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The Secret Sauce – Mr. Monster/Funky Crossover

posted on November 2, 2020

As I’ve noted before in this space, the Pizza Monster that’s been showing up at Montoni’s on Halloween is based on a real life Pizza Monster who materializes on All Hallows Eve at my favorite pizza palace Luigi’s. In searching for a different take on this years’s Pizza Monster arrival in the strip at Montoni’s, I thought, who better to take on the Pizza Monster than Michael T. Gilbert’s classic Mr. Monster?  So, over lunch one day, I asked Michael if would loan me his Mr. Monster for this year’s Halloween arc. Not only did he do that, but he drew Mr. M’s appearance in Funky.

Thinking you might like to see how that came about, I thought I’d uncork a jar of secret sauce and show you what we did. First the story was written and penciled leaving a place in the panel for Mr. Monster to appear. Then the pencils were Dropboxed over to Michael so he could pop-in his monster masher along with a color guide. Following that, the strips were inked and lettered, and, for total authenticity, I used Michael’s Mr. Monster typeface for the dialog in his balloons. The result was an incredibly seamless merging of characters and styles.

Michael was also kind enough to gift me his original art which I’m including here as well so you can see it in it’s full uncropped glory..

The result was a really fun crossover mash-up. Thanks again, Michael! I’ll be following-up over the next three days with the remaining panels.

Cover Me 37

posted on October 13, 2018

The Mr. Monster covers were always pretty cool… but this one was the pick of the stack. Hence, it’s Cover Me appearance.

The Batty Batom Bullpen – Michael Gilbert

posted on March 6, 2017

The next cover that’s been revealed  in the Komix Korner cover gallery is a Starbuck Jones cover by the inimitable Michael T. Gilbert. I first met Michael and by extension Mr. Monster at a dinner at Craig Russell’s house way too long ago. He and Craig were working on the Elric books at the time, and along with getting an early look at some amazing Elric pages, Michael showed me some Mr. Monster repros that he had. There’s just something nuttily endearing about good old Doctor Strongfort Stearn and his monster dispatching alter ego. If you’ve never checked out Mr. Monster, you really should do yourself a favor. I guarantee it will be totally worth it.

For his Starbuck cover, Michael chose a Robinson Crusoe themed scene that’s reminiscent of so many fifties comics where the hero would get stranded in some exotic local far from civilization. And, as is often the case when you let others play with your toys, he added the Octo-Shark to the Starbuck Jones canon. As other covers are revealed, you’ll see how the Octo-Shark reappears to vex our hero. It’s one of the things that made this project the funnest.

Michael also holds court in each issue of Alter Ego as the interlocutor at Mr. Monster’s Comic Crypt and is always a fascinating read. His tale of his search for the long-ago creator of the first Mr. Monster is worth tracking down. And if you want to see Michael’s Starbuck cover, just go to the Gallery page and give it a click. You just might want to start saving up to bid on it and make it your own while at the same time helping the Lisa’s Legacy Fund in its battle against cancer.