Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Smile!

I've been a big fan of the art of Alex Ross for many years now. He specializes in photo-realistic portrayals of superheroes, and his work is nothing short of amazing and awe inspiring.

Most of the time.

Take a look at this variant cover he did for the upcoming final issue of the Life With Archie comic.

By Stan Lee's Toupee! What the hell happened here? I don't know if I've ever seen a more sinister and disturbing piece of art. Everything about it, from the detailed rendering to the bizarre and extreme angle is downright terrifying.

First of all you've got a smug looking Jughead in the foreground silently judging you, as if he's somehow privy to all the darkest secrets you hide from the world. Then you've got Archie positively leering down at you in the most unwholesome way possible. Note that Ross even attempted to translate that grid pattern on the sides of Archie's hair into reality, with unsettling results. What did he do, press his head in a waffle iron? And then we have Betty and Veronica, both sporting unholy rictus grins as they've apparently been exposed to the Joker's Smilex Gas.

I guess the lesson to take away from here is that some comics weren't meant to be rendered realistically.

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