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August 4, 2015

It’s updates, updates, updates at Cat-Tales right now.

the-knight-of-the-mirrors

The new story, Knight of the Mirrors has finally begun.  Teased last week with a brief prologue that featured Bruce and Selina returning from a case on Wayne One, the story finally begins in earnest with Chapter 1: What Kind of Day Has It Been? on the Cat-Tales website and mobile-friendly mirror Cat-Tales.mobi.

We also had a new artwork: Ivy’s Holiday, debuted last week which was promised to be the first of several new updates.  Well, they’re here!  Beginning with Anya Uribe’s “The Babe and the Bold” heading of a number of new additions in Featured Artist and a pair of domestic scenes featuring the cats.

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Knight of the Mirrors

July 29, 2015
Batman and Superman in The Knight of the Mirrors

‘Make it thy business to know thyself, which is the most difficult lesson in the world.’ ~Don Quixote

The cover, title and prologue have dropped on what promises to be an eventful Batman/Superman outing.  Whether the World’s Finest or Versus isn’t quite clear from he cover.

The Knight of the Mirrors on the main Cat-Tales Website and mobile-friendly mirror Cat-Tales.mobi.

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Ivy’s Holiday

July 26, 2015

This beautiful new addition to the Digital Art inspired by Cat-Tales and displayed in the fan galleries is based on events in Cat-Tales Blueprints

Ivy's Holiday

Ivy’s Holiday

by CT’s original Poser artist Thundering Monkey.

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Dead Comic Writers Society

June 15, 2015

You know, it’s been a long time since I laid into DC Comics, but this just pisses me off.

Apparently our favorite company started putting advertising into its story pages yet was somehow unprepared for the world’s most predictable backlash: readers found it intrusive.  Now, I’m not going to get into an Art v. Commerce debate, because that would be inappropriate.  I’m the Catwoman writer with the non-prostitute origin who does for love what those guys do for money; it’s too meta.  I’m going to stick with how they publicly justify the decision and the glaring spotlight it shines on the company’s loss of vision and focus.  According to IGN, DC Comics head Dan Didio said “We are in the business to have ads in our books.  We’ve always been the best with ads in our books, and now we have companies interested in buying ads in books. So I think that’s a good thing.”

Jon Stewart: I'm no expert, but that sounds like bullshit

I’m no expert, but that sounds like bullshit

Now, this isn’t Ray’s Air Conditioning Repair on Interstate 42.  This is the head of DC Comics, a division of Time Warner.   I’m not saying it has to be a polished statement crafted with Sorkinian eloquence saying the thoughts and prayers of everyone at DC Entertainment, Warner Bros and parent company Time Warner goes out to the readers as they adjust to this traumatic intrusion on their comic-reading experience, but I have to wonder what ‘We are in the business to have ads in our books’ translates into behind closed doors when they’re being blunt.

The guy sitting next to me at the bagel place was able to translate the above into an appropriate corporate statement on a dare:

We are in the business to tell great stories and make phenomenally entertaining comics, and to do that competitively in today’s world means exploring different ways to deliver ads.

You could also mention that advertising keeps the issue price down, allowing the reader to buy more titles, which I’m sure the local comic shops would appreciate.  You could, in short, view the reader as the customer, not the product.  According to Mr. Didio, DC sees itself in the business of harvesting eyeballs to deliver to advertisers, not telling stories that are good enough people will pay to read them.

I wonder which of the writers and artists creating those comics would agree?   Actually, I think I know.  When you see someone come in on a title who changes everything the character has been, changes the cast and relationships and even sexual orientation, almost as if their story was written for a different character entirely in another book–possibly one that’s just been cancelled, you’ve found one.  You see, none of it matters because the character traits that made him or her beloved to the readers are not relevant, making the story compelling or even coherent is not relevant.  It’s all just equipment in a factory used to acquire eyeballs that are the true business of the company.  The comics aren’t the product, YOU ARE.  That’s presumably why they think they can change you to fit whatever their new business plan calls for.

Here’s a tip, guys, from the Dead Poets Society.  Your real writers and artists know it’s true whether they’ll tell you or not, because that’s why they chose to do that for a living instead of a dozen other things that would pay better and for companies that would treat them better.

dead-comic-writers-society

We do not tell stories because it’s cute.  We tell stories because we are members of the human race, and the human race is filled with passion. 

If you’re not, I don’t know why you went into entertainment in the first place but you’re taking up a slot that could be filled by someone who is.

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The Bat-Brain

April 18, 2015

Selina makes many references to “the Bat Brain” in Cat-tales.  She respects it as a force of nature that it is, and relishes her ability to short circuit it with a moist whisper…

batman-thebatbrain

You can’t write a series like Cat-Tales for over ten years without people sending you links to Batman stuff. Lots of Batman stuff. This print by Chris Wharton might just be my favorite. Not surprising given Her Feline Self’s prime placement.

“She gestured, slowly, the edge of her fingers just grazing her chest as she traced the border of the bikini top.  The mental picture this evoked finally brought about the wordless scowl she’d been waiting for, accentuated by a barely perceptible stiffening of the muscles just visible through the eye slits of the cowl… Batman’s tell, the tell which meant victory.  She had, once again, jostled the bat-brain until she jarred loose any thoughts of crimefighting.  That task accomplished, she returned her attention to the computer screen with a purr.”
~ Demon’s in the Details

“If you keep tickling my ear like that, I won’t be able to concentrate,” he managed hoarsely.  “Please, just… this is why there’s no sex in mysteries.  Just… sit over there,” he pointed.  “Less Irene Adler.  More Watson.” She went to the chair, laughing that, after all these years, she had finally short-circuited the great bat-brain—and at the worst possible time for Kitty’s trademark curiosity.
~ Armchair Detective

“It. Was. Infuriating.  The woman who loved him as Bruce and the Cat who fought him as Batman wanted to know what that remarkable Bat-Brain was up to, and it seemed like he was deliberately missing the point.  All he did was tell her to ‘clear her mind’ (read: watch the bat Walapang sit on its perch above Workstation One while he set a baseline for the ears’ default position).”
~ Comedy of Errors

I rubbed my forehead.  It isn’t often I can’t keep up with the Bat-brain, but this was one of those times, and the one downside to that RAW INTENSITY that is Batman is that it’s all but impossible to slow him down.
~ Comedy of Errors

“Look, I get that you’re upset about what happened to me this afternoon, but you’ve got to stop trying to ‘fix it’ retroactively, because you’re obviously not thinking clearly.  And you really shouldn’t be out in this condition.  Not if, you know, the Bat-brain is out of commission.”
~ The Gotham Rogues

“Mhm.  Confessed everything.  The Auchinclosses, the Winthrops, the Mellon-Scaifes, the Broadmoors.  He worked it out, and what he’s personally acquired for the Orphans Fund that those people never planned to give before he turned that lovely scheming Bat-brain on them comes out to 17.5 acres of Catitat, food and veterinary care for forty rescued lynxes and—because he correctly deduced that I liked to treat myself after a heist and didn’t put every single penny into the Catitat—two weeks in St. Kitts.”
~ NMK Inc

“Oh, you found a place for the Last Bimbo Hurrah?” she asked, coming closer to check out the workstation screen.  He looked up at her with a raised eyebrow and she added, “Yeah, okay, that would have sounded better if I didn’t look like a Flash Gordon cocktail waitress.  Forget how I’m dressed and impress me with the Bat-brain.  Where are you taking Treasure and Trinket?”
~ Spontaneous Generation

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It’s Almost Tax day

April 14, 2015

batman75-greetingsfrom-poison-ivy

Paper is Murder


It’s almost Tax Day and Poison Ivy would like to remind you that if you’re not e-filing, you’re a terrible person. (Also you should eat less salad.)

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The Elephant in the Room

April 1, 2015

Guys, when there’s an elephant in the room, you introduce it.  Cat-Tales has gotten stale.  I know it, you know it.  I could ride it down or I could walk away with dignity. I’m choosing the latter.  Bruce and Selina deserve that and so do you.  So Cat-Tales is over, but I am pleased to announce my brand new series starting today:
lego-bat-mite-tales
LEGO BAT-MITE TALES!
Because you don’t need fingers to fight crime, you just…

Okay, I’m still working on the tagline.  If anybody can help me, please for the love of Nutmeg, drop me an email.

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