Throwback Thursday Illustrations

Woo! It’s almost Friday, guys! 😀 I’ve been really busy the past few days so I just wanted to pop in with a quick TBT art post.

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This one’s a serious blast from the past. Probably did this about 10 years ago, I think.
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A much more recent piece. Probably just a couple years old, and it’s where my icon comes from! (Beetlejuice fan art of Lydia Deetz.)
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Fan art piece of Dr. Harleen Quinzel I did about 6 years ago.

Hope you guys have all been having a great week and have a fantastic weekend! ❤

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The Batman Adventures: Mad Love Re-Read & Review

“Face it, Harl. You’re a certified nutzo wanted by the law in two dozen states . . . and hopelessly in love with a murderous, psychopathic clown. At what point did my life go looney tunes? How did it happen? Who’s to blame?” — Harley Quinn

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First things first, Happy Valentine’s Day to all of my fellow bloggers out there! ❤

In honor of the holiday I decided to re-read and review an old favorite of mine, The Batman Adventures: Mad Love by Paul Dini and Bruce Timm. Originally published in February of 1994 and set in the continuity of Batman: The Animated Series, Mad Love gives us Harley Quinn’s origin story and follows her as she plans and attempts to carry out the ultimate scheme to impress the Joker and win his affections once and for all.

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I have a lot of love for these characters despite the fact that they both have done some pretty awful things. I’ve always been a fan of the bad guys, which is one reason I think I’ve also always been so into Batman to begin with. I mean, c’mon, dat Rogues Gallery! So, although I love me some villains and reading about all the awful things they do, this does not mean I am pro-messed-up-relationships like that of Harley Quinn and the Joker. Just like I am not pro-destroying-entire-planets, pro-tying-damsels-to-railroad-tracks, or other dastardly things villains do just because I choose to read about them.

Sure, the Joker and Harley Quinn are a famous and well-loved (on-and-off-again) couple in the comic book world, but that does not automatically mean that they are a good couple. Hence why I did not select them for my recent Cute Comic Couple post despite the fact that I love the Joker and I love Harley Quinn. Here’s the thing: I love to read about them, but I’m not going to romanticize an abusive relationship.

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I’ve seen a lot of girls post things about wanting a relationship like the Joker and Harley’s and I can’t help but think that either they don’t know their source material or that I should feel very, very concerned for them. They may be interesting characters to read about, but their relationship is not what any sane person would consider to be “cute”, or even healthy for that matter. Even to this day, the stronger and more independent Harley still struggles with her feelings for the Joker from time to time, but at least she can see how toxic their romance is.

Exhibit A: Her acknowledging how bad things were with the Joker and deciding that no one ever gets to put their hands on her ever again after a scuffle with interstellar bounty hunter, Lobo in the Injustice comics.

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Tell ’em, girl.

I feel like I went off on a little side rant here, so apologies for that, I just felt it needed saying. So, without further adieu, onto the review! 😛

Our story begins with the Joker and Harley doing what they do best: bad guy stuff. With Commissioner Gordon in their grasps and plenty of sharp and pointy objects to play with, the diabolical duo are having one hell of a date night. Ready to inflict some serious pain on the good ol’ commissioner, their plans are shattered by the sudden appearance of Batman, doing what it is he does best: thwarting the Joker’s plans.

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“Damnit, Batsy! Always spoiling my fun. THIS is why we can’t have nice things!”

Needless to say this proves to be quite the mood killer for Mista’ J despite Quinn’s best attempts to get him to “rev up his Harley” vroom vroom! 😉

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Not dealing well with the Joker’s rejection, Harley’s mood shifts from disappointment to anger as she blames Batman for coming between her and her man. This is when we get our big flashback of Harley’s start at Arkham Asylum as the young psychiatrist Dr. Harleen Quinzel who quickly falls for a notorious patient, none other than the Joker himself. While she originally intends to get into the criminal’s head, he winds up turning the tables on her and getting into hers, painting a picture of himself as a victim, and Batman as a self-righteous monster always there to knock him down. She convinces herself that she can help him. That he only needs love and acceptance, the very things that she could give him, to be better.

Her dangerous new romance seems to be cut short though when the Joker escapes the asylum. She finds herself worried sick about him in his absence. It isn’t until a week later that Batman drags back a bleeding and battered Joker, enraging the protective Quinzel and causing her to reach her breaking point.With her love interest wounded and locked back up, Harleen flips the switch to full-blown Harley Quinn, robbing a costume and novelty shop to piece together her trademark jester costume and busting the Joker out of the asylum so they can begin their official reign of chaos on Gotham City.

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Harley’s head is filled with delusional dreams of a future life and family with the Joker, something she knows she will never have as long as Batman is in the picture. She’s convinced herself at this point that Batman is the only thing standing in their way of true domestic bliss. So she makes the decision to take the bat out of the picture for good. I won’t give away the rest of what happens, but I’m sure you can imagine that things do not go for Harley as she would like to think they will.

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All in all, Mad Love is a staple point in the history and development of Harley Quinn’s character. Recognized by IGN Comics as “one Batman book everyone should read”, this one-shot won an Eisner Award for “Best Single Story” in 1994. Even Mark Hamill himself, who has voiced the Joker numerous times in various animations and video games, has named this comic as one of his all-time favorites.

She may have gotten her start as the Joker’s sidekick/girlfriend, but there is no doubt that Harley Quinn has become a force all her own in DC comics over the years.

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Powerless: A Review So Far

If you’ve ever read a comic or seen a film involving a super hero fight scene you know that these clashes of power rarely lack in the collateral damage department. We’re talking office buildings with all the windows smashed out, flipped or crushed cars, buses being thrown through the air like they’re nothing, and that’s all just by Tuesday.

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Well, the new NBC show Powerless is all about the little people who deal with that damage. Set in the DC universe, this comedy TV series follows perky optimist Emily Locke (played by Vanessa Hudgens) as she takes on her new job as Director of Research & Development at Wayne Security. Yep, Wayne Security, as in part of Wayne Enterprises. If you are no newcomer to the DC universe you’ll already be well acquainted with the name Wayne. No, not the famous rapper, Lil Wayne, we’re talking the playboy billionaire, Bruce Wayne, silly!

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In the show, the employees of Wayne Security are the people who come up with various products to help everyday helpless citizens feel a little bit safer in a world full of clashing super villains and caped crusaders. Our main character Emily spends the first two episodes trying to fit into her new workplace and make friends with her eccentric new co-workers, including her spoiled, rich, man-boy of a boss, Van Wayne (cousin to Bruce Wayne, or as Van calls him, B-dubs”), played by Alan Tudyk.

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I personally have really enjoyed watched the first two episodes of this show. It’s a lot sillier than I think most people would expect from a DC series, but if you just embrace the fact that it is meant to be ridiculous I think you’ll find that the show has a lot of fun charm to it. It’s got a quirky sort of vibe and the effects are mostly pretty hokey, but it isn’t meant to be all badass. It reminds me sort of if you took a work comedy like The IT Crowd, threw in some DC comics goodness, added a dash of cheesy but fun viewing pleasures like Bill Nye the Science Guy and Beakman’s World and threw it all into a blender. All still while managing to be fun and fresh. With that all said, I will definitely continue watching.

 

 

 

Valentine’s Day Fan Art

It’s the weekend before Valentine’s Day so I thought I’d share some of my more lovey-themed doodles/fan art with you guys. Some are older than others so you’ll probably notice some definite changes in style and the varying tools I was using to draw/color them at the time. That’s one of the fun things about drawing, your style is constantly growing/changing as you continue to learn new skills and explore new art styles. 🙂

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Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas, daydreaming about Jack.
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Severus crushing on Lily. “Always.” ❤
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An older one of Harley Quinn, pining for her Puddin’.
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Queen of Hearts fan art from volume 1 of the Tales from Wonderland comic.
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Sheldon and Amy fan art sketch from The Big Bang Theory.

I’m off to do some Valentine’s Day baking now. The plan is chocolate chip muffins and chocolate covered cake balls. 🙂 I hope you guys all have an amazing weekend! ❤

 

This Week’s Reading Goals

This week’s gonna be a busy one but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do to get her reading done! *Puts on determined face.*

I’m currently on page 346 of The Girl with All the Gifts, by M.R. Carey and I plan on finishing it in the next day or two. I really have enjoyed this book from the start but it did hit a little bit of a slow point in the middle that slowed me down for a while. Last night’s reading session changed that though and I’m just as invested as I was when I started reading it. I can’t wait to see how this one ends. Overall I’ve greatly enjoyed it thus far.

You can read more of my thoughts on the book here if you’re interested. 🙂

It was also recently reviewed by my #1 Partner in Crime here.

My other reading goals for the week are of the comic book variety. I recently read both volume 1 and volume 2 of the New 52 Batwoman TPBs by J.H. Williams III and W. Haden Blackman. This week I’m hoping to start and complete volume 3.

I was really looking forward to checking out the Batwoman comics for a variety of reasons, but one of the main ones goes wayyy back to Batwoman’s origins in the 1950’s. One of the supposed major reasons for her creation was to provide Bruce Wayne with a female love interest to shush all those rumors about Batman and Robin being “partners” of a vastly different nature than the crime-fighting variety. These days, Batwoman is much more than a pretty little bandage to cover up any sort of wounded hetero-masculinity that Batman and the Boy Wonder might have had circling around them. In fact, she herself is a lesbian. Times are changing and if DC really did initially create Batwoman to sweep any rumors of homosexuality under the conservative rug than I think it is a refreshing change to see her now out and not giving a damn what others think regarding her sexual orientation.

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Then and Now

*Steps calmly off of soapbox*

Aaaannd now back to your regularly scheduled reading program:

So, keeping it in the Bat Family, my other intended reading goal is one that has been on my TBR list for a while: Batman: The Long Halloween, written by Jeph Loeb and illustrated by Time Sale. With Halloween coming fast it seems an appropriate time to read this. The art and the color scheme are pretty dark and moody which I think will go well with the story.