Monthly Archives: April 2022

Of Rabbits, Rhinos, Cats and Foxes

Not long ago, I had the priv­i­lege of work­ing on the series Samu­rai Rab­bit: The Usa­gi Chron­i­cles for Gau­mont. And you can now watch sea­son 1 of it on Net­flix! A lot of work and love went into this series, and I hope the audi­ence real­ly loves it!

I’d guess a num­ber of vis­i­tors here might be aware of Stan Sakai’s long-run­ning Usa­gi Yojim­bo com­ic, which our show is inspired by. Before I inter­viewed for my board revi­sion slot on the show, no one told me what the show was (which is pret­ty stan­dard pro­ce­dure with these things), but I kind of had a hunch. So when we reached the point in my online inter­view where they ver­i­fied my hunch, and I was asked whether I was famil­iar with the com­ic, I was able to reach down off-cam­era and come up fan­ning a thick fist­ful of Usa­gi comics, say­ing, “Yeah, I have some famil­iar­i­ty with it.”

I end­ed up being hired to work on the even-num­bered episodes (Go Team Even!), and now I can post some of that work here. More can be seen over in the Sto­ry­board Revi­sion gallery on the oth­er side of my site.

Much love and respect to my fel­low Team Even mem­bers, and the whole Usa­gi crew! It was a blast, and I hope to work with you all again!

Captain Saturn Giant!

Some of you may rec­og­nize this as the cov­er of Odd Comics’ Cap­tain Sat­urn Giant, pub­lished in the ear­ly ’60s. Odd Comics as a pub­lish­er seems to have been large­ly for­got­ten these days, and it takes a lot of dig­ging to find their comics, but it’s worth the effort.

Okay, I con­fess: the above was a lie! It’s just a fake com­ic cov­er, by me. I’ll tell you the truth as to how this came about.

Over on LinkedIn, the very tal­ent­ed Thomas N. Perkins IV post­ed a draw­ing he’d done on the first page of a copy of his book If…. Thomas does a lot of cool stuff, but some­thing about this draw­ing par­tic­u­lar­ly caught my eye. It had a sort of Sil­ver Age-look­ing super­hero char­ac­ter, with a big mon­ster behind him. I com­ment­ed on how I liked it, and in Thomas’ reply, he said it was “Cap­tain Sat­urn and his pet Gulglammakus.”

Some­how, their being named plant­ed a seed in my brain. And sud­den­ly, I was envi­sion­ing Cap­tain Sat­urn fea­tured in a Sil­ver Age extra-length Giant com­ic. I told Thomas about this, and with his bless­ing, I went to work on this cover.

Thomas’ orig­i­nal draw­ing was in black and white with gray tones, and he want­ed to fig­ure out the col­or scheme for Cap­tain Sat­urn for me first, which I then trans­lat­ed into the Sil­ver Age comics col­or palette.

His response when I gave him a pre­view of the fin­ished cov­er was, “I won’t lie, I am sure this is a book I would’ve read as a kid.” I’m very pleased to get that kind of reac­tion. And I’ll con­fess, this is the sort of thing that would’ve caught my eye too. And prob­a­bly still would!

For a time after grad­u­at­ing col­lege, I used to have this recur­ring dream: I’d walk into a comics shop I’d nev­er been in, and dis­cov­er all these real­ly cool comics that I’d nev­er seen before! The sad part though is that I could nev­er remem­ber any­thing about them after I woke up, or maybe I’d have tried to cre­ate those comics myself. Maybe one of them might have been some­thing like Cap­tain Saturn!

Cap­tain Sat­urn is ™ & © Thomas N. Perkins IV. Thomas, thanks much for let­ting me play with your toys for a minute!