Saturday, March 14, 2009

Mindbomb: Apocalypse Then and Now

Well, my childhood dream came true- Kamandi is finally animated. Of course, it's just for a few minutes in a weird episode of Batman: Brave and the Bold entitled "Dawn of the Deadman." I can't quite figure out the premise of the episode, but the winks are multitudinous. You have Boston Brand and Gentleman Ghost, time travel, walk-ins, astral projection, Doctor Canus and more (no Ben Boxer, alas). This is episode 1.7 and it aired 1/16.

What's more the voice actor for Kamandi is from my old stomping grounds, Quincy. In fact the very first thing I did when New England Comics (the fine folks who brought you The Tick) opened their first store in Quincy was complete my Kamandi kollection.

My first issue of Kamandi was #30, which came out 34 years ago this month. Quite an initiation into Earth AD; the story was entitled "UFO: The Wildest Ride Ever," and dealt with UFO abductions, stargates, genetic engineering, terrorism, and much more. Read more on this bizarre milestone of a funnybook here.

Although Kamandi was already sort of made into a cartoon with Thundarr the Barbarian, I think the time is ripe for the real thing. Those apocalyptic memes resonate in this time like no other since the mid 70s.


  1. as long as its not so dark as a guy fox (V For Vendetta) but, lets be honest here, with watchmen on the silver screen and silver cord, its not looking good (literally) at all...

  2. The Tick cartoon was a childhood fave of mine, though I never read the comic. Spoon!

    Magneto's Mutation Machine in the X-Men movie was located in the Torch of Isis, like the time portal in this episode.

    Dr. Canus looks like McGruff the crime dog. Other way around, really.. Okay, that wasn't necessary to point out.

    Faceless Mason.. Er, "Gentleman Ghost" doppelganger appeared in a recent Mario game, as "Count Bleck". Seems to be a recurring theme, the top hat, scepter and monocle-clad character in children's media...

    I literally laughed out loud when GG put Batman in a coffin with a Cross of Lorraine on it. I must be going bonkers. "Good god", I said. I had actually just made a post about "death and rebirth" initiations...

    Batman: The Brave and the Bold resonates 222 which Aferrismoon has pointed out is Obama's special number..

  3. Speaking of Isis, I saw this story and thought of this site:,0,848237.story

    "Pentagon plans blimp to spy from new heights":

    "The Air Force has signed an agreement with DARPA to develop a demonstration dirigible by 2014. The prototype will be a third as long as the planned surveillance craft -- known as ISIS, for Integrated Sensor Is the Structure, because the radar system will be built into the structure of the ship."

  4. Cadbury commercials, throwing down some subversive fun, nearly a 1:30 before they drift in the Sign. cadburied at the airport

    The ad punks threw down the 33(15:33 on the side of the road"The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility." bible passage)
    , K2 on stairs... theirs far more to it but i'm still searching through books to figure most of the symbolism out. Though the commercial is ripe.

    Its old though anyone stumble upon this already.

  5. In my little boy mind of the 70's, I imagined that Kamandi was an alternate earth version of the DC Joe Simon character Prez who didn't last very long in the DCU. And as a Planet of the Apes nut, Kamandi fed those visions as well
    But what grabbed me in the clip you posted - with Apes and Prezidents swirling in my mind - was the location of the ray weapon! I instantly recalled an issue of an Ape comic by Doug Moench and Mike Ploog entitled "Up the Nose Tube to Monkey Trash" where the characters ascend Mt Rushmore and enter a chamber through the left nostril of President Lincoln!! The Chamber happens to be the final refuge of the last president at the time of whatever disaster befall the Ape world.
    So today's lesson would seem to be that if you ever find yourself trapped in some post-apocalyptic world where animals have evolved and acquired the ability to speak - ALWAYS look in the left nostril of giant statues for something that will help you out of a jam.
    Oh and the title of that story obviously left an impression on others as well because googling it led to a blog by name of a talented CGI artist that i enjoyed reading - just love how the internets work!

  6. Right on, David! I love those old Apes books- I did a couple stories on them in Comic Book Artist. Actually, Apes, Kamandi and Conan was my Holy Trinity back the day. Hell, I even bought Kamandi after Kirby left.

  7. I have a question for Chris and the board...board sort of sounds like borg the way I phrased it but I meant comment/blog board.

    My question is...

    What does a river represent in myth and just plain esoteric symbols?

  8. Anony 10:48pm

    There is really no "one static meaning" to esoteric symbols.

    I don't know of ANY esoteric / occult symbol that doesn't harbor within it at least 2 different meanings depending on your viewpoint.

    What is the specific context in which "The River" symbol is used?

    That accompanying context will almost always guide you to the philosophy associated with or the intended underlying meaning of the symbol.

    for example I could use this phrase in an esoteric work:
    "The underground river (or stream)..."

    the accompanying words and the genre of the work imply to the reader that it is intended to mean it in the sense of "hidden wisdom". So it is also depending on the wider context of the paragraph that the potential symbol appears in and the overall tone of the body of work that it is in.

    And then it might not be a "symbol" at all - such as if the phrase was used in a documentary about underground water.


  9. Well I'll keep pointing my Ankh towards the river's good for that, finding water that is.

  10. See the problem with esoteric study is that nothing is ever really made clear to the student, or reader. Sometimes the words just carry within them that meaning, that spirit, that essence of the subject.

    And then sometimes, they are just vacuous, as in empty.

    For most it is very hard to distinguish the subtle difference.

    And then for some, almost entirely due to practice, it comes easier. It is something they just immediately see.


  11. vacuous is an interesting choice of words there for a symbol. a plant vacuole is the rigid membrane( also tonoplasts ) that stores many plant nutrients and also keeps out water. turgor pressure(inside water pressure) determines a lot as well. so the living water inside a plant cell is key as well as the water outside is key. for outside water pressure is resisted to keep the plant cell alive. water and rivers being a thing of life in symbols. symbols that are worshiped which have no inherent meaning are like fake fruit. or as you say vacuous. I find it sad that Egyptians were demonized for looking at the river or waters as sexual. For sex brings about life or is a needed part for an organism such as humans to survive. The earth is the ultimate symbol and we are meant to interpret that. We need each other and the earth. That in itself is symbolic. Everything else beyond that is symbols for the sake of symbols. and one has to wonder if past the most basic symbols....such as water and say the Fibonacci series of numbers...all else is just as you say.... vacuous

  12. lol nice one once again Christopher

    nice to see Kamandi aka Thundarr the Barbarian left an impression on you like it did on me managed to track down the series down on the net last year

    here rs links for the cartoon