable alien girl. It's actually pretty short at just 13 episodes, and story looks a lot more involved than the more popular and similar series, Oh! My Goddess ever got- at the very least, the lead hero in Onegai Sensei gets to kiss the girl and then some (HOHO!).

This weekend I also started on the pages for Gig's Project 100 story. Hopefully I will be able to work on the pages within this week, so I can start work on my own story, and then later on Angel Ace Next. Deadlines are steadily getting closer; have to start cracking the whip and working.