Chivalry and Knavery is an on-line black & white comic strip created, written, and drawn by P. T. Cooper. Now in its eighth year, this comedic sword & sorcery adventure strip is rated as a Reader Favorite on Belfry.com. It’s also made it up to #53 in the rankings at thewebcomiclist.com. Join Kira the fox wizard, Sir Toby the lion paladin, and Ulf the human barbarian in their many battles — both mundane and fantastic. Visit www.chivalryandknavery.com to see the latest installment. There you’ll also find information about P. T. Cooper’s two published novels (Rin Tin Tin and the Lost King and The King of the Cats), as well as a gallery of the strip’s characters drawn by guest artists.
Cartoon Brew reports that, “Now that Disney’s Oz The Great and Powerful is a box office hit, let the Wizard of Oz remakes commence.” CB goes on to report via Variety that, “Clarius Entertainment will theatrically release the 3-D CGI pic Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return in the first quarter of 2014. We posted the film’s trailer last fall, back when the film was called Dorothy of Oz, and the reaction was tepid.”
Flayrah announced Dorothy of Oz too last September, and it did get 13 comments. The link to the trailer still works. See Tugg the talking tree, Wiser the owl, the marshmellow soldier, and the new anthropomorphic characters in addition to the familiar Cowardly Lion, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, the flying monkeys, and all of the beloved others.
These are Books 2 and 3 in Jobling’s Wereworld saga. Book 1, Rise of the Wolf, was reviewed here last May. Viking has ignored my request for review copies, so I had to wait for the Glendale Public Library to get them. Sorry for the delay.
The Wereworld Young Adult series is set on the island-continent of Lyssia on a fantasy world, in which each of the kingdoms is ruled by a Werelord who can transform into an animal, including birds and fish. School Library Journal has called the series “Game of Thrones for the tween set”. In Wereworld: Rise of the Wolf, teen farmboy Drew Ferran learns that he is adopted and is really the werewolf son of the murdered Wolf King Wergar of Westland, Lyssia’s most powerful nation, which has been usurped by Lion King Leopold who has replaced the old wolf aristocracy with his own lion nobility.
Thrown into the Seven Realms’ therianthropic politics whether he wants to be or not, Drew finds friends and allies such as Princess Gretchen, a fox shapeshifter, and Hector the young Boarlord; enemies such as King Leopold and his sadistic son Prince Lucas, and the Ratlord Vankaskan; and those who may be friends or enemies like the dynamically charismatic but utterly untrustworthy Count Vega, the Sharklord.
How many Oz movies have there been? The Wizard of Oz (1939), of course. Return to Oz (1985). Dorothy in the Land of Oz (1980). Dorothy and the Scarecrow in Oz (1910), The Land of Oz (1910), His Majesty, the Scarecrow of Oz (1914), and The Patchwork Girl of Oz (1914), all co-written or directed by Frank Baum himself. The Wiz (1978). The Wizard of Oz (1925), the silent version with Oliver Hardy as the Tin “Woodsman”. The Witches of Oz (2011). It’s not a movie, but the Broadway musical Wicked (2003). Does Zardoz (1974) count? Well … LOTS!
Now there is Dorothy of Oz (2013?), produced by Prana Studios in Los Angeles and Mumbai with a pretty impressive voice cast.
The Species of Blessing Avenue consists of three short stories: “The Species of Alone” and “The Species of Rivals”, published by Smashwords in June and October 2010, and “The Species of Triumph”, published here for the first time. All three feature Israel Kevinson, a hunky and gay teenager who lives on Blessing Avenue.
From the start, you couldn’t tell that this was anthro fiction. And it isn’t, exactly.
Sometimes I get philosophical when I’m dealing with the jocks, especially when I’m holding one of them by the ankles, suspending them over the toilet. This is what my dad calls a ‘swirly’, but seeing as how he’s old I can’t hold it against him for knowing such a corny name. Anyway, the reason for my getting all Socrates-like is this: a bully is someone who preys on those who are weaker, right? Well seeing as how I’m preying on the bullies who think they can pick on my friends, does that make me a bully? I don’t think so, and neither do my friends. Maybe I’ll take a class on it when I go to college because questions like that make me think. (p. 3)
There are references to Izzy’s mothers blonde hair, and to bodybuilding and martial-arts videos with Arnold and Jet Li. It’s not until p. 17 that Izzy turns into a lion – he’s a werelion!
David Nytra is a relative newcomer to the world of fantasy graphic novels. Still The Secret of the Stone Frog, his first work as a writer and illustrator, is drawing a lot of interest from fantasy collectors just prior to its release. “When Leah and Alan awaken in an enchanted forest, they have only each other and their wits to guide them. In a world of pet bees and giant rabbits, they befriend foppish lions and stone frogs, learning to confront danger as they find both their own independence and the way home. Newcomer David Nytra’s breathtaking pictures break the boundaries of imagination, sending the reader on a wild flight of fantasy while experiencing the most universal of stories: Growing up.” According to the pre-order site at Amazon, Toon Books will publish this hardcover black & white graphic novel in early September.
Did I ever tell you that I once wrote a movie script? It was Furry, too.
This was twenty-five years ago, in 1987. Clearance Papers was only a 9-minute amateur film – an embarrassingly amateurish amateur film – but for a two-man effort, it wasn’t too bad.
What exactly is a “cinema novel”? Animation Xpress #317 (26 June 2012), reports that Hyderabad-based BTales (the B is for Bharavi) will publish Maharaja in July, the “first ever cinema novel in English”, for “worldwide release”. Maharaja is:
[a 175-page] authentic screenplay written by Bhargava, who is also famous as the creator of Kittu, an animation feature film made in Telugu. Till date (sic.), Bhargava has produced five feature films under his banner Bhargava Pictures.
The story circles around the adventures of a young dynamic, bold, helpful, intelligent, honest & smart monkey, Nandu, who dreams to become king of the jungle by changing the forest laws. Nandu stands up for the new generation and hints that its time to change the rules and take charge.
I was in a bad mood all day when I went to see this movie. A real bad mood.
I was looking forward to seeing it, however, because I decided it would cheer me up. I wasn't expecting it to be great and cheer me up; I expected it to be bad, and then I would get to take out all my frustrations on it in my review.
Can I even write that?
Anyway, you read the headline; this movie cheered me right up in the way I did not expect it to. By not sucking. Also, by not only not sucking, but by really not sucking a lot.
Well now, this seems to have come out of nowhere: Carnal, Volume 1: Pride of the Lions, written by Jason Bergenstock and illustrated by John Connell. Here’s the description from an article by Mother/Writer/Gamer: “The first graphic novel in the Carnal series, Pride of the Lions takes place on the continent of New Africa and focuses on three main species of humanistic animals. After the Great War decades earlier between the hyenas and the lions, the victorious and once united lion prides now lay scattered across the land, torn by civil unrest over territory disputes and food shortages. The hyena clans that survived the war were forced deep into the Earth and now live in a massive underground city under the control of a terrible witch. The buffalo race is indifferent to most other species and have walled themselves off from the rest of the kingdoms. Humans have lost their hold on the African territories long ago and live as a simple, nomadic species. The first book opens with Long Eyes, an old sapphire-eyed lion who is determined to save the lion kingdom and rescue his warrior son, Oron, who has gone missing. Long Eyes believes Oron is the key to uniting the prides.
Graveyard Greg explains in his Foreword how he came to write this novel. Firstly, there was the Second Life virtual-reality world, for which he created a jackal persona with a red Mohawk wearing black jeans and red sunglasses. Secondly, there was his brief job as a barista at a Starbucks. Thirdly, there was John “The Gneech” Robey’s series Fictionlets: The Extremely Brief Adventures of Bridgid and Greg, each of 400 words or less. Fourthly, there was his own imagination, which blended them together, named his jackal Venti and gave him a job as a part-time barista at a Starbucks clone, and he was off and running in a series of short-short-short chapters of one page or slightly over each. Voilà; Welcome to Cappuccinos! (exclamation point optional).
The Lion Man of the Hohlenstein Stadel is a 32,000-year-old sculpture which depicts a humanoid figure with the head of a lion. Fragments of it were first discovered in 1939 by archaeologist Otto Völzing, in a cave named Stadel-Höhle im Hohlenstein (Stadel cave in Hohlenstein Mountain), in the Lonetal (Lone valley) in the Swabian Alps, Germany.
The figure, pieced together over many years as fragments were found, stands around 30cm tall, and was carved from mammoth ivory using a flint knife. It may represent a mythical creature, or possibly a shaman hiding under an animal hide.
Debate has raged over whether the figure is male or female, and the discovery of approximately 1,000 new fragments may help resolve the issue. The sculpture will be disassembled and rebuilt to include the new fragments.
I wasn’t as proactive as I thought I would be, and I’m pretty sure I missed a couple posted during the first of September, so apologies there. Otherwise, here was last month’s Newsbytes.
The past few days have been very active with animal-related stories from around the world:
- An animal rights activist from Ukraine is protesting poor living conditions for zoo animals, living in the lions' den for five weeks to raise money for them.
- A pair of cougars have been shot after they began attacking humans in Alberta.
- Ukraine's government has vowed to end a sickening local tradition of animal abuse.
- An Idaho man is in hot water after prancing around in a bunny suit.
- A truck carrying bees has flipped and closed a major highway near Edmonton, Alberta.