Interlude - Recent Arrivals and Other Stuff
Looking for a write-up on Prelude #2? Well, looks like it won't be too long in coming -- my copy of the book has apparently been shipped from the comic shop today, which means it'll be here around, oh, maybe Saturday. We'll see how UPS does this time.
Looking for something new to amuse yourself with for a few moments? Read on.
Today in the mail I recieved one of the last few Eternity/Malibu Robotech publications I didn't own -- the third collected edition of the Sentinels comic book series, reprinting issues #7 - 10 of Sentinels Book I. This was released in probably mid-1992, about three years after the earliest material within its covers was originally published. Speaking of its covers, both front and back feature original art by John Waltrip.
When I talk about not taking the colors on the covers of the Sentinels comics seriously, this is sort of what I mean. Check out the fugly colors on the SDF-3 on both pieces and Rick and Lisa's pinkish purple uniforms on the back. Egads. While the front is a better piece, I have to admit a certain fondness for the back cover piece. Gotta love the giant looming Alpha Fighter, and and Minmei & Janice are so amusingly out of place in the composition. But those lime green Hovertank silhouettes on the bottom -- those are pretty sad looking. And check out that awful back cover copy: "Will Rick Hunter be able to save Cabell -- the only man capable of repairing the SDF-3 warp drive -- from his hiding place deep within Tirol before they both meet their end at the hands of the insidious Invid?" Cripes, who wrote that tripe?
The additional non-story art in this volume mostly seems to be taken from house ads for Sentinels Book II -- one even includes the Sentinels aliens, who certainly don't appear in this book, as it covers everything from the morning after Rick & Lisa's wedding to the REF's counterattack following the Invid crippling the SDF-3 in Tirolian orbit. Oddly enough, the Dave Dorman cover for Sentinels Book I #7 is missing, and instead another piece of art from the Sentinels clip file is used for the first "chapter" page -- the weirdly-posed Alpha Fighter Battloid that appears on the signed sticker plate in the second hardcover collection ("The Wedding of Rick Hunter & Lisa Hayes," containing Sentinels #5 & 6 and Wedding Special 1 & 2) and on several "back issues for sale" house ads that appeared regularly in Eternity's books around 1993.
I probably wouldn't have remembered what the deal was with the omitted cover except that I actually just scored a Dave Dorman Robotech piece off eBay about a week or so ago for a little more money than I should have spent. It's the cover for Comico's Robotech Masters #21. Check it out:
Unlike every single other Robotech page and cover piece I've purchased over the years, this thing is on heavy duty illustration board and came with a piece of light wax paper taped overtop with masking tape. It also has instructions from Dorman to the colorist at the top:
"Colorist - Bowie is wearing an orange jacket. The Invid flowers have pink petals, white seeds, aqua blue leaves and stems. I think a gradule color tone (possibly purple/violet) from dark at bottom to light at top would work for background. Thanks"
For those who don't know, Dave Dorman is a big deal painter of Star Wars and fantasy subjects -- here's his website -- and right after I won this auction I got an e-mail from some guy going basically, "Hey, you paid this much for a black and white Dorman piece and skipped out on this painting over here that went for less? What's up with that?" I then went back to eBay and noticed that another Dorman Robotech cover -- New Gen #18, I think -- went for more than the painting, which was from I-don't-remember-what. Obviously another fan more of the subject matter than the artist. A lot of artists back in the day really struggled with the streamlined Japanese character designs of Robotech, including Dorman -- the Sentinels cover that wasn't included in that trade paperback is an excellent example of that. While he obviously can make a painted rendering of an assemblage of Star Wars figures sing like no one else, as he has done numerous times now for trading cards, novels, and comic covers, most of his Robotech work -- done in the late 1980's, outside his chosen medium, and in a style he doesn't really do -- is only so-so. Of that body of work, though, this would have to be one of my favorite pieces, a nice mythosy bit featuring the best-realized of Robotech's human-alien pairings. I've also always been fond of Masters #22's cover, with the fully armored 15th Squadron engaging in a firefight, and the bittersweet romantic cover to New Generation #19.
I leave with an image of the nerve center of my operation, where I spend most of my waking hours after work. This is the setup as I was trying fruitlessly to scan the Alpha Battloid piece from the TPB.
There will be more tomorrow. Oh yes, there will be more.