Archive for November, 2007

Death Defying No Longer – Evel Knievel

November 30, 2007

eksicover.jpgPerhaps my very first true-to-life hero as a kid was the iconic Evel Knievel. I was maybe four years old when I first learned of the death defying daredevil. I remember watching his televised stunts on ABC’s Wide World of Sports. I had all of the Ideal bendable Evel Knievel action figures and wide-up cycles, vehicles, and accessories. My little brother and I were both Evel Knievel one year for Halloween. I made my parents (actually I think it may have been my dad losing to a match of Roshambo with my mom) to take me to see the movie Viva Knievel.

I just found out about a half an hour ago that Evel Knievel — born Robert Craig Knievel — died Friday. He was 69. While it was well known that his health was deteriorating over the last years, suffering from diabetes and pulmonary fibrosis, I still find it hard to believe that he was finally unable to defy that in which he defied for so long — death.

Just yesterday, I was reading his latest, and hypothesized as his last, interview in the December issue of Maxim — ironically entitled “Evel Never Dies.” Well, as it turns out… It does. He does.

“They started out watching me bust my ass, and I became part of their lives,” Knievel said. “People wanted to associate with a winner, not a loser. They wanted to associate with someone who kept trying to be a winner.”

Knievel led a colorful life, to say the least. Though the colors may have mostly been black and blue. Thanks, Evel.

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Chase: Found And Lost — Part 6

November 30, 2007

My pulp fantasy-noir continues with Part 6 of the first issue of Chase: Found and Lost. I’m throwing in an extra page this round as well since the script runs a couple of pages longer than the standard 22. If you need to catch up links to the previous parts are below.

PAGE 16 (Four Panels)

1 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN AND CHASE
as Gutman surveys the office. Chase attempts to straighten up the desk a bit.

GUTMAN:
If I’ve come at an inappropriate time…

CHASE:
No… Sorry about the condition of the place. I recently had to let the help go.

2 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN AND CHASE
as Chase almost chuckles at Gutman’s reply.

GUTMAN:
I understand.

CHASE:
If only.

3 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN AND CHASE
as Gutman looks a bit confused. Chase motions toward the empty chair in front of the desk.

GUTMAN:
Excuse me?

CHASE:
No, please excuse me. I’m sorry, you are again?

4 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN
as he settles into the chair in front of Chase’s desk.

GUTMAN:
Victor Gutman.

PAGE 17 (Five Panels)

1 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he settles into the chair behind his desk.

CHASE:
What can I do for Mr. Gutman?

2 – ANGLE ON CHASE AND GUTMAN
as they look at each other from across the desk.

GUTMAN:
I’m looking for my daughter.

CHASE:
Alright… And, how old is she?

3 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN
who’s nervousness is beginning to wade and is being replaced with a look of concern.

GUTMAN:
She is old enough to know better, yet young enough for me to be concerned about her.

4 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he becomes more business-like.

CAPTION:
I hated cases like these. They usually turned out to be stickier than honey straight from the hive.

CHASE:
My rate is two hundred fifty up front, plus two hundred fifty upon completion.

5 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN
as he response immediately.

GUTMAN:
That sounds very reasonable.

PAGE 18 (Four Panels)

1 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he leans forward in his chair.

CAPTION:
He didn’t even blink at that amount. I figured I would press it.

CHASE:
Plus…Twenty a day to cover expenses.

2 – ANGLE ON CHASE AND GUTMAN
as Gutman displays a questioning look. Chase, on the other hand, grows a bit more serious.

GUTMAN:
Twenty a day? How long does an investigation like this usually take?

CHASE:
Are you concerned about your daughter, Mr. Gutman?

3 – ANGLE ON CHASE AND GUTMAN

as Chase tries to read Gutman from across the desk.

GUTMAN:
Of course I am.

CHASE:
More concerned than you are for a mere twenty coins a day?

4 – ANGLE ON GUTMAN
as he straightens up and sits upright in his chair.

GUTMAN:
I see your point Mr. Chase.

PAGE 19 (Four Panels)

1 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he works at his desk. There is a candle that is burning very low. He is scribbling notes on parchment.

CAPTION:
I burnt a fresh candle to the nub getting all of Gutman’s details regarding his daughter.

2 – TIGHT ANGLE ON CHASE
as he contemplates his new case.

CAPTION:
Her name was Rose.

3 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he gazes out of the window.

CAPTION:
I had a case. Whether or not I’d be able to solve it wasn’t a concern. Regardless of if I could find this Rose or not, five days of investigation would get me out of hawk with Weathers. Another four days and I’d be square with the Burnt Cork.

4 – ANGLE ON CHASE
as he turns his attention away from the window and toward the knocking at the door.

SFX:
Knock. Knock.

CAPTION:
Now what?

Chase: Found and Lost © 2007 Dan Taylor

“My Charlie Brown Christmas”

November 29, 2007

For — now this is an estimation — the thirty-seventh year in a row now I caught the annual airing of A Charlie Brown Christmas the night before last. I’ve watched it every year since I was two or three. Maybe I caught it when I was one, not sure. But, watching it reminded me of a little gem that the cast of Scrubs created for their cast and crew holiday party during their third season (I believe). Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you… “My Charlie Brown Christmas” — featuring the animated works of Charles M. Schultz’s Peanuts as voiced by the cast of Scrubs.

Here is the direct YouTube link, as well as a good TV Squad link.

Note: My first YouTube embed. 

Ninja Bandito Preview Available At Indy Planet

November 28, 2007

nb0-frontcover170.jpgThe Ninja Bandito Preview comic book is now available at Indy Planet! As of today, you can purchase your own copy of the Ninja Bandito Preview — created and written by yours truly and with art by Dustin Evans — for only $2.00.

In a far off land of dichotomy and danger exists a man of mystery. An amalgam unto himself, he is a product of chaos and order… The eye of the storm. He wanders the land on a quest to successfully prevail over a myriad of trials and tribulations set forth before him. but by whom? Forever in search for the answer to a question he does not know, he is interwoven with the fabric of chaos verses law, good versus evil. He is the… Ninja Bandito. The Ninja Bandito Preview issue offers an introduction to an all-new adventure hero, and sets the stage for a job that the Ninja Bandito cannot refuse. It makes a great stocking stuffer for the ninjas and/or banditos on your list. Domo arigato, amigo.

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Head Aches

November 28, 2007

Just a random gripe here. I woke up this morning with my head completely stuffed — nose, ears, and even my eyes felt like they had pimentos stuffed in them. I blame the hospital for getting me sick. Yesterday I got the sutures snipped out of the back of my scalp that I had stitched in last Sunday (November 18) to hold it together. Ah, to be healthy and in one piece.

Talkin’ But Still Walkin’

November 27, 2007

smallheartwriters.gifWell now that I’m back from my Thanksgiving holiday sabbatical I’m catching up on news, including the latest haps with the current Writers Strike. Apparently after resting up and reviving from a tryptophan induced coma writers and producers have resumed talks according to Variety and other online sources. Apparently both sides began an almost clandestine scheduled three-day session on Monday morning at an undisclosed hotel, as well as establishing a news blackout.

Yesterday, Nikki Finke posted at Deadline Hollywood Daily that a “deal” may already be in place. “A very reliable source tells me that there appears to be a deal seemingly in place between both sides.” While the strike might not be wrapped up this week, a supposed deal put together by agents working with both sides may mean that a deal may be struck by Christmas.

John Aboud over at United Hollywood isn’t ready to “fire up the margarita machine” quite yet and urges that writers and they’re supporters shouldn’t ease up the pressure just yet. And there’s a simple way that supporters can continue to fight the good fight…

In this season of giving, why not give a box of pencils to the media moguls to show your support for the writers with the program Pencils2MediaMoguls. For just a buck, it’s an easy symbolic message to send.

Maybe, just maybe, my Christmas wish of seeing a complete and deserving series finale season of my beloved Scrubs will come true.

And… I’m Back.

November 26, 2007

Flew back in to John Wayne Airport at about 8:30 this morning after spending the last four and a half days visiting family in the “greater” Gardnerville, NV area. While it’s a relatively short flight — only about an hour — the girlfriend and I still had to get up at 4:00 this morning to drive to the Reno, NV airport for the flight home. Believe you me, Carson Valley is cold at four in the morning — like 12 degrees.

So, the Thanksgiving visit to the parental units was the reason for the lack of posts the last five days, but there wasn’t much to post about… I didn’t go shopping on “Black Friday.” I wasn’t on the lookout for any nerd related news regarding television, movies, or comics. Nothing new to report on my various projects. And, apparently the writers strike is still on.

The main pastime in Carson Valley is gambling — which is fine by me since I dig blackjack and video poker. I didn’t do too bad, though I didn’t walk home with any fortune to speak of, I figure dropping about 100 bucks for the duration of the trip isn’t too shabby.

My brother did introduce me to Guitar Hero III, which was a lot of fun. Since I currently don’t have a video game console I doubt I’ll be rushing out to get my own to play. Hopefully my nephews who live about 20 minutes away will be getting it from Santa. And, speaking of Christmas shopping… I hope to start today and finish before the second week in December.

Crackin’ Skulls

November 20, 2007

Well, at least one skull. And technically I don’t believe the skull was actually cracked. But it sure as hell hurt. Sunday evening the ever so graceful and nimble yours truly took a spill and SMACK! It happened in the bathroom. I fell back into the tub and the back of my head slammed into the built in soap dish. Upon noticing the amount of blood gushing out of the wound — and the fact that my bathroom instantly turned into what looked like the set from CSI: Crime Scene Investigation — I got my ass to the emergency room right quick. Ah, nothing like getting your head stitched up in the E/R to finish up a weekend. I’m not sure exactly how many stitches — definitely more than a dozen, maybe 18 or so. Just when I finally got all of the stitches and staples out of my back a couple of weeks back.

Tomorrow I get on a plane to fly up to my folks house for Thanksgiving. So, Mom, if you’re reading this (and I doubt you are so nobody needs to point it out to her) everything is okay, but I had to go to the Emergency Room on Sunday and get a few stitches. I figured I’d just wait and explain it when I got there.

So that’s the main reason there was not a post yesterday. Right now with the bandage wrapped around my head I look like the flute player marching with the two drummers from the Revolutionary War picture.

Scripting Babes and Rats

November 16, 2007

I handed in two comic book scripts this week — one on Wednesday and another on Thursday. The two scripts couldn’t be more different. The first script I turned it is the first issue of a five issue story that I’m co-writing with Neil Kleid. To be honest, it was a little bumpy figuring out how and where we were going to go, but the journey should be smooth sailing from here on out. It’s got sex, drugs, murder, and three hot chicks that I like to call the “Tinseltown Triplets.” The image below is courtesy of artist Chris Moreno.

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The second script that I turned it was for the second issue of another five issue story that I’m writing solo that deals with swashbuckling vermin on the high seas called Pirat Tales. The image below is courtesy of Orlando Baez.

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I feel accomplished. So the day that I took off today catching up with Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead (which reminds me that I have to work on the zombie anthology project next week) and a little World of Warcraft is completely guilt free.

Damn Kids And Their Loud Rock And Roll

November 15, 2007

I really don’t need anymore evidence to the fact that I’m getting older. I’ve got the receding hairline, my goatee is sprinkled with gray, and my doctor has informed me that regular prostate exams will begin with my next visit. But KROQ’s recent announcements regarding their line ups for both nights of their KROQ Almost Acoustic Christmas has hammered yet another nail into my coffin.

First off, a little history… Growing up in Southern California I grew up listening to KROQ (history). I remember when the morning show was Raymondo & the Blade before Kevin & Bean (where Adam Carolla and Jimmy Kimmel got their starts). I remember “The Roq of the 80s.” In fact, as I type this I”m listening to the online feed of KROQ Roq of the 80s (with Frankie Goes To Hollywood currently playing). In the past I have attended a number of KROQ Weenie Roasts as well as the KROQ Almost Acoustic Christmas. I still listen to the radio station — mostly in the morning — but not as often as I used to.

And since the Holiday Season is upon us, KROQ recently announced the line-up for this year’s Acoustic Christmas shows:

Night One (December 8, 2007)

  • Linkin Park
  • Angels & Airwaves
  • Avenged Sevenfold
  • Bad Religion
  • Paramore
  • Rise Against
  • Serj Tankian

Night Two (December 9, 2007)

  • Muse
  • Feist
  • Jimmy Eat World
  • Modest Mouse
  • Silversun Pickups
  • Spoon
  • The Shins

Now I still listen to enough KROQ to be familiar enough with just about all of the acts on the two-night bill, but not enough to really want to drive the hour plus to Universal City to see either night. I’ve seen Bad Religion, past on a local Modest Mouse show a few years ago, my girlfriend likes the Feist tune they use in the iPod commercial, and I like The Shins tune in Garden State (though it didn’t change my life).

Back in the day… I remember witnessing the fan mini-riot at the L.A. Collusium during the first U.S. Monsters of Rock (Kingdom Come, Dokken, Metallica, Scorpions, Van Halen), tearing my patella tendon while in the pit during Jane’s Addiction at the very first Lollapalooza in ’91 (Jane’s Addiction, Siouxsie & the Banshees, Living Colour, Nine Inch Nails, Ice T & Body Count, Butthole Surfers, Rollins Band, Violent Femmes), and seeing Pearl Jam open for Nirvana, who opened for Red Hot Chili Peppers in ’92.

There’s only one upcoming concert that I really want to catch… Next month Cheap Trick is playing at a local venue. I am getting old.

For the record, the acts that performed the first time I attended KROQ’s Almost Acoustic Christmas in 1992 — Adam Ant, David Byrne, Cause and Effect, The Cult, dada, Duran Duran, EMF, The Farm, Michael Penn, The Rembrandts, Seal, Soul Asylum, The Soup Dragons, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Suzanne Vega, The Violent Femmes. (I just realized that I’ve seen a lot of The Violent Femmes over the years when I also include various Weenie Roasts and playing with No Doubt.)