Wanna Be Archie-fied?

AdamWeb

This personal commission was a top-secret Christmas gift from the buyer, Adam Alamo, pictured in the Jughead hat above, to his dear wife, Shannon, pictured in the really cool Star Blazers shirt!

I’ve mentioned before that Adam has been a huge fan of Archie Comics and even runs the very successful and fun Fans Of Archie Comics Facebook Page! He was also a huge champion for Die Kitty Die and helped us spread the word about our Kickstarter all over Facebook and Twitter. He even started a Fans of Astrocomix Facebook page! I have no doubt that Kitty would not have done as well as she did without Adam.

God bless Shannon! She’s the sort of wife every comic book fan should have… VERY patient, tolerant, and willing to go and hang out at comic conventions. One evening during dinner with the Alamos, it came out that both Shannon and I are mutual fans of the old anime cartoon, Star Blazers. The rest of the evening turned into talk about the Argo, Gamilons, the Wave Motion Gun, and the Comet Empire. Poor Adam, who wasn’t a Star Blazers fan, didn’t know what we were talking about. Cool husband that he is though, he still commissioned the above piece and requested that Mrs. A be wearing a Star Blazers themed shirt! I was certainly happy to oblige!

Thanks for everything, Alamos! We’ll see you guys very soon! Please check out Adam’s Facebook pages below!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/Archiecomicfans/

https://www.facebook.com/groups/947774008649479/

If YOU want to be Archie-fied, I’m always open to taking on commissions! Just email me through this site!

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9 comments on “Wanna Be Archie-fied?”

  1. Adam Alamo Reply

    Thanks again for the kind words, Fernando. Both the wife and I hold you and your work in high regard. Can’t wait to chat again soon, whether at a comic con or at a Star Blazers con.

  2. JR Loflin Reply

    Wow, had no idea you were a fan of Star Blazers, I loved that show growing up! Have you seen the remake of the original Iscandar story, Space Battleship Yamato 2199? One of the most faithful remakes ever, but it still manages to add characters and complexity to an already deep story. I definitely like that they added more female crew members this time around, but Nova was my first cartoon crush and she’ll always be #1. Would love to see your take on her someday.

  3. fernando Reply

    As a kid, Star Blazers used to air in reruns in the NYC area where I grew up. I loved it. I liked Speed Racer a lot, but I loved Star Blazers. That cartoon was my first taste of military science fiction and directly led to my love for Star Trek. One of the things that impressed me about the show was how in any given Star Force could overcome the obstacle of that episode but they could still seemed screwed. I have a lot of cherished scenes from that show that I love to recall… the first firing of the wave-motion gun, Desslok rams the Argo, the Comet Empire destroys the Andromeda, the Argo destroys the Comet Empire… All beautifully dramatic moments!

    I haven’t seen any remakes or sequel series. In truth I also haven’t seen that “lost” third season, the Bolar Wars. I have the dvd’s but after a couple of episodes, the new voices and abandoned continuity just drove me off and I never finished it. I really should revisit those if for nothing else, the sake of completion.

    A Nova sketch is an interesting idea. I should do one for the upcoming convention season.

  4. JR Loflin Reply

    It’s funny you mention Speed Racer…my first exposure to Star Blazers was part of a daily rotating cartoon called the Guess What Slot. They would alternate between Star Blazers, Speed Racer, the original Ultraman live-action series, and, for some inexplicable reason, Gilligan’s Island cartoons. To this day, I still don’t understand that last one. The first episode I ever remember seeing was the Starflies episode of the Comet Empire arc. I will never forget Nova confronting Desslok on the bridge of his wrecked flagship or “all the fire and the smoke” that enveloped the Argo as she fought bravely on against the Comet Empire even after all hope was gone. They don’t make them like that anymore.

    It took me a long time to finally see Bolar Wars and when I did, the new voices left a bad taste in my mouth as well. It’s not that they were bad, per se, but they were not Wildstar and Nova and all the gang I’d grew up loving. I found out later that it was actually the Speed Racer voice actors filling in, which is kinda funny, considering how I first saw the show.

    If you do check out the 2199 remake, you’ll have to view it in Japanese with English subs. A dubbed version was started, but due to poor DVD sales I don’t think the entirety of the series was dubbed. It takes a while to get used to the Japanese names for the characters, but the visuals are much sharper. I love how they retained the music of the original series (it is even arranged by the late composer’s son). They even retain the countdown to extinction, placing it at the end of a post-credits “Next Time…” trailer after every episode. You can find sample clips (and even whole episodes!) on YouTube if you’re interested.

  5. fernando Reply

    Your descriptions really bring me back to the show, JR. This was the show that made me fall in love with a good space battle. In many ways, Star Blazers did it more dramatically and emotionally than Star Wars or Star Trek. There was nothing like seeing the poor battered Argo emerging from a huge cloud of smoke and gas with a cracked hull, bent cannons and bleeding smoke herself. And then there was the slow but powerful post-battle music…! I might need to break out the dvd’s and do another viewing of the Iscandar and Comet Empire seasons. Sometimes I blur the two seasons together. Let’s face it. There was a formula in place and certain themes were repeated. I associated the star flies with the trip to Iscandar but I’ll trust your memory over mine.

    This 2199 remake sounds intriguing. I may have to track it down on YouTube and give it a shot.

    Your story about the Gilligan’s Island cartoon reminds me of another favorite cartoon of mine, Roughnecks, this was an animated version of Starship Troopers. Although similar to the movie in overall look and design, the cartoon had a much, much more serious tone and had more in common with the book than it did the movie. It was done in the early days of computer animation so anyone sampling it today has to really make allowances here. Like Star Blazers, it had continuing storylines and that overwhelming feeling that even though the heroes overcame a great immediate conflict, they were still very screwed!

    The reason I’m remembering this show is because it originally aired on the Sci-Fi Channel (back when it was the Sci-Fi Channel and not SyFy!) and it was scheduled for the ungodly 7am slot weekdays. Every Friday, however, Sci-Fi dropped every fifth episode of the series in order to air an episode of a Rambo cartoon! That’s right! Rambo! Sadly, this crazy sort of scheduling is probably what doomed that show which only got better and better.

  6. JR Loflin Reply

    “I’m doing my part, are you?”
    Roughnecks, yes! I never thought about it before, but the parallels between the Troopers and the Star Force are quite intriguing. In addition to the “hopeless” nature of their continuing fight, we also see them lose a beloved commander near the end of the series and replace him with the young hothead who has matured as the stories progressed. It’s a shame they didn’t get to finish the series off properly.

  7. Dennis Reply

    Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles was probably too intelligent a series for the Sci-Fi Channel (or at least in the time slot they aired it). As soon as I saw it, I recognized it as having much more fidelity to Heinlein’s novel than the live action films. It’s always been a great puzzle to me why there aren’t more CGI animated series adapting science fiction and comic books; to me it seems like the perfect way to go, far more convincing in creating an imagined world than live action movies and television shows. Fortunately the series was released on DVD, so I got to see the entire thing in the correct order (this is actually important). The out-of-production DVD box set of the complete series is kind of pricey now, going for $60 and upwards on Amazon, but at the time I bought it, it was cheap.

    • fernando Reply

      Roughnecks is one of my all-time favorite animated series. The CGI of course is of its time and it was almost certainly too sophisticated for the Sci-Fi Channel of the time, who absolutely had no idea what to do with the show. A client of mine in “the know” many years ago had told me that originally Roughnecks was going to be part of the Sci-Fi Channel’s plans for original prime time programming. Those plans never came to be and the show was then just dumped into Sci-Fi’s early morning cartoon programming where almost no one saw it. This is where I discovered the show and got hooked on it. Of course the show died and no second season was ever produced.

      The show has an interesting legacy. Almost no one has heard of it. The few people I find who have heard of it love it like I do. A few times I’ve tried to get new fans started on the show and while its a favorite of mine, I’ve had a hard time winning people over with it. A big part of the problem is the show starts off with the Pluto Campaigns which aren’t the most visual episodes of the series and granted on the surface may seem a bit repetitive and “video gamey.” Usually, I tell people to hang in there until the Tesca Campaigns and then they’ll be hooked. It’s a tough sell though.

      All of this talk about Roughnecks has me itching to watch it again. Its been many years since I’ve gone through a viewing of the whole series. I do have those dvd’s you mentioned. I even have a set of the series on VHS!

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