Cool Stuff!

Stevie Wonder on Sesame Street!

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Cool Stuff!, Journal, Music | Leave a comment

Fantastic link!

Click here to start the jam!

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More Work From Neill Blomkamp, the man responsible for “Alive in Joburg”

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Cool Stuff!, Film & TV, Journal | Leave a comment

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Neill Blomkamp continues to use Science Fiction to explore social issues in post-apartheid South Africa with this short film TETRA VAAL.

“After you see it once, replay the video and pay attention to some of the poses that the robot makes. Let us, for example, take a look at the robot holding the machine gun upright in a rather patronizing and authoritative manner while patrolling the streets of Johannesburg. Then there is the car ride and casual looking through the window in a slight mixture of relaxation, readiness and anticipation we would expect from say, a NYPD officer ready to go to action in some American movie. Perfect analogy to human behavior and some good cliche pickups make quite a combination.”

However, TETRA VAAL isn’t nearly as cool as the absolutely extraordinary ALIVE IN JOBERG which is everything that genre should be, at least to my mind.

Some people have been calling his stuff derivative, with ALIVE IN JOBERG being a take on the film ALIEN NATION and TETRA VAAL being a riff on ROBOCOP. But the work has such resonance as social commentary that the updating of these ideas in his hands seems almost necessary (of course ROBOCOP is a top notch example of relevant social satire in and of itself).

If you’re feeling it, also check out Neill’s great commercial for Citroen called ALIVE WITH TECHNOLOGY.

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Robot Spammer Capitalist Fuckers be Gone!!

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Cool Stuff!, Journal, Science & Tech | Leave a comment

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This was one of the hundreds of posts spammed to my site in the last few days (the poster’s command of English is fantastic!):

“Do You have enough pwoer to provide your patrner high quality S-EX on St.Valentine day? Get a MONSTTER pwoer, nothing can bring your ererction down! Show your partner the PWOER of your LOEV and she will always remember You. Loev will ALWAYS be associated with YOU! Your order will be PRIVATE, nobody will know what You use. Follow this link and get SSPECIAL DISSCOOUNT for that period!”

That’s right! The hero of the bowery knows the game. You need Herbal Viagra!! Punk rock has a big dick so get with the program!! We have the proven penis enlargement for you!! All here at JoshuaDysart.com!!

AGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the Internet! The greatest idea in the history of the species (at least since yoga) and these assholes use it to spam my tiny, un-ambitious website, proving, once and for all, that some form of viral evil will infect every model of communication humanity dreams up! We are poisoned to the bone, my children!! Poisoned to the bone!!

Screw the fictional, perpetually erect, golden boy these insecurity vultures are trying to pass off as the standard for masculinity!! The guys who figured out how to give me this electronic advertising VD were the same bastards who were selling snake oil out the back of a wagon a hundred and fifty years ago! (Or just 75 years ago if you’re from west Texas).

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Every year during May and June, thousands of villagers from remote areas of the Himalayan region of Nepal, risking their own lives, head for high mountains to collect yarsagumba, believed to be a cure for sexual impotency, among other things. It is estimated that one villager can earn up to Rs. 2,500 approximately $35 a day by collecting yarsagumba which is beyond the monthly salary of many Nepalese households. Yarsagumba with its Latin name cordyceps sinesis literally means “summer plant and winter insect” in Tibetan. Before the rainy season begins, spores of the cordyceps mushroom settle on the heads of caterpillars’ that live underground. The fungus gets so much into the body of the caterpillar that it grows out through its head and drains all the energy from the insect ultimately killing it. (Intelligent Design my ass).

Sigh… all right, that’s it… my rant’s done. Of course my raving won’t keep the bastards from attaching their mindless ad leeches to my site, but I want the posting feature to start being more active. I’d like to communicate to my readers through it. It’s not perfect, but it’s something. It’ll mean I’ll have to be more pro-active about cleaning the spam out of course. I’ll do my best.

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In December of 2000 a Welsh rugby team “The Wizards” began to stiffen its defense with the help from a Chinese supplement dubbed “herbal viagra.” A product containing an extract of fungus taken from the larval remains of silkworms.

It’s been a long time since I’ve given any love to this site. I’ve been busy… which is awesome (more on that below), but I figure I should post something so that the first thing new people see isn’t that picture of me pissing on a wall from the last entry. Particularly since I have an all-ages horror comic coming out this summer, and 13 to 16 year-old kids need to see my penis about as much as they need to be sold herbal Viagra.

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Ginseng root on a billboard in downtown Shanghai. Remarkably managing to be phallic and have a vagina at the same time.

I’m going to try to make something interesting of this site. You know, post more regularly, lots of links… even some new ideas about content that I can’t mention here for fear that the whim will pass and the plans will never be executed. I have two big projects looming (which I can’t talk about yet) and they might get in the way of this website’s master plan, but we’ll see. Also, it should be mentioned that I’m a laughable example of anything but lazy. Generally, I’d rather go over the falls than row. But I have an inkling of creativity and a persistent desire to never have a day job again, so it’s definitely in my best interest to keep this website up to date, looking professional and filled with relatively engaging content. We’ll see how it goes.

WORK IS GOOD

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Cover to the upcoming Swamp Thing #26 “Burying the Bones”

My second SWAMP THING trade (from Vertigo Comics), HEALING THE BREACH, will be hitting in February. The book includes the title story by ENRIQUE BRECCIA, plus the stories THE HOLLAND MIND drawn by Ronald Wimberly and LITTLE RUNAWAY by the incomparable RICHARD CORBEN. The trade features my most experimental storytelling on the title to date, so check it out. The monthly pamphlet is wrapping up THE BLEEDING RACONTEUR story line this month, then guest artists DEAN ORMSTOM (BOOKS OF MAGIC: LIFE DURING WARTIME) will be penciling #25 and JOCK (THE LOSERS) will be busting out #26. Both of these cats are awesome, and I’ve been seeing the pages from them as they come in. They’re just going to be fantastic looking books. #25, entitled MEANWHILE… IN HOUMA, is all monsters, girls and mayhem! Dean recently confided in me his love for Hammer films and old Universal horror flicks. So expect a real horror comic from this guy. With #26 (called BURYING THE BONES) I’ve given Jock a script that is virtually the anti-thesis to a Losers comic, with several opportunities for him to play with form and structure, so keep an eye out for it. It should be really interesting. The work he’s turned in so far is stylistically ambitious. Also #25 will be the first issue overseen by my new editor and friend PORNSAK PICHETSHOTE. It’s been absolutely great working with him and like JON VANKIN before, he seems to be putting up with my wandering mind and profound insecurities just fine. And don’t forget my first Swamp Thing trade, LOVE IN VAIN is still available.

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Teaser poster for the film MONSTER HOUSE

Next year, around the time the movie MONSTER HOUSE hits theatres, SKULL AND BONES: A MONSTER HOUSE STORY will be landing in comic book stores. Over forty pages of all-ages horror fun that’s a companion piece to the film. It’s from IDW and drawn in a wonderfully whimsical style. This is my first work for this publisher. I’ve only seen the opening five pages and they look really great. The second comic book title that I ever wrote (CHASSIS) was an all-ages comedy and it was nice to get back to that softer voice during the writing of this work.

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Original, sold out cover to the first issue of CAPTAIN GRAVITY AND THE POWER OF THE VRIL. A reprint of #1 can be purchesed at the PFP website (link below).

CAPTAIN GRAVITY AND THE POWER OF THE VRIL (Penny Farthing Press) has wrapped and the collected trade should be hitting sometime in 2007. There will be THIRTY new pages of story and art included!! These extra pages do not constitute a backup story but will be part of the actual narrative. Sal Velluto, as always, is rocking it. I can’t wait for this. Sal and I have been kicking around ideas for the next Captain Gravity adventure, but I haven’t had time to sit down and give it the attention it needs, soon, though, hopefully this year. I loved writing this character and I think giving Sal more input on the book can only make it better. Sal is a gentle soul, a fierce artist and an all around stand-up human being. You can read some pages of the first issue here.

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Dean Haspeil… Warrior!

Dean Haspiel and I are still sitting on a fantastic pitch that editor Joan Hilty has asked us to modify for the DCU. I’m lagging behind on that task as well. In fact I’ve been downright unprofessional about the whole thing. I really love the original pitch and I think I’m having a hard time making the changes Joan is asking for. And now Dean is booked for the year. But it’s cool. Dean and I will work on something eventually. I should really call Joan and apologize for my half-assedness.

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It’s true… Luis Reyes is Jesus Christ.

I finally followed up with Luis Reyes, my editor at TOKYO POP, and got him some artist test pages based on a pitch I slung his way about a year ago. It’s called INSECT SONG and I’m really desperate to do it. It would be my first original project since VIOLENT MESSIAHS. And original work is more the direction I’d like to go in. I’m telling ya, there just needs to be more hours in the day.

Plus, don’t forget, there are those two big projects I can’t talk about until they’ve solidified more. One at DARK HORSE the other at VERTIGO. I’ll give you the heads up when the time is right.

So there you are. I gotta get back to the grind. Peace, love and all that hippie shit,
Joshua

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YES YES!! Motherfuckers, YES YESS!! YES YES!! Motherfuckers, YES YESS!! Yo, it’s your boy GW! Breaking it down all clever like! That’s how I’m reppin’, OH! Bmore! And I ain’t gonna talk you to death, I’ll let the motherfuckin’ picture do the rest!

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Cool Stuff!, Journal, News & Politics | Leave a comment

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Chorus:

Fuck the police! Fuck fuck fuck the police!
[Fuck them motherfuckers!]
Fuck fuck fuck the police!
[Get paid back] You’re motherfucking right yo

Verse One: Dr. Dre

Fuck the motherfucking police!
They don’t want peace they want a nigga deceased
So he’ll cease to be a problem and by the way the perform
It seems the Klan gave the white police another uniform
And yo the black police, the house niggaz
They gave you a motherfucking gun, so I guess you figure
you made out, good to go, but you didn’t know
They would stick your black ass back in the ghetto, yo
To kill another nigga, catch him with crack, in fact
Freebase – they put in the neighborhood in the first place
But the brothers ain’t stupid, remember that
You got a gat, I got a gat, so whassup with that
A to the motherfuckin K
The last words you hear, then the smoke appears
Tears, from your motherfuckin family
They’re starin at me, but I’m goin gun happy, fuck em!
Shootin everything in sight tonight’s the night to get hyped
and fight for what’s wrong, fuck what’s right!
And by the way, my name is Dre
So listen up motherfucker to what I gotta say, yo

Chorus:

Fuck the police! Fuck, fuck, fuck the police
Fuck
Fuck, fuck, fuck the police
[Now for the first episode]

Politics, Media, Cool Links and Work Updates

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Animation, Comic Books, Cool Stuff!, Film & TV, Journal, Music, News & Politics, Photos | Leave a comment

Wow, it’s been a long time since I rolled into this little closet of a web room. Time to check all the light bulbs and scrape the cobwebs from the corners. For those of you that give a shit and have the time to drown in somebody else’s fairy tale, I’ll hit a few basics, catch you up on work, then hook you up with some cool media stuff. Into the mix I’ll throw some images from very current politics. After that I’ll leave you to your own devices and get back to my real job… spit shining the fiction machine.

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I was asked to write a 300-word promotional blurb for SWAMP THING to be published in all the Vertigo books in their monthly “column” entitled ON THE LEDGE. The first thing I wrote (perhaps we actually ride words instead of write them, hmmm� oh sorry) the first thing I wrote was done in my voice, which is this sort of open road rambling you’re enduring right now. I was very proud of it. Then some ghost named doubt glided its icy fingers up the spine of my inspiration and I began second-guessing what I’d written. I wonder if I’ll ever be able to create from a place of no fear? Anyway, as I said, I started to second-guess myself and I rewrote a more acceptable, but slightly pappy, piece of pimp.

So here’s the original ON THE LEDGE, the cool one, in case you’re interested…

*

ON THE LEDGE

These are things we always knew. That the rivers of the world are the true clocks, drumming down the land, passing time not in ticks and tocks but plips and plops. That the weather still tumbles across woods and mountains and deserts and oceans and wetlands and ice more than it does hamlets and malls and suburbs and shanties and soda pop mansions and labyrinthine megalopolises. That beneath the lands we build are the lands we truly cross. These are things we always knew. But we forget. We fight resource wars, we eat cake, we watch NASCAR, we play online videogames. We forget. We drown out the hum of nature. We become absent minded of the engine that governs us… just as we forget our own heartbeat.

But there’s a place, a mythic, gothic bog located somewhere in the vegetation of our collective imagination. And in it lives a monster. A creature that, like you and I, is crafted from the very fabric of the earth that birthed him. A walking sentient eco-system. A slice of spirit trapped in matter. And though he has forgotten much, he hasn’t forgotten what we have. He’s on the other side of this encroaching expanse of concrete and digital porn. He’s a soldier and a savior, a friend and a foe, heartbroken and healing, reluctant and ready.

He is called Swamp Thing… and in these times of forgetting.. he is what’s needed most.

– Joshua Dysart

*

Yeah… so there you go… that’s not what will appear in the comic books, but that’s what I was feeling, thinking and dreaming at the time.

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The Pentagon, under pressure from open-government advocates, released hundreds of images Thursday of flag-draped coffins of American soldiers. Of course the election is over now. From SFGATE.

MOLLS AND TROLLS, MOLLS AND TROLLS, WORK WORK WORK

Things happening all over the place. I’m about to start writing the Swamp Thing arc for issues #21 – #24, to be drawn by hard driving Enrique Breccia. It’s currently called THE BLEEDING RACONTEUR (though these things do tend to change), and, no bullshit, it will literally change the swamp forever (or at least until the next writer takes over and swings his/her wrecking ball pen up against the walls of all my little sandcastles).

More CAPTAIN GRAVITY work has been commissioned from PENNY FARTHING PRESS. Seems the book is going for a crazy spin around comicdom. It’s the number one seller in the history of PFP. Cool. Wizard Magazine just published a blurb stating that the original issue #1 is entirely impossible to get your hands on, fortunately the reprint #1, with a new cover, is on the menu… so bon appetite! I’ll be writing 20 to 25 extra pages of new story for the Trade.

I’m currently talking to Scott Allie, one of my favorite editors in the industry, over at Dark Horse about a mini-series. Can’t give any details right now, but it’s big and I’m really fucking jazzed about it. I’m going to start writing my proposal in about two-weeks. I’ll let you know more when there’s more to know.

The fantastic artist Dean Haspiel and I are working on a pitch together. He just finished working with Harvey Pekar on Vertigo’s THE QUITTER. When it’s ready we’ll hit VERTIGO first, then go from there. I look forward to sharing more of that with you when the time is right.

TOKYO POP is patiently waiting for a three-book breakdown (each book will be about 150 pages). My editor there…

Luis Reyes…
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and I have already settled on the project, now we just have to sell it to all the head-someones. Still, with so much other shit going on, it might be awhile before I get to it. On the plus side, this would be my first entirely original project ever. So hopefully I can give some love to it soon and it’ll get the green light.

There’s some other stuff too, but right now it’s all so gossamer that it’s not even worth mentioning.

Lots of work, but very little of it at that magic paycheck point yet. So I’m still struggling with money. Keeps me edgy, I say!

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French artist Marc Molk carries a painted portrait of British weapons expert Dr David Kelly in protest on the day of the British general election outside Downing Street in London, May 5, 2005. The suicide of Kelly, a former Iraq weapons inspector, in July 2003, led to the Hutton inquiry, which lifted the lid on the inner workings of the government and presented a serious threat to the premiership of Britain’s Prime Minster Tony Blair. Although Labour’s Tony Blair looked set to become British prime minister for a third straight time today, he might well exit the political stage in the near future after a ‘bloody nose’ from voters over the Iraq war, experts said.

COMIC INDUSTRY NEWS…

The latest incarnation of the Wein/Infantino HUMAN TARGET has seen its last issue with #21. It didn’t even get two years. If that were to happen to SWAMP THING I’d already be halfway through my run. This time around HUMAN TARGET was written by Peter Milligan and drawn by various exceptional artists, but mostly Cliff Chang. It was a very solid comic book. Fantastic actually. And Vertigo let it ride for a while despite rough numbers. It’s frightening to be working in a market that doesn’t reward this level of intellect, character development and plotting. Meanwhile sales on manipulative, spandex, crossover wankfests by mediocre writers go through the roof. It makes me concerned for my own future. This getting the axe, along with the now defunct KINETIC and possibly the very well written BOOKS OF MAGIC: LIFE DURING WARTIME, well, it’s beginning to show a hard trend. Books that I like and respect, and that I think – quite honestly – are better than mine, are not liked and respected by others. What does that say about my own work and my future viability in the market place?

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The U.S. can’t account for $100 million missing in Iraq. Government mismanagement of assets, from the lack of proper documentation on nearly $100 million in cash to millions of dollars worth of unaccounted-for equipment, are setting back efforts to fight corruption in the fledgling democracy, auditors and critics say. Meanwhile, while nameless war profiteers are getting rich… this picture released by the U.S. Army shows a U.S. soldier holding a child fatally wounded in a car bomb blast in Mosul, 360 km (225 miles) northwest of Baghdad, Iraq, Monday, May 2, 2005. 15 Iraqis were wounded in the combined suicide bomb attack.

HERE’S SOME COOL MEDIA STUFF

COMICS

SEA OF RED – REMENDER, DWYER & SAM (Image): There are a couple of pirate books out right now, but this one is just cool-ass gorgeous. The writing is fantastic, ringing impressively true to the genre, and the art is stellar. It’s beautiful.

THE GOON – POWELL (Dark Horse): I will pimp this book till the zombie apocolypse comes. Hilarious, monster fighting action illustrated with extraordinary craftsmanship.

VIMANARAMA – MORRISON & BOND (Vertigo): What if Kirby had been Hindu and had an infatuation with Bollywood? King Morrison, once again, shows us how it’s done. This cat Morrison seems to be living ten minutes in the future at all times. And everything Bond touches turns to gold.

OR ELSE – HUIZENGA (Drawn & Quarterly): This is a B&W from 2004, but I only just now discovered it. Wonderful, quiet, poetic, moving and formally inventive.

HAPPY – SIMMONS (Top Shelf): Another old work I just stumbled on. Sick, glorious, and simultaneously fluffy and edgy. The “autobiographical” comic about a young boy witnessing an exposed ball sack is fucking genius. And it’s just a dollar/issue at the Top Shelf site!

FILMS

ENRON: THE SMARTEST GUYS IN THE ROOM (Dir: Alex Gibney): I literally – and I’m using the word correctly, as in “actually” – had a panic attack listening to the phone conversations of these fucking assholes as they raped California citizens out of billions. An amazing exploration of the corporate culture of greed and a study on the dangers of deregulation. Far more engaging and infuriating than you could ever imagine.

ASSISTED LIVING (Dir: Elliot Greenebaum): Nice effort for the most part. It works far more often than it fails. First time director to watch.

PALINDROMES (Dir: Todd Solondz): The latest from the writer/director of HAPPINESS. Not perfect, but edgy as fuck. I like his more minimalist style here. An abortion fable where all the pro-choice people don’t give anyone a choice and all the pro-life people kill. The scene in which several handicapped children sing a song called “Jesus Doesn’t Make Mistakes!” is… well, wrong… and right.

MUSIC

The sea of sound I’m bobbing atop of as I write this week…

CORNERSHOP – WOMAN’S GOTTA HAVE IT (1995): Crazy lo-fi east/west fusion. From David Byrne’s label.

COTTONBELLY – X AMOUNTS OF NICENESS: NYC SESSIONS 1993/2004 (2004): fantastic dub-dance remix album.

ERYKAH BADU – MAMA’S GUN (2000): As a friend said, this is the best R&B album of 2000.

NICOLA CONTE – JET SOUNDS REVISITED (2002): groove ass nu-jazz remix of the lounge classic “Jet Sounds”.

BOOKS

THE POLITICS OF HEROIN: CIA COMPLICITY IN THE GLOBAL DRUG TRADE – McCoy: “The problem with America’s failed chance at essentially reducing if not eliminating drugs as a problem was a contradiction between the needs of domestic policy and the national security state.”

WEBSITES

POSTSECRET: anonymous postcards, all sent in with secrets written on them. A gorgeous humanist site. Some of the cards are heartbreaking.

Alchemical Kubrick. 2001: A Space Odyssey, The Great Work – On Film: Stanley Kubrick as Hermes Trismegistus!

The Holy Consumption: Read more independent comics goddamn it!

WEB MOVIES

Atom Films Online has several Raoul Servais animated films that can be watched free of charge. Servais founded Europe’s first department of animation. He’s best known for twelve animated films that won him world recognition at prominent international film festivals in the 1970s. In 1980 HARPYA was voted one of the fifteen greatest animated films of all time by a panel of international film critics. Watch ’em!

Sirene (1968),
Goldframe (1969)
Operation X-70 (1971)
Harpya (1979)
Pegasus (1973)
To Speak or Not to Speak

IN CLOSING…

That should cover me for a while. I’ve got to go masturbate and get back to work now… shutoff the lights on your way out.

One last picture… from my personal collection.

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Tone Rodriguez, larger than life penciler of VIOLENT MESSIAHS