Tuesday, May 31, 2005

She Hulk 'opus'

Fabe and Jimmny's art happening

Just a short post to foist some the graphic depictions of my demented mind on ye all. Myself and a fellow PhD and comic fan, (a man of more names than me*...Fave, Z. Graves, Jo Rounders) decided to show some of our paintings round at chez Homunculus on Saturday. As he would note we have a similar artistic predicament:

Technically--just about--too proficient to qualify as authentic "Outsider Artists", but beyond that all bets and speculations are off.

We managed to show our "Middling-Bad" art by pure chicanery, duping people with promises of alcohol, pringles, saucy dances and such (like in those shindigs what grown-ups have). If any of my 'readership', if such a thing exists, were there, thanks for coming. Also thanks to the special lady friends of mine who planted some interesting pictures on my digtal camera, I'll have to leave it unattended more in future, you've made and old man very happy, again.

Imagine the guests' surprise and horror, upon entering, as these perverted insanities glowered at them with their beady one eyes. Some guests attempted a spot of psychoanalysis into my mental state. No mystery to those who have the pleasure/misfortune** of hearing me hold forth on such subjects as comics, fetish photography and She-Hulks, (not to mention she males). If there was one below a single entrendre that'd describe these works, (a minus-entrendre?) but props to the friend who claimed he could see the visage of my supervisor within the stare of the she hulk.

More pics are up on my 'art' blog The Jimmny Homunculus Arts Hole.

*The pseudonom list thus far, in order of creation: The Chief (understandably hard to make new acquaintances believe that one, but those in the know, know), Hunter T. Crumb La Rue, Claude Van Der Hoof, Bubba Scrutt, and Jimmny Homunculus.

**Delete as applicable.

Pervoirt in residence

The Savage and Sensational She Hulk

Friday, May 27, 2005

The Cruiser Kabuki starts to crack....

In my role as geek PhD I do have watch some pretty ropey films...(Supergirl, Batman and Robin, The Phantom) but I feel for two of my colleagues 'HH' and 'RN' who have to watch Tom Cruise films over and over. I mean, my favorite Cruise opus is Minority Report, and that's only because I get to see Peter Stormare take out his eye balls.

Anyway, 'RH' has alerted me to this link where it seems being a grinning mook that we all have to like...seemingly by law is taking its toll. I thought I'd have to wait longer for the cracks to show in his gurning emotional kabuki of a face...I imagined Hollywood Babylon-style revelations 20 years hence of dead rent boy/prostitute mishaps that were made to go away and blamed on poor Robert Downey Jr. or something.

God knows what him and that Katie Holmes one get up to, I've taken the liberty of imagining a scene between them, with apologies to Little Britain's stage hypnotist Kenny Craig:

A Tale of Tom and Katie


EXT. DAY. Hollywood. Tom Cruise, a 40-something actor, (who is beloved by everyone and is the best actor ever) sits with Katie Homles, (not a bad actor, but suffers from being the fantasy gurl-next-door of 40-something actor types*) on a poolside chaise long or something....

Tom (steely blue eyes peering into the soul): We should really be together forever...or at least until after summer, I mean I'm in War of the Worlds you're in Batman Begins, it makes perfect sense(ehem...financially)...I mean, sorry what I meant to say was I wuv ewe.
Katie: emmm
Tom: yeah...it was like I said to Rebecca De Morney on the set of Risky Business...
Katie: Rebecca De who? Risky what?....
Tom: emmm
Katie: ummm
Tom: look in to my eyes, not around the eyes, look into my eyes...and the teeth, don't forget the teeth, the smiley smiley teeth
[clicks his wee paw]*click*
you're under..."I'm not a mid-life crisis fading actor, cultist and possible steely-eyed killer, I'm an all-American cheeky boy next door and savior of the whole world...on numerous occasions...and I wuv ewe..."
*click* and you're back in the room...
Katie: emmmmm

*jeez and older, just remembered old 'parchment straining to cover clockwork powered features' Michael Douglas in Wonder Boys.

Monday, May 23, 2005

only about 25 days to go!!

From the twilight zone of the sleep deprived...

Still trapped in the writing hole with only action figures and my in-progress painting of She Hulk for company, with the use of various stimulants, all legal unfortunately*, but thought I’d break out to make a few announcements and show people that I’m still alive—no mean feat after surviving an Irish 30th birthday in London which ended up with me skinning up at 8am—see post below for London trip stuff. I have added some new links that need to be ‘bigged up’ in the parlance of our times.

First up is Laura Tooth, who has recently extricated herself from a joint blog, and has set up a much anticipated 100% Tooth-only site, you have to read the archives to find out from whence the name ‘came’.

Found myself reading this great book, which I recommend to anyone. It’s great to feel like one is in a fraternity of writers, linked by our irascibility, bad sleeping schedules and worse habits. The ethergut blab-blogosphere is of course a perfect meeting place for such a dissolute brother and sisterhood. Top screen and comic writer John Rogers' blog is a great starting point, through this I have discovered the excellent Web presence of some of the creators of the stories that consumed by misspent adolescence: Chris Weston, Mark Millar and Rian Hughes

Every comic fan has ‘their period’, for me it was the late 1980s early 1990s ‘British anthology boom’ reading stuff like 2000AD, Blast, Crisis, Revolver, Strip, Deadline, Expresso, Overkill, and Meltdown, in rural Ireland, it was like being invited to some cool London party or other. It’s a joy to see some of the creators of these frantic, amazing stories with great sites. Not least of which is Warren Ellis, whose site is a joy to behold, scratch that, it’s less a site than a glimpse into an amazing electronic brain, a mixture of philosophy, photos, updates on his titles and rants. While looking for advice on writing one could do no worse than aspire to having "ideas" that feel like this:

A bunch of stuff knits together and lights up and you’ve got what’s called “an idea". And for that brief moment where it’s all flaring and welding together, you are Holy. You can’t be touched. Something impossible and brilliant has happened and suddenly you understand what it would be like if Einstein’s brain was placed into the body of a young tyrannosaur, stuffed full of amphetamines and suffused with Sex Radiation. That is what has happened to me tonight. I am beaming Sex Rays across the world and my brain is all lit up with Holy Fire. If I felt like it, I could shag a million nuns and destroy their faith in Christ.
From my chair.

Read the full post here.

Better get on with it, I just just saw a fox run past my window so it's nearly dawn, the 'milk-float of doom' will soon whirr by marking the beginning another day preceeding a sleepless night of unproductiveness--got to get me some of that tyrannosaur sex radiation.

*I haven’t gone the Philip K. Dick amphetamine route just yet: (advantages: you can bang out a novel in a night, disadvantages: supposed alien consciousnesses beam things into your brain via a pink light. Oh, and being married about five times, don't know if that is an adavantage or disadvantage.)

My kind of (arse) art...

London trips of one kind or another

As I have mentioned before, I do like the odd escape from the delights of Norwich to the big smoke, where one gets to see things rare in this ‘fine city’, e.g. people reading books in public. I must look like a yokel, though, as I gawked in slack-jawed amazement at the things I’m sure hip London cats see as mundane. Take the tube, for example. I’m sure if I had to take it every day, it would drive me insane. I’m always amazed by it, tough. Perhaps it’s my science fiction—obsessed brain but it seems to be like something out of La Jetée or Fahrenheit 451: subterranean tunnels, mechanised trains, robotic voices. I was there for S's 30th birthday, an old college friend from back in the day. It was a great party, and good to see our respective capacities for various substances still hold up to the old NIDS (Northern Irish Drinking Standard)after almost ten years. I was asleep on a sofa by about 5am with a rug over my head and awoke when someone tried to sit on me at about 8 to a line only heard at the best parties:

“I think there’s still someone under here”

I then took over skinning-up duties, joints for breakfast are never advisable, but great fun. In related surreal experience news, I also caught the Robert Crumb exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery. It was very strange to see copies of Crumb's Weirdo I have in my collection behind glass cases being ‘oohed’ and ‘aahed’ at by black-clad hip London types. There was a sketch-book instead of a guest book though and leaving my scrawl was oddly satisfying. There was also a 12 year old kid there who dragged his folks along. I saw him in the gift shop haranguing them to buy him three editions of The Complete Crumb. I was thinking ‘jeez, cut your losses kid, you’ve already got to see the Crumb exhibition don’t push your luck by demanding 40 odd quid’s worth of books containing statuesque asses. If I was 12 and had Crumb books they would safely hidden from the folks...

Saturday, May 07, 2005

beeee....on writing lockdown.

Althussuer and Apocalypse Shopping.

I remember reading in this book about a friend of Louis Althusser coming to visit him and seeing a sheet paper in the middle of the floor. Returning something like 8 years later, he returned to discover the very same piece of paper in the same place. I think academic work is 99 percent finding the right bit of paper just at the moment you need it, so I’ve been going through one of my crazy filing reorganizations to remind me of what actually is in all the folders and boxes that surround me in a cocoon of print (whether this cocoon is to protect me from society or society from me remains to be seen). It’s frightening, I came across one the first letters I sent saying I would be interested in doing a PhD and it was dated 2001! fucking hell, If I’d being thinking about this stuff that long I should be done by now.

I’ve also been on a crazy Batman binge * with a constant stream of his animated incarnations: to see what gems to foist on my department in a seminar on Monday and editing together bits of probably the best Batman movie of all time and a great episode of this called ‘Tales of the Dark Knight’. Last weekend, I had £17 to buy enough food /drink for the week, and still managed to spend the £4 it cost to go and see The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, well I thought, celluloid has been filling hungry bellies for over a century. It worked too, the film was great, then again I’m just happy to be out the room! And the trailers (Star Wars, Batman Begins and Sin City) had no small part to play in how much I liked the main film. I get so excited at the trailers when I’m at the cinema, I almost forget there is a main feature and the get excited all over again when the film starts—hence my frequent solo film watching, most people think the trailers are there to miss and/or talk loudly through. Then it was off to nearby Morrisons for a spot of what I call ‘Apocalypse Shopping’: This is where one stocks up on pasta n’ sauce, super noodles and tinned crap so one could, if necessary, stay in indefinitely (as in a nuclear holocaust) to conserve funds, slowly developing the scurvy and mental instability that has been driving people’s PhD’s for many a generation. But I’ve learned this to my cos: whatever you’re circumstances, don’t stoop to the level of ‘Bettabuy’ coffee. Seriously, it’s like paying someone 35p to douse your head in a muddy puddle, that’s even after I ‘cut’ it with the final quarter or so of a jar of Kenco. Drinking it made me shiver, in a horrible someone just pisssed on my grave way, not a relaxing piss-shudder whiskey way. This weekend was slightly better and I am now ready to embark on another 24-hour writing lockdown—no tv, phone, Internet…so I have to now unplug that little procrastina-tube reuter until about 4pm tomorrow…bye for now…


….beeee, (imagine the blog equivalent of that girl playing tictactoe with the scary clown on the old BBC test card).

*Like this is some sort of blog-worthy news? I've been on a 'Batman binge' for like 16 years.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

er...em...no caption needed!

Where am I? You're in the Village. What do you want? We want you to talk guff about Batman.

15 years or so ago I sat in a small room painted red and read the comics that I’m still on about (She-Hulk, Crumb’s Weirdo, 2000AD, Deadline, etc.)*. Little did I know that years later I would be foisting images of my perversions and peccadilloes (see above Brian Bolland’s amazing pen and ink rendition of power and constraint) on an unsuspecting public via the magic lantern of the old school OCP (wait until I get the hang of Power Point) in the form of this great academic conference. It was in the middle of nowhere in this place. We were all waiting by the train station and a local person on a bike made his way past in a rickety stylee and claimed to be our driver. A few minutes later he comes back in a school bus and we got ‘shuttled’ off to our mystery location. It reminded me a lot of another famous Welsh village, location for The Prisoner. Indeed I did feel like No. 6 when I woke up on the second day feeling like I had been brainwashed—immediate thoughts on waking up: where the fuck am I? Oh yes, I’m in the middle of Wales and in a couple of hours I’ll be projecting images from my comic collection on to wall in a room full of people I’ve just met.

One spends so many hours alone in twilight rooms (15 years ago by necessity, today by choice) suspecting, hoping for the existence of a psychic brother/sister-hood of allied minds. Sometimes you meet them and there’s not enough time to say all you want. Hoarse from sleep deprivation and alcohol**, one still has the energy to keep talking and the yearning to hear more of other people's ideas.

Being in the middle of nowhere, there was only one train we were all on to get back to civilisation (well, Birmingham. In ultimate geeks' revenge we took up whole carriages—in an inverse of all those times drunken shouting football fans take over whole carriages. I’m sure the general public were delighted to hear our theoretical conversations, not to mention my musings on she-male pornography and unsubstantiated (and obvious totally untrue***) theories that Tom Cruise may well have killed somebody…I just don’t trust his wee beady eyes…we’ll find out in about 30 years. Had I known I could have commissioned some ‘Foucault Football Scarves’ or a ‘Derrida Jerseys’ from this fine fellow.

There’s a inevitable comedown after conferences though, for me it’s back to getting splashed with cleaning fluid and staring into space hoping for inspiration to strike, hoping this project can be done--and can be paid for, what's more. It’s just good to know there are others who are asking the same questions. It’s inspiring that any time I open a pen or turn the computer on to do this, at whatever time of the day or night, there’s other people doing likewise.

*I also read far too many Shaun Hutson books, I had almost the full compliment of ‘novels’ from this scribe or, ‘dream weaver’ if you will, whose sex scenes have to be read to be believed. If I had a pound for every time I read sentences which included the words "bulbous head", I would be a very rich man. Incidentally the Badbrute (who also experienced the “Hustson experience”) and I, over a snifter or two of Jameson, sacrificially ripped up most of my collection and I still occasionally uncover 'bulbous' envelopes filled with dark fragments.

**Being a veteran of many an Irish wedding (attending obviously, there’s no Mrs. Homunculus, and none is sought whilst in this season of brooding Batmanery), I have found that these things are always welcome to secretly pack: fine screw-top wines (or if not, always remember a corkscrew), a sneaky nagan, disposable glasses etc. As an Irish man, such festivities are taken very seriously and pre-planning is essential. The bar will eventually close, you’ll be in the middle of nowhere and there will always be a hardcore posse up for more insanity. Although this can end in tears and blood, as another sojourn with the Baaadbrute attests—sometimes Absinthe isn’t the best post-wedding tipple, although it’s always fun to compound a morning after hangover with a scar and possible concussion.

***Yeah right! As if the Cruiser’s legal team read this insanity—but he might have some Carnivore style system that alerts him whenever his name is taken in vain, or when he suspects that someone, somewhere doesn't think he's an all-round, A-1, top nice guy cool dude.