CGI hell

Why is it that Pixar, pioneer of the full-length computer-animated film, seems to be the only studio that can successfully pull it off? Today I took my three-year-old son to see Disney's The Wild, the story of a bunch of zoo animals forced to live in, er, the wild (this will sound familiar to anyone who saw last year's Madagascar.) It was truly, truly dire. The script was awful. It featured the voice of comedian Eddie Izzard but they forgot to give him any funny lines. The fact that he was a Koala bear "from London" called Nigel was presumably meant to be amusing enough.

Other recent atrocities I've had to suffer include Chicken Little and Ice Age 2. Of course, my son thought they were all great, though he seemed less enthusiastic about The Wild. When we got home we watched a couple of online trailers for Pixar's next one and we laughed ten times as much as we had just done at the cinema.


Those cat cartoons keep on coming

This one can be seen in the current edition of Prospect magazine.


A knights tale

Here's a bizarre thing: a thoughtful, in-depth piece on Holy Grail myths, by Associated Press Religion Writer Brian Murphy, written to coincide with the current Da Vinci Code hype, ends with a reference to a gag cartoon I drew a couple of years ago which he stumbled across on the web. Here's the article at Yahoo, the gag is below. The cartoon did the rounds of the usual magazines but remains unpublished, a fact that I've long thought was part of some global conspiracy ;-)

Hey look, that nice Mr Cartoon Fiend has posted an interview with me.


A toys story

I promised myself I wasn't going to do too many posts about kids and parenting on this blog, but, well here goes. Any parent of young children knows about picking your way across the living room avoiding toys (treading on a Lego brick with bare feet is widely recognised as one of the worst types of pain there is). Well, sometimes there are casualties. Last night, luckily while the kids were in bed, I was walking across the living room when I felt a heart-stopping crunch under foot. I looked down and, frankly, it was too tragic to be believed. I decapitated Buzz Lightyear. He looks beyond repair too. He's finally gone to infinity and, indeed, beyond. So far the loss has not been noticed, but I'm already scanning eBay for a replacement.


Going Live

Recently attended the Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival, which was quite a laugh. It was my first cartoon festival and I did some live gag cartoon drawing in front of the Great British Public for the first time. Very scary. You can't draw the cartoon as you would in a room on your own, you have to reveal information in such a way as to build up to a punchline, because there are people behind you waiting for one! It's like a mix of cartoonist and stand-up comedian. Luckily I got enough laughs to soothe my fragile ego. The festival was actually over a week ago but I'm only just getting around to writing about it because as well as picking up the cartoon festival bug I also picked up a rather virulent flu bug, as did several other sickly scribblers, and have been out of action for a week.