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“You know, my son, I wouldn’t be Emperor of the Galaxy if I didn’t have a few powers at my disposal. Imperial Battleship, halt the flow of time! For the space of three minutes, every molecule on this planet will be immobilized. But after the third minute, the green ray loses it’s power. Time will flow once more and everything will explode.”- Christopher Plummer as The Emperor. 

That sounds pretty serious. 

In 1978, shortly after the release of the first Star Wars installment, Italian director Luigi Cozzi began filming his own space opera entitled  Scontri Stellari Oltre la Terza Dimensione, which translates to “stellar clashes beyond the third dimension”, or better known as STARCRASH. 

Released today, March 9th, 36 years ago, Starcrash has literally been called one of the worst/best sci-fi movies of all time. From Wikipedia: “Kurt Dahlke of DVD Talk said, “Starcrash is a masterpiece of unintentionally bad filmmaking.  Cozzi’s Star Wars knock-off buzzes around with giddy brio, mixing ridiculous characters with questionably broad acting, an incredibly simple yet still nonsensical plot derivative to Star Wars, and budget special effects that transcend into the realm of real art. It’s a completely ridiculous movie.

The time was 1979, and the world was abuzz with droids and lightsabers and villains dressed all in black. Sci-fi was all over the place in TV, film and toys. It was a good time to be a 12 yr old boy; Buck Rogers and Battlestar Galactica were on tv, Alien, Disney’s The Black Hole and Moonraker were playing in the theaters and Micronauts were on the toy shelves. Then came Starcrash. 

But with all these other blockbusters cashing in on the sci-fi craze, how did Starcrash miss the bullseye? Was the acting that bad? Were the special effects that bad? Was the story really that bad? 

Apparently so. 

On paper, it looked just like every other sci-fi script (picture the table read scene from Ben Affleck’s movie Argo) but how could it be a miss with such a stellar cast? 

Marjoe Gortner as Akton: the world’s youngest evangelical preacher. He was an ordained minister at age 4, and has also starred in such 70’s classics as Earthquake, Food of the Gods, Viva Kinevel! and American Ninja 3: Blood Hunt.

Christopher Plummer as The Emperor: this legendary actor has made over 200 movies, most notably (and most recently) Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, A Beautiful Mind, and the classic The Sound of Music. 

Give me Rome any day. I’ll do porno in Rome, as long as I can get to Rome. Getting to Rome was the greatest thing that happened in that for me. I think it was only about three days in Rome on that one. It was all shot at once.”

Joe Spinell as Count Zarth Arn: his laundry list of greats includes The Godfather and Rocky franchises, Taxi Driver and one of the all time great slasher classics: Maniac.

Robert Tessier as Thor: the ORIGINAL tattooed bad ass; who starred in a plethora of Burt Reynolds movies such as The Longest Yard, Hooper and The Cannonball Run. He was also in The Deep and made countless guest appearances on TV programs throughout the 70s/80s. He was also in the cult classic The Born Losers in 1967 and even had a brief stint as a Mr. Clean clone for Tough Act cleaning spray.

Nadia Cassini as Queen of the Amazons: ok, well she was an Italian actress who didn’t break into the American market, but she made over 20 movies and was hot.

Speaking of hot…

Caroline Munro as Stella Star: eye candy for classics such as The Spy Who Loved Me, At Earth’s Core (with a certain actor named Peter Cushing who would go on to be in that Star Wars movie a year later…) The Golden Voyage of Sinbad and of course, Maniac with Joe Spinell. And she’s freaking hot. 

Oh, and let us not forget David Hasselhoff as Prince Simon. 

This was the Hoff’s second movie, his first being Revenge of the Cheerleaders where he played a character named “Boner”. Yup. Boner.

What about the musical score? The original music was by Oscar winning composer John Barry known for classics such as Midnight CowboyGoldfingerSomewhere in TimeDances with Wolves. The film was a mixed media of special effects including live action, miniatures, stop motion animation, green screens and animation. The plot is derivative and the acting flat and over the top. But there is never a dull moment. 

And what about the dark and evil figure dressed in black who resembles a certain character (who’s name rhymes with Varth Dader) that appears on the poster behind Akton (wielding his “energy sword”) ? Why that’s none other that Elle, a robot sherif of the Imperial Space Police. Who talks with a robotic southern accent. See? I told you, never a dull moment. 

Among the other obvious Star Wars rips throughout this masterpiece, there is a final battle sequence where space ships are making strafing runs on a gigantic space station shaped like a hand. 


Christopher Plumbers speech at the end of this $4m 94 min celluloid treat is worth the price of admission alone. But I should also note it’s on YouTube for free. 

To wrap up, I must conclude with this bit of personal reflection: I remember seeing this movie in the theater in ’79 and remarking I thought it was better than Star Wars. And I truly believed it at the time. Fast forward to about 2005, and I receive an email from an art dealer who just happened to have this original painting for sale on his website:

The memories came flooding back, and it took me all of 10 seconds to decide whether or not to add this to my collection. I couldn’t resist, and now I get to look at it every day and couldn’t be happier. Happy 36th anniversary Starcrash, if it wasn’t for you…well, I’d have a big blank space in my wall in need of filling. 

Out with the old…

…to make room for the new. Dug out some old art that was collecting dust, time now to move ’em along and make some room for new ideas. For sale:


“Monsters” flash sheet, 2014, liquid acrylic on arches 11″x14″ $200

“One In The Pink, One In The Stink” 2012, liquid acrylic on arches – 9″x12″ $150

“Big Bottom” 2013, acrylic on canvas board, custom framed 16″x20″ overall – $300

“The King” 2014 (painted on Jack Kirby’s birthday) acrylic on black canvas 8″x10″ $100

“Microman” 2013, liquid acrylic on 3 4″x5 1/2″ puzzles, matted 11″x21″ overall -$100

Untitled 6″x6″ acrylic on black canvas -$50

20141204-222201-80521891.jpg Untitled 6″x6″ acrylic on black canvas -$50

Flash 1998, colored pencil on poster board 11″x17″ – $100

Flash 2000, colored pencil on poster board 11″x14″ – $100

“Mad Green Acroyear” 2014, acrylic on black canvas 10″x8″ – $200

“Homage to the Space Race” 2012, colored pencil on coquille 16″x17″ – $150


“Chameleon” and “Electro” 2014, both acrylic on black canvas 8″x10″ – $100 each

“Derek Smalls” 2012 acrylic on black canvas 12″x12″ – $150

“U.F.O.” 2103, liquid acrylic on arches, framed 11″x11″ – $100

“Kirby Kollector Kards” print, 2013 limited edition of 10, signed and numbered, giclee on 260 gm paper, 12″x18″ – $50 each

“Ozzy” flash, 2014 liquid acrylic on arches 11″x14″ – $150

Entertaining any best offers, discounts on multiple purchases contact: and accepting Paypal using same

Thanks for looking!


How To Draw Star Wars by Lee J. Ames


This afternoon I visited my local Wonder Book & Video which is never a disappointment. Today’s haul included this gem from 1984: How To Draw Star Wars Heroes, Creatures, Spaceships and other Fantastical Things by Lee J. Ames. (He’s the author of over 50 how-to-draw books, duh)


Like every book of this nature, it breaks down the image into simple shapes for the younger artist to get a grasp on how to properly construct an image. And Lee isn’t a half bad artist either



There are instructions oh how to draw almost 30 different things from R2 to the Dagobah Swamp. Since the book came out in 84, it covers most of the ships and characters from the original trilogy.







The book covers all the human characters as well (Luke, Han, Leia, Lando) but the robots and ships are always the coolest to draw



Careful drawing Akbar, he’s very “phallic” looking…



Following the simple steps it’s impossible to draw these designs incorrectly





Finally toward the end there are instructions and examples of shading




James, Threepio and I hope you enjoyed this little tutorial! Now get to drawing…



Time to clear out the old to make room for the new, first up:


SPCHD 11″x14″ $60


6 sheet set $125







All sheets are 11″x14″ archival inks on 260gm paper accepting Paypal:



Nothing says Halloween more than monsters. And nobody did monsters better than guys like Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko. But before they made the Marvel superheroes, they made…




That’s actually not quite accurate. You see before they were called Marvel Comics, they were called Timely Comics. And before Timely, they were Atlas Comics. Atlas featured the likes of Captain America, Sub-Mariner and The Human Torch. That was the 40s. By the 50s it was about westerns and romance, and by the 60s, it was monsters monsters and more monsters.


Publisher Martin Goodman saw that EC Comics was doing well with their monster line, so he had Marvel follow suit. As sales started to wain on the monster stuff, he saw DC Comics was doing well with the supers at the time…and well, we all know what happened next…


So without further ado, here is a gallery of some ass kickin’ monster comics covers from the early days of Marvel. All of these titles would eventually switch over to the popular superheroes we know today, but for now…let’s get SCARY!

Tales To Astonish #5 1959

Tales To Astonish #6 1959

Tales To Astonish #7 1960

Tales To Astonish #8 1960

Tales To Astonish #9 1960

Tales To Astonish #10 1960

Tales To Astonish #11 1960

Tales To Astonish #12 1960

Tales To Astonish #23 1961

Tales To Astonish #33 1962

Tales Of Suspense #4 1959

Tales Of Suspense #8 1960

Tales Of Suspense #10 1960

Tales Of Suspense #20 1961

Tales Of Suspense #29 1962

Tales Of Suspense #30 1962

Journey Into Mystery #53 1959

Journey Into Mystery #56 1960

Journey Into Mystery #67 1961

Journey Into Mystery #69 1961

Journey Into Mystery #74 1961

Journey Into Mystery #77 1962

Journey Into Mystery #78 1962

Strange Tales #74 1959

Strange Tales #82 1961

Strange Tales #83 1961

Strange Tales #85 1961

Strange Tales #94 1962

Strange Tales #96 1962

Strange Tales #100 1962

Happy Halloween…


Mazinger Z

Yes, it’s that time of year again. It’s October, which means the bestest of all holidays is coming up. That’s right, it’s almost Christmas! But in the meantime, Halloween is less than a month away, and it’s time to break out some goodies.


This is the Shogun Warrior Ben Cooper costume from 1977. This is Mazinga and it’s a very thin vacuum formed mask, slightly different from the usual stiffer plastic they used in earlier releases.


This also appears to be a J.C. Penny catalog item, because the box is radically different as well. Made of a tougher corrugated cardboard, the front is decorated with a generic sampling image of other costumes


The mailing box is also much larger than the in-store ones, with no die cut opening on the front to see the costume inside



The costume itself is the typical “flame retarded” vinyl and cotton, and as is another typical occurrence with these types of costumes the fabric part gets pretty shredded after 30+ years



There is also a small note attached to the box indicating you have to supply your own damn boots. What a rip off


And as always…PLAY HARD



Prints for sale

I recently got a new run of flash prints in, all are high quality inks on 245gsm archival watercolor paper stock and are 11″x14″ and ready for framing. Prints are $30+$6 priority mail shipping, int’l orders please email for shipping costs. Paypal preferred user ID is

These prints are first and foremost flash sheets, but also make a great gift for the tattooer in your life. Thanks for looking!

“Evel Knievel” 2014

“Spider-Man” 2013

“Star Wars” done on May 4, 2014


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