Thursday, April 24, 2014

summer komikon 2014

so, got my face on a komikon poster and i guess it's all downhill from here.

the maskot film and DVDs seemed pretty well-received, and by that i mean no one's complained about it, except maybe for that one social studies teacher at the panel (mediated by jason inocencio of and the geek shall inherit the earth) who wanted to know why ketchup had to swear so much in that one scene. ketchup and i made long-winded explanations about maskot's pent-up rage and need for catharsis, and then direk chris just says "it was funnier that way."

people seemed excited to get two new issues of school run, and to hear that the end is in sight with about four issues to go--that's only two more releases, if i can stick to two new issues per event.

i feel rather proud of school run 6 and 7, the culmination of quite a bit of setting things up between robert and maki.

still, it feels like i've been doing school run for a decade, and it'll be good to start on something new. or some things. :)

komikon in general: with so many of this season's must-have new titles being offset-print (rodski patotski, sulyap 2) or visprint-published (abangan, tabi po) GNs, and many of the established indie folks releasing increasingly thicker, pricier volumes, i wonder if komikon isn't becoming a victim of its own success.

ang maskot short film panel, photo by victoria velasco
ketchup, he's just a swell guy. what can i say?
already komikon is the book launch venue of choice for comics publishers, and as more mainstream GNs and pricey indie titles get released at the same event, buyers will find themselves having less and less money left to spend on less-established creators, on impulse buys and tryout purchases. and in the end, that'll be bad for the market. how will new talent gain a following if people lack the budget to buy their work?

it's pol medina jr.!
 a.k.a. "seatmate"  heh heh
one solution might be to have a komikon store where people can buy stuff all year round, but that's probably not feasible right now for a number of reasons. another could be more, smaller book launches throughout the year, but good luck getting publishers to go along with that. maybe it's just up to convention goers to start saving earlier and bring more cash. or maybe the organizers can team up with mastercard or visa and start offering pre-approved komikon credit cards. devious!

photo by kim buncio

Friday, April 4, 2014

captain america: the winter soldier

(some spoilerish but general plot discussion here)

the Hero is a man from a different time and place, and the world has changed without him. he is treated as a symbol of goodness, but his idealism seems antiquated. this leads him to doubt himself, although never his principles.

the military complex adopts him, makes use of his powers, but he later learns that all is not as it seems. 

the only person he can trust is his female companion, who is physically weaker but knows more about the world, and so helps him uncover the achilles' heel of the rogue military operation.

 his nemesis, with whom he shares a unique shared past, is in many ways his equal in combat, but with the advantage of being completely ruthless.

in the end, the hero triumphs not by destroying the baddie, but by convincing him that their shared history, what they have in common, is more important than their differences.

captain america: the winter soldier is the superman reboot i'd always wanted.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Terminus (the Glenn from The Walking Dead song)


We've come back this season, at least those of us still alive
Here within this Terminus we all hope to arrive
I was a survivor from Cell block C, you were with the Governor of Woodbury and...

You came down the tracks of the train and you walked by my side
Shoulder up to shoulder that tunnel was 9 meters wide
Oh my heart was screaming, walkers wanted to eat (us)
Following my movements with a rock on your feet and...

Oh, down toward Terminus all of us tread
So, when were't at Terminus who will be dead? 
"Won't you leave me, go find Maggie?" you ask of me then
But I draw my gun and shoot a walker again

We were all alone on a shooting spree
Really thought my bullets would run out on me, but
Maggie and some others came and made it rain lead
Made sure that the walkers wouldn't rise from the dead
Could have kept on walking my entire life
But the season's ending so i'm back with my wife!

And so we left for Terminus with one episode left
Baby,no, I have no idea what happened to Beth.

So here I am this season where they made all of us walk
Here within this Terminus where the gates are unlocked
Lord,I'd like to see that credits roll sneak peek
Probably a few of us will die next week and...

I am now about to begin the last of my days
I'm within what others would call a Terminus phase
I myself can only say it's The Walking Dead. I just hope the writers don't give me Hershel-head that's gross...
La da da
And you know it's gross
La da da... La da da...

Thursday, March 20, 2014

i support pnoy's radio airplay quota

this article's been popping up on my facebook feed repeatedly the past few days, to pretty much unanimous discontent. at the heart of the matter is executive order 255, which states:

"all radio stations shall broadcast a minimum of four original [F]ilipino musical compositions in every clockhour of a program with a musical format."

or to put it another way, stations have to allot about a quarter of every hour of airplay to local music. which, if you think about it, is pretty reasonable. TV ads get more airtime than that.

so why all the negative comments?

1.) anything pnoy does is wrong.

i'm not qualified to talk about that.

2.) i'll listen to what i want!
no one's forcing anyone to listen to anything. they're forcing the station to play OPM one quarter of the time, thereby giving local artists more exposure (and/or royalties?), which hopefully leads to more income. is that so bad? the rest of us remain free to change the station, or pop in our earbuds, or play music on our pc, whenever "pusong bato" comes on. just like always.

3.) its forced patriotism! borderline communism!
look, this is about money, pure and simple. this is about giving a degree of economic protection to local music artists. EO 255 is, in effect, an airplay quota. the EU, australia, canada, new zealand, and venezuela, to name a few, also have radio airplay quotas; it's not really such a strange and unnatural thing. EO 255 will not turn us into north korea.

in fact, i'd be happy if they expanded the EO to cover movies as well, add a screen quota in there.

let's try to get past our kneejerk reaction against being told by the government what to do, and try to think about how EO 255 will benefit local artists (and by extension, pop culture) and how little its actual effect is going to be on our personal freedoms.

4.) but what about jazz and classical music stations? 

now that's a legit problem. i'm not familiar with the local jazz scene, but we do have local jazz artists, don't we? as for classical, i know our one classical station, 98.7 DWFE, also plays christian stuff, so maybe they could play christian OPM?

Sunday, March 16, 2014

"let it go" vs. dragon ball mashup

so the other day i was listening to this guy, who is about the most affable-looking heavy metal guitarist i've ever seen:

and i thought, "gee, i can't even listen to that sort of arrangement and some of those riffs without thinking of 'head cha la'"... until i realized i was thinking of "head cha la" because the song actually sounded like "head cha la."

so i tried singing the "cha la, head cha la" refrain instead of "let it go, let it go." it seemed to fit pretty well, so i thought, i should be working, why not make a mashup?

i'd initially planned to lay the "head cha la" vocals over a "let it go" instrumental track, but couldn't find the former. luckily i found a "let it go" vocal track and a minus one of "head cha la" (the gino padilla version!) floating around on the web, so i threw those together in audacity:

i had to slow down idina menzel's vocals by about 3%, cut out a few of her pauses and add silences to some of her phrasing. the final outcome is far from perfect, but i think it gets the general message across:

Monday, December 23, 2013

ang maskot short film premier at cinemanila 2013

i finally got to see chris costello and mihk vergara's adaptation last saturday at cinemanila 2013 at sm aura in taguig. it was a tiny audience--just 30 seats(!)--but what an experience it was.

with its stellar cast, liberal use of SFX (the little bird was animated by arnold arre!), and awesome music (including an actual jholliebird jingle, variations of which were used as theme music throughout the film), ang maskot feels like either an overachieving short or a full-length feature crammed into twenty minutes.

the filmmakers are planning on additional screenings early next year, and a DVD release some time after. i can't wait for the film to be shown to a wider audience.

here's a comic i made about my viewing experience:

Friday, September 6, 2013

ang maskot short film update: cinemalaya was a bust

well, chris costello and mihk vergara's short film adaptation of "ang maskot" unfortunately did not make the cut for this year's cinemalaya festival. 

the directors, however, have their sights set on november's cinema one film festival, so we will be crossing our fingers that the film will fare better there. direk chris says the film's chances are pretty good, so, positive thoughts, visualizing, asking the universe, etc.

that said, after the cinamalaya rejection, and with reboots being all the rage these days in hollywood, i think i'd like to do a reboot of "ang maskot," you know, to make it more palatable to local film fest judging panels.


1.) instead of a fastfood restaurant mascot, the protagonist is now a gay dancer working in a seedy furry fetish gay bar, in which all the lights are tinted red.

2.) the manager is mean to the protagonist because the latter rejects the former's constant sexual advances.

3.) the goon is a corrupt cop.

4.) the girl is a prostitute with a heart of gold. her father is also her pimp.

5.) the twins being raised by the girl don't know that she is not only their sister... she is also their mother! by her own pimp daddy!

6.) the second blooper, wherein the protagonist walks out of the shower naked in full view of the twins, is now canon.

7.) after the protagonist and the girl have their rooftop conversation at the end of the story, the protagonist steals the tabak from andres bonifacio's statue at monumento and goes on a killing spree while wearing the jholleebird costume. there's your effin' symbolism.

8.) the police arrive on the scene and, after a long and emotional exchange about fruit trees, gun down the protagonist in slow motion. one of the cops is the goon, who swears to live a better life from now on. daylight breaks over poor, dirty, violent, obscene manila. mabuhay!
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