Sunday, May 27, 2012

CAVE BOY: Dino Rescue

Sometime around 2004 (or earlier), I was delighted to find myself watching reruns of some old Hanna-Barbera cartoons on Cartoon Network's "Boomerang" block, which was on Saturday nights after midnight.  These included the JONNY QUEST (from 1964, still my vote for best American animated TV show ever made), SPACE GHOST (1966, in my mind Alex Toth's "signature" creation, even if he hated it himself, and a show that was a huge influence on my own STORM MAN AND STORMBOY), THE HERCULOIDS (1967, another show that apparently inspired me, though much later) and FANTASTIC FOUR (1967, my introduction to characters from Marvel Comics, which in some ways was better than the source material).

I've always had more ideas than time to do anything with them, so usually it's not like I'm looking for inspiration.  Yet here it hit me again.  While watching the "filler" cartoons in the middle of SPACE GHOST-- "Dino Boy In The Lost Valley"-- I got the idea to do something similar.  What would make mine stand out would be, it would be a "lost valley" that existed in the same future world of STORMBOY!  Futuristic sci-fi and dinosaurs, side-by-side.  Wow!

In short order, I actually got the idea for 2 different stories.  One would be set during the original series, when Stormboy was around 11 years old.  The other would be a sequel, set during his "grown up" series.

But then I happened across Tim Fish's YOUNG BOTTOMS IN LOVE, an online series of short comics stories, each done by different creators in a wild variety of styles.  And so, before I could ever get to either of the first 2 story ideas, I hit on a 3rd one-- set neatly about halfway between the time of the other 2.

I was also watching my TARZAN collection at the time, and it's obvious this also gave me a chance to do some "jungle" type action.

The way I devised the story, it would work in 2 different forms.  An 8-page version would contain the action, and a bit of romance.  This wound up running online as part of the YBIL website series sometime in 2004.  Later, I was able to recycle it, and it was published (albeit in B&W) in the 1st issue of QUEERBAIT in December 2006.  (I never did get a copy of that from the publisher.  He never paid me for the cover I did for him, either.)

I wanted to experiment and see if I could come up with a different style that would fit the material.  What I wound up doing was fully-rendered pencils, much of it in a looser, more "cartoony" style than I'd been using, and then adding "limited" color in Photoshop.  This gave it a look similar to many European comics which are printed in "2-color" process.  I'd first seen this used when Herge's THE ADVENTURES OF TINTIN was serialized in CHILDREN'S DIGEST magazine in the late-1960's.

I also did a 12-page, X-rated version.  Here it is, for the first time!  Enjoy.

Story & Art (C) HENRY KUJAWA
All prominent characters are Trademarks of HENRY KUJAWA

1 comment:

  1. Awesome! Please do more comics!!!! Like this one!