Thursday, February 14, 2013

Adults Need LEGO's Too: Give us Stark Tower!

LEGO DC Minifigure Collection for 2013
Robin and Aquaman
Lego's are the addicting source of conflict for most parents.  
Said parents have a child, have an excuse to buy and build with Lego's till heart is filled with joy.  Then the inevitable happens.  
The child grows up and wants a phone. 
Lego's are no longer a source of fun.  
The child will not realize that this was true entertainment for unfortunately another 10+ years.

The dilemma that is left is either, "How can I get away with squandering my time on Lego's without the child?" or "Where the heck do I store 2 five gallon bins of Lego's?" 

Okay, so maybe this is a little bit of a case in point scenario, meaning my case in point.  When my son decided Lego's were not cool anymore, I thought he was insane.  Seriously. 

We had put together the Lego Full NBA Basketball Court together and had some rockin games; and we conquered the Lego Full Soccer Stadium and continued to add to it. Then there was HOGWARTS....oh boy, that was crazy. We plowed through helicopters, airplanes, spaceships, trains, towns, and even the jungle - dinosaurs included.  Finally, there was of course, Star Wars everything. 

Star Wars and Lego's seem to go together like peanut butter and jelly.  They just fit. When in doubt - buy Star Wars Legos. 

"Have you put any Lego's together lately?" 
"Pshhhh, yep just finished the 3,808 piece Death Star. Started it last night."

Last October, I went to New York Comic Con and was thrilled to see the Lego booth, I had a small surge of excitement when I saw this however:

New York Comic Con - October 2012 LEGO booth
I stood and stared. The concept of LEGO piecing together bricks of Legos was so boggling to my feeble mind.  
It was like INCEPTION!  
Yet, glorious! It was at this moment I realized - Lego needs to just straight up make Lego's for adults.  
Market them to adults, geeks, nerds, or 'parents who have no more excuses.'  

Give us STARK Tower!  Give us Justice League Headquarters orbiting satellite! Give us Castle Grayskull! And for the fun of it - throw in Voltron! 

I for one, wouldn't mind stepping on Lego's again. 
Some pain, is a reminder of creativity!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

What's Love Got to Do With It?

       Comic books...

Dan Panosian- urban-barbarian
Why do we even read them?  Some discover comic books in their childhood, through a friend, or a family member.  Some stumble upon them by accident in a store, library, attic, or even the garbage can.  And, some do not discover the magic of a comic book till they are in their adult years.  So, I pose the question again, why do we even read them? 

I fight my first instinct, and may I add that I am fighting with every ounce of galactic strength, to go directly to the Internet and research what studies have been previously done, polls that have been taken, and theories have been established per this question.

I would "assume", that nostalgia would be first on the list of reasons for the adults currently reading comics, who started as kids.  But what about new readers?  Or, readers who have ventured into new story territory? 

According to articles I have read and that have peaked my interest, comic books are doing more than just satisfying the want to relieve the golden memories of yesterday.  According to a study done by Kaplan International Colleges, Spiderman is doing his neighborhood duty by teaching people English.  Yes, as always proving that, "with great power, comes great responsibility."

I would venture to say, with the recent boom in comic publishers and indie titles that are now available - it can be even more confusing than ever to decide what to read.  There is definitely a GRRRR factor, if you do not know what you like or if you are new to this reading style. However, it can be done. And new comic books sales are proving that "indie" is here to stay!

Issue #100!
I find it interesting that our culture is finally catching on to the idea that comic books are more than just "silly child's stories" with "drawings."  The art is intricate, and goes through sequence and processes that are detailed and finite.  Story lines can be as simple or as ridiculously difficult as the reader would like them to  be.  There is most definitely something for everyone.  

What I appreciate even more, and have enjoyed myself about recent developments, is that the education system is now beginning to look at graphic novels and comic books as a way to get through to children by using visual connections.  

Art by Robert Atkins

Whats love got to do with it? Everything when it comes to comic books.  For the creators it is obvious - their heart and soul is bled onto each page.  Each story writer, penciler, inker, colorist, letterer, editor, and publisher - a comic book is  a collaboration of a work of art.  

Why do I read comic books? 
I read them because I like to feel the story.  I enjoy using as many senses possible to make that happen.  I notice the textures, colors, lines, saturation, hues, word bubbles, fonts, point types, story lines, and every detail that makes the comic book complete.  I try to understand why the story was written.

It is only then that the story becomes not just a past time, but an experience. 

"Elders of the Runestone" - Fantastic new story to check out! Story by Quinn Johnson, Art by Robert Atkins