Junior Mad Scientist – Lab Notes

Still Life With Monster, V

April 26th, 2007 by Weber


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The Request Lines Are Now Open

April 26th, 2007 by Weber

The site had been live for a couple of weeks when came this unexpected piece of fan mail:

I‘ve checked your site out a couple of times and it looks good.

I feel that you should put that poem you wrote about “loving you best when you are very far away” on there. I love that one!

Also, be careful what you wish for if you ask other people to write something about you! I’ll bet I could come up with a something verrry interesting!

Keep up the hard work!

Love, Mom

This started a hunt through the floppy disk archives for something I wrote back in 1993. It was eventually re-discovered on one of the dozen or so back-ups that was part of my regular college writing routine.

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Noble Failure #4 (Another 24-Hour Comic)

April 26th, 2007 by Weber


NOBLE FAILURE #4 (April 2007)

READ! the stunning conclusion to TOPOR: THE THING THAT SLEPT — Can the diminutive Dr. Riley and his sexy, cycloptic, assistant survive the tired trespasser from space?

GUFFAW! at the antics of those mischievous MONKEYS ON AN ELEVATOR!

WONDER! why I can’t do 24 pages in 24 Hours!

(scroll beyond the art for more sly commentary)

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(Sincere apologies to the great Jack Kirby for misappropriating some of the artwork from Fantastic Four #1. The King is dead. LONG LIVE THE KING!)

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NOBLE FAILURE #3 (Another 24-Hour Comic)

April 19th, 2007 by Weber

inmouth.jpg haha.jpg topor2.jpg

NOBLE FAILURE #3 (March 2007)

Installment the third of my monthly attempt at a 24-Hour Comic. The page count fell this time around: only eleven, plus the cover. But they’re all quality.

Some people (who shall remain nameless, but you know who you are) suggested I forget the covers and concentrate on page count. An understandable argument, though I can’t agree. Even if I was near finishing in the prescribed time, that last page would still get sacrificed for a cover. There’s something sad and incomplete about a coverless comic.

exemplum gratis: Somewhere in my collection (currently in storage or I’d scan it) is a copy of INCREDIBLE HULK #181.


For those of you not in the comic book know, this is the first appearance of Wolverine — one of the industry’s most popular (i.e., $$$$$$$$$) characters .

You may remember this guy

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from such films as X-Men, X-Men 2: The Revenge, or Swordfish as plain ol’ Hugh Jackman.

(The wife says, “He’s dreamy.”)

Anyway, nice copies of INCREDIBLE HULK #181 currently sell for between $680 and $2000 on Ebay.


Before it came my way, somebody colored the masthead with green crayon and cut the small Hulk circle out of the upper-left. Then he proceeded to bend, fold, spindle, mutilate and otherwise defile the rest of the book.

The point is: mournful though it may be, it’d look downright tragic without a cover.

Anyway, that’s my cover story and I’m sticking to it.

Other items of note for #3:

  • More “Monkeys on an Elevator”
  • Part II of “Topor: The Thing That Slept”
  • And a letters page

(Apologies for the large type on the bullet points. It’s probably something in the default formatting. I’d fix it except Web Master Mike has forbidden me from even looking at the code. There was a lot of swearing and something about chopping off my hands. So, no touch-y.)

I’m still tinkering with the image sizes, trying to find the ideal pixel count for your viewing pleasure. Meanwhile, click as always on the thumbnails to get a bigger image, then mouse over the picture. If a magnifying glass appears, click again. The image should get a bit bigger and easier to read. This will be handy for “Monkeys on an Elevator” and the letters page.

As always, your comments and suggestions are welcomed.

Next week, NOBLE FAILURE #4, a book review, and maybe a few other surprises.

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Posted in 24-Hour Comics, Art, Comics, Stories, Writing | 1 Comment »

Noble Failure #2 (another 24-Hour Comic)

April 17th, 2007 by Weber

NOBLE FAILURE #2 (February 2007)


Ah, yes. Scans for my mythical second attempt at a 24-Hour Comic. The February edition has more content — 16 pages, plus this snappy cover — though the overall tone has taken a dark and brooding turn.

There’s blood.
And some swearing.
And a couple of dead bodies.
And monkeys.

In fact, unless you’re 18 or older, or have expressed written consent from your parent(s) or legal guardian, it’d be a good idea to skip February. Don’t say I didn’t warn you, kids.

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: The events in this comic do not in anyway reflect my emotional state, then or now. I am not, nor have I ever been, suicidal. I don’t believe I am friendless or that my family has abandoned me. It’s just a story.

That being said, I DO believe those rats at the International Astronomical Union poked a dirty stick at Pluto.

“Dwarf Planet” my achin’ eye!

As always, your comments are welcomed and encouraged.

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Posted in 24-Hour Comics, Art, Comics, Stories, Writing | 2 Comments »

Homeland: The Illustrated History Of The State Of Israel (Book Review)

April 13th, 2007 by Weber


First, a few disclosures:

1) I met Bill Rubin on my way to Comic Con 2005
2) Bill has kept me up-to-date with the progress of the book
3) He bought me lunch and
4) was kind enough to find a place for my name on HOMELAND’s Acknowledgements page

I lay all this out so there is no misunderstanding, no whiff of malfeasance or calls for my impeachment. Especially on my first review for this site.

Another disclosure: I’ve had a tough time writing this review.

I like the book. It’s well executed; it’s ambitious; it reads well; I enjoyed it and learned a lot. Still, I have pages of false starts. It wasn’t until today that I realized the problem: my expectations were in the way.

Despite having followed the project for nearly two years, having seen advance artwork and heard Bill’s stories about the book, I was still expecting a non-fiction graphic novel — a character-driven, historical narrative told with boxes and balloons.

Boy, was I wrong.

HOMELAND is exactly what it says it is: “the illustrated history of the state of Israel.” And while the book employs numerous aspects of sequential art storytelling, it manages to transcend them in some way.

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Still Life With Monster III and IV

April 11th, 2007 by Weber


Two more in what seems to be either an ongoing series or a running joke. Time will tell. (Click on image for detail.)

Also included in the gallery are some other gouache pieces that have been accumulating in the sketchbook. No rhyme or reason behind these; just fun with paints. (Click on image for detail.)

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Hey, good lookin’

April 8th, 2007 by Weber

The pages for NOBLE FAILURE #1 have been updated with better scans and streamlined files. Now you can actually read the pages, especially the Rumi adaptation. It’s a significant improvement from what was up there before. Enjoy.

(Thanks again to the guiding hand of Webmaster MIKE!)

Posted in 24-Hour Comics, Art, Comics, Stories, Writing | 2 Comments »

Still Life With Monster II

April 6th, 2007 by Weber


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Noble Failure #1 (a 24-Hour Comic)

April 6th, 2007 by Weber

NOBLE FAILURE #1 (January 2007)

(The first two pages are a from a poem by the 12th Century philosopher and poet Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi. The text was written in ink with a bamboo quill. It looks good as a big piece, but it’s tough to read at the smaller size.)

by Rumi (Coleman Barks, trans.)
You’re sitting here with us, but you’re also
out walking in a field at dawn
You are yourself, the animal we hunt when you come with us on the hunt
You’re in your body like a plant is solid in the ground
Yet you’re the wind
You’re the diver’s clothes lying empty on the beach
You’re the fish
In the ocean are many bright strands and many dark strands
Like veins that are seen when a wing is lifted up
You’re hidden self is blood in those —
Those veins which are like lute strings which play ocean music
not the sad edge of surf, but the sound of no shore

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Click on the 24-Hr Comics tab at the top of this page to examine all of my NOBLE FAILURES. The February and March editions are scanned for upload, and I’ll be doing April’s next weekend. More details, write-ups, and comics coming soon.

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