The Home of the Creative Mind

Welcome to PooBahSpiel, the online voice and home of the creative mind of Mark Monlux, Illustrator Extraordinaire. Prepare yourself for an endless regaling of art directly from the hand of this stellar artist. And brace yourself against his mighty wind of pontification. Updates are kinda weekly and show daily sketches, current projects, and other really nifty stuff.

Monday, February 1, 2016

The planets aligned when Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure premiered. It was the end of the 1980s. California’s “Valley” pop-culture was at its height with style, language, music and Mall Culture. Bill and Ted were yet another couple of characters portraying the youth of that culture. And this movie could have easily come and gone, like so many other teen films trying to capture that unique moment in a bottle, were it not for some happy choices. One of those was hiring George Carlin to play Rufus. His respectability as a comedian added credence to the humorous story. While there is some sexual humor, it plays a side note. The real magic of the movie is in the characters Bill and Ted, played by Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves. While they are shown as airheads, they are first and foremost gentlemen. They are kind, considerate, and are polite without affectation. Even though their love is for Heavy Metal, they never aggressive except when defending honor. Their attitudes permeate Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure because they embrace life as an excellent adventure. The audience gets caught up in their optimistic joy. With a superb song selection, a most bodacious script, and some well-timed comedy, you will have a most excellent time watching Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

The Comic Critic Reviews "The Man Who Fell to Earth"

I saw The Man Who Fell to Earth in the theater when it came out in 1976. Who wouldn’t want to see David Bowie in a movie? This would be his first time starring in a motion picture. I was a little disappointed that none of his music was used, but aside from that, the movie met all of my expectations: it had David Bowie, it was a science-fiction fantasy, there was beautiful imagery, and I anticipated being confused. I was fourteen—almost everything confused me. A lot of things still confuse me. But The Man Who Fell to Earth doesn’t confuse me nearly as much now as it did then. The film is all about confusion, confusion of identity, of purpose, of morals. It can be seen as an allegorical story where youthful ideology is bludgeoned by cruelty of greed, corruption, vice, and loss. David Bowie had just left his gender-bending, glam-rock persona of Ziggy Stardust and was in his Thin White Duke era. For a confused adolescent such as myself, to see someone unabashedly being anything he felt like being, to express himself as wildly or sedately as he saw fit, and all the while being suavely cool, David Bowie was quite the inspiration. I walked into The Man Who Fell to Earth hoping for a guided tour of trippiness from Bowie—and he delivered.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Return of Stickman #1588

True story. I wonder if they found her. Maybe she shaved her beard. I thought about doing this strip from the stabber's perspective with her shaving off her beard in a gas station or something. The strip you see was a lot easier to compose as no thinking was involved. I'm all about no thinking.