Saturday, January 31, 2015

Arnim Zola and The Penguin

If you told me a year ago that these two villains would each make memorable live action appearances I would not have believed it, and yet that has come to pass.  Arnim Zola's unexpected involvement in Captain America: The Winter Soldier was the highlight of the film for me, and that's saying a lot.  Robin Lord Taylor's performance as a young Penguin beginning his criminal empire on Gotham has been entertaining as well, and I look forward to seeing where he winds up by the end of the season.

Friday, January 30, 2015

The Creeper and Moon Knight

You have to be at least a little nuts to dress in a costume and go out to fight crime, so it's always appealing to me when a hero is at home with that aspect of their personalities.  The Creeper is one such character, and I got a kick out of the joy with which he approached his dual life.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

B'Wana Beast and Conan

OK, nobody really demanded this one but I thought it would be fun to give B'wana Beast a cover appearance.  Like many, I always thought he was goofy even by comic book standards with his crazy costume and weird power to combine animals.  The folks behind Batman: The Brave and the Bold clearly had a soft spot for the character, and gave him a cool arc that continued throughout the series, which made me appreciate him - once again proving that all any character needs is a polish and a fresh take every now and then.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Black Canary and The Fantastic Four

I have been wondering if the new Black Canary on Arrow would possess the famous canary cry and I got my answer, sort of, on the most recent episode.  Her debut was a very brief one, but it began with a bunch of thugs being rocked by a high pitched sonic attack.  Granted, it seemed like an electronic equivalent to the super-power, but it was a nice nod to the comics.  Hopefully she will gain the actual ability somewhere down the line.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Tarantula Vs. The Tarantula

Even though it never got to see a lot of action, I always liked the updated costume that Jerry Ordway gave The Tarantula when he appeared in All-Star Squadron.  It's not easy to come up with a cool spider related design that does not remind the viewer of Spider-Man, but Ordway succeeded .

Monday, January 26, 2015

Creature Crew

For this team I wanted to assemble a bunch of characters that would have no problem confronting the type of menaces that are just too spooky or creepy-crawly for the rest of us. After what all of these guys have been through, I don't see them flinching at much.  Any conflict the team might have would probably come from Mulder, who would want to understand  the menaces they face rather than just kick their butts like the rest of his teammates.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Hulk and Elfquest

Even though it preceded a very cool moment, I was a little confused at Bruce Banner's "I'm always angry" comment at the end of The Avengers.  Does he now have the ability to switch to the Hulk at will if that's the case? Does he no longer have to be in a state of extreme emotion?  Hopefully this will be expanded upon in the upcoming sequel, where The Hulk is said to have a larger role.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Sandman Vs. Freddy Krueger

I'm not a huge fan of slasher films, but the Nightmare on Elm Street series was fun for me to watch with my friends as a teen.  I liked that Freddy Krueger had a twisted sense of humor that set him apart from other horror villains.  There was some interesting art design in the dream sequences as well.  I don't remember much about Freddy's victims, except that I think one was Johnny Depp and there was a kid named Kincaid that showed up in a few of the films and had some funny lines.

Friday, January 23, 2015

The Watcher and Charlie Brown

I have been wanting to use this title for a long time, I just had to find a concept that went with it.  It really bothered me that Marvel decided to kill off the Watcher in one of their recent events.  It looks like the Marvel Universe will be changing soon though, when it gets smooshed with the Ultimate Marvel Universe.  Maybe Uatu will get another chance at life when all is said and done.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Batman and Spider-Man in "Larceny At Ladies' Night!"

I remember being excited at the prospect of a live action Spider-Man back in the 70's, but when I finally saw the Nicholas Hammond-starring TV-movies I was a bit underwhelmed.  The suit was OK even with the clunky web-shooter, and it was cool to see Peter Parker interacting with J. Jonah Jameson, but it still didn't feel very much like the Spidey I knew from the comics.  The lack of any super-villains hurt it for me and the many re-used shots made the shows feel cheap even for the standards of the day to me.  Why they never crossed him over with The Hulk I will never know.

Batman and Spider-Man have a bit of history on STF: The Lost Issues...

Spidey and JJJ joined forces against Batman in Issue #937...
They were joined by some Amazing Friends in back in October 2011...
The shared a Golden Age adventure in September 2011...
Spidey wore his black outfit for their  July 2010 meeting...
And here is where they first crossed paths.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Green Lantern Vs. Groot

Groot was understandably the breakout star of Guardians of the Galaxy.  I was very happy with how well realized the character was, from his appearance, to his personality and varied use of his abilities.  I don't know anyone who can watch the final 30 seconds of the film for the first time without smiling.  Even his limited dialogue was used wisely.  I figured that Groot would really give the original Green Lantern a run for his money, given his ring's inability to affect wood.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Superman and Ka-Zar & Shanna

I like that Marvel could have their cake and eat it too when it came to Ka-Zar and Shanna.  With the Savage Land setting, they could tell Tarzan-type tales away from civilization, and then they could also have their jungle characters interacting with their more mainstream roster of super heroes.  The story possibilities

Monday, January 19, 2015

Elasti-Girl and Elastigirl

The Incredibles is one of my favorite Pixar films, and that is saying a lot because I pretty much like them all.  A sequel has finally been announced. and I hope that they can meet the high standards of the first installment.  Pixar has a decent track record for sequels - Sure, Cars 2 was not as great as their usual fare, but I thoroughly enjoyed the follow ups to Toy Story and Monsters, Inc.  I am curious as to how much further down the road the Incredibles sequel will pick the story up.  Will they consider the real world time that has passed, or tell a tale that takes place only a short time after the events of the first film?

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Man-Bat and Tigra

It's high time comic fans got to see both of these heroes in live action.  Now that Batman will be mixing it up with super powered allies on the big screen, there's no reason Man-Bat shouldn't make an appearance in his inevitable next solo film.  Tigra could be a good fit for either The Avengers or Agents of SHIELD on TV.  Special effects technology is finally at a place where these characters would look great onscreen.  I wonder which one will make it there first?

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Doctor Doom and Darth Vader

I always felt that Darth Vader had to be inspired at least a little bit by Doctor Doom.  The mask hiding a scarred face, the cape, the power and attitude... there is definitely a connection between these two.  It's too bad that we can't seem to get a proper Doctor Doom on the big screen.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Batman and The Partridge Family

The cover is the result of a request/challenge from Michael Eury, Editor of the always awesome Back Issue Magazine.  I only have vague memories of The Partridge Family - it didn't make much of an impression on me other than liking some of the music and the fact that I kind of looked like a young Danny Bonaduce (we have since gone in different directions).  Still, this idea was too weird not to try.  Thanks for the suggestion, Michael!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Storm Vs. The Weather Wizard

It's been fun watching Barry Allen's rogues gallery growing on The Flash.  The announcement that Mark Hamill will be reprising his role as The Trickster was a pleasant surprise.  The first episode featured The Weather Wizard, who has a brother waiting to take up the mantle in a future installment.  Now that Captain Cold and others have been introduced as well, I look forward to them joining forces with one another to give The Flash a tough time, just as they have in the comics.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Solomon Grundy Vs. Man-Thing

Both of these characters are known to hang out in swamp lands, so you know it was just a matter of time before the crossed paths.  Man-Thing is a tough customer, but I think that Grundy would give him more of a challenge than most of his opponents do.  Whatever knows fear burns at the man-Thing's touch, but Solomon Grundy does not strike me as one who succumbs to fear very often.  The fact that he is continually reborn means he probably does not even fear death and would fight to the very end.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Robocop Vs. Judge Dredd

When STF Patron Tom Zilla suggested this pairing, I was kind of surprised I hadn't featured it yet.  Dredd and Robocop do seem to be a natural team-up.  A pretty close battle as well - I'm really not sure who would come out on top if these two were at odds.  I would be a blast to read anout, tnough!  Thanks for the inspiration, Tom!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Iron Man Vs. Lex Luthor in "It's Just Business!" (Part 2)

Continued from yesterday's cover, it never pays to ignore Superman's advice.

Jess Eisenberg as Lex Luthor in the upcoming Batman V Superman is the one casting choice that I am still a little nervous about.  I know that Eisenberg does well at playing intellectual, calculating characters, but will he be imposing enough to stand up to Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill in full costume?  I'm not even sure which Lex we are going to get - Will it be the billionaire business mogul pulling the strings, or will we see him don a power suit to enter the action himself?  Whatever they do with the character, let's hope they stay away from shady land deals for once.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Superman and Iron Man in "It's Just Business..." (Part One)

This story follows up on Superman and Iron Man's last adventure together, in which Luthor was already causing trouble for Tony Stark (back in issue #810).  Superman had a tough time the last time he battled Iron Man (in issue #179), but maybe he will fare better this time.  They aren't always at odds though, and their movie together broke all kinds of box office records (issue #581). The events of this tale will lead directly into tomorrow's issue, so stay tuned!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

The Vision and Astro Boy

I watched the recent CGI animated Astro Boy movie, and despite all of the current day technology that went into it, it just didn't have the same magic for me as the classic cartoons.  There's something about those black an d white episodes that was kind of cool.   The robotic character I really want to see, though, will be in action this Summer.  I can't wait until we get to see the birth of The Vision in Avengers: The Age of Ultron.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Babe, Wonder Woman and She-Hulk

This cover is the result of a suggestion by Adam Stockman.  As a Patron of this site in good standing, how could I say no?  John Byrne certainly illustrated some of the most beautiful women in comics.  I remember being especially knocked out by his depiction of Frankie Raye in Fantastic Four.  His Ororo was always amazing as well.  Thanks for the inspiration, Adam!

Thursday, January 8, 2015


Welcome to the Super-Team Family 1000th Issue Spectacular!  

When I started this blog back in April 2010, I had no idea how long it would run - I figured maybe a year or so.  Now here we are, after 308 Brave and the Bold covers, 200 Marvel Two-In-One covers, and now 1000 Super-Team Family covers. I am at 1508 covers, with more to come!  As promised, this post includes a bunch of extras:

  • The never before told Secret Origin of the Lost Issues!
  • The Best of Brave and the Bold: The Lost Issues!
  • The Best of Marvel Two-In-One: The Lost Issues!
  • The Best of Super-Team Family: The Lost Issues!
  • What are... The Lost Lost Issues?
  • A special peek at what the interiors of a Lost Issue might look like!
  • step-by-step tutorial on how a Lost Issue cover is created!

  • (Since the images here are larger than in my regular posts, please note that you can click on them for an overlay image, or right click to open in a new tab if they are not displaying properly on smaller monitors)

    My love for comic characters and crossovers goes back as far as I can remember.  As soon as I could draw, my interests were clear:

    Like many kids, I decided to create my very own comic books.  I made up my own character, Alastor the Avenger.  Alastor only made a single solo appearance in his debut origin issue.  My love of team-ups was alive even back then, and I decided to pair him up with a superhero from the comics I loved for each issue.  And as you can see, I was already pairing Marvel and DC characters together in the same tale:

    I made 15 issues of Alastor and I am glad I kept them around, they always remind me of happy childhood times when I look them over.  I kept on doodling as I grew older, and in 1992 I decided to make a complete 50-page comic as a Christmas present for some members of my family. This story featured the Justice League of America (currently disbanded in the comics, I made a tale to reunite the original cast).  My mind was still on inter-company crossovers, and that was definitely an element in the story, here are a few pages:

    And yes, the Justice League invited Alastor the Avenger to join their team by the end of the issue! Believe me, I have never had any illusions about becoming an actual comic artist, I just enjoyed drawing and creating stories for my own personal enjoyment.  The Idea of crossovers kept rattling around in my mind, so a few years later, I decided to start a new epic adventure.  This one would be a massive Marvel/DC crossover, featuring all of my favorite characters.  I wrote a 100-page script and loosely penciled 50 pages before I got busy with other things and put it aside.  I will present about half of them for you here - if you have ever wondered what the interiors to an issue of Super-Team Family: The Lost Issues might look like, well here you go!  Oh, and don't bother squinting to read my overly-wordy text, the story is basically this:  Darkseid and Doctor Doom discover each other tampering with a nexus between realities and use it to trap The Watcher and The Spectre.  Using energies from these two, they gather villains from the DCU, disguise them as DCU heroes, and have them wreak havoc on the Marvel Earth.  They do the same with Marvel villains, sending them to cause chaos on the DC Earth.  The real heroes of each Earth then gather at the summons of The Spectre and The Watcher (still being controlled by Darkseid and Doom) and after being fed misinformation, decide to set out to defeat the heroes of the other Earth, who they think are villains. While DC would travel to The Marvel Earth, villains from both earths would conquer the now hero-less DC Earth.   That's as far as I got with the first 50 pages, the rest of the story involved various battles, each with a clear winner.  At the height of the battles, Doctor Strange and Doctor Fate would have realized the ruse and notified the heroes.  The Heroes who won the battles would assemble to defeat the villains in the DCU.  In a panic, Doom and Darkseid send Galactus, Brimstone, Sentinels and other giants in to turn the tide.  The heroes who lost the earlier battles recuperate and arrive as the cavalry.  The story would have ended with a merged Earth - not like Amalgam, but with characters from Marvel and DC operating on a single Earth.  Yup, a very silly, wonky story - but it was never meant to be read by anyone.  I just wanted an excuse to draw as many heroes and match ups as possible.

    I got out of the habit of regularly drawing after that, only very occasionally putting pencil to paper - but when I did, there was usually a crossover element:

    One day, I was thinking about The Brave and The Bold, how I loved those Batman team-ups and was sorry to see the series end, despite enjoying Batman and the Outsiders, which replaced it, as well.  There were so many cool characters Batman hadn't met in the series, Captain Marvel, Martian Manhunter, Starman, etc.  I wondered what it would have been like had the series continued, so I decided to use MS Paint to make up some imaginary covers.  At first I was very strict, using only DC characters that appeared during the years that B&B was published with Jim Aparo artwork wherever possible.  Soon enough, though, my interest in inter-company crossovers came through and I began adding heroes from Marvel and elsewhere to team up with the Dark Knight Detective.   I posted these on a comics message board, and it was suggested that I start a blog featuring them.  I thought the quality of these early covers was pretty rough, but what the heck, some folks might get a kick out of them.  Thus began The Brave and the Bold: The Lost Issues!  

    I have often been asked what my personal favorite B&B Lost Issue covers are.  I looked them over and narrowed it down to my top 12:

    People seemed to like the covers, so I decided to keep things going by switching to Marvel-Two-In-One: The Lost Issues! It was fun to use Ben Grimm as an anchor, he is always enjoyable to write for.  Here are my personal top 12 MTIO Lost Issues:

    When the time came to switch to another title, I decided to blow the doors wide open with Super-Team Family: The Lost Issues!  This time I decided to present the issues with chronological numbering, rather than random as I did with B&B and MTIO.  While I was happy with what I had been able to accomplish with a simple program like MS Paint, I felt it was time to kick things up a notch.  After 350 issues or so, I bit the bullet an bought a copy of Photoshop, which really allowed me stretch creatively.  Here are my personal favorite top 24 STF covers:

    Believe it or not, there are actually Lost Lost Issues! Here are a couple of covers I did as commissions years ago, back in my MS paint days: 

    Now to fulfill a request that I often receive for a tutorial on how to create a Lost Issue.  I posted one of these for my MS Paint techniques a few years back, and here I will present how I currently use Photoshop to make a cover.  We'll use yesterday's issue, #999, a relatively simple one:

    I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to visit this blog over the years, especially those who have left comments letting me know how they feel about my covers.  Thanks also for all of the great suggestions - I may not reply to each individual team-up request (because the answer is always the same - "Maybe"), but I am constantly taking notes and many suggestions eventually make it to the blog.  Thanks to everyone who has shared my blog with others, helping the audience grow.  A big thank you to the good people at Near Mint Radio, The Clobberin' Time Podcast and Compton After Dark for inviting me to be interviewed on their programs.  Thank you very much to Michael Eury of Back Issue Magazine for giving me an awesome plug in a recent issue! Last but certainly not least, A giant thank you must go to the folks who have lent support to the blog by advertising here or with donations be it one-time or as a patron!  Every little bit helps and I can't say how much it means to me.

    If you would like to help support the blog, there are a few ways to do so - by advertising (still dirt cheap, my ads usually go for a few pennies a day), by making a one time contribution by clicking on the "Donate" button at the bottom of the page, or by becoming a Patron.  The blog of course will always be free and the easiest way of showing support is by visiting and commenting.  Thanks again for 4 1/2 fun years!  Keep coming back, there will be a new cover every single day!

    This is Ross, signing off!

    Support STF: The Lost Issues!