February 2nd, 2014
I like classic Doctor Who, a lot more than most of the newer series. Tom Baker is my favorite Doctor and nothing since, at least in my opinion, has come close.
Back in 1994, Cornerstone Communications put out three card series based on classic Doctor Who. This is my look at the first series of 110 cards.
January 26th, 2014
Way back at my very first look at non-sport cards, I put up the original series of Raiders of the Lost Ark. I had intended to go back and present other Indy card sets from Temple of Doom and Last Crusade but, of course, I never got around to it.
Therefore I wanted to put up a card set that explores all of the Indiana Jones mythos.
January 19th, 2014
I wanted to try an experiment. I’ve avoided putting in any of the odd card types that became popular during the early-to-mid 1990s in the non-sport market. The hologram cards, the chromium cards, the prismatic cards, embossed and foil and you name it, I figured they just wouldn’t work well in a scan so I never really gave it a shot. However, I came across this set about Greg & Tim Hildebrant and even though it’s in chromium format, I thought it looked good enough to present to my loyal readers.
Greg & Tim Hildebrant are two American twin brothers who worked together as science fiction and fantasy artists, producing covers for comic books, movie posters, novels, etc. They are best known for their Lord of the Rings calendar illustrations, but have worked on many different properties including Star Wars, Marvel and DC comics, the cover for Terry Brooks’ Sword of Shannara and on Magic the Gathering and Harry Potter cards for those respective games. Unfortunately, Tim Hildebrant passed away in 2006, but Greg is still doing well, he received the Chesley Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement from the Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Artists in 2010.
January 12th, 2014
In 1979, playing off the success of Star Wars, Walt Disney Pictures put out a movie starring Maximilian Schell, Robert Forster,Joseph Bottoms, Yvette Mimieux, Anthony Perkins, and Ernest Borgnine. That movie was The Black Hole and while it wasn’t the huge hit that Disney hoped it would be, it has developed a dedicated cult following over the years. The film, about a group of scientists who discovered a massive black hole and a madman, thought lost in space, who wanted to go through it, was pretty high concept for the day and quite dark in it’s presentation, especially for Disney, which was known for putting out happy kid’s movies. There are rumors that they’re going to put out a remake one of these days, they have a script, a director and a producer attached but so far, no definitive plans. It’s too bad because remakes generally suck, it’ll be hard to do the kind of amazing effects they managed using practical elements when they invariably make it into a CGI film.
December 29th, 2013
I decided, this being the holiday season and all, this time I’d give you a two-fer. Back in 1989, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure introduced us to Wyld Stallion band members Bill S. Preston, Esq. and Ted “Theodore” Logan, two kids trying to write a history report so they don’t fail English so Ted won’t be sent to an Alaskan military academy, thus breaking up the band. They meet Rufus, a guy from a future where their music is idolized and together, they go on a most excellent adventure through time. In 1991, they return in Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, where the guys fight evil robot versions of themselves, die and go to hell. Oh, and then they save the world. Imagine that.
December 22nd, 2013
Primarily known for his organic artwork and progressive rock album covers, this week’s focus is on the work of Roger Dean, British-based artist, designer, architect, and publisher. Dean has a different view of his work, he says “I don’t really think of myself as a fantasy artist but as a landscape painter.” Certainly his work incorporates organic and natural shapes, making a visual style all his own. He’s been the primary album artist of groups like Yes, Asia and Uriah Heep over the years, as well as a furniture designer, he was responsible for the “retreat pod” chair used in the film version of A Clockwork Orange.
December 8th, 2013
Since I’ve been doing a considerable number of art card sets recently, I figured I might as well continue with that trend because there are so many really good artists out there and, I’ll be honest, in the 1990s, card companies really did go overboard making card sets about just about any well known sci-fi or fantasy artist they could find.
Chris Achilleos is a well known painter and illustrator, born in 1947 in Cyprus but currently lives in the UK. He specializes in both fantasy and glamour work and has had his paintings featured in magazines like Heavy Metal and Radio Times, as well as doing promotional and conceptual artwork for properties like Doctor Who and Conan the Barbarian. He created the rather infamous cover for Whitesnake’s 1979 album Lovehunter, which featured a naked woman straddling a giant serpent and it generated so much controversy that he swore off working for rock groups thereafter, although he did the cover art for the 2003 rock opera The Once And Future King by Gary Hughes.
October 27th, 2013
Let’s get back to some good old movie cards. This time, I take a look at the cards released for Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. They were put out in 1984 by FTCC, and contained 60 character and movie cards and an additional 20 card subset of the ships.
October 20th, 2013
There was a time when, Garbage Pail Kids were all the rage. I’ve talked about my collection in the past and while it’s absurdly large to post images of (well over 80 pages of cards), there were quite a few knock-offs of the series, made by other companies, and Topps itself, who wanted a slice of the GPK pie. Another property that was popular at the time were those stupid little plastic trolls with long florescent hair, made by Norfin, and in 1993, card company Classic decided to combine the two and create the Trouble Trolls.
October 13th, 2013
Anybody who has been into science fiction or fantasy books for the past 50 years knows all about Frank Frazetta. Born in 1928 in Brooklyn, New York, Frank Frazzetta (he later dropped one ‘z’ to make his name less clumsy) grew up, the only boy among 3 sisters. He was artistic from an early age, quickly moving from an art school which he says taught him very little to working in comic books and finally to being a world-class painter. Throughout his career, he produced covers for science fiction and fantasy books, record LP jackets, paintings and posters and other media. He was inducted into the Comic Book Hall of Fame in 1995 and the Jack Kirby Hall of Fame in 1999. His work redefined the way the sword and sorcery fantasy genre looked and he produced hundreds of paintings in his very distinctive style. Frank died in 2010 of a stroke, but his works were put out to the masses in this first of a series of non-sport card sets, released by Comic Images in 1991.