We’d like to welcome back Derek Hamill and say hello to first time HC contributor, Kyle T. Smart! Nice work, guys!
Archive for ‘Blog’
I’ve been sitting on this little script for over a year now. I know it’s a little offbeat and that’s probably because the idea stemmed from a joke I made during the height of Gaga fame. I joked about making it into a comic and then I realized I had no reason not to make it. After all, I’d illustrated ‘epic battles’ for Jason Lebeau’s Final Battle script and Brendan McGuirk’s Settling the Debate, I wanted to try writing one for once.
Then at some point shortly after I wrote it, Mike Rooth had agreed to work with us and I wanted to get him attached to something ASAP (because he’s fantastic, check out his site). I didn’t have too many scripts sitting around at the time, but this one sprang to mind… I started thinking about how much more hilarious it would be with Rooth’s realistic style, it seemed like the perfect match.
Rooth was really enthusiastic about it and jumped on it. He had other obligations that meant he couldn’t start until recently, but it was worth the wait. He’s great to work with too, throughout he maintained a very professional and amicable attitude and really threw himself into these pages… especially the final panels of page one where he can be seen running from the strange object falling to Earth.
It’s taken a while to get this done, but it was worth it.
I’m happy. Hope you’re happy too.
-Michael V. Bramley.
Hey all, we’ve got something short but sweet for you… and by sweet, I mean, haunting. And by haunting, I mean I’m scared of Derek Hamill.
I love Star Trek. I’m not a Trekkie, I didn’t base my life around it, I know it’s got it’s flaws, I just really like it. It was the first Sci-Fi I was ever exposed to, back when I was a kid and my dad showed me the first episode of TNG. Actually, the earliest bonding experiences I remember with by dad centered around discussions of the Star Ship Enterprise and its inhabitants.
When I discovered repeats of the original series, even as a kid it didn’t take me long to crack the intricate code they used to make their scripts;
*Kirk hits a guy.
*A guy in a red shirt dies.
*Bones says; ‘Goddamnit Jim,’ or ‘I’m a doctor, not an X.’
*Spock says that something isn’t Logical.
*Sometimes Kirk gets his freak on with a multicoloured chick.
*Sometimes Spock does the hand gesture, or the death-grip.
I don’t mean to say that’s all the series was. They broke a lot of ground on TV and dealt with big concepts such as race and war against a fun science fiction setting… buuuut in virtually every episode those aforementioned signatures showed up so frequently that they became a running joke amongst fans for several decades after the show ended its run.
Some believe that the joke reached its logical conclusion when they hit upon every one of those points in the recent Star Trek reboot, or maybe earlier when Futurama did a whole Star Trek episode featuring the original cast, but I think that there will always be new ways to approach the joke.
Hence Star Strike!
I decided to do occasional strips exploring the familiar and comfortable clichés of the original Star Trek Series, starting with this one, about an away mission that doesn’t quite go to plan.
Hope you like it!
This is by our mainstay members Geoffrey D. Wessel and Lisandro Di Pasquale, whom you may have been missing lately. They did a bang-up job of it, as you can see, but did they spend four hours lettering it, even though they have a cold and should be in bed with a hot water bottle and that cuddly panda their wife always forces on them because she thinks it’s cute?
No, no that was me.
-Michael ‘Just Happy To Be On the Team’ Bramley
P.S: I love you guys, don’t ever change.
CLICK HERE TO READ EXTRAS NOW! (NSFW) Yeah, see our logo? That isn’t a typo…
So… I always knew it would come to this.
And why? Because I’m a man of my word.
Ever since I first started nagging people to make comics with me for Hadron Colliderscope, I’ve always said that we wouldn’t censor anything. It just so happens that until now, no one has ever tested that theory (with the exception of Brandon Montclare, but we’ll get to that some other time). I’ve never put anything up on the site before that’s seemed quite so… pornographic.
A part of me wanted to avoid stuff like this having gotten so far, I mean, Christ guys, my Grandmother looks at this site sometimes!
Buuuut Derek Hamill contacted us and offered these pages to us (pages intended initially for another project) and I just couldn’t think of a good reason to not take them. I mean, it’s a good comic, with superb art and the right page-count – and already 100% finished. I’m not going to kick a Gift-Horse in the mouth here, I’m really happy they offered it to us!
So we do porn now. I’ll have to deal with the whole Grandmother thing if and when she remembers this URL…
I really hope I forgot to give her a business card…
We invited collaborators and friends of the site to tell us about their favourite Sci-Fi Movies in short reviews. Below is Lisandro’s submission. He chose the movie that made people think leather trench-coats and sunglasses were a cool combination.
Stay tuned for more!
LISANDRO DI PASQUALE’S FAVOURITE SCI-FI MOVIE : THE MATRIX
There is not much to say about this movie other that I LOVE IT!
I remember clearly the day I saw THE MATRIX. It was a day of joy and wonder. My eyes couldn´t believe what they were seeing.
I´m sure that if you ask anyone about the Matrix today it´s going to tell you that it´s overrated, childish and what not. I disagree.
Watching the Matrix it´s like peeling an onion, not because it´s going to make you cry, but because its multi-layered. There´s so much information on that screen that you need to watch it more than once to fully appreciate its glory.
Yes, it´s a kung fu movie, but it´s also Sci-fi, and metaphisics, and theology, and philosophy, and visual candy. Maybe even more than that, but for the sake of shortness let´s keep it there.
The visual spectacle was only comparable to that which had been achieved by the original STAR WARS. We were eye witness to a massive development in the field of visual effects NOT achieved by ILM.
Granted, all the special effects in the world can´t create the illusion of Keanu Reeves acting, (that would be a miracle) but, oh lord…the effects! The characters! The action!
It paved the way for a whole new world of ideas and visuals. It proved that action and story could live happily forever after. It was a feast for the senses. I remember leaving the theater so full that I needed to sit down and digest what I just saw. Then I went back for seconds…
…And thirds, and more…
To this day I´m a Matrix enthusiast, even with the sequels, they complement each other, the idea and concept start to fade in the third one, but hey, we have anime, and three massive games to augment the story. It was one of the first multi-platform stories ever.
To this day I watch it and stare in wonder, it was 1999, and it blew my brains out.
Not bad for a kung-fu movie.
-Lisandro Di Pasquale
This is a short story I wrote in late ’09, before I started this website. It’s a retelling of a famous old classic, re-imagined as a horror story. I’d had the idea ricocheting around my head for about ten years, but every time I tried to write it down, it just hadn’t worked. Something was always missing. This time, with Carver, I think I hit the notes I had always intended to.
I considered making it into a comic, but every time I’ve adapted the script, it just doesn’t work as well as I think it did as a short story. So, if you’re a bit bored and have the attention span for this sort of thing, give it a shot and let me know what you think!
CARVER by Michael Vincent Bramley
I lost my hair when I was young. Sometimes I think that’s the first curse I ever had put on me. I think it was my dad. The big burly bastardo he was, he always resented me for my mother’s death and I wouldn’t have put it past him to do such a thing to spite me.
Maybe it’s not all his fault; maybe I was bad from the start. In the womb, I tore up my mother’s insides and shitting me out was the last blasted thing she ever did in this Godforsaken world before shuffling off her mortal coil.
And now, hovering over the remains of my own wife, as the result of… well our son, I suppose, I find myself even empathizing with my old man a little myself.
My wife… God the last thing she said to me was a curse, half coughed out of her collapsed lung… the words brought blood with them, through those full rosy lips I’d kissed on our wedding day those years ago; ‘Giuseppe,’ she’d said, ‘you did this… you cavorted with the devil, and now you will never feel God’s embrace… curse you, you basta-’
She died without understanding that I did it all for her. This whole madness, my descent into such darkness and misery, it’d all been for her. I didn’t even want a child! I hate children! I’ve hated them since I myself was a child! They’d make fun of my baldness and make my life a misery, and still, to this day it continues!
But my dear wife, she wanted a child so very much, but she… or we… or perhaps I… could not have children. And though this came as a relief to me, it weighed heavily on her – and it didn’t help that she worked in my store, selling the wooden toys I carved to the children of our village. Seeing them every day – the thing she wanted most dearly…
I wish I’d never found that confounded leather-bound book. It’d belonged to my father, whom I’m sure right now is rotting in the very depths of hell for even glancing at such a twisted abortion of the written word.
I blew the dust from the cover myself, within my workshop (that’d once been my father’s) and scanned the pages silently in a drunken stupor. At first I thought it fanciful rubbish, nonsense of the highest order, blasphemous and to be dismissed…
But then… then I saw her.
Her picture in the crude engraving did her looks no justice, but something of her beauty must have been trapped in those thick dark lines, as they captivated me so. She was Black Magic… a burning flame of ice, something that God had never intended, by all rights she shouldn’t have existed, but she did. She was new, exciting and she was alluring…
The book told me how to meet her, and it took more drunken sessions of staring at that page and trying to talk myself out of it before I finally stumbled out into the woods and chanted the words over a stack of old puppets I couldn’t sell. An offering, I suppose… or maybe raw material…
The woman in the book, she was meant to bring life… I was doing this for my wife you see… making her the child she so desperately wanted.
When the woman came, she wore no clothes. Her hair was as long as her body was tall and blue-green in colour – something not mentioned in the book, she reminded me of water… of life. Her eyes, though beautiful, were not human – they were all one colour, the colour of her hair… and those lips, they were black, pitch black and full and pouting, like the rest of her, alluring, but somehow unnatural and wrong. Her whole body moved like leaves drifting down a stream, like she was moving to the rhythm of a slow and sweet song, but ambivalently she also had the air of a stalking animal, ready to pounce at any second.
We made love… or something; I’m not sure what you’d call the violent and lustful act that we partook of in that woodland clearing. Maybe we made hate.
Her kisses burned my flesh and her blue-green nails tore my skin as she cursed me a hundred times over… her touch stung, but I lapped it up, I’m ashamed to say that I loved every minute of that painful cacophony, and gave myself entirely to her lightning grace.
I can’t pinpoint when I fell asleep, but I fell hard into a slumber so peaceful that I might never have awoken from it.
I’ve seen some terrible things in my life, but none more than what I saw in the woods as I awoke that next morning to the scent of roasted pork. The pain in my head lead me to believe that perhaps the night before hadn’t been real, that it had all just been a dream, or some side-effect of the absinthe I’d been chugging back over the past week…
But I rubbed the sleep from my eyes and cast them upon the stack of burning skeletons before me. Then I realized that it had been all too real. The skeletons belonged to children. This was the smoked grave of six or seven young children.
As if that weren’t mind-bending enough, shreds of the charred clothing scattered bared an odd familiarity to the clothes my wife had sewn together from my old shirts for the unwanted puppets I had brought here the night before, somehow impossibly implying that these children were born of those self-same puppets I had laid before the demone lady.
I thought to myself; is this it? I may have sold my soul and this is all she’s given me? This disturbing, stinking heap of wretched, scorched bones?
At first I supposed I hadn’t done it right. I thought – maybe I’d misread the passages from my father’s book.
That’s when I heard a little child’s voice call me ‘Papa’, from within the ashes. Somehow, a child had survived this mess I’d created. I dug into the pile of the bones with my bare hands until I saw the puppet. It was the ugliest of the unsold puppets lying at the very bottom of the remnants of this unholy bonfire.
The others had become real children, if the bones were anything to go by, but he, the one remaining living one, he was still made of wood… and though grubby, he was remarkably unscathed by the fire. Although the puppet strings had burned away, the puppet seemed to squirm quite independently of convention.
My first instinct was to bash him with a rock, and kill him there and then, but then I remembered how fierce the monstro woman had been the night before. I remembered how close I felt to death throughout our carnal act – and how it seemed as though her merest gesture might have snapped me in two. I feared that she, being his true mother, might seek retribution. So instead, I shakily picked him up in my hands.
He was merely a foot and a half tall. I designed him to look like a little boy, but the nose was always too pointy and long, and there was an unpleasant mottled knot in the wood to one side. Also – his painted grin was somewhat haunting and mischievous – and those beady painted eyes pierced my soul as they now moved impossibly one way or the other, searching for something.
‘H-hello son?’ I ventured, trembling.
‘Take me home, Papa,’ he said, ‘I’m cold…’
On my way home, ashamed, I carried the creature in my bundled coat and tried to avoid eye contact with the neighbours. Occasionally it… my ‘son’ would whisper to me, or call out, but I would stroke it and hush it… ‘him’ to silence. I began to think that my wife, bless her soul, might even warm to the… thing inside my coat…
I breathed a sigh of relief when I got home and found that she was nowhere to be seen. I unravelled my coat and sat the little puppet on the table. It wasn’t moving.
For a fleeting, wonderful second, I wondered if the whole thing had been a dream, until the puppet slowly closed its painted eyes in a freakish, impossible blink. He sat silently, though… still… just watching me.
I poured myself a stiff drink and rubbed my temples. I sat in silence for hours, until the bell over the door tinkled as my wife entered the storefront. ‘My love,’ I called out, ‘I’m back here in the workroom.’
‘Thank God!’ she said, rushing through, ‘I worried so much when you didn’t come home, and Antonio told me he’d seen you wandering around in torn clothes… are you okay?’
My wife hugged me close and I brushed her cheek with my hand for the very last time and whispered, ‘I… have something to tell you.’
She stepped back, regarding me with a quizzical look and crossed her arms as all concern for my well-being left her, ‘another woman? Is that where you were all night?’
‘No,’ I said, too quickly to realize that this was in fact a lie, ‘I just… I need to introduce you to our son…’
I motioned to the puppet, directly in front of me. Slowly he swivelled his head around to lock eyes on her. Something in the way he moved reminded me of a cockroach or a beetle, jaunty, scuttling motions.
‘Hello, Mamma,’ he said.
Immediately my wife’s expression bent into that of disgust as she gripped the cruciform around her neck and began reciting biblical passages. I stepped towards her trying to reason with her… ‘I did this for you,’ I told her, ‘this is our child! For you!’
She hit me upside the head and yelled ‘you did this! ‘YE SHALT NOT SUFFER A WITCH TO LIVE!’’
The puppet moved.
There was a blur, a terrible scuttle and leap; the puppet had my carving knife before I even knew it and he began meticulously perforating my wife’s ribcage. I screamed and tried to pull the puppet away, but he ignored me as he disassembled the woman I had pledged my life to. The only real woman I had ever loved.
When it finally gave up, its awful task completed, it stepped back and my poor, dear wife had time to spit out her curse to me. In all this time, she’d squeezed her cruciform and I pray (not that He’ll hear my prayers again) that it was enough to save her.
Tears streamed down my face as I stood, shaking, not knowing what to do or how to even move. Finally I picked up the poker from the fireplace, weighing it in my hand as I weighed the concept of destroying that little pine bastardo in my mind… would that monstro lady really kill me for it? Would God forgive me if I destroyed the abomination I had created? Would he protect me? I turned to face my bloodied ‘son’.
‘I did it because I love you, Papa’, said the puppet, turning towards me with its terrible painted grin. He slowly blinked his horrible painted eyes once again.
Maybe it was shock, but all I could think about at that point was how the pointy wooden nose looked longer, sharper and more terrible than I remembered it being before.
‘Am I a real boy now?’
We invited collaborators and friends of the site to tell us about their favourite Sci-Fi Movies in short reviews. Below is Raph’s submission. He chose the movie with the catchiest John Williams soundtrack of all time (seriously click here and you’ll be hearing this for months; Ner ner neeerrr ner ner, ner ner neeeerr ner ner).
Stay tuned for more!
RAPHAEL SOOHOO’S FAVOURITE SCI-FI MOVIE : JURASSIC PARK
Okay, so I’m a rare sci-fi geek. I didn’t see a lot of movies until I was older. I grew up poor, and so the opportunities to see movies were few and far between. I didn’t see Star Wars until I was 11, and it was on TV. I didn’t see Terminator 2 in its entirety until I was 15 (bought it on DVD). I saw the Star Trek movies on TV every year at a very young age, and they stick with me, but I want to talk about Jurassic Park.
‘…NER NER NEEERR NER NER, NER NER NEEERR NER NER…’ -The Editor
I was 8 or 9 when Jurassic Park came out in the theaters. I asked my father to take me to see it. His alternative was to buy me the original Michael Crichton novel. It was my first adult novel. I read that thing into oblivion. It would be over a decade until I saw Jurassic Park, which I did last year, at Sunshine Theater on Houston Street in New York City.
It was a midnight movie, Sunshine likes to show older movies every Friday at midnight. I went with a couple of co-workers, bought some popcorn, and watched the spectacle unfold. It seemed like everyone had seen it already, and truthfully, I could have too (never got around to it). I was not disappointed at all.
Despite being from 1993, the movie held up for the most part (Lex exclaiming excitement over a CD-Rom in the electric car was a wincing point). It did exactly what I expected: put people in the middle of dinosaurs, with amazing and horrific results.
I’m a firm believer in the magic of movies, I will freely lose myself in the fabric and the universe of a story told, even if its plot is dubious. I was swept away to a magical land of possibility, and my (not-quite) inner eight year old was deeply entertained, satiated by the sight of dinosaurs.
I didn’t do much here, so I’m just going to waffle on about the creator and how I got her involved with the project.
I had the good fortune of meeting Karen Zachary Wang last year at some Anime Convention, I’m unsure which I go to a lot to support my wife and they all sort of blend into one large amorphous convention (full of every kind of Sailor Moon variant one could possibly imagine) in my memory.
Whichever con it was, I took a break from manning my wife’s table and ended up getting completely lost in the hectic mess of cosplayers, camera flashes and hungry artists. Luckily I saw something more familiar to me than all of the big-eyed Japan-inspired imagery that was closing in on me from every angle, I saw pictures of Robin, Superman and Batgirl, familiar symbols in a land that was foreign to me. They were different somehow though, remarkably rendered in a style I didn’t recognize, though I did recognize quality when I saw it. They were displayed at Karen’s table.
The work looked so professional, I fully expected Karen to at least realize it. Though when I spoke to her, she couldn’t be more humble. I asked her if she would be interested in doing some work with us and she said that yes, she would do it, but she would have to work around her school schedule. I said that would be-
Wait… School? You’ve got to be fucking kidding me – SCHOOL?
This girl was in fucking college, she was only eighteen and attending art college in NYC. I suddenly felt like that old artist who met Da Vinci when Da Vinci was still a little boy, legend has it that he broke all of his paintbrushes and gave up art when he saw that the kid could paint things far beyond his own abilities. Karen wasn’t only good, she was better than a eighteen year old had any right being, and that just wasn’t fair!
So to recap, if I hadn’t gotten lost looking for the bathroom, I never would have found her artist alley table and I never would have spent approximately one year systematically bugging her until she produced this marvellous comic for us… I’m sure there’s a message in there somewhere. Something about persistence?
And the comic is marvellous, it’s simple, but surreal and, frankly, quite haunting. All wrapped up in Karen’s beautiful art!
We couldn’t have asked for more.