Friday, May 30, 2014

Fluffy The Hamster in Tom Cruise's "Edge of Tomorrow" Mech Suit

I haven't paid much attention to the class hamster these last few weeks.  I am pretty sure she is still around.  After we hosted her for the winter vacation, I hoped that she would at least stay healthy and active long enough afterward that there would be no claims of hamster negligence or abuse on our part. 

While Ansel has not been thinking much about Fluffy either recently, he was much happier to see her in the mech suit than my previous crappy drawing of him.

If Fluffy can be Daniel Craig and Ben Stiller, then why not Mr. Cruise?

You can see all of the Fluffy napkins here.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Edge of Tomorrow Mech Suit

All You Need Is Lunch.

It has rained quite a bit recently, so we have not been able to bike to school every day and we have had several opportunities to contemplate the subway posters for the latest Tom Cruise action movie, "Edge of Tomorrow."

I sometimes wonder why it is that most mainstream action movies seem to be so perfectly marketed to my sons.  Perhaps the movie itself, based on a Japanese novel by Hiroshi Sakurazaka titled "All You Need is Kill"  offers more than just the satisfaction of imagining oneself stomping around in a mech suit while smashing and shooting aliens. Perhaps.

Unsurprisingly, Ansel was not pleased with my lousy sketch of his head.  I should have drawn a puppy or a hamster wearing the suit....

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Gronk With Skylanders Lunchbox

The boys have really enjoyed reading the webcomic Gronk by Katie Cook.

This is somewhat surprising as there are no weapons or battles, and it features primarily female characters.  It is mostly age appropriate and cute and funny.

At least there is a monster, albeit one with a blond hairdo.
And lots of gross jokes about cat litter and cat vomit.

Robocop 2014, The Terminator and Hiccup

Macho robot guys with a lurking alternative character.

We finally watched the 2014 version of Robocop over the weekend.
Immediately afterwards, while the kids were bickering over who got to be which version of Robocop, suddenly the Arnold Schwarzenegger style Terminator seemed to be part of the game also.  The robot guys with big guns were saying things like "I'll be back," and "Hasta la vista, baby."

At this point, I feel compelled to mention that the boys have not seen any more than a few snippets of any of the Terminator movies.... Although, since they have now seen Robocop, this is clearly not a parenting accomplishment on my part.

At any rate, Robocop and the Terminator obviously scratch the same itch in the 7 or 11 year old male mind.  Our sons want to identify with them...Not for their troubled relationship to humanity of course,  but because they are remorselessly powerful guys in cool outfits with big guns. 

Interestingly enough, Robocop 2004 features Mr. Voice of Hiccup, Jay Baruchel, as a craven guy from marketing.  The boys found him pretty compelling despite the fact that he is the antithesis of the powerful robots- ie, entirely gun less.  I think he appealed mostly because he retains some of Hiccup's mannerisms and wimpy, snarky guy attitude despite being an amoral corporate man in a suit.  They found his line, "Hey don't shoot, I'm just a guy from marketing" to be worth repeating multiple times. 

While this does provide an alternative option to the macho robocarnage, I'm not sure it is entirely a good one.

Scooby Doo Cerberus

The gates to my personal hell might in fact be guarded by a three-headed Scooby Doo.
(Or, what is worse than drawing Scooby Doo? Drawing him three times.)

Can I begin by mentioning how much I hated the Scooby Doo TV shows when I was a child?

Like my loathing of the Brady Bunch, it was a dislike born of, and refined by, frequent exposure.  My hatred, however, did not seem to stop me from watching the show. Perhaps this was because it was the 1970's and there were limited choices in children's programming...or maybe I just enjoyed my own hatred?  It's hard to be sure some forty years later.

But now that there is infinitely more Scooby Doo franchise around to dislike, I find myself strangely less hostile.  This may be because I have sat through so much children's programming that is clearly  more offensive.  Aside from the most recent television series, (which insultingly imagines that Velma would want to become romantically involved with Shaggy... and Shaggy would be torn because he really likes the dog better) I've lost the energy to be insulted by the dog or the gang in their various incarnations.

I don't remember the exact proximate cause of this napkin.  I think it was an episode of one of TV shows that the kids watched on their day off last Friday, during which all of the "gang" dressed up in costume as Greek monsters.

On the napkin, however, Scooby literally has three heads.
I'm pretty sure Ansel does not have the same conflicted feelings about Scooby Doo that I have, but he found the napkin amusing enough to take it to school today.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Untickled Slow Loris With Strawberry

No endangered species were harmed...or tickled...during the drawing of this napkin.

(Archer is on a field trip today and took a packed lunch with a napkin for the second time this school year.)

Last night at bedtime...or let's be honest, it was a bit after official bedtime... Archer suddenly HAD to show us something important online.  After several unsuccessful spelling attempts, he finally managed to pull up images of the Slow Loris.  Apparently, this is one of those internet memes.  There are many images and videos of Lorises being adorable and behaving like pets... and apparently enjoying being tickled by humans.

Because few instances of internet cuteness can exist without a tail of guilt and awfulness:
When I looked up Slow Lorises after Archer went to bed to draw a picture for him, I discovered that, unsurprisingly, Lorises should not be pets.  They are an already endangered species and need to be left in the wild.  They are also nocturnal and extremely photo phobic, so their slow, amiable and pet-like behavior is purely because they are blinded and overwhelmed.  They are poisonous (the only poisonous mammal!) and most of the pet Lorises have supposedly had their teeth pulled out with pliers.  And lastly, the Lorises who are apparently enjoying being tickled in the popular videos are actually being tortured and we are misinterpreting their response. 

It's possible that all of the above information is just part of a killjoy environmentalist plot to rob people of the innocent pleasure of watching Lorises enjoying being tickled.  I cannot vouch for the sources.

But we won't be tickling any Lorises just to be safe.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Rocket Raccoon With Dumpster

It's all about the raccoon:

Marvel seems to have recently released an additional trailer for "Guardians of the Galaxy" which has more screen time devoted to Rocket.
A snarky talking raccoon armed with what appears to be a sizable arsenal of huge guns could hardly be more enticing to our seven year old son. 

Here in the wilds of Williamsburg Brooklyn, we do sometimes see a very large raccoon  hanging out around the dumpster in our side yard.  While my exposure is limited, I gather that disrupting human trash is a favorite raccoon pastime.  

When I thought about putting Rocket in the place of our neighborhood raccoon,  I couldn't really imagine him going through our trash ( for leftovers...or for ammunition, maybe?)

The kids are already pretty leery of the local raccoon. Finding the Marvel version lurking in the yard would certainly be more daunting.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Raggy and Femur From Ben Hatke's "Zita"

The kids were pretty enthusiastic about reading the recently arrived third installment of Ben Hatke's "Zita" graphic novel."

Among Zita the space girl's many pals in the book is this character: a charismatic team-up made of two aliens who respectively look like a pile of rags- "Raggy" and a skeleton- "Femur."

Monday, May 19, 2014

Knifehead and Godzilla Chat Across the Brooklyn Bridge

The kids were so very excited to see "Godzilla"  that we had to go during the opening weekend.
On the way home, there was a great deal of discussion, (mostly driven by the obsessed 11 year old) of how this movie compares to other movies in the Godzilla canon and to "Pacific Rim."

Archer could certainly offer chapter and verse about the differences and merits  of all the Kaiju vehicles.  Perhaps I should only observe  that I felt about the same  about "Pacific Rim" and this most recent incarnation of "Godzilla."  This movie did not have the small boy pleasing giant drivable robot angle, nor the "Canceling The Apocalypse" rah rah spirit of Mr.  del Toro's effort, but maybe that was not entirely a bad thing. 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Thunderbird Talons with Giant Food and Horses (For Scale)

A giant griffin-like creature makes an appearance in "The Sixth Gun" Volume One, snatching horses off the ground and conveniently dispatching bad guys.

This scenario was of course a bit violent for lunch, so I substituted some broccoli and strawberries, but added riderless horses for scale.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

General Oleander Hume from "The Sixth Gun"

The first two volumes of "The Sixth Gun" by Cullen Bunn, art by Brian Hurtt, were apparently deacessioned last week by the kids' Quaker school of course, the books went home with us.

I'm guessing that the supernatural old west horror comic was deemed to be a bit too graphic...and definitely not Quaker enough. I did notice that there are several other violent offenders in the library's graphic novel section, including "The Dark Knight Returns," but perhaps someone complained specifically about these particular books.

I did not have much success rendering the first volume's main bad guy, the undead, chained-wearing, confederate General Hume. My version is definitely having a bad hair day.  The fantastically high pollen count and some sort of extra credit cold are making me feel a bit like a zombie myself, so I just couldn't manage to draw a reasonable beard on the man last night.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Octobear Meets Sharktopus

 My kids have not seen "Sharknado."  Can you believe it?

"Mom! Come on!  A man cuts a flying shark in half with a chainsaw!"  How could we possibly resist that?

I admit I definitely have a different standard for movies than for graphic novels.  I have read a great many age-inappropriate things to the kids.  (if it is a book, it must be just a little bit good for them, right?)  We even read Ethan Nicolle's definitely adult-oriented "Bearmageddon" featuring the above "Octobear." 

Brief exposure to even the most ridiculous movie imagery, however, can easily result in a child who is afraid to walk his full bladder  across a darkened bedroom to use the bathroom because alien face-huggers or land sharks could be lurking in the Lego box.  Perhaps we will hold off for a bit longer on "Sharknado" and its very tempting close relative "Sharktopus." 

But the creatures are funny enough for napkins.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Talia from Mary Crilley's "Brody's Ghost"

We read volumes 4 and 5 of the graphic novel series Brody's Ghost last night.
Ansel was extremely dismayed by the cliffhanger ending that requires waiting for the next installment.  Volume 5 was just published April 15th, so it may be a wait...

My version of  the titular ghost Talia is definitely not cute enough, but Ansel was still willing to take her to school today.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Mothers Day

Mother's Day is not a much observed holiday at our house, but I did have the rare pleasure of coming home after the kids were already asleep late night.

Ansel told me it was ok to post this picture as long as I didn't make him look too fat.  That was not a problem.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Robot From "Daisy Kutter"

The kids were very pleased to reread Kazu Kibuishi's "Daisy Kutter: The Last Train" last night.

I always enjoy reading this "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" styled cyberpunk western graphic novel to the kids, but had forgotten how much vocabulary editing is required for the first grade reader....

Although few things are better than swearing robots....

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Amazing Spider-Man with LEGO Spider-Man

The kids are not absolutely certain that they would like to see the latest Spider-Man movie in a theater.  They are concerned that it might not be good enough to merit their undivided attention.  (Viewing movies at home where you can recline in your underpants and demand snack service is another thing entirely) 

Of course, this exacting cinematic standard is being applied by the kids who told me as we exited the theater from the second Captain America movie that it was the best movie of all time....

But they have yet to meet a superhero franchise that they would not like to have in LEGO form. 

I am pretty sure that we do not actually own a Spider-Man LEGO minifigure.  This is a major oversight that I expect I will be hearing more about.

They used to like Spider-Man quite  a lot, but it has been a while.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Venom and the Red Skull

Ansel stayed home today because of a mild fever...and so that he and I could bicker for a full day about the watching of minecraft youtube videos versus the memorization of sight words.  (where? there? were? who? how? what?.... and....WHY?)

Perhaps he would have taken this napkin today had he been in school.  

He and his brother are occasional fans of Spider-Man and Captain America.  These Marvel characters  have never been quite as compelling for our sons as say, Batman or Nightwing, but the kids are very willing to pretend to be one or the other for long enough to pummel a sibling or advance the destruction of the livingroom furniture. 

In anticipation of maybe seeing the latest iteration of Spider-Man in a movie theater, we watched the 2007 "Spider-Man 3" over last weekend. And we watched some of the first Captain America movie for no good reason besides the fact that it was on TV, again.

So, perhaps these two villain guys are being pals on this napkin to commemorate the watching of too much Marvel themed television over one weekend.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Pandapool With Lunch Food

Even after some heavy editing by mom, Deadpool is definitely a "not appropriate for children" comic series.  This is of course, exactly why our kids like it.

"Deadpool kills Deadpool" pushes the usual sort of Deadpool ridiculousness to new frontiers inhabited by alternative universe Deadpools like Dinodeadpool, Lady Deadpool, Squirrelpool and the boys' favorite: Pandapool.  And of course they are all trying to kill one another, for some fairly abstruse meta-narrative reason that one would think might be difficult to explain to a seven year old.  

But the only thing that really troubled Ansel about the story was that Pandapool didn't survive.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Wookie and Sasquatch: Chewbacca and Flink

Continuing our Bigfoot theme: last night we followed "The Beast of Wolfe's Bay" and "Iron West" with Doug TenNapel's "Flink"

Ansel is not a big fan of Star Wars (he patiently suffered through his brother's multiyear obsession) but Chewie is still appealing...well, probably for the same reason that Bigfoot is.

I'm not sure what the potential relationship might be here?  Sure, they are both tall, hairy guys with grey noses, but I don't think they would have a language in common, so they won't be able to exchange hair care tips.