Friday, December 18, 2015

"Star Wars: The Force Awakens" review

As the title of this should indicate, this is my review of the latest Star Wars film, Episode VII: The Force Awakens. And if you haven't yet seen this film, know that this review will be spoiler-filled, so if you wish to avoid spoilers, stop reading this now.

In fact, I'm writing an extra long introduction to this post JUST to make sure that no spoilers pop up in anyone's feed or a google search of this blog. Yes, I am writing a bunch of pointless filler right here JUST to take up space and words to protect you all from spoilers.

So... SPOILERS!!!!

If you don't want to know anything about the film, STOP READING NOW!!!

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Okay, you were warned. Don't whine to me if you keep reading.

First off, let me say that I REALLY liked the movie. It will take time for me to decide if I LOVED it. But I've seen it twice already and it's really solid. That said, I think it's nowhere near as perfect as it's currently being touted as.

I think that fandom was given a very expensive, 2 plus hour fan film/love letter to the original "Star Wars", and at the end of the day, that's a little disappointing and in some ways, exactly what I was worried was going to happen.

Let's spoil the plot right out the gate. A lonely, gifted girl from a desert planet is whisked away on a grand adventure where she meets a wise old man who offers to shepherd her away from her sad life into a new one. Together they storm the evil villains lair where he is killed, inspiring her to discover the hidden power within her and save the day. Does that sound familiar? Okay. The evil lair is a giant super weapon that can destroy planets with a single weakness that can destroy it utterly. I know you've heard THAT one. "The Force Awakens" is an almost scene for scene redo of "A New Hope".

And not in an artistic mirror. A nearly one-for-one remake. And at the end of the day, was that really all you wanted out of a new Star Wars? The same stuff you loved over 30 years ago repackaged? I thought everyone hated remakes?

Let's talk now, not about the genuinely interesting new characters like Rey, Finn, Poe or "Ben". They are great, well fleshed out characters that were pleasures to watch. Go J.J.! You nailed fixing the biggest flaw of the much hated prequels. No more stiff, wooden dialogue or acting. Home run, there. No, let's talk about our returning heroes. Specifically Han Solo and Leia. (Chewy was great. No gripes there.)

Han Solo is a grizzled smuggler living on the edge of space, taking jobs where he can get them.

Leia is a general, leading something baffingly called "The Resistance" with intelligence and powerful leadership.

They are EXACTLY THE SAME CHARACTERS THEY HAVE ALWAYS BEEN. The script bent over backwards to make sure that the old guard and the entire universe itself have not changed in any significant way. Instead of the Empire, we have the First Order. Instead of the Rebellion, we have the Resistance. But what are they resisting, since we are told there is a restored senate and Republic on a planet that sure as hell looks like Courescant, but is destroyed without ever being named.

Shouldn't the "Resistance" just have been, ya' know, the army. Why is Leia leading another rag tag group of reb...istance fighters when the rebellion won the war? Well, sadly I suspect, it's because all involved wanted to stick as close to the expected status quo as they could. Fans HATE change. That's just the sad truth. As much as we all whine about hating remakes, they are made because we want to see the same damn characters go through the same damn motions over and over. And J.J. Abrams and co. delivered. Han and Leia had a son, he went evil and their reaction was apparently to spend the next however many years doing nothing new at all.

All the foreshadowing of Leia being as potentially as strong in the force as Luke in "Jedi"? All but ignored. Their relationship? Broken up to try and recreate the tension we fans are more comfortable with. It's like how Pixar keeps bending over backward to make sure we get to see "delusional Buzz" in every Toy Story film. The warm,comfortable hug of the familiar in place of forward motion, change or growth.

This seems to have been the guiding light of the entire film: Maintain the illusion of change without really changing anything. Even John Williams' score was sadly anticlimactic. Sure, he gave us all of our favorite hits from the good ol' days. But where was this film's "Duel of the Fates", "ACross the Stars" or "Battle of the Heroes"? Even the most ardent prequel hater will generally, if begrudgingly, admit that the scores were fantastic. Williams built upon the familiar themes with new ones to GROW the audible universe. New characters and moments were given dynamic life in the scores. But there was precious little of that in "The Force Awakens".

Rey had a nice, melancholy bit of music, but it was overshadowed by a slavish need to dip into the depths of nostalgia at every turn. Much like the rest of the film.

I feel a little robbed. I was hoping for an Episode VII that would show us a bold new vision of a galaxy far, far away. Instead we were given a beautiful recreation of what we've already seen.

And yes, I still liked it.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Uncle Scrooge

I first fell in love with "Scrooge McDuck" from his staring role in "Mickey's Christmas Carol". From there, I followed the gent to "Duck Tales", and years later to the work of #carlbarks and #donrosa.

While I still love #ducktales, I find that nothing beats #unclescrooge COMICS for the very best of the old bird.

That said, this piece was designed to have elements from both the cartoon and the comics that inspired it. The #moneybin was modeled after it's appearance in the cartoon, as was the inclusion of a plane, to represent #launchpadmcquack. While the nephews #juniorwoodchuck quidebook, Scrooge's "sideburns" and his good old #numberonedime are specifically from the comics.

This was a lot of fun, and maybe someone from #IDW will see it and decide I would be a good cover artist for their #disney books!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Comic Art Examples

Hello,

My name is Dee Fish. I'm a cartoonist and illustrator located in Oil City, PA. I am the creator and artist of the online comic, Dandy & Company and the independent graphic novel series, The Wellkeeper.

As an artist, I've drawn stories for the Image Comics titles PvP and The Perhapanauts. I've worked on Atomic Robo for Red 5 Comics and Star Mage and White Chapel for IDW. I'm also the co-creator, co-writer and artist for the Hashtag Comics mini series, Carpe Noctem.

On this page, I've collected a number of samples of some of my work, broken down by tasks for your review and consideration. Thank you for your time and consideration. If you have any questions or would like to contact me, my email is: deebrisbyfish@gmail.com

PENCILS:




INKS (All pencilers credited on art files):


FULL PENCILS & INKS (The Wellkeeper):




FULL PENCILS & INKS (Carpe Noctem):



Thank you for your time and consideration. If you have any questions or would like to contact me, my email is: deebrisbyfish@gmail.com



Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Dandy & Company: The Movie!?

RELEASE POSTER
So, I can almost hear you all asking me, "There's going to be a MOVIE!?!"

Ummmm.... No.

Well, maybe SOMEDAY, but not just yet. See, as a creator, I've been told countless times "Someone should make a Dandy & Company movie!". And HECK, I agree. I'd LOVE to see these characters that I've been drawing for over THIRTY YEARS made into a movie. But that's not happening anytime soon.

As such, I've decided to do the next best thing. And so, starting in January of 2016, the weekly webcomic becomes "Dandy & Company: The Movie! The Official Comics Adaptation of the Non-Existent Motion Picture!"

That's right. For the full 52 weeks of 2016, I'll be creating a longform comic book adventure that is exactly what I WOULD make into a movie if I could! It's going to be the ULTIMATE DANDY & COMPANY ADVENTURE!!!! And what better way to announce a new FAKE movie than with a FAKE movie poster where I do my level best to rip off movie poster master artist, Drew Struzan!

See you online in 2016!!! (Actually, keep reading now too. There's all kinds of funny new strips every week!)

TEASER POSTER

Monday, August 24, 2015

Who Ya Gonna Parody?


Since restarting the strip last December, I've been doing mostly one off gags and have only dipped my toes back into the water of long form storytelling. Well all THAT'S over starting this September with the upcoming crossover with Martin Dunn's ghostly SPECTRO of #iFightGhosts!

So prepare for 3 months of laughs, spooky scares and shameless rip offs starting this September 2nd!!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Rare "Derrick Fish" sightings!

Hey there, folks! Below is my current schedule for conventions and appearances here in Florida before our big move this summer to Pennsylvania.

FREE COMIC BOOK DAY - May 2nd from 11 to 2 at Emerald City Comics in Clearwater, Florida!

COMICS FEST CORAL SPRINGS - May 9th, 9 to 5 in Coral Springs, Fl!

CARPE NOCTEM PREMIER - May 30th from Noon to 4 at Heroes Haven Comics in Tampa Florida!

GODS & MONSTERS Grand Opening Celebration - June 13th from 10 to 10 at Gods & Monsters in Orlando, Florida!

Additional Appearance Info to come as it materializes!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

MEGACON '15: The Beginning and the End

On the weekend of April 10th, 2015, Visitors to the ORLANDO MEGACON will be in for a unique treat!

In Artist's Alley, table GREEN 11, I'll be set up premiering the all new FINAL ISSUE of me epic fantasy adventure series, "The Wellkeeper" along with the remastered FIRST ISSUE of my classic supernatural superhero, "APPARITION"! 

With "The Wellkeeper #12", I bring to a close an amazing adventure following the trials of Zoe Kostopoulos as she learns to protect the life energy of the planet as it's latest Wellkeeper. It's an adventure that premiered AT Megacon back in 2009 and I'm beyond excited to be bringing you the finale, both as individual issues AND in the form of 3 awesome collected editions.


Originally published as a fanzine back in 1994, "APPARITION" is the story of a young man named Cooper Donovan who is shot and left for dead. Resurrected by forces beyond his understanding, he is reborn as the mysterious and ghostly APPARITION. It's a classic super hero adventure, re-scripted, re-lettered and remastered for new readers and the all new FIRST issue will be available in Artist's Alley, table Green 11!

As always, I'll be there with ORIGINAL comics, fantastic art prints AND will be drawing original commissions just for YOU of your favorite characters! Be there!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Apparition Reborn

Created when I was back in high school in 1990, the Apparition was a supernaturally powered hero that I drew for years as a kid. After my time at the Joe Kubert school after High School, I revisited my childhood character, redesigned and rebooted him in a series of new adventures. Originally self published as a fanzine, I drew 6 issues of Apparition. 

Fast forward to 20 or so years later, and I still have ideas for the guy, and so I'm cleaning up, re scripting and relettering the 1994 series. The first remastered adventure will premier at this April's ORLANDO MEGACON with an all new cover. 

Here are some of the new covers and art. Check it out.






Thursday, March 26, 2015

MEGACON 2015

"The Wellkeeper" Concludes at Megacon 2015!

For Immediate Release

In 2009, cartoonist Derrick Fish premiered his epic, fantasy/adventure comic book, "The Wellkeeper" at the Orlando Megacon. With stunningly detailed black and white art, rich characters and an engrosing story, "The Wellkeeper" quickly grew a following that attends the annual show every year to see what happens next in the adventure.

"The Wellkeeper" is the story of a young teenage girl named Zoe Kostopolous who inherets a power passed down from mother to daughter across the generations that connects them to the life energy of the planet. This connection allows them to control and manipulate plant life, animals and all natural forces at will. But these powers skipped a generation, so Zoe finds herself with powers she doesn't understand and hunted by dark forces that seek to destroy her for her gifts.

Since that premier in 2009, Derrick Fish has continued to chronicle Zoe's journey from survivor to hero through a carefully planned adventure designed to culminate at the conclusion of 12 issues. And that 12th issue will premier, once again, at the Orlando Megacon this April 10th. 

All 12 issues of the series will be available for readers anxious to find out what happens, along with 3 jam packed trade paperback, containing the entire adventure, so if you'll be in the Orlando area the weekend of April 10th, be sure to make your way to MEGACON's famous Artist's Alley, table Green #11!

For interested readers that can't make it to the show, The entire series can also be ordered as digital downloads and printed books by simply going to theBIG POND COMICS STORE at Indy Planet!

Derrick Fish is the creator of the indie comics, "Dandy & Company" and "The Wellkeeper". He's drawn stories for the Image titles, "The Perhapanauts" and "PVP" along with "ATOMIC ROBO" for Red 5 Comics as well as "Star Mage" and "White Chapel" for IDW Comics. He's currently working on a new series from Hashtag Comics called "CARPE NOCTEM", that he's co-writing and illustrating. His work can be found online at http://www.thewellkeeper.com and http://www.derrickfish.com

Thursday, February 26, 2015

All Good Things...


While the official premier of the final issue of The Wellkeeper is set for this April's Orlando Megacon, online readers and fans can get their hands on the epic conclusion to the fantastic adventures of Zoe, Sebastian and the rest TODAY!

THE WELLKEEPER© is the tale of a young girl name Zoe, the latest in a long line of women known as Wellkeepers. She is charged with the task of guarding the living energies of the earth itself and is empowered to communicate and control those very forces. With these gifts, Zoe can talk with plant, animals and control the forces of life itself. But she is hunted by dark forces that seek to destroy her to take her gifts and bring about the death of all things.
Available as both digital downloads AND awesome printed editions, you can order all 12 individual issues or the entire series in the form of 3 epic trade collections!




Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Carpe Noctem is Coming!


CARPE NOCTEM is an all new and unique comic created by Drew Crower (Tailwands) and co-written by myself and Martin Dunn (Joshua Black, Project: Overwatch) with art by myself (Derrick Fish. The Wellkeeper, Dandy & Company, The Perhapanauts) and colors by Alexa Fox's Challenging Studios. (Forager, Weapon of God)

It is the tale of a aspiring young writer named Chelsea Nobles, who through chance is thrown into an insane world of vampires, zombies and ancient evil. Chelsea is empowered as a Scribe to cover up the actions of notorious Las Vegas entrepreneurs, and vampires, Jace and Dante Rivera.

With pitch black comedy, hard core action and nail biting horror, CARPE NOCTEM has it all and is one of the best looking comics I've had the honor of being a part of.

CARPE NOCTEM is available to order NOW in the March issue of Previews. So tell your local comic shop to get in on the hottest new comic of the year!

Click for Diamond Previews ORDER INFORMATION. Order number: MAR151389

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Apparition



When I was back in high school, in 1990, I created a supernatural hero that I called "Apparition". Inspired largely by the still hot "Batman" film, I wanted my OWN dark crime fighter in a cape and came up with (what I THOUGHT was. lol) a super original origin twist. MY hero would become a crime fighter to avenge the death of... HIMSELF! I would later find out that a few characters have already done this, but it did not deter me. I drew 43 issues (badly) of this guy with my friend, Earl Holloway, back in high school.

After my year at the Kubert school, I decided to reboot my high school hero with a slightly revised backstory and more ghostly powers as a series of 6 fanzines I self published between 1994 and 1996.

So now that the Wellkeeper is nearly complete and i'm busy on Hashtag Comics' CARPE NOCTEM as the co-writer and artist, I've decided that I'm not busy enough and will be remastering those 6 issues to re-publish this coming year. I'll fix all the typos and hopefully the horrible scripting I did, but represent this hero of mine to a whole new generation of readers! Hope to see you then!