Sunday, July 24, 2016

REX MORGAN 7-11-16 to 7-24-16

Two weeks worth of REX in this post. The comics in the attic story wraps up, for now. We'll get back to Buck and the Harwoods Sr. and Jr. at some point, but for now we're shifting gears and wrapping up plot threads left unresolved by the previous writer.

In the 7-17 Sunday, Kelly confirms what Holly told her at the museum gala -- and we're left wondering what Dolly Pierpont is really up to.

I'll confess here that Rene Belluso is not my favorite character in the strip. He's out the window in the second Sunday strip here, and I'm happy to see him go. Though as some have pointed out -- by revealing that he's not quite what he seemed and didn't even really look as he presented himself (the Walter White/Heisenberg look is on purpose -- just me having some fun) I've now made him a compelling character in the moment that I'm ejecting him from the strip...! Well -- maybe he'll be back someday, if I can find something interesting to do with him. But no more art lessons from him for li'l Sarah.

To answer one question from a reader -- how could Hank Sr. have tutored Rene, when Rene said he was trained in Italy? Well -- would you believe everything Rene told you? We only have his word as regards his background -- and I wouldn't trust an admitted forger to be telling me the truth about anything.

As for the gangsters who show up looking for Rene -- the fellow in white is (visually) based on the great cartoonist, Alex (FLASH GORDON) Raymond -- and the big bruiser in the pinstripes is inspired by the classic B-movie character actor Mike Mazurki.  We'll be seeing more of them in the strips that follow these.

As always, you can follow this and many more strips at COMICS KINGDOM.


Monday, July 11, 2016

REX MORGAN 7-4-16 to 7-10-16

This week we continue to move the comic book story along, as Buck shows he's already making connections with top collectors. Thursday's strip is a shout out to a real life collector of horror/monster memorabilia, who also happens to be one of my favorite movie directors. I'll let you figure it out from there.

Saturday's strip hints at events yet to come.

Sunday recaps recent events in the strip -- but also suggests that there may be changes ahead....

Thursday, July 7, 2016

REX MORGAN 6-27-16 to 7-3-16

The museum gala continues. After focusing on the comics in the attic storyline for a while, we switch gears back to Sarah, Dolly and the museum. Holly was introduced as a museum employee in a Sunday page back in June of 2014. We spent an entire Sunday page establishing her -- and then she was never seen again. I thought she was too appealing a character to disappear forever, so I brought her back for this sequence, and have plans for future appearances. Here's one panel from that introductory Sunday page.

Holly spills the beans regarding some of Dolly Pierpont's secrets. There will be much more to this -- but you'll have to keep coming back to find out just where this is going. As always, you can follow the strip every day at the Comics Kingdom website -- and a (cheap!) subscription gets you access to a decade of archived strips, and your favorites -- new and classic -- emailed to you every day. Please consider signing up, will you? It's a great way to support the cartoonists whose work you follow.

The story over the next few months will shift back and forth from the comics plot line, back to Sarah and Dolly, then more with Milton, Heather and Jordan -- and yes, Rex doing his doctor thing.  I have plenty of story material planned out -- but can only do so much in each individual strip. So if you're wondering what happened to so-and-so, or why haven't we seen such-and-such lately -- well, stick around, folks, we'll get to it all.

Monday, June 27, 2016

REX MORGAN 6-20-16 to 6-26-16

The gala continues -- and so does the story of the comics in the attic. This week we finally meet "Horrible Hank" -- who turns out to be not so horrible after all....

Next week we'll take care of some other business, then get back to Buck and the Harwoods.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

REX MORGAN 6-13-16 to 6-19-16

Here's another week of REX MORGAN. Time to get on with the museum gala. Monday establishes that Rex is back to work after taking some time off to be home with newborn Michael. Some readers are itching for me to get back to medical themed stories -- and that is part of the plan -- but there are a lot of dangling plot threads that need to be tied up, so first things first. Still,  even if we are not following him to the hospital and clinic -- he's going there every work day. And I'd say a few days have passed between the 6-12 Sunday strip and the 6-13 Monday.

For those wondering what's happened to my PHANTOM posts -- I will catch up on those eventually. I have been very busy getting REX on track schedule-wise (we had been working far too close to deadline) -- working 7 day weeks for some time, so something had to give -- and that was largely this blog. One of these days I'll sort through the gazillion photos in my files and post on any number of subjects that should have been posted here -- but for now, it's weekly REX and eventually catching up on THE PHANTOM.

Next week, even though we're at the gala, we'll get back to the comics in the attic story. And remember you can read this day by day at the COMICS KINGDOM website.

Monday, June 13, 2016

REX MORGAN 6-6-16 to 6-12-16 -- some logos and notes on the strip

Here's another week of REX -- B&W dailies, of course. You can't see these on Comics Kingdom -- so thats why I share them here.

I also thought you might enjoy seeing the logos I made for the comic books that have appeared in the strip. It didn't make sense to redraw these every single time -- so I whipped these up and have reused them multiple times -- dropping them in and changing them to fit perspective, etc. And no. I'm not going to draw and write complete interiors for any of these -- though it certainly is a fun notion to consider...!

With Hank Jr.'s announcement that there is more than one stack of comics in the attic, Buck and Rex rescue the rest. I should note that they are not ripping up the floorboards -- but just pulling this stuff out from underneath. I once lived in a house with an attic that had easy access to the space under the floorboards and the notion of how simple it would be to hide stuff under there always stuck with me. This story allowed me to use the idea at last. The artwork would have been rolled up, like tubes, to fit. I never stated that in the strips, but showed the art pages curled up some to hint at it at least.

The monetary value is based on the notion that these are mint/near mint artists' file copies equivalent to EC titles -- signed by a major artist. The art value is also based on sales of original EC art.

I was amused that one person posting in the Comics Kingdom comments section complained that my math was off regarding five hundred thousand being half a million!  This is why I can't take those comments too seriously. So many folks there also jumped to the conclusion that Rex was going to keep the comic books -- and this was going to be another "Morgans get free stuff" story. Nope. It was always my intention to turn that overdone trope on its head -- and have Rex insisting on returning the treasure trove.

I also shake my head over the snarkers who were all aflutter over me retconning the history of the Morgan's house -- when that goes back some eighteen years -- who seemed unable to recall that Rex has a home office/study -- well established in very recent strips. They thought Rex was going to haul all this stuff to the clinic? Gee -- you'd think some of them are just looking for something to gripe about...?

And let me address the house origins once again. Yes, I'm rebooting/retconning some elements in the strip so we can move forward, unencumbered by decades of largely inaccessible continuity. The strip has, aside from four comic books in the 1950s, never been reprinted in book form. King Features does not have a complete run of it in their files. There are years and years of the strip that I have no access to whatsoever. I'd love to see Frank Springer's run on the feature -- but aside from a handful of examples on the web -- it's no where to be found. I have a few clippings from Fernando DaSilva's run -- but no complete stories. King's online archive begins toward the end of the Tony DiPreta period -- October 1998.

And I've read the earliest available strips. In them, a recently married Rex and June (pregnant with Sarah) are selling June's house, and there is talk of them putting the proceeds of the sale toward the "new house." They move into the "new house" in 2000, just after Sarah's birth (yes, the six year old was born sixteen years ago) and the hiring of nanny Heather. There is talk of it being their "dream house." Nowhere, in any of the archived strips from this period is there any mention of the house having been newly and specially built for the Morgans. I have no doubt this was established -- as long-time readers remember it -- but it had to have been established in strips predating what is available in King's archives.

So -- as far as I'm concerned, the history of the house, prior to the Morgans moving in, is for me to decide as it suits the purpose of the story. Retconned. Rebooted. Changed. And it's all moving forward from here on.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

REX MORGAN M.D. 5-30-16 to 6-5-16

The comics in the attic plot continues. It seems, from comments I've received, that my Hank Jr./Sr. fakeout regarding the signatures in the comics worked. I was worried most readers would see through it -- but I guess I pulled off the surprise.

I was glad to be able to return Buck to our story, as I felt we'd dropped him just as he was becoming interesting. And he needed to repay Rex that loan, darn it! (Which he does on 5-30-16 below). There was nothing in previous strips establishing him as a comic book fan -- but nothing that would keep me from adding that element to his background.

Some readers seemed concerned that Rex and/or Buck were planning to keep the comic books for themselves -- but that was never my intent -- and the truth is revealed in the 6-2-16 daily. The books go back to the Harwoods -- and that was always Rex's plan.

Doing a comic book themed story right off the bat is certainly a little self indulgent -- but the story fits in with several other plot elements that I need to wrap up, and you'll all see how as it unfolds. We will be seeing a good deal of the Harwoods -- and Buck, as this plays out -- but I promise it won't be the only ongoing plotline here. I have Dolly, Rene, Heather, Milton and Jordan to deal with, as well as Sarah's gala and her book -- and the Morgan's eventual move to a new home, all on my plate. This, plus wanting to get back to seeing Rex practicing medicine more regularly. It's a lot to juggle, and I hope you'll stick with me while I work it all out. I do know where I'm going with all this -- but to tell you would spoil the story, wouldn't it?