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.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1498

A few weeks ago I was with Mark Brill and Travis Bundy at the Tacoma Public Library doing a presentation on how to do comics. While the others were talking I was drawing up the cartoon to show to the audience. I wanted to comment on how sometimes that artist of a strip was often perceived as the main character of a strip, and how an artist would often get flack from their readers if the main character would say or do something different than the artist would in real life. But then I remembered we our focus was on comic books and not comic strips. I also drew another strip based on this one which I did show to the class. You will get to see that one on Monday

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The Comic Critic Reviews Alfred Hitchock's "Rear Window"

I truly want to go on a rant to say how great a storyteller Alfred Hitchcock was. I want to pontificate at length the scope of his genius in layering his works with the superb efforts of his talent pool of collaborators. They were all masters in their fields. Take Edith Head, the costume designer. Once Hitchcock started working with her, he never let her go. Why? Take Grace Kelly’s entrance. You fall in love with her the moment she walks into the room, and you can’t help but love her for the rest of the movie. Grace Kelly’s excellent acting skills, aided by Edith Head’s design of her superbly elegant clothes, embodied her character. I want to rant on and on, but I’ll just say that everything about Rear Window is a joy: the set design, the script, the lighting, the cinematography, everything. As with every true artist, there is more to Hitchcock’s work than can be seen with a casual passing eye. His ability to lure you with a double-take is just the beginning of the adventure. No sooner have you glanced back than suddenly you find yourself caught up in a net of thoughts, conceptions, and twisted perception. In Rear Window, the roles within its established microcosm seem obvious. As the movie progresses, we are forced to reassess those roles and then explore ways test our assumptions, just like our hero. Alfred Hitchcock takes a rather plain murder mystery and creates a captivating adventure of the senses, as well as a friendly tweak to the mind.

As a side note, many suspect that the character Edna Mode in The Incredibles pays homage to Edith Head. I certainly hope it is. Her screen legacy of eight Oscar wins (out of thirty-five nominations throughout her fifty-year Hollywood career) for best costume design shouldn’t have ended with her last film, 1982’s Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid, released a year after her death. After all, she was only 84.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1497

Good luck finding the news story that inspired this strip. There are so many about this problem that I'm surprised that there isn't a name for it. If there is a name for it, please let me know.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1496

I provided more than enough clues for you to find the news story that inspired this strip. What I like is the mugshot of the robber when they took him in. He looks like he was run over by a truck.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1495

Good luck finding the news story that inspired this strip. There are so many about this problem that I'm surprised that there isn't a name for it. If there is a name for it, please let me know.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

The Comic Critic Reviews Back to the Future

Back to the Future was a tremendous summer hit. It was helped in no small part by various homages and its iconic imagery. The character of Dr. Emmett Brown’s visual similarity to C.A. Rotwag in Metropolis is just one excellent example. Back to the Future’s popularity has remained high for the last twenty years because its strong material provides a depth of material from which entertainers can pull jokes, parodies, and cultural references. The movie itself continues to have a cultural influence. When people see a DeLorean going down the street, they don’t remember the cocaine bust scandal that devastated the company—they think time travel. The fun Back to the Future has with time travel parody is part of its joy. And if you want to have some extra fun, compare the actors and actresses in their old-age make-up to how they really look now, twenty years later, and you might reassess your hasty judgment call on the special effects.

When I was writing this review, I was trying to figure out a way to mention how a DeLorean auto club always manages to stay at the same hotel as lots of out-of-towners coming to the Spokane Comicon. I wanted to talk about how bad Hollywood is at intentionally trying to depict the future, and how so often the secondary props and dialog. But none of it encapsulateding it as well as making yet another parody of Back to the Future.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1494

This true event reeks of such high irony that I think everybody wrote this same scene in their head when they heard the news.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1493

This event took place in Washington State. But, and emphasize this enough, it is not a comment about the relationship my hairdresser has with her daughter. There are lots of mothers who have daughters in symphonies. This is not a story about the one that cuts my hair. Honest.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Comic Critic Reviews House of Wax

I’m a huge Vincent Price fan. How huge? His was the first movie actor’s name I memorized. I loved watching him perform. Watching him meant watching a lot of horror movies, and every young boy enjoys horror movies. Vincent Price carried himself with a regal, sophisticated air. He was immensely charming, polite, the quintessential gentleman. His bearing was so elegant that his victims apologized for being such a bother when he slid the knife in. Price’s ability to encapsulate menace with such movement and expression enthralled audiences. While he’d played a number of worthy roles before, it was in The House of Wax that he eased himself so easily onto the throne to became the king of horror. It seemed he’d been there all along, the quiet monarch always in command. The House of Wax was a tremendous box office draw. The rage for 3D films had just begun. That, along with Vincent Price’s performance, gave House of Wax a long run, establishing it as one of the 50s classic horror films. There’s a Blu-ray 3D version available now, but I only hope that I’ll eventually have the opportunity to see Vincent Price in a re-release on the big screen, The House of Wax in all of its 3D glory.

The technology was so new, they had to show this trailer at the theaters:

Friday, August 2, 2013

The Return of Stickman #1492

I left enough clues in the cartoon that you should be able to find the news story that inspired this comic.

Oh, I nearly forgot. Tomorrow I will be sharing the Jet City Comic Show both at the Proctor Art Festival in Tacoma. The event will be from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. and I look forward to seeing my fellow Tacoma natives there.