Wednesday, 30 December 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Four Post Two

These four panels were really all about trying to firmly tie the events on board the ocean liner with those occurring on the coast of Cornwall, and having a bit of fun with some ludicrous zombie-killing situations. In particular I wanted to get my main protagonist involved with some Undead close combat, and thought it'd be quite amusing having him snatch one of the German corpse's boat paddles and start battering them around the head with it.

Meonstoke's use of the 7.92-MM LMG 34 is heavily influenced by my love of using light machine guns in the "Call Of Duty" zombie-based video games. As a result I thought it would be a bit different if he conveniently 'found' one, not too water-logged, and having propped it up upon Mister Gotch's shoulder's, started to drive the Third Reich ghouls back with one of their own weapons. All silly stuff I realise, but it makes me smile.

Assailed by a seemingly endless number of German zombies, Meonstoke's thoughts momentarily turn to Miss Priscilla's predicament, as his faithful secretary goes hand-to-hand with the long-dead monster behind all these Undead shenanigans... Fedor von Bock!

Saturday, 10 October 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Four Post One

This fourth instalment of "Sacrifice Upon The Waves" hopefully starts with something of a shock as the entire sub-plot of Miss Priscilla involved her saving young Weimar's life from the German Undead, and ultimately the secretary fails in her mission. It also gave me the chance to introduce a genuinely intelligent zombie, in the form of Fedor von Bock.   

Priscilla's scene also provided me with the opportunity to suggest that time had also subsequently passed on board the ocean liner. Thus Mister Gotch is able to imply that Meonstoke and his crew have been busy futilely barricading themselves within the vessel. The sailor's dialogue also follows the exact route the zombies would have to have taken if they were aboard the real ship. 

Faced with a seemingly endless number of water-logged hungry corpses, Ermin Meonstoke and Mister Gotch take to the dance-floor in the hopes that they'll be able to disco-dance their decaying foes to death...

Saturday, 19 September 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Three Post Three

Having managed to incorporate a few more of the cruise liner's crew members previously, I was able to utilise one of their gory deaths within these first three panels to give a bit more detail about the layout of the vessel, and the composition of its staff. I even managed to squeeze in a quick reference to what type of decaying uniform my German zombies were wearing.   

Meanwhile back on dry land, I needed to finally remove Weimar's grandmother from the action, in order to be able to fully concentrate upon the arrival of the true leader of these Third Reich living dead. It did however give me the opportunity to show just how much affection the elderly woman's young ward still felt for her, despite the pensioner trying to feed her to the undead. 

Desperate to escape a house packed full of zombies Miss Priscilla faces the sinister mastermind behind the German corpses' invasion of the Cornish Coast. Whilst Ermin Meonstoke discovers just how powerful the Undead can be when they wear the Iron Cross...

Friday, 18 September 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Three Post Two

Following on from the last post's revelation as to where the German zombies have risen up from, the first three frames of this instalment clarify just what Weimar's grandmother is up to on the Cornish Coast. But also momentarily give the protagonist's hope that they may be about to escape the ghouls' clutches - Only to have them immediately quashed by more of the walking dead coming in through the back door.  

The last frame finally sets up a genuine purpose for Meonstoke to achieve whilst on board the cruise liner, except for just generally surviving, and also provides the hero with a few more 'souls to save'... or be eaten. Ermin's dialogue is also once again based upon the actual layout of the passenger ship I used for the basis of the narrative.

With the cruise liner's lifeboats within sight, Ermin Meonstoke's fortunes take a turn for the worse as the vessel continues to sink and flood the corridors with even more of the hungry undead. Meanwhile Miss Priscilla confronts Weimar's grandmother for the last time..?

Thursday, 17 September 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Three Post One

This scene once again consists of my standard zombie-killing sequence, where a hapless victim is devoured and Ermin Meonstoke then dispatches the offending walking cadaver. However I did want to make it clear that my titular character and Mister Gotch were now surrounded by the living undead. This would allow me to have more of the ghoulish cannibal 'pop' up into frame at the most inopportune of moments for my heroes. 

In addition the dialogue (despite the spelling mistake) is reasonably important as it establishes just where these German zombies have come from, and perhaps more crucially, provides a link with the Third Reich undead also plaguing Miss Priscilla on the Cornish Coast.

Determined to defend her sightless charge, Miss Priscilla stands firm against a seemingly insurmountable horde of German carnivorous corpses... at least until she runs out of ammunition and Weimar's Prussian grandmother decides to open her home's back door...

Thursday, 30 April 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Two Post Three

Ermin Meonstoke's scene in this posting is a pretty standard 'zombie-killing fare' for my drawings and sticks rigidly to my three-frame formula of (i) zombies eat someone, (ii) Ermin blasts one and then (iii) Ermin runs away. The only addition to this particular encounter is that I used Mister Gotch as an opportunity to impart some more 'real world' facts about the Eclipse. For some reason the headgear of the helmet-wearing Third Reich zombie also would appear to be slipping back off of its head. 

Miss Priscilla's brief frame was simply included to slowly push along her plot, and use the revelation that Weimar's sacrifice will bring back her long-dead German grandfather as a cliff-hanger for the next instalment. 

Desperate to reach the main deck area and safety, Ermin Meonstoke discovers that the cruise liner has suffered more than just the ones hull breach. But will the 'Saviour of Souls' be able to react quickly enough to help his companion Mister Gotch evade the hungry undead..?

Sunday, 26 April 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Two Post Two

One of the reasons this particular story is a five-parter as opposed to my usual four episodes in length, is because I needed some additional space to set up the adventure and establish the motivations of the main 'guest' characters. Ordinarily I can usually accomplish this within the first twelve or so frames. But for this story it was clear I was going to take a little longer; thus it is only now, as the reader starts to close in upon the conclusion of the second instalment, that Miss Priscilla confirms this entire situation has in some way been manipulated by Weimar's grandmother since shortly after the young woman's birth.

I had always wanted to write a tale based upon large vessel sinking beneath the waves and trapping the passengers in a 'Titanic-like' fashion. The addition of the clawing Undead swimming down the ship's corridors and dragging its passengers to a gory death made the prospect doubling exciting. However as I couldn't have either Mister Gotch or Meonstoke eaten (at least not this early into the adventure) I added the nameless seafarer into the scene in preparation of an imminent horrible demise.

Determined to seal the hull breach, the crew of the cruise-liner Eclipse discover that it is not only salt water which is seeping into the vessel. For the long-dormant dead of the Third Reich have awoken and have need of fresh flesh...

Friday, 24 April 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part Two Post One

The first of these two scenes hopefully sets up that something horrible is about to happen to the cruise liner Eclipse, and rids Ermin Meonstoke of his 'facade' that he is just an ordinary member of the crew. With hindsight I should probably have dressed him in one of the sailor's outfits as opposed to his standard tie and collar costume. In addition there are an awful lot of ellipses in this sequence. 

Weimar's blindness, which by its very nature necessitated someone having to explain to her what was happening, gave me a lot of opportunities to provide Miss Priscilla with some wonderfully 'cliche' horror-themed dialogue.  

As Miss Priscilla battles the Undead and desperately tries to keep young Weimar safe, Ermin Meonstoke must investigate the cause of the unnerving banging upon the exterior hull of the cruise liner. What could possibly be clambering up the great ship's side... and will steel plates be enough to prevent their entry... 

Monday, 13 April 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part One Post Three

This entire first episode was written to simply establish the good from the bad characters and incorporate the Undead as quickly as possible, and as such I think it works quite well; albeit being a bit obvious that the grandmother was up to no good.

I've written drawn many zombie stories and their appearance has hardly changed at all since I started. For this adventure I simply mixed my standard cadaver heads onto the bodies of some German soldiers I'd created earlier and dirtied their uniforms up.  

Miss Priscilla must fight for her life in a house quickly filling with the hungry Undead. But beneath the waves a second army of walking corpses is stirring, and Ermin Meonstoke must use all his powers of persuasion to save the passengers on board the cruise liner Eclipse.   

Saturday, 11 April 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part One Post Two

Based upon a genuine cruise ship which travels to the Galapagos Islands, I wanted to use this opening scene of Ermin Meonstoke and Mister Gotch to impart a little bit of information about how many passengers were on board the Eclipse, as well as how fast it travelled.

In a slight departure from my usual storyline formula for zombie tales, I also wanted to show that the 'saviour of souls' had already embarked upon this adventure prior to the reader 'picking it up'. For the ghoul killer has somehow managed to gain passage on the vessel as part of the ship's crew.

With Meonstoke at all at sea, Miss Priscilla finally comes face to face with Lady Weimar Von Keitel's birthday guests... and discovers they've been waiting longer than a lifetime for the celebration. 

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

"ERMIN MEONSTOKE" Sacrifice Upon The Waves - Part One Post One

Drawn in August 2009, this is actually a 're-boot' of a series of "Mooretoons" I drew approximately nine years earlier and continues the ghoul-killing adventures of Ermin Meonstoke and his faithful secretary, Miss Priscilla. A five-parter, "Sacrifice Upon The Waves" involves two elements I thoroughly enjoy incorporating into my stories, rising water levels and flesh-eating Nazi Zombies; so plenty of both are contained within its pages.

With these opening few panels I really just wanted to set the scene of an isolated and  sinister elderly German woman, preparing her blind grand-daughter for the girl's eighteenth birthday... Unfortunately I never changed the font of the pensioner's dialogue, so for now the only connection to this odd couple and the days of the Second World War is their family name Von Keitel.

Miss Priscilla's appearance in the final frame is actually a play upon how I usually start my "Ermin Meonstoke" tales, as ordinarily it is the titular character who first appears infamously declaring "I have come to save your souls." However for this story I wanted to separate the partnership right from the beginning, and needed to establish the secretary's plot first and foremost.

What manner of foul menace is soon to rise from it's grave to threaten the birthday celebrations of 'Lady Weimar Von Keitel'? And what has it to do with a new employee starting work on board the cruise liner Eclipse?

Friday, 3 April 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Four Post Three

As this was the first of four stories drawn for a new series of "The Rambler" I purposely didn't fully resolve the creation of a new Timeman until the end of the following four-parter "The Yeti Hunters". But the first two panels do at least provide some clarification that the 'dying' Rambler has ended his journey, and it is now time for his replacement to start his.  

The last scene set on Beorge is a serious cop-out as I used the opportunity to have the fish-like aliens 'save' the outgoing Rambler by healing his wounds and returning him to the location where he was first imbued with the ability to time-travel. Previously I had established that a new Earth Timeman is only selected upon the death of the current one. But I had enjoyed writing and drawing this character for so long that I simply did not have the heart to kill him off. So gave him a somewhat 'sickly sweet' ending.

"The Rambler" will return. But first, the Undead have started to rise from a watery grave and threaten the passengers on board a luxury cruise liner. Fortunately masquerading as one of the crew is the Ghoul Collector, the Saviour of Souls himself... "Ermin Meonstoke".

Thursday, 2 April 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Four Post Two

I tried with the first two frames of this posting to better explain what the enemy time agent's device was actually doing, as I felt I probably hadn't covered it too well in the story's first three episodes. I'd actually left the exact nature of the threat somewhat 'open' to interpretation because I had wanted to use it to generate a sense of mystery around the Rambler and what exactly he was up to. But in hindsight this might have been a mistake. In essence however the time destructor has literally been burning away the Earth's timeline from its end back towards its beginning, and the Timeman needed to put an end to it before it reached the planet's beginning and had literally wiped out all of history. 

As the story is also the first of a new series, and thus a bit of a re-boot, I wanted to reiterate and better explain that the Rambler receives his time-travelling abilities from the Beorge. But that even they have their limits if their time agent is too badly injured, as he is in this case.

The Rambler is gravelly injured, and time is finally running out for Earth's Timeman. But all is not lost as the alien Beorge identify a new individual to become the planet's time-travelling champion...

Sunday, 29 March 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Four Post One

This scene is simply all about sacrificing oneself in order to save the day, and I thought was a great way for the longest-running version of the Timeman to bow out. I also put his 'demise' in early to leave me with plenty of room to give the character, one who had started life as a completely hand-drawn and coloured drawing, both a proper send off and handover to his successor.

In addition it allowed me to include one of my favourite advantages of computer art programmes, the 'flashback'. As I was able to digitally scan and manipulate two inked drawings of the earlier Timemen and incorporate them into a panel where the ailing Rambler saw his predecessors and sought their approval for his solution to the Enemy's time destruction device.

The Rambler may have saved the Earth's time-stream but at just what cost to himself. Battered and burnt, have the Timeman's adventures finally come to a fiery end. Or is this just the start of something new..?

Friday, 20 February 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Three Post Three

In these first two panels I simply wanted to show what the time-bomb looked like, complete with multi-coloured wiring and have the Rambler unmasked before he could complete his task.

This set up a nice frame in which the time-traveller provided a bit of closure as to what happened to his companion, Wandsworth, when I previously stopped drawing his adventures a few years earlier. I had actually considered having the character, a butler, accompany the Rambler in "The Time Henge". But felt that it would give me too many people to write for all at the same time. As it was I therefore stuck to an old story idea I had planned to draw where Wandsworth remained on board H.M.S. Victory as Captain Hardy's servant following the Battle of Trafalgar. The four-parter was going to have been called "Nelson's Waterloo."

Earth's time-stream is ablaze and about to be destroyed. But can even a strong-will and determination help the Rambler stave off the flames long enough for him to de-active the Time-bomb.!?!

Thursday, 19 February 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Three Post Two

There are two points to this sequence of panels and ordinarily I would have paired them together but as I wanted to show a brief passage of time between the two drawings set on the planet Beorge, I split that scene up. One of my biggest concerns about this series was trying to explain just why the aliens needed to maintain the smooth-flow of  the Earth's time-stream, so I tried with these frames to explain that they siphon off the energy created by 'events happening as they should' in order to hold their planet's tectonic plates together; as their planet is at the end of its life.

I also wanted to show why the Rambler was so keen to reach Stone Henge's central altar as it is actually a disguised time-bomb which he needs to re-wire. As I thought it was quite hard to spot my hero of the hour amongst all the grey robes, I deliberately kept his right coat arm showing.

The Rambler has only seconds to re-wire the time-bomb or the Earth is finished. But can he complete his task before he is discovered..!?! 

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Three Post One

Having essentially been an ineffective passenger for the first half of "The Time Henge" this part finally gives our grey-suited 'hero of the hour' something to do, and show he can use his fists. I actually left the Rambler's arm showing as he donned the hooded robe in order to make it clear that it was the time-traveller getting dressed, as opposed to the unconscious lodge member reawakening.

This part also introduces another green-uniformed Beorge, in the form of one of an alien engineer. His dialogue also reinforces the fact that the Rambler's journeys through time are enabled by the technology of the amphibian space species as opposed to any gadgetry he may have upon his person.

As the Grand Lodge prepare to dispatch a human sacrifice, the Rambler must make a difficult decision... Rescue the fair maiden from a bloody death or re-wire a time-destructor and save the entire planet.!! 

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Mooretoons - Early "Doctor Who" Adventures - Man-Eating Ants, A Glass Dalek And Ogrons

Top: The Man-Eating Ants attack and the Master Ant    Bottom: The Meddling returns... and more Ants
Having suddenly fallen into an artistic style which clearly suited my needs by being both clean-lined but also reasonably detailed, “The Invasion Of The Man-Eating Ants” is arguably my favourite original “Doctor Who” story. Indeed I have re-used the story for a subsequent adventure involving my own time-travelling character “The Rambler”.

The main motivation behind the four-parter, as I recall, was that I thought I could swiftly and easily draw a horde of ants and as a result speedily finish another tale. Unfortunately the time required to draw all the ants, irrespective of my technique of simply using a continuous squiggle, quickly lead to the little ‘monsters’ being replaced by a far larger, but infinitely easier to draw Master Ant. I also used the story as yet another excuse for me to include the Meddling Monk; my own take on the villainous Time Lord who I thoroughly enjoyed writing and drawing. In addition, knowing I was fast running out of stories for William Hartnell’s incarnation of The Doctor, I started to have the time traveller begin thinking about his great age and that he would soon have to regenerate. Thus at the end of the adventure, an over-tired Time Lord collapses from mental exhaustion.
Top: An invalid Doctor and Ogron meet the Glass Dalek    Bottom: The Doctor's Dalek and a Rad-Mutie
Carrying on with this theme that the Doctor was mentally unwell “The Decoy Of The Daleks” was a chance to once again script an insane Gallifreyan and include a few official canon monsters from the BBC television science fiction series; namely the glass Dalek from the March 1985 programme “Revelation Of The Daleks” and the classic Ogrons, thanks to the July 1986 VHS video release of “Day Of The Daleks”.

By this time my portrayal of the First Doctor had dramatically departed from his televised counterpart and was now decidedly bald and wore a tracksuit. The story also provided me with the opportunity to give an appreciative nod to the nuclear irradiated mutants known as Mutos from the 1975 BBC story “Genesis Of The Daleks”. 

Monday, 2 February 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Two Post Three

In many ways these four panels encapsulate the main plot device behind all of my stories for "The Rambler". The alien Beorge, who rely upon Earth's smooth flow of time for their own survival, identify when some change is occurring and send their Time Agent to the place in question. Upon arrival the Timeman gets into all sorts of mischief.

The 'TEEOOWW' sound effect is one I've used since I first started drawing these adventures. But the bubbles are new as they came as a pre-generated graphical effect with "Paint Shop Pro".

Far from safe, and trapped over a hundred years in their own past, the surviving tourists now face a new threat... to become the sacrificial subjects of a druidic ceremony.!?!

Saturday, 31 January 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Two Post Two

These three panels are another attempt to inject a little bit of 'proper' history into the story, and at the same time move the action along. Once again the backgrounds are actually of the relevant parts of Stone Henge.

I made the last panel double-sized in order to incorporate the extra dialogue and to give myself some space to illustrate that there really were quite a few of the Neolithic tribesmen running around the ancient monument; albeit they're now all burning to death.

Have the historical site visitors survived the murderous machinations of savage man just to be burnt alive in the flames of time itself... or does the Rambler have a solution; one which means a visit back in Stone Henge's past..? 

Monday, 26 January 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part Two Post One

One of the things I like to try and do with my stories for "The Rambler" is include the occasional little-known or interesting historical fact. These panels are one such a scene, as I wanted to explain that the modern-day lay-out to Stone Henge isn't actually the same as it was during the Neolithic Age.

Indeed one of the reasons I decided to main one of the main characters an English Heritage tour guide was to allow me to do this more easily, as he was bound to have some knowledge of history in general. The photograph in the background is actually of the Heel Stone mentioned in the story.

[I've spotted an error in the dialogue which I'll correct as soon as I can]

Fleeing the Neolithic savage the surviving site visitors readily follow the Rambler. But is the mysterious stranger leading them to safety or to be sacrificed.!?!   

Sunday, 25 January 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part One Post Three

Although reasonably action-packed, these final panels of the first episode are really just about establishing which visitors have survived the attack by the Prehistoric savages, and enabling them to reach the actual archaeological monument. They also firmly establish that the Rambler is the leader of the small group and has some sort of a plan to thwart whatever disaster it is he keeps saying is about to destroy the Earth.

With hindsight I realise that what all three of this 'main cast' lacked was eyebrows, something these days I almost religiously draw on all my main characters. As a result I can't help but think that both the Rambler and the older grey-haired survivor look younger than what I actually envisaged.

Hunted amongst the tall rocks of Stonehenge, the surviving visitors must cast aside their concerns over the sanity of the Rambler, and put their trust in him when he says he must alter the Earth's time-line..?   

Saturday, 24 January 2015

"THE RAMBLER" The Time Henge" - Part One Post Two

I'm a big fan of the double-length panels, especially when I want to get a big scene in with lots of figures and don't think it'll look terribly good if I shrink it all down in order to fit a single frame. They also let me increase the amount of dialogue I can 'squeeze' into a scene; albeit this particular posting seems 'riddled' with the ellipses I no longer use these days.

The prehistoric builders are actually just some recoloured drawings of some Celtish warriors I made in 2005 for a short-lived series entitled "Pax Romany". I just removed their tattoos and re-dyed their hair and moustaches.

The mysterious alien race known as the Beorge are rather piscine in look, though they are not an underwater species. The characters of the Chancellor, the Emperor and one or two other minor ranks have remained the same since I first started making these stories over twenty years ago, despite changing the Earth's 'Rambler' from time to time. The background is a photograph from a brightly lit underground cave, as I like the alien-feel of all those stalagmites and stalactites. Plus they are wonderfully colourful.

Outnumbered the remaining tourists must fight for their survival against the attacking Prehistoric savages. Only then dare they risk a surprising escape route...  

Thursday, 22 January 2015

"THE RAMBLER" "The Time Henge" - Part One Post One

Drawn in September 2009, this is actually the third series of "Mooretoons" I've drawn for the time-travelling agent of the alien Beorge. Indeed, originally titled "The Timeman" the first hand-illustrated adventures were started in 1992 and ran for a couple of years before, under the new banner of "The Rambler", I started to incorporate computer graphics, sound effects and speech bubbles into my artwork.

"The Time Henge" is all about handing the baton over to an entirely new agent of Beorge. I hadn't actually drawn any more 'Rambler' stories for seven and a half years, so wanted to give the character a completely fresh start but also give a nod to role's former incumbent. I also had to create a new 'companion' for the agent. Someone who would ask lots of questions and get into trouble. As a result I started with a little bit of a crowd scene so it wasn't immediately clear both who would be the new 'Timeman', imbued with time-travelling powers and who would 'assist' them in ensuring the smooth-flow of Earth's timeline.

Despite having wholeheartedly moved over to computer-enhanced drawing for some years before this story was drawn, I made this four-parter rather quickly as a 'pilot' to see if the characters would still be interesting. As a result many of the drawings are simply 'pulled' form other stories I've drawn and as a result they're a rather inconsistent mixed-bag.

Who is the mysterious pensioner and what is his plight!?! Murderous ancient man and bizarre aliens abound in the next instalment...  

Friday, 16 January 2015

"MEN OF MYSTERY" Virus Of The Panda - Part Four Post Three

Whilst I like the smaller tight panels for this final instalment of "Virus Of The Panda" I don't think they let you easily see the swirling disorientated background effect of Cheng Fu's poisoned blood. It is also a little unclear that The Peking Panda is escorted away by the local authorities, having been arrested at the end of the fight.

The faded background to the final panel is actually a piece of glazed painted pottery depicting the Taoist Immortals who are meant to be coming to claim the soul of the sick Sensei Cheng Fu. It was a bit of a balancing act to work out just how visible this needed to be. I didn't want it too strong so you couldn't still see the hospital, but clear enough so you could make out the Immortals' faces and realise Cheng Fu was in grave danger of joining his spiritual gods.

Next time a hapless visitor to Stonehenge becomes embroiled in a plot to destroy all of time, and as a consequence embarks upon the first of many adventures travelling through Earth's history as an agent of an alien race. It's time for "The Rambler"...  

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

"MEN OF MYSTERY" Virus Of The Panda - Part Four Post Two

With this scene I wanted to quickly cover why the Peking Panda wears the skin of a Giant Panda, and show him infecting Cheng Fu with the virus. Indeed, I actually went so far as to use a red mottling effect to visually show that both the villain's claws and some of this own ninja henchmen were contaminated with the infection.

As I didn't want too much of a distraction from this simple 'story telling' I predominantly reverted back to using my basic composition format of similar-sized rectangular panels. Although I had already learnt that by changing their edges and making some of the frames larger and smaller it was possible to completely eradicate the dialogue ellipses I have been using for the past ten years or so.

Infected with a deadly disease, can Cheng-Fu defeat both the Peking Panda and the killer virus..!?!

Monday, 12 January 2015

"MEN OF MYSTERY" Virus Of The Panda - Part Four Post One

For first four panels of this final part of "Virus Of The Panda" I went back to using my usual sized panel but continued to try and break up the perceived monotony of all the frames being the same shape. The opening drawing is an attempt to show what a character is thinking as an event takes place elsewhere. Thus you have the Peking Panda inside the hospital and within a tiny frame, reacting to a large explosion outside. I think the dialogue bubbles sort of ruin this illusion, and with hindsight I'd have drawn the villain on the other side of the panel.

The fourth drawing is a simple split panel which I wanted to use to show Sensei Cheng-Fu running through the corridors of the hospital. in addition I slightly blurred the background in order to suggest he was travelling at speed. Again I think the text and speech bubbles somewhat impinge upon the effect I was hoping for.

As the order is swiftly brought back to the hospital, Cheng-Fu faces the mastermind behind the attempted viral outbreak, and only one will walk away from the encounter in good health...

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Mooretoons - Early "Doctor Who" Adventures - Daleks, Cybermen and Dodo

Top: 'City of Daleks' and a Thatcher!?!     Bottom: Dodo and the Emperor Dalek
Written at a time when I was clearly full of teenage angst and lashing out at anything and everything, irrespective of whether I actually understood the subject matter in question, “The Demise Of The Daleks” is probably the most disappointing story I’ve written… and much of the artwork isn’t that great either. Indeed if I could turn back time and remake just one story, this would definitely be it.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s some nice elements to this four-parter, such as being set within the ‘City of Daleks’ and being based upon companion Steven Taylor’s to recover and resurrect the Doctor after he is electrocuted by Terry Nations’ pepper-pot creations. It also introduces the new travelling assistant Dodo Chaplet, a talking budgerigar and provided me with an opportunity to draw my own version of the Dalek Emperor. But all these good ideas are implemented quite appallingly, and the inclusion of a clip-clopping tortoise-shelled behemoth based upon Margaret Thatcher is possibly the worst thought out creature I’ve ever imagined.
Top: The Doctor falls foul of a water trap     Bottom: The Cybermen
Bizarrely, the following story, “The Chasity Of The Cybermen”, despite its somewhat perturbing title is actually one of my all-time favourite tales. And it would appear that some passage of time passed between its creation and that of ‘The Dalek Story’ before it, as the artwork is clean, stylised and the plot rather funny; in my opinion at least. Clearly inspired by the “Doctor Who” September 1967 television story “The Tomb Of The Cybermen”, it concerns the TARDIS crew exploring the Tomb of Metal shortly after an archaeological explorer has been killed by a Cyberman.

Fleeing the silver giant, the Doctor, Steven and Dodo rush headlong into a water trap and only escape by drinking all the liquid up using straws. Having survived, the friends then rush back to the time machine, and depart. Simple, straightforward stuff which let me draw plenty of ‘Patrick Troughton-era’ Cybermen for the first time.