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.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Return of Stickman #1451

When I first read this new story I immediately thought of drawing the classic scene where somebody gets hit over the head with a guitar/musical instrument. Then I thought it would be more of a challenge to draw the strip leaving that actual image out completely and just leave the reader with a the same mental that popped into my head.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Comic Critic Reviews Raiders of the Lost Ark

Serials were long gone from the theaters by the time I was born. But I was fortunate enough to see a lot of the old black-and-white movie serials on television when I was growing up. From the silent features of The Perils of Pauline to King of the Rocket Men, serials were part of my generation’s viewing culture. Thus, when Raiders of the Lost Ark was released in 1981, it was a one-two punch of success. The adults in the audience got a nostalgic flashback to their younger movie-going days. And what the kids had only experienced via the boob tube was spectacularly splashed across the silver screen. I felt that I was watching not only a sterling homage to my Dad’s films, but a movie fashioned specifically for both of us to enjoy on our own levels, and each other’s. Watching Raiders created a reverberating generational bonding moment. Raiders of the Lost Ark did much more than lay a cornerstone to a franchise. It reinvigorated the entire genre of Action Adventure within popular culture—inspiring books, videos, cartoons, comics and movies—all with the goal of recapturing that magical movie moment.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Return of Stickman #1450

In all the years I've drawn Stickman I've either man his holidays sheer hell, or a half-told series of unconnected and usually unpleasant events. So this year I thought I would just have him suddenly on his own.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Return of Stickman #1449

I was inspired to draw this strip when I realized how many people were phoning it in today when it came to work.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The Comic Critic Reviews The Best Years of Our Lives

Until the release of The Best Years of Our Lives, very few movies employed post-traumatic stress as a major tool for their narratives. Until then, the stresses of war were either shown on the battle front or about an individual soldier on leave. The Best Years of Our Lives explicitly focused on soldiers’ lives after the war, yet the opening sequence cleverly introduces the idea that soldiers coming home face an entirely different battlefield. The three military men arrive in their hometown not by train or car, but by bomber. We see their anticipation of their target as they stare at the landscape unrolling beneath them. Only this time the land beneath them is their homeland. This sets the tone for churning undercurrents of emotion that prevail throughout. This movie did fantastic at the box office not only because it resonated with returning troops, but also because it resonated with the entire country, still reeling from the heavy costs of war. Harold Russell, the actor (a wartime double amputee), became the personification of America’s desire to recover, even after great loss—so much so that the Motion Picture Academy decided to give him a special Oscar for inspiring all returning vets. His nomination for Best Supporting Actor was considered a long horse, and winning that didn’t so much stun the crowd as emphasize the empathy his role generated. To this day, he remains the only actor to have received two Oscars for the same role.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Return of Stickman #1448

When I read the news story that inspired this strip, I couldn't help but wonder two things: 1. How revolting dealing with the mess must have been to humans. 2. How the wildlife in the area must have been attracted to it.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Return of Stickman #1447

After I read the news story about the woman's who's last wish was to have her privates carved on her tombstone I thought up two strip ideas. I didn't have to chose between them because they could work sequentially. I then spent way too much time trying to figure out how to pull two more strips out of it for a full week of beating this topic to death before I gave you. So, good news, you will get a strip tomorrow on a whole new topic.

Yesterday I attended the Tacoma Pierce County Chamber's Annual Meeting. It was my first time going to the chamber and I was very impressed. There were hundreds of people there. I do believe I might have to become a member.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Return of Stickman #1446

I'm not going to provide a link to the news article that inspired this strip. You will just have to trust me that there is a tombstone like this out there in the world. Of course you could always Google it. But consider doing so from your home computer. Otherwise your keyword search might set off some alarms on your employer's server.

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Comic Critic Reviews Around the World in 80 Days

David Niven was the perfect choice for the role of Phinneas Fog in Mike Todd’s Around the World in 80 Days: not because his calm demeanor embodied British sophistication, not because his timing was excellent, or that his natural wit expands itself in his dialog, but because even when he’s in action, you can tell–you can just tell–that he’s having fun. And when I read a story by Jules Verne, regardless of what wild fantasy or dark human characteristic that’s being explored, I can just tell that Verne was having fun, too. It’s magic to watch an actor having fun in an adventure the author had fun writing, in a film in which everybody in Hollywood is having fun as well. You should watch this film. It’ll be fun.