Custom Figures and Models
Hey! Here's some action figures and toys
I've had modified or spruced up over the past couple years...
I'll try to get some better pictures up at some point, but
my first priority is becoming a better cartoonist, so: It
might be a while. On with the show!
The awesome King of the Hill line shares the same
problem of all the Beavis and Butt-head licensed merchandise:
No OTHER brand (or band) name could appear on the products,
so, "AC/DC" and "Metallica" got changed to
"Skull" and "Death Rock," and now Dale's "Mack"
hat (a Deer Hunter reference, possibly deliberate on
Dale's part) gets the rub as well. Thanks to the nimble
fingers and steady hand of go-to girl Celena, Dale's as right-wing
a nutjob as ever.
So licensed brand names are one thing, but what about the American
flag?? For some reason, it got rubbed off 'Lok here... even
though it's one of the top four or five most important visual
characteristics of the guy. Maybe Toy Biz found his quasi-satirical
nature unsettling, and sought to soften the blow he represents
against post-Watergate America. In fact, I'm sure that was
their concern exactly.
Oh, hell yeah. All I even asked for on this one was that
Celena paint the toy dinosaur red... It was already just
enough a lazy departure from the standard T-Rex that it made a
decent Devil stand-in, I thought. Then Celena went to work
on the face, as well. Painting the teeth sharp, the eyes
expressive... Nice work, my friend. "Devil
cries out with the frightful rejoicing of his toothsome kind!"
as Moon Boy might say. Come to think of it, a little Moon
Boy sitting on his back would kinda complete the picture.....
Don and Bill
Yes, it's the cyborg lobster sidekicks of Gomi, the cyborg nerd
from Jo Duffy and Kerry Gamill's Fallen Angels limited series!
Finding toy lobsters of roughly the right size to match
the rest of my figures was a task that took the best part of two
years, by the way. All I need now is just the right Harry
Potter to paint blond and put in a tiny blue jumpsuit... Ahem!
In a manly way, of course.
The one customized figure that I bought outright,
with no hand in its creation. But it's Flag-Smasher! One
of the very few good things to come out of Captain America: The
Gruenwald Years... A nice ideological enemy... And,
all the better for my tastes, a super-villain dedicated to the
idea of One-World Government! What an evil, peace-loving
The Mobile Organism Designed Only for Computing,
who changed the last word in his acronym to "Killing,"
this figure came out as part of the Iron Man animated TV show
toy tie-in. Fortunately, they designed him to match the
comic book version (unlike the Mandarin figure, but don't get
me started on THAT...) but, unfortunately, he was a drab and colorless
thing, with a hole in his head where his killing jewel should
go. Celena went above and beyond on this one, even finding
a costume jewel that fit perfectly... And she colored him
to match the Mike Zeck drawing from his Marvel Universe profile.
Here's the first model I've made of one of my own
characters.... The despotic leader of Space France, from
one of my F. France Jericho 24 Hour Comics. All the elements of
this model were found (or pointed towards) by Celena or her sister,
Selah, my colorist-girlfriend.
It's the Spirit's arch-enemy, the Octopus! Never
seen, but always striking out from the shadows, his only trademark
the three-lined pair of gloves! I found the color Octopus
story Will Eisner did during the... 60's? It was sometime
after the original b&w stories, I know that much.... just
before Celena got to work on this one, so I could tell her the
gloves were purple and yellow rather than... Well, whatever lame
color combo I would've made up. The figure is another
Spirit figure (of course) but with the alternate "beat-up"
head that you could interchange with the smart 'n clean one. And
the eyes are painted angry, instead of the original hurt-and-confused
I'd rather not have started my custom figure collection
with Rick Veitch's anti-Objectivist "superhero"... The
Midnight Mink, King Rad, Moon Mistress and Judge Jury would be
way cooler... But the character design was so simple and
elegant, and easy to apply to a Spider-Man figure, the One is
where we began. With enough space to display it someday,
I'd like to build the One's enemy, the Other: A great swarming
mass of humanity, with one person on top, holding a whip!
This is a figure put together by Selah herself at her job as an
art teacher. I like having such an accurate little model
of someone... Again, if I ever have the space for it, I
think I'll try to get her to make me a whole little army of these
things, one for everyone I know, love, and hate. It just
seems like something Superman might have kept in the ol' FoS....
Chris Ware's Superman
The Red Skull
Rosie the Riveter
The Thing (Fred Hembeck Edition)
The Thing (Jack Kirby's Secret Stash)