Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Give These Men (and Woman) Some Oscars!

Lord of the Rings: Return of the King is the most exhilarating, most spectacular thing I've ever seen on screen. Taken collectively, the entire Lord of the Rings trilogy is a film that may well be regarded as THE greatest film ever made. And I don't say this lightly.

When Fellowship of the Ring was first shown in 2001, I did not have the chance to see it. I knew it was a good movie, but I didn't realize how good it was until I actually saw it in December of 2002. From its first showing until then, I read about how it was knocking people off their seats, blowing people away. Whilce Portacio even gave a rave review of it in my old message board. I just knew then I had to see it. But since I missed it in the theaters, I could do with the next best thing: watch it on DVD.

The pirated version of it appeared almost immediately after the movie came out, but I didn't watch it then. The original 2-Disc DVD was released August of 2002, but I didn't watch it then either. Leinil, Edgar and the guys watched it at Nil's place during one of our DVD-marathon things, but I hid in the computer room, read some Preacher and went to sleep. I wanted to watch the Extended Edition DVD of Fellowship, which was due to arrive December of that year. Even after getting the DVD Gift set, I joked that I would wait for the Extended editions of both Two Towers and Return of the King in 2004 before I watched all of it one by one in one day. I recall everyone wanted to kill me. he.he.

After watching the Extended DVDs of both Fellowship and Two Towers and after marvelling at how the filmmakers pulled off such a masterpiece, I swore we'd watch Return of the King as soon as it arrived in the country. Because of the Philippine Film Festival, all foreign films opening in December will be moved to January. There were some advanced screenings in December, but tickets were expensive. But I didn't care. I wanted to watch it and I wanted to watch it NOW! So thanks to Karen Kunawicz, we were able to see it on December 18. I had promised Gary Mayorlago to buy tickets from him for a December 22 showing, but I didnt' realize we had a family thing on that day so I had to forgo watching it for a second time. Because one time just isn't enough.

And after seeing it, I felt inspired, alive, exhilarated, sad, and driven to tears at the sheer beauty and power if it. Sean Astin's performance as Sam Gamgee needs special mention. His role as Frodo's loyal and trusting gardener is one of the most heartfelt and moving performances I've seen. Of all the performances on Return of the King, his was the one that stayed with me for a long time. Allright, I forgive him for that lameass speech at the end of Two Towers, but he more than makes up for it here. He deserves an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. At least!

But the man behind it all, Peter Jackson, deserves an Oscar for Best Director and Best Picture (all the Lord of the Rings movies collectively). He managed to pull off a near impossible task. Create a epic film of monumental proportions which hammers every single person, fan and critic alike into submission, leaving little or no room at all for the denial of this film's greatness.

And if there is an award out there for the Single Coolest Moment by A Hero Captured on Film then it has to go to Orlando Bloom as Legolas. Watch the film, you'll understand why.

Mirando Otto also deserves a special award for the Best Girl Power Booster Moment. What a powerful moment that was not only for the women in the audience but for the guys as well.

My wife insists on giving Viggo Mortensen a Viggo Mortensen Award for being so very VIGGO in the film. Can't argue with that!

Never have I been so moved to applaud as much as I did in any movie. And here I applauded many times. What an achievement this film has been and what an experience it was to watch.

Tuesday, December 30, 2003


New Look for the New Year! I'm being forced to learn HTML against my will...or more accurately, I always wanted to make my own template for my blog, which is difficult without learning a certain amount of HTML and a certain understanding of blogger codes. It's taken me two years and I think I've finally gotten it. he.he. Better late than never.

Happy New Year All!!

Films and TV Series I Wish Were on DVD

I've been collecting favorite movies on DVD for several years now and with this format's potential for archiving programs and preserving them in pristine condition for a long time makes such a collection worthwhile. A lot of my favorite shows have turned up on DVD in the past several years like Ed Wood, SHOGUN, The Mission, Highlander TV Series, but there are still a whole lot more I'd like to see. I wish the companies who own the rights to these shows/movies release them because I'd buy them in an instant!


This is a British weekly police show set in the English countryside in the 60's. It started way back early 90's and it's still going. I was able to watch only the first 5 seasons but I really liked every episode I saw. Maybe the simple life in a countryside setting appeals to me. I wonder how they can maintain the 60's era thing with now more than 10 seasons with Christmas shows each season.

The Brittas Empire

Another British show! These guys rock, honestly! The Brittas Empire is one of the funniest shows I've seen. Some people are annoyed by Chris Barrie, but I kind of find him hilarious. He was last seen in Tomb Raider: Cradle of Life. Actually, the DVD is already available in the UK, but my TV can't handle PAL as yet.

Mr. Belvedere

Another British actor! In an American show. Wasn't really a huge huge hit in the 80's when it first came out, but I found the show to be strangely compelling. I even made a whole site out of it. Check it out! All seasons on DVD. I'll get two copies!!

Let It Be

If there's one Beatles DVD I would like to really have, it's THIS one. I had a betamax copy of this in the 80's but I've worn it out after continous viewing.

There are a lot of other titles I have in mind, but these are the ones that immediately spring to mind. :)

Sunday, December 28, 2003

One Year!

It's exactly ONE YEAR since Ilyn and I got married. One year! I can't believe a year has passed so quickly. And before you know it, I'll be in this blog again next year talking about it. Any minute now! It's been a great year! And one of the most productive years I've had creatively. And next year will be even more so. This January sees Crest Hut Butt Shop #3, three years after #2! But I'll make sure that #4 won't take THAT long again! There are lots of other projects in the works and write them all here as soon as release is definite.

Congrats to Arnold Arre and Cynthia Bauzon who got married yesterday! Sorry we couldn't be there. We wished we were! One of these days we HAVE to celebrate our wedding anniversaries together! :)

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

San Pablo Comics Art Festival on TV

Clockwise from left top: Azrael our emcee, Wilson Tortosa and fan Architect Arlan Esmena, Mr. Mandy Marino, me and host Bobby Alvero.

I stumbled on the telecast of the Comics Festival we recently had by accident just a while ago and I managed to catch the latter half of the show. That's why I only got a few pics. It was being shown on Channel 21, Telmarc Cable. I was really glad that they gave a lot of members of the group air time and have their say on the festivities. I don't know when it's showing again. I think I better call the host and ask for a copy for posterity's sake.

Cool! :)

Tuesday, December 23, 2003


A fried of mine emailed me tonight with some Christmas greetings. Another email of his arrived at the same time and it triggered my Norton Antivirus scanner, saying that it contained the JS.Fortnight.D virus and that it will automatically quarantine it. After being safely convinced that the virus was contained, I opened my friend's email in EUDORA, the email program I normally use, but not intending to open any attachments it may contain. But something strange happened. Every email, even old ones, cannot be opened. I closed the program, and when I opened it again, Eudora informed me that the Inbox is corrupted and prompted me to build a new one. And when I did, all the messages in the Inbox has gone.

Oh Shit!

I normally go through all my emails as soon as they come in, but I had been so busy the past month that I let my messages accumulate in my Inbox unfiled and some of them unopened and unread. I had been intending to open them at a later time and reply one by one. I think I've had anywhere from 100 to 150 messages in my inbox tonight. And some of them I know to be too important to be deleted, and some of them needing reply very soon. But now they're all gone!

To my friend...jeez, man. You know you're one of my best friends but aw man.... still I know it's not your fault. Just be careful opening those damned attachments. As for me, I didn't open any attachments and I handled the virus as properly as I know. I guess Eudora acted up at the wrong moment. I probably should have filed the important emails as soon as I got them.

To anyone who has emailed me in the past month or so, please send your emails again.


Monday, December 22, 2003

Siglo Inquirer Review

'Brave, bold step'

"Siglo: Freedom"

Edited by Dean Francis Alfar and Vin Simbulan
Mango Books, Quest Ventures and Kestrel IMC, Inc.
2003, 140 pages

ONE look at the elegantly spare cover, and readers will know that "Siglo: Freedom" is unlike anything else out there. Nothing indicates that it is a collection of comic-book stories. The loaded title, the beguiling design -everything about "Siglo" says this is a project that takes itself very seriously.

And readers should take it seriously as well, because "Siglo" is a brave, bold step forward for Philippine comic books.

For the entire review:

Sunday, December 21, 2003

My comments feature is down again. No real problem really. Just letting people know so that they don't think I closed it intentionally. I'd never do that, specially after some interesting albeit frustrating discussions there lately.


Last night was the launch of Siglo: Freedom at Greenbelt 3, Makati. Siglo: Freedom is this huge comics anthology of stories of freedom told through the eyes of Filipinos through the last 100 years. I was given the chance to contribute a story set in in the 1940's. I was glad to have been given this decade because I felt it was the one where I could tell a story that I really wanted. I wanted to tell the story of a makapili played by a fictional ancestor living a true family legend. As to what that means, I would suggest you just read the book. He.he. Right now available at ComicQuest Megamall, but will soon be available nearly everywhere books are sold. Or you can catch us at the grand launching on January 30 in Intramuros.

From left: Andrew Drilon, Marco Dimaano, Our Benefactor Mr. , Jason Banico, Nikki Alfar, Gerry Alanguilan, Dean Alfar, Carlo Vergara, Elbert Or and Yang Vergara.

Dean Alfar (standing), his wife Nikki, and Richard.

Oliver Pulumbarit, Carlo Vergara and me.


Footnote with regards to my entry of December 15:

Jonas has suggested a put a bullet style of presenting my points, maybe in the form of a FAQ. My long and winding meanderings on my views on Filipino art may be too meandering for other people to fully grasp. Once again, I am baffled by the feedback of my opinion. Because feedback has nothing to do at all with what I'm saying, I'm accused of things that I'm not doing, I'm attributed sayings I never really said. Feedback falls so far from the real point of my articles that I'm convinced that they never really read my words at all. It's terribly frustrating.

Friday, December 19, 2003


If you don't see the comments feature, it wasn't my doing. Something seems to be wrong with the service provider. Maybe they're down or something. Hopefully it comes back soon. In the meantime, having it down like this makes loading of this page really slow. And for that I apologize. Hang on. If it doesn't come back in the next couple of days, I'm getting Haloscan.

Oh and if you don't see me at Friendster anymore, that was MY doing. It just wasn't working anymore for me. I think it's a great idea, but I find myself finding less and less time for it. Just a note for some people: Friendster doesn't allow profiles for groups, animals or fictional characters, only individuals. It's in their Terms of Service, please go read it. You should also place pictures of YOU, not drawings, pictures of actors, ducks, chickens or whatever. You should also put your real names not some lameass codenames. How else can people find you and know it's YOU? Nag friendster ka pa.

I'm also getting rid of my cellphone soon and I won't be getting another one. Actually, my old cellphone has been acting up the past several months and in fact, I'm using a friend's phone at the moment which I need to return very soon. I can always buy a new one, but when my old phone got broken, I was forced to go phoneless for a while and I sort of liked the feeling. I realize I can get on without it. I remember the reason why I got it in the first place, which you can read in this section of the archive dated February 22, 2001.

Basically, I got a cellphone because I was always online and Ilyn was getting pissed getting a busy signal on my landline all the time. Another reason was that she was working in Alabang and I couldn't tell her if I was going to be late picking her up because of traffic. Now I never get a busy signal because of my DSL, and Ilyn and I are now both living together. Certainly there are more uses of a cellphone than that, but none of the reasons are enough anymore for me to maintain one. More often than not, cellphones are used to tell people what you can't tell them in person, or if you wish to change the time of a meeting with impunity or call off a meeting all together. I suppose I may get disadvantaged about certain things if I do let go of my phone, specially if nearly all of the people I know have one, but I think I can live with it. It's just as easy to just email me or call me on my land line. It may just take a bit longer, but I've managed to live so long under those kinds of circumstances without much problems so I see no reason why I can't again.

If anyone wishes to get in touch with me, its so easy to do so. There's my site,, my message board, and you can always email me at gerryalanguilan at

Dean Alfar, one of editors and writer for Siglo, wrote this very concise (and funny!) account of how Siglo: Freedom came to be:

I'm really proud of the book and I'm extremely glad and honored they asked me to be part of it. I can't wait to do it again next year. :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Submissions and Stuff

I receive a lot of emails with artwork asking for critique. It may take some time, but I get around to offering my thoughts on all the artwork sent to me eventually. It's gratifying to see really talented folks getting interested in drawing comics and I try my best to be honest about my assessment of their work so it will help them improve. The thing is, some people send me samples telling me they want critique, but deep in their minds all they really want is praise. Because as soon as I spot a weakness and point it out, I'm bombarded with all kinds of excuses. "It's my style", "That's the way I really draw" and some such nonsense. They get pissed, they go away, I never hear from them again. Those who send me the artwork through the postal mail I take much more time and effort to critique and there I really have a go at it. So far, all those who received feedback from me seem to appreciate it and show sincere desire to improve and that's good.

Sometimes, I receive scripts. Some of them are even sent to me by my friends asking for feedback. Unlike critiquing art, critiquing scripts take a very long time and almost all the time, I never get to offer feedback. It just too difficult and takes too much time. I spend most of the day working, an hour or so to email and Internet, and the rest for other duties around the house like cooking and stuff like that. So if I can't read scripts, it's not because I have something against these people, its just because my human limitations just prevents me from exerting more effort than I can possibly give. So if you intend on sending me a script to ask me what I think, please don't. Most of the time I'll just be nice and say I'll get back to you, but after a month or couple of months of not hearing from me you'll just be pissed and wish me bodily harm.

This is a panel from City of Light, a short story I drew for Unbound Comics a few years ago. I was going over the files in my computer and found some art I haven't seen in a while and I thought I'd put it here.

I've been thinking a lot about this choice I've made, that of being a comics creator over every other option I have had. I remember showing up at a former classmate's house with my portfollio way back in 1994. I still had that long hair and I was enthusiastically showing my drawings. My classmate looked at me looking really amazed. Not at my drawings, but the fact that I was doing this stuff "AT MY AGE". At my AGE, I had that long hair. At my AGE I was still messing around with comics. Not too long ago I met another former classmate at a local mall and we got to talking about our respective careers. The way he mentioned "comics" sounded so condescending that all of a sudden as I looked at the face of this "friend" I had known ever since I was a kid, I realized I didn't know him at all. Not in any way that really matters.

During both times I was never hesitant, I was never ashamed to tell anyone what my job was. Maybe they'll like it better or maybe "GET" it better if I told them I was an architect instead but no, I dont' exist to to give way to the ignorance of other people. I write and draw comics. That's what I do. It pays the bills, I don't neglect any of my responsibilities, I abide by the laws, I don't smoke and I don't drink and I don't do drugs . Beyond that, I can do whatever the fuck I want and I don't have to make excuses about what I do for a living just so other people would feel more comfortable towards me.

Monday, December 15, 2003

Several people have asked me if I was going to the C3Con held December 13-14 at Megamall. I think I was asked this question last year during the first con and my answer is still the same. And the answer is I cannot. I think I have to explain further the reasons for this decision. Some people are already aware of my stand on Filipinos doing manga in my article that can be found here. If some of you are have not yet read it, you might want to so you will get a better understanding of what follows.

I have gotten a lot of feedback, half of them negative, about that article. And the disappointing thing is, many of those negative reactions have been given without fully understanding what I have written. Some of my friends have suggested that I try to write it as simply and as succinctly as I can so that I cannot be misunderstood. I will try. I understand how fans of Filipino manga comics like Culture Crash can be offended by what I have written. But I do have to say with all honesty that I have written that article with no malice or hateful intent. Offering a differing opinion is by no means an indication of an agenda on my part to bring anyone and their accomplishments down. Any piece of work done by anyone (and that includes specially me) has to stand some sort of criticism. For how will any artist improve if all he heard was praise?

My article was directed not only at Filipino artists doing manga, but every single Filipino artist who compromises originality to following something that is popular. And these would include the Jim Lee clones, the Dave McKean clones, and any artist who subverts his own artistic identity to adapt the artistic identity of others. It just so happens that there are just too many Filipino artists doing manga that it overwhelms everything else.

There is also feedback, angry feedback at that, that I have no right to write such an article when I myself am drawing characters like the X-men, and Superman, clearly American characters and I am drawing (or at least inking) them in an American style. What many fans of manga don't fully realize is how unique, how distinctive and how incomparable manga is as a style of illustrating comics.

The Japanese artists have accomplished something very few nationalities have ever achieved in their own countries, and that is establish a unique and instantly recognizable style of comic art. Although each Japanese artist has a particular style that identifies who he is, manga as a whole has numerous similarities that unite them all into a single movement of comics art. Just one look at a Japanese artist's work and without knowing who he is, and seeing perhaps just a little portion of his work, you instantly say, "that's MANGA". No other country currently producing comics can boast of the same unity in style that the Japanese have. Certain European countries have developed a "clean style" of illustration and for a while in US Comics in the 60's Jack Kirby set the standard for American comics art, but those movements have not fully developed because of other movements of differing styles of art that always emerge in their part of the world. Filipinos themselves enjoyed having a united style in the 50's up the 70's. But the emergence of new artists have taken their styles in wildly different directions.

So to consider my style of drawing as "American" would be unfounded because there is no such thing as an American style of comics art, in my opinion, specially currently. There are simply too many artists drawing in wildly differing styles that it would be impossible to find similarities between them, enough similarities that we can lump them into one single "American" style. For instance, take a look at the work of Kevin Nowlan, compare it to that of Alex Ross, then compare it to that of George Perez, then on to Robert Crumb, and then on to Gahan Wilson. No similarities between them whatsoever.

Definitely my own personal artwork has its influences. One can find traces of this artist or that artist in my work if he looks hard enough. But I'd like to think I've developed my drawing to the point that I can call the end result truly my own. I think I have developed enough affectations in the way I draw that when people see my work they instantly know that it was done by me. Is my artwork Filipino? It's not for me to say, but I'd like to think it was because I'm a Filipino and I created it, and I am drawing in a way that no other artist is drawing. I try very, very hard to find an original way of drawing and to a certain extent, I think I've done just that. And I have no words to express how fulfilling that is as an have your own identity. I'd like to think that a lot of other artists out there currently making comics would definitely find more fulfillment if they just tried to find their own personal identity, to try to draw in a way that no other artist is drawing, instead of drawing in a way other people draw.

To me, "manga" is a uniquely Japanese creation. And it's an incredible creation. A lot of amazing comics have been produced by Japanese creators that have left lasting impact. It's wildly popular and it has influenced a lot of artists outside Japan. And certainly Filipinos are not immune. An influx of Japanese influenced comics have been flooding the market over the past several years and more are produced with each passing year. To me, manga will always be Japanese and regardless of how popular it is in the Philippines, regardless of how many Filipinos choose to use manga in drawing their comics, manga will never be Filipino. It should never be. Because we did not create it. We did not originate it. We must be proud to call something our own only if we have created it ourselves. It doesn't matter if these comics are written in tagalog or are set in Philippine locations and the characters ride in jeeps and tricycles, or if the Philippine flag is fluttering in the background. They're *still* manga. The unique characteristics of manga make the look of the art too Japanese to be considered truly ours.

As an artist, I have decided not to follow the direction the popular trend of comics art in the Philippines is taking, led by the many Pinoy manga comics. It is a purely personal decision on my part and it's a decision I had no difficulty making. I have taken criticism that I have not given Culture Crash et al credit that is due them. All right then. I give them credit for bringing comics back into the popular consciousness of Filipinos. I credit them for bringing together both fans and creators to celebrate comics in their conventions. They have terrific artists and I admire their enthusiasm, determination and endurance in creating their comics. But I cannot support the artistic decisions that they have made. Nor can I be part of any activity that promotes their art and pinoy manga in general. And this is why I did not attend the C3con last year, I did not attend it this year, and I will not attend any future C3cons. To attend will mean I am supporting Filipinos who do manga, and it's something I cannot do. What Culture Crash may not realize (or maybe they do) is that they are in a position to greatly influence the artistic growth of many young artists today. The thought that many young impressionable artists will be influenced to draw manga instead of finding their own unique original voice is something that I find truly appalling. And that is something I cannot support.

It is true that this movement has electrified the local comics industry and many of them have been commercially successful. Today, all of this is good for the industry, but I fear that there may be long term damage done to us, as Filipino artists and our artistic integrity. We are a talented people. We excel in many forms of art and I'd like to think that we Filipinos are one of the BEST when it comes to comics art. I think we can do better than just do what other artists do. We can create something we can call truly our own. We can create works of art that no other artist in the world has ever thought up. We can create comics that other artists from other countries will seek to emulate. And we can do this only by striving to create something original, something new and fresh and different. We can do this if we WANT to.

Some people have said that I may just be envious of Pinoy manga's success and that I'm bitter and all that. Nothing can be farther from the truth. There is nothing in their accomplishments and achievements that I am envious of. I can never be envious of something I don't believe in. Envy connotes the desire to want what they want. And there is nothing they have that I can possibly want. Acclaim? Fame? I have no use for that. Everyone else who wants it can have it because they're not for me. Commerical success? I'm doing fine on my own thank you and no one need not worry needlessly about my state of financial affairs because all is in order.

I'd like to think there is hope. Many people have pointed out to me that sometimes artists have no choice. They are influenced by what they grew up with, and cannot help but draw what they grew up reading. And I agree with that. So its my fervent hope that these artists discover and open their minds to other forms of comics art. Not just comics art, but all forms of visual art. I have been extremely gratified upon seeing artists like Philip Tan and Wilson Tortosa, who both started drawing manga but very quickly found their own voice and now they are producing excellent and highly original works, worthy of admiration. It is one of the main reasons why my group and I have held the Comics Festival here in San Pablo. It was to show the many kinds of comics art that have been produced here in the Philippines throughout our history. We recognize that a lot of younger artists have probably not have heard of names like Francisco Coching or Alex Nino, or Mar Amongo, or Nestor Redondo at all. So we took the opportunity to introduce the works of these remarkable (and unique) artists to a whole new generation of artists.

Next year, we will be having a much bigger festival early in December which we will feature even more artwork from our comics veterans and new artists, but also artwork from painters, sculptors, illustrators, photographers. We will also be launching a new project that will be created in the spirit of expanding the artistic horizons of young and old artists alike. Stay tuned for more details on that one! :)

Sunday, December 14, 2003

I just got home from an interview with SWITCH, a program on Celestron Cable, San Pablo City. Those interviewed with me were Komikeros Rick Malijan and Jonas Diego. Switch was supposed to interview us last Sunday during the Festival but due to some technical reasons, the interview was moved to today. We talked about everything that had to do with being a comics artist and how we came to be known as "Komikeros".

As I've explained here previously, "Komikero" was a name I thought would be nice domain name for my personal site. It was also what I named my message board. The Laguna Artists Group being named "Komikero" happened by pure accident and it was something I didn't intend. But it just sort of caught on, which is just allright, I suppose.

For those in San Pablo, our episode on Switch will be shown 7:00pm this Saturday, December 20. Unfortunately, I won't be able to see it since I'll be in Makati for the SIGLO launch.

Speaking of Siglo: Tales of Freedom, the 100 page anthology for which I contributed a 10 page story about a fictional ancestor living a non-fictional family legend, is now available at ComicQuest. I haven't seen the book yet, but I've already received messages from people I know that they really like the book and really liked the story I did. And it's really nice to hear. The first time I got involved with the project, I felt a nice vibe from it and I knew that it would result in something good. I hope to get my copies really soon.

Thursday, December 11, 2003

The festival pictures have been uploaded at last!

I'm still writing the account of everything that happened before and during the festival. It's taking a while so I decided to go and upload the pictures first, which tell its own story in its own way. Thanks again to all those who came. Thanks to my Komikero Comrades, you all did fantastic work. Thanks to all those who helped and supported us in making such an enjoyable event for everyone. See you all next year!

Meanwhile...WASTED can now be ordered directly from COLD CUT DISTRIBUTION. This is for all those folks in the US and elsewhere abroad who have been wanting to buy a copy. Now's your chance! Order soon as supplies are limited.

PS. Noel F. Lim, I haven't seen Season 3 of Sopranos yet. I hear it's still good.

Monday, December 08, 2003

I can't believe how great the festival turned out. I have lots of pics and lots of stories to share but I'll take a breather first. Azrael and Ryan and a friend of Ilyn stayed the night. I'll put up pages later on about the event. Thanks for all those who came and all those who helped and gave their support. My Komikero all did great. Great job! For now, I'll rest. he.he.

Saturday, December 06, 2003

Tomorrow is the festival! It drizzled today but I've gone beyond being driven crazy because of it. If you are coming to the festival...bring an umbrella! :)

Want to know how to get here?


Take care!

Thursday, December 04, 2003

Know what? So what if it rains eh? SO WHAT? The festival is happening whether it rains or not so if it rains, let's just take it and not worry about it. What's a little water eh? As to those who took the streamer, I hope they fucking choke on it.

I hope to wrap up this issue of Superman today so I can concentrate on Festival business again starting tomorrow. The guys will be coming over and we will be working on packaging more artwork, making IDs, making signs, me making the online map. The banners should also be arriving tomorrow. These banners are different from the streamers in that they are vertical and are in full color printed from a graphic file I made in Photoshop last weekend. Hopefully, I can still finish the SAMPALOK drawing. HOPEFULLY!

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Some idiot took down our streamer. Not good.
It rained this morning. NOT good.

I'd rather have idiots taking down our streamers than having it rain on the day.

Monday, December 01, 2003

I did some last piece of Comics Festival business today before I concentrate totally on this Superman issue for several days until Friday. I hope to be finished with the issue long before then because there is one more piece of art I need to finish for the exhibit at the festival. Me and Geoff picked up some streamers I had made a week before. We brought it to the Municipal hall to get the necessary permits to get it displayed on the steets. We installed one near Pizza Hut, and another at the unfinished pedestrian overpass in front of Central School. We had to install it as soon as possible to get maximum exposure before the Festival itself. Right there in the picture is our co-organizer Mr. Marino's worker Mario and on the left is GEOFF! Thanks pare! It was tough getting up there because the stairs are unfinished making it difficult to climb.

Sunday, November 30, 2003


Before anything else, I have a message for FLIM. I got your text...I coudn't reply because my phone is...well, broke. Yeah, I can help you go to any place where I've taken my pictures. Just tell me when...just as long as it's after the festival.

And speaking of the festival....ONE MORE WEEK TO GO!

It hasn't been raining the past several days and we all certainly hope this weather holds until Sunday. We spent the past couple of days putting together the artwork that we will be displaying. 180 pieces of artwork can be displayed, but we've only processed only 154 so far. The guys stayed overnight last night to do this as I inked, trying to finish Superman. Lots more Festival stuff to take care of this week, but I gotta set aside a couple of days to finish this Superman issue. I hope to be finished with everything as soon as I can so I can think of nothing else but the festival until Sunday.

Friday, November 28, 2003

The EIGHTH Lake of San Pablo? I've always wondered about this deep valley I pass by everytime I would go to Los Banos. This valley can be seen before leaving San Pablo on the left where the Soriano Industries compound is located. Over the years I heard that it was simply a valley, or a river, and the most tantalizing thing I heard that it was in fact, the mysterious 8th lake of San Pablo City, a city that has always considered itself as the "City of Seven Lakes".

I had a chance to go to Soriano Industries this afternoon because Mr. Frank Soriano is one of the generous sponsors of our Comics Art Festival. He donated a certain amount of money, and more importantly, some coco fiber that we would need to install on our bamboo stands where we will be displaying our artwork. I asked the foreman there about the valley and he told me with great pride, that it was in fact a lake. It wasn't simply a valley, or a river, it was indeed a lake called "TIKIW". I rushed excitedly over to the edge for a view and there it was right below me. The water is small, and is nearly hidden by a huge sheet of water lily, but it was a spectacular sight nonetheless. I've heard no legends about this lake, no stories, no fairy tales of any sort. In fact, many people in San Pablo don't even know it exists.

I think people SHOULD find out about it, how beautiful it is, and to promote the need to preserve it. An idiot politician almost turned this place into a garbage landfill not too long ago. This same idiot politician was the one who made real estate theft legal in the Philippines. What a TOTAL idiot.

I think this lake would bear some research and as soon as this festival is over, I'll visit this place once again and find out all I can about it.

Thursday, November 27, 2003

I stayed over at Leinil's place for a couple of days to blast through some pages of Superman Birthright. I always enjoy staying over there because almost always we'd have other artists over like Ryan Orsoco, Ed Tadeo, and Augy De Lara and we'd work on our projects. We entertain ourselves as we work by having something on the TV and this time it was the Extended Edition of Lord of the Rings: Two Towers. We went for Starbucks before it closed so we could stay up later, but we stay up later anyway even without it so we just do it to take a break and take a walk. On the picture there from left is Edgar, Amie, Me and Leinil.

I met with Carlo Pagulayan, one of the guests we will be having at the festival here in San Pablo. Over there with me is Jeffrey and on the extreme right is Carlo. A VERY talented artist. Jeffrey is as yet unpublished, but he's pretty good inker himself, trying to break in. Carlo on the other hand, is a published artist, having worked on Marvel's Elektra and Emma Frost. We went to the venue just to show them where it will be.

Monday, November 24, 2003

Two weeks to the Festival! I think we can make everything pull together by then. Rain still remains a big concern. Used to be it didn't rain in December. Now we get typhoons even during Christmas. There's a HUGE typhoon coming even now. Should be here in a couple of days. I'll be staying at Leinil's tomorrow night to blast through an issue of Superman. It should be fun. Ryan Orosco will be joining us, as well as Augy and Ed Tadeo. We'll be watching Ed's DVD of Two Towers extended edition. Or rather I'd just listen to it as I ink. I hope the weather won't be TOO bad when I go home.

Siglo, the comics anthology I did a 10 pager for, will be released next month! Honestly, I can't wait. I've seen some of the work that the other guys did and they look really cool. I'm amazed at the speed in which this book was put together. It took just over two months of to do a hundred page book.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Construction of the exhibit stands continues. Johnny and I went to the venue this afternoon to check out what was happening with the stands and only a few were left yet to be done. And it's looking pretty good. It's been raining intermittently all throughout the day and its something that concerns us a bit on the day of the festival itself as it is an outdoor event. What to do when it rains? We're still trying to figure it out.

Sunday, November 16, 2003

The Comics Festival is just three weeks away and things are getting really hectic. The group has been meeting now every Sunday and things are slowly falling in place. The bamboo stands are now being constructed, sponsors are being wooed, the contest particulars formalized, and below, we're placing posters all over town announcing the event.

Top Picture from left: Jac, Jonas, Ryan T, Geoff, Henry, Johnny, Gerry
In the middle of this, another Superman deadline I have too meet exactly one week from now. Man!

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Siglo: Celebrating One Hundred Years of Freedom

I really haven't talked about it before now, but I've been invited to contribute to this comics project masterminded by Dean Alfar and Mike Simbulan. I wrote and drew a 10 page story about San Dig, a district in San Pablo back in the 1940's, incorporating a completely true family legend in the process. There is a fascinating legend that has been passed through the generations concerning the Alanguilan family. I've always wanted to do a comic book about it and this project seemed to be the vest venue for it.

And like all pencilling and inking gigs I've taken for the last several years, I try to do something different each time. Because of the limited time in which I had in my schedule to do it, I had to develop a style that was quick to do, without making it look that I just totally rushed it. There may be a page or two that may seem rushed, but a great majority of pages in this story I put a lot of thought into, specially in how to put down the lines. Overall I was pretty happy with it, although people who are used to seeing detail in my work would probably think I hacked it off which I most honestly did not.

I'm very excited to be part of this project as I think the overall concept is brilliant. 10 stories from 10 decades of life in the Philippines, written and drawn by some of the best writers and artists in comics. How can I refuse? I'm told that this should be at the printers as early as next month and should be arriving in HARDBACK! I can't wait!

Sunday, November 09, 2003


Flyer for the upcoming festival. Just email me if you would like more info:
gerryalanguilan at yahoo dot com.

Friday, November 07, 2003

Thanks Budjette Tan! Thanks J. Torres!

"Komikeros: The Filipino Contribution to the Comic Book Medium"
Part 2: 1990s-present "

Saturday, November 01, 2003

IKIRU, one of my favorite Akira Kurosawa films is finally coming to Criterion DVD. Technically, a DVD of it is already available from Mei-Ah but the transfer isn't very good and the translation is terrible. This new edition of it is far superior with a new high definition transfer, audio commentary by Kurosawa author Stephen Prince, two documentaries about Kurosawa and the making of Ikiru and best of all, a translation that I have no doubt makes far better sense.

It stars Takashi Shimura, the head samurai in Seven Samurai, and he's my favorite Kurosawa actor after Toshiro Mifune. Ilyn doesn't like this movie because she feels that the character played by Shimura is just too pathetic to feel any sympathy for. And to an extent I agree. Shimura's character was indeed really pathetic for more than half of this movie, but what he does towards the end more than redeems him in my eyes. I find Ikiru to be a very human, very moving story. You most likely will find it boring if you are an action junkie and are expecting another Seven Samurai or Yojimbo, but successfully pulling off a quiet contemplative piece like Ikiru, Kurosawa proves he's no one trick pony.

Tuesday, October 28, 2003

I removed the pictures I posted just recently. I decided to create a photoblog separate from this one so it won't get bogged down with too many large pics. The photoblog is already up and can be accessed here:

Please visit! Comments enabled! :)

Sunday, October 26, 2003

Goodbye TIMAWA

The email address I have had since 1997,, has finally been retired. So if that address is still in your addressbooks, better delete it now. It was a hard decision to close that address since it's been with me for such a long time, but I find myself with little choice. With 1000+ emails a week, 99% of which is fucking spam, dealing with all that just to keep the address has become more trouble than it was worth. Sure I can open the address again, maybe a year from now if I liked, but not before I take down all the links to that email online so the robots wouldn't be able to harvest it anymore. After a year hopefully it will be all cleaned out.

Thursday, October 23, 2003


Last Saturday night, I was in a casino for the first time in my life. We were winding up our UAP National Conference with a Fellowship night hosted by Boysen at the Casino Filipino in Tagaytay. I wanted to get out as soon as I got in. For some reason, it felt like 1984 in there. 1984 as in the novel by George Orwell written in 1948, speculating what the future will be like. This is the book where phrases like "Big Brother is Watching" was coined. And man, I felt like Big Brother was watching me all the time everwhere in there. Cameras, cellphones with cameras, and even HATS for God's sake weren't allowed inside. And Ilyn had a hat with her. I knew beforehand cameras weren't allowed so I didn't bring mine. It's too bad because Fellowship night was really fun and we met a lot of really nice people. It was kind of restricting, and you felt like you were being watched all the time. We were searched coming in, but it was downright insulting when we were searched going out. What the fuck did they think we were going to steal? Forks? Spoons? OUR spoons and forks are WAAAAAY lot nicer than the scrap metal you call utensils, Casino Filipino. We're ARCHITECTS. We don't steal fucking spoons and forks because we can afford fucking hundreds of those. Aside from the Fellowship program itself which was really fun, everything else about that casino disgusted me. And I'm not going to step into one ever again.


When I was searching the web this morning, I stumbled on a couple of things that nearly drove me crazy. TWO new releases from Bruce Springsteen...and they're both coming out next month! I can't believe I didn't hear any news at all before. I called my DVD and Audio CD pushers right away to order copies for me. he.he.

Monday, October 20, 2003

Just arrived late yesterday from our UAP National Conference of Architects in Tagaytay. Lots of really cool things to talk about like places we've been, people we met, things that happened, and I will write them all down, complete with pictures later this week. In the meantime, check out the website of our UAP CHAPTER here for a 3-page collection of pictures from the trip.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Working Vacation

We rented a jeep to bring our dog Eugene to Ilyn's house until the weekend. Me and Ilyn will be leaving for Tagaytay tomorrow at 5:30 in the morning for the UAP National Conference of Architects. We'll be there until Sunday. It looks like I will be bringing some work with me to the conference. We still haven't finished the Birthright issue we're working on and by tomorrow Leinil will be finished with all his pages. It will be up to me to finish the book from here on in. I had wanted to finish the book before I left, but now it's apparent that it's not going to happen, I'll need to bring pages with me. It hasn't occured to me at all not to go to the conference. After missing it for TWO consecutive years because of work, I swore that I won't miss this one, specially now that I've took on the job of documenting all the Chapter's activities for archiving on the website. I've been playing around with the camera on and off for a couple of days. Here's what our rented house looks like from the outside. The lighting looks really strange for some reason. But I like it. Sort of surreal. I love the chickens. :)

Everybody's talking about this Friendster thing. My friend Maggie invited me to it last May and I sorta just passed on it. Just another time sink I felt. But now a lot of people are talking about it and more and more of my friends are getting on it and so I thought, what the hell. I thought I'd try it out. If you're single this is a really GOOD way of finding people to meet. If you're married like me, well, the best thing about it is finding out an old friend of yours is a friend of a friend. Something like that. It would be allright I guess if the damned server wasn't too FUCKING SLOW. And I'm on DSL so that's saying something. Well I'll try and hang on to it for a while and see what happens.

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Finally got myself a digital camera! I've always wanted a camera that took really good pictures...that's because I've always wanted to take pictures. I've been dreaming of getting an SLR back when I was high school. When I started out working on Architecture, I was saving up to finally buy myself one. But it sorta got pushed back and back and back, specially when I thought how much I would be spending not only on the camera itself, but on the film and having it developed. I thought it best to get a digital camera instead recently, when I met people who have shown me the benefits of having one. You can take pictures all the time and see the results instantly. Here's a pic of my dog Eugene:

Friday, October 10, 2003


Some of you probably thought it was a video game eh? :) But no, I'm talking about James Clavell's SHOGUN, starring Richard Chamberlain, Toshiro Mifune and Yoko Shimada. It was shown in Philippine television in the early 80's as a huge TWELVE part series. Is anyone reading this old enough to have seen this and liked it? It just came out on DVD and I grabbed a copy immediately. I'ts been more than 20 years and this series has lost none of it's power.

A lot of people may not realize it, but Shogun had a huge impact on people and culture, specially in America. Certainly books, comics and other films (more notably by Akira Kurosawa and Hiroshi Inagaki) have been around a long time before, but none of them have made such a hard and long lasting impact as Shogun had. And for many Americans, Shogun was their very first exposure to Japanese culture. It has been reported that movie and restaurant sales went down during the time Shogun had been showing on TV. And a huge number of Japanese restaurants opened and a lot of American men took Japanese brides. You come away from watching this series knowing how to speak some Japanese. Even I learned a few useful words and phrases here and there.

Chris Claremont was so inspired by Shogun that he brought the X-men to Japan and introduced a Japanese character named Mariko (the name of the lead character in Shogun), whom Wolverine fell in love with. Before this, Wolverine was a ticking time bomb, crude and berserker. In the Wolverine limited series written by Claremont and drawn by Frank Miller, Wolverine went through basically the same journey that the hero of Shogun, John Blackthorn (Anjin-san), did. Wolverine and Blackthorn were at first looked down upon because they were foreigners. Gaining the respect of the Japanese, each earned their respective names Gaijin-san and Anjin-san. Each went through hell and emerged through the other samurai.

Some of that probably rubbed off on Miller that Ninjas started appearing in Daredevil, and he eventually did RONIN. Pretty soon a lot of other comic books were having ninjas or samurais and all sorts of other Japanese things in their comics. Miller continues right to the present with MIHO on Sin City. Shogun is one of the reasons why manga and anime are so accepted and welcomed in the western world, and to us as well.

Sapphire and Steel!

One of my most favorite Sci-Fi series is finally coming out on DVD! Like Shogun, very few of you may not remember this or even heard of it, but during its time (1979), Sapphire and Steel was phenomenal. Sapphire and Steel wasn't that high profile even during its time. But it WAS way ahead of its time. It had stories, concepts and characters that were so strange, so fantastic that it probably turned off a lot of viewers. But it thrilled quite a few...including ME. It was like X-Files with super powers. Sapphire (Joanna Lumley) was beautiful and mysterious, Steel (David McCallum) was quite and cool and in control. Silver (David Collings) was awesome as a guy who could replicate any object just by touching it. It was a series that had one of the most disturbing and unforgettable endings. I can't wait to see it again.

Apparently, the call from Malacanang was legit. I was called once again yesterday by the Office of the Presidential Commission on the Alleviation of Poverty and I was made clear about what they needed from me. They needed someone to lead in the effort to bring art to the people to uplift them culturally and hopefully, financially. Needless to say, it's quite an admirable objective and it's something I totally support. I just happen to think I'm the wrong guy for it. I don't have the tools necessary in my character to be able to do this job properly. I had a job that took a lot of time from me and I was afraid that I may not have the time to devote myself fully to it, to be of service enough to make it effective. I recommened that they approach Gilbert Monsanto, who I believe to have the necessary drive and enthusiasm that could do nothing but benefit the effort. Best of luck man. This is quite an honor and I'm sure you'll do a terrific job.

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Anyone else get a strange phone call from Malacanang lately? A woman who says she's calling from the Commission on the Alleviation of Poverty in Malacanang called me up yesterday and said that the meeting I will be having with their head will be postponed from 9:30am on Friday to Lunchtime same day. Needless to say, I was flabbergasted. This is the first call I got from them. I made no arrangements to meet with anyone on Friday, this week or any other week in the near future. And why would I? I'm in another one of my tight deadlines and I need to finish this issue of Birthright before I leave for Tagaytay next week. Doing the comic book takes up nearly all my time and I have little time to do anything else. Still, I was really puzzled why I'm being called. They seem to have assumed that I had already talked to them before. But I haven't. And If I did, I would not have been available to meet with them anyway, not this week or next week.

It turns out my brother got the same call as well. And he was the one who gave them my number. Strange. Anyone else get any such calls?

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

I'm thinking that the Inquirer thing is probably the last interview I'm gonna do. And the Shangrila thing I'll be going to this weekend is the last such similar event I'll be a guest to. Believe it or not, I just like to work and just let all the other guys have the attention. I've actually been feeling quite uneasy about this kind of thing ever since the publicity surrounding Stone, way back 1998. I needed to help promote the book of course, and that's why I did it. But at some point it just became too much. Being asked to pose and act like a superhero is quite silly to me, really. And to be honest, I really hate doing it. It all started to distract me from working, and it seemed to inspire a lot of kids who wanted to be in comics, not because of the art, but because they want to be on TV and on the newspaper too. But that isn't what it was about to me. It's probably difficult for some people to believe, but I don't like the attention at all. I don't like being treated better than other people. Because my dad had worked in the local bank, I could always go up to the teller and have my business done first even if there's a line. I don't do that. I don't feel right doing that. I always fall in line, no matter how long it may be. I just like to write and draw comics, that's all. But working in comics, specially American comics, recognition and attention are part of the thing. I don't want it, but its there. I'll just do my best not to get involved in that, that's all.

My reluctance to do talks and seminars have got to do with the fact that I'm not really a public speaker. I can teach one or two people I meet here in San Pablo, but to do it in front of a large group of people (I consider 10 large) I feel I will not be as effective. I'm not a public speaker and I never will. I'm an artist and despite of my talkative nature here in my blog, I'm basically withdrawn and I don't have that many close friends. There are many times when I'd rather be alone. I'm much more of a writer. And I just love to write. People seem to be confused when they meet me, specially when I start talking. Me talking is very different from me writing. One could swear that those are two different persons.

My career is writing and drawing comic books. I feel that's one thing I'm good at. Why get me, or hire me to things that require skills outside of that? If you want to hire me, hire me to DO COMIC BOOKS. I can do that for you. But I can't speak to an audience for you. I can't go out there and be sociable for you. I can't go out there and lead other people, organize things, manage things and stuff like that. I didn't train for that. And I have no personal urge to do any of that.

Sunday, October 05, 2003

The interview came out in the Inquirer today. :) It had this picture of the four of us doing the superhero thing. From left that's Leinil Francis Yu, me (Superman Birthright), Philip Tan (Uncanny X-men), and Wilson Tortosa (Battle of the Planets). Thank goodness I didn't have to do the Wolverine thing (they asked Leinil to do that he.he.). All I had to do was look mean. Which wasn't difficult. Still, big BIG thanks goes to Ruey De Vera for his amazing support throughout the years. This is the 2nd article he has done on Leinil, the 2nd on me, and he did a really nice Wasted review a long time ago. Thanks Ruey! You can find an online version of the interview here:

Lan Medina was supposed to join us for the interview but deadlines kept him home. It was nice of Ruey to mention him and his work nevertheless.

I was supposed to meet Leinil in Sto. Tomas, Batangas today. We're really putting out all the stops and trying really hard to finish the current issue we're drawing as soon as we can. It's no longer enough that Leinil couriers the pages to me. That means a delay of one day the pages getting to me. We need to meet now at least 2-3 times a week so he can hand me those pages faster. We had agreed to meet sort of halfway between our homes. Sto. Tomas is still closer to my house than his, but at least he's got a car and I gotta commute.

I was at Jollibee Sto Tomas at the appointed time, but Leinil was unfortunte enough to have gotten stuck in one of the most terrible traffic jams in recent history on the expressway out of Metro Manila. A sudden furious downpour flooded parts of the highway and it stalled vehicles all along it. He called to say we should meet the following day instead and he would be turning back. If the traffic is bad as it is, he may well still be there. Unfortunately, my mom got caught in this monster jam herself. I gotta call home to see if she's back.

Thursday, October 02, 2003

My head is SWOLLEN today. Please forgive my momentary urge to toot my own horn today. Aw what the hell. I'ts my blog baby and I'll toot if I want to!! :)

Here's a review of the work I did for the Graphic Classics: Bram Stoker from Feomante's Horror Homepage, a review by Christos N. Gage:

"Stoker also drew on other denizens of the supernatural for his villains, like the wrathful ghost in THE JUDGE'S HOUSE. I'd seen this short story adapted before in Warren's classic CREEPY magazine; but this version, by X-MEN and SUPERMAN: BIRTHRIGHT inker Gerry Alanguilan, is even more chilling, and that's high praise indeed considering the Warren version was drawn by the legendary Reed Crandall."

Read the entire review here:

Wow, if that doesn't make any artist feel like a million bucks I don't know what will.

But man....Reed fucking Crandall! I'm a BIG fan. If I had known that Crandall did an adaption of The Judges House I sure would have been intimidated...and it might have affected the way I drew the story severely. But still...I don't need to see Crandall's work to know that it would surely have been better drawn than mine. No false modesty here I assure you. Just an acceptance of what I can do. But I'm sure I can do better than what I can do now.


Sunday was another BIG day. I spent the entire day at Sampalok lake with my artist buddies, as I usually do every last Sunday of the month. Rene Enriquez, a new member of the group all the way from Cebu, brought his nifty digital camera and shot some really cool pics. I put up a site of his pics of us here:

It started to rain really hard just as the last picture there was taken. I had to go home at 4 so I can prepare for a UAP thing that night. On the way home I got nearly hit by lightning. Really! It hit something close by and it made an exploding sound. I looked around and I didn't see anything.

At the UAP induction, I had an awareness of my real purpose in that organization. I mean, I wasn't a practicing architect, and yet, there I was a member of an organization of architects. What makes me stay? I can't explain it....I just want to. I like the people in the group and I like belonging to it. But with everyone having his or her specific role...I had been searching for just what I use I can be. After being made chairperson of Web Promotions, it all became clear. I had volunteered to make a website for the group years ago, but only now did I resolve to put my all into it and make it the best UAP site there is. I still don't know HTML, but I do try to make the best of it.

United Architects of the Philippines San Pablo Chapter

Sunday, September 28, 2003

I woke up at 6am yesterday and by 10am I was in Megamall to meet the guys. Lan Medina had emailed telling me he won't be able to make it because of deadlines. I know how THAT feels. I had to buy a black jacket first because Ruey De Vera, the guy from the Inquirer doing the interview said we needed to wear something black and honestly, I didn't really own anything I wore that was black, except perhaps for my socks. At Comic Quest Wilson Tortosa was already there. Wilson is probably one of the friendliest people you will ever meet, nuff said. We hung around waiting for Leinil Yu to arrive. Raquel, the store clerk told me that Wasted had run out again and asked me to bring in more copies. I'll bring another box next time I'm in Megamall. After Leinil arrives we head off to Powerbooks Pasay Road to meet up with Philip Tan, who by this time already met Ruey there. Together we all went up the Inquirer offices somewhere in Pasong Tamo. I can't remember how we got there for all the twists and turns we took.

The Inquirer had a building all on its own and I gotta say it was very interesting. The building has a HUGE staircase right in the middle going right up to the top floor with the offices surrounding it. We did the interview all of us at once and I was surprised at some of the things I heard. I dunno if it will make the interview but I came away from it knowing more about these 3 people than I knew before.

Next we did the photo shoot. Turns out I didn't need to buy a black jacket because Ruey had found black jackets for all of us to wear. To be honest, I was dreading this part of the interview because I really don't feel comfortable with set up pictures. You know, like I'm pretty sure the photographer was going to ask us to act like SUPERHEROES or something. Once I was asked to pose like Wolverine and I really didn't like it. It felt WEIRD. I'd much rather have my picture taken normal-like, you know? Before I realize what was happening, there we were, being asked to pose like SUPERHEROES!! It turns out the other guys didn't feel like it too, specially Leinil who was quite vocal about it. Specially because HE was asked to pose like Wolverine! Ha! Ha! Ha! I had it easy. I just had to stand there and look mean. Which really wasn't difficult because I know people out there who think I'm really mean anyway.

After the shoot wraps Ruey told us that the interview will come out this coming Sunday, October 5. Before we went, he took us on a tour of the building, which was VERY interesting because you get to see just how they go about creating a newspaper everyday. I had actually visited the Inquirer offices some 15 years ago, back when they were still at Intramuros. I was trying to break in as a comic strip writer and artist and I had been showing around my samples. There was one big difference between the offices then and the offices now. Today, it's much MUCH more silent. Because no one longer typed. On a TYPEWRITER. I asked if I could still apply for the comic strips and I was told that I could. Great! After that we all went for lunch because by then we were all very hungry, specially me since I haven't even had breakfast yet. After that all I wanted was to just go back home and sleep.

Back home I didn't sleep. I finished off my Inking Challenge for the INKWELL Yahoo Group where I inked a piece of fellow inker Aaron Sowd's pencilling. You can find Aaron's pencils here. And you can see how I inked it here. Here are a couple of pages where you can see all the pencils in the challenge and the inks done so far:

Inking Challenge Pencils
Inking Challenge Inks

Saturday, September 27, 2003

It's 2:15 in the morning and I've just finished one of the most punishing deadlines I've experienced. I've been sick with the cough and colds on top of that and with every passing hour my body doesn't want to do anything but lie down and sleep. To make things even worse, Ilyn is much more sicker than me as she has fever on top of her colds and cough. Our pantry has run out, there's nothing more to eat in the house and we're both too sick (and too busy) to go out. I could have just called for take out, but my phone has been down all day, and my DSL has been down for the past couple of days. And if there WERE something to cook, I wouldn't be able to anyway because our gas ran out just this morning. I can't even use the phone to call for a replacement tank. The only person having a worse day than me is Jack Bauer of "24". I told none of this to any of my employers (although they just as may well find out if they read this) because I don't want to be seen as making "excuses". This is one thing any aspiring comic book artist must face at one point or another. That you have to finish that job no matter what and don't make excuses. If you're sick, if there is no power, no phone, whatever, you have to find a way to get your job done and do it without complaint. Finding solutions to your problems as an artist is part of the job.

The good thing is, my dear old mom caught wind that Ilyn and I were both sick and she brought us lunch and did some marketing for us. My phone and DSL finally came online tonight just as I needed to send pages. If it didn't, I'll just go back to the old house and use my brother's computer to send the files. I finally get to rest....but only for a few hours. I need to wake up at 6am so I can leave for Manila by 7:30. I need to be at Megamall at 10am for the Inquirer interview. I want to go home as soon as that is finished so I can spend the rest of the day just sleeping as Sunday is another big day.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Maybe you'll be out there on that road somewhere
In some bus or train traveling along
In some motel room there'll be a radio playing
And you'll hear me sing this song
Well if you do you'll know I'm thinking of you and all the miles in between
And I'm just calling one last time not to change your mind
But just to say I miss you baby, good luck goodbye, Bobby Jean

-Bobby Jean
Bruce Springsteen

I've always liked this song...ever since I first heard it in 1984. It's one of the few songs that gets me all choked up no matter how many times I hear it. For some reason, I feel like listening to it now.

Happy Birthday to a good friend of mine. :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Sunday, September 21, 2003

I just realized it's going to be a pretty BUSY week this coming week. I'll be staying over at Leinil's place for a couple of days starting tomorrow to finish up an issue of Superman. Ilyn will be coming with me to fill in the blacks.

On Saturday, I'll be joining Leinil (again), Wilson Tortosa, Philip Tan, and Lan Medina for an interview and picture taking for The Philippine Daily Inquirer. That should be fun. :)

Sunday I'll be having the Laguna Artist's group all day on the spot drawing thing at Sampalok Lake again. But I would have to leave by 5pm since I have to attend the UAP SAN PABLO Chapter's Induction at Max's. Which reminds me, I would need to have my barong tagalog dry cleaned sometime this week for that. Haaay.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

What I sometimes feel. Today I feel like SHIT.
-From Crest Hut Butt Shop #3

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Ha! ha! This is just SOOOOO cool! Cooler than having my name somewhere in Amazon!

I think I'll go have a pig slaughtered...and a couple of chickens too!


Tuesday, September 16, 2003

I feel so tired. I sent off a Fedex box of Superman pages earlier today (in the rain), thought up and wrote a 10 page story for a comics anthology for December, and drew a Wolverine for Inkwell, the Inker's Mailing List. I can't talk about the anthology yet, but I did this Wolverine sketch for the Inkers group because we are currently having a kind of "challenge". Each inker would come up with a sketch of a favorite character, and through random selection, we would receive another member's sketch so we can ink it.

I got so busy today that it wasn't until 7pm did I realize I was sorta falling sick. I have cough and colds and I feel really bad. I'm so pissed everytime I get coughs because it almost always deteriorates into annoying and painful whopping coughs and in a time when people are SARS-paranoid, having a cough at this time would be the worse thing one can have. After a dinner of Bugong Chicken I decided to turn in early.

For some reason I woke up at 9:30 and I couldn't fall asleep again. I went to our studio (which is just another room in the house) to catch Ilyn creating a model for the San Pablo Seminary in the middle of Smallville. Strange. Here I am inking Superman and he's literally my favorite comics character ever, but I don't feel eager to watch Smallville every week. It's not the show is bad, in fact every episode I've seen so far has been nothing short of excellent. I can't explain it. That's probably why I think it's strange.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

A lot of my work has come out or will be coming out this month. Already available is Superman: Birthright #3. I don't have a scan of the cover yet, as I will only get my copies tomorrow. Head on over to the main page to see the cover art without titles and letters.

Out September 13 is V Necks and Neckties CD by San Pablo City indie band Mellow Del Prado for which I drew the cover to. It's actually a wrap around cover only half of which you will see when looking at the CD. You will see all of it when you take out the cover paper and open it out. I sorta got the idea from Bruce Springsteen's BORN TO RUN album. I don't remember now how these guys got in touch with me, but I think it was via email. It's such a trip to know a band like this right here in San Pablo and for me to do a cover for them is really quite a rush.

Out around September 15 is Graphic Classics: Bram Stoker for which I adapted, pencilled, inked and lettered a 16-page adaptation of Bram Stoker's short story "The Judge's House". This would represent my 2nd complete pencilling and inking job to come out in the US. (The first being Ochlocrat) I have several more stories lined up to come out in Prophecy Magazine, but publication of that magazine, although sure, is still on hold for the time being. Slowly but surely, I'm getting to do much more drawing, which was what I wanted all along when I first started doing comics. The look of Ochlocrat and Judge's House is wildly different. Feedback of too much detail on Ochlocrat is something I took to heart and I tried to incorporate it into the Judge's House. The latter story has less lines going all over the place and has more blacks. I'm still not sure if I really nailed the style I want, but I know I'm getting there.

All this may seem a lot, but I can get very lazy sometimes. There would be a day here and there where I would just lie down and watch DVDs all day, or be online and play games on the computer all day. Sometimes I just read comics. Speaking of which, I got a whole bunch of them the other day:

JLA Vs. AVENGERS #1 (of 4) written by Kurt Busiek, pencilled and inked by George Perez Oh man! Having grown up with Crisis, this series reminds me why I fell in love with comics in the first place. For anyone who didn't grow up with Crisis or Teen Titans, the look and feel of this series may seem old school, but me, I'm a kid all over again! It's not deep or thought provoking or angst ridden, but it was never meant to be that in the first place. It's done for the sheer enjoyment of seeing super powered heroes in colorful costumes from different companies duking it out with George Perez at the helm. To me, superhero comics are never more fun!

The SANDMAN: Endless Nights Special. Neil Gaiman and Miguelanxo Prado. Gaiman really has a way with words and concepts. Brilliant little story about the beginning of everything. I don't know who this artist is, well I know him now, but he's really good. X-Men artist Frank Quitely has a pinup here which is a lot better than most of his X-men work. If he colored his illustration too, I'm sold! That coloring is really really good.

ACROSS THE UNIVERSE: The DC Universe Stories of ALAN MOORE At last! I've been nearly killing myself looking for these stories but it had been darned near impossible. Great of DC to compile all of Alan's stories for DC (outside of Swamp Thing and Watchmen) in one book. I've been aching to read a lot of these stories for such a long time. Needless to say, after having read most of the book by now, I gotta say with much more conviction: Alan Moore is fucking brilliant. There. Nothing more can be said.


Sunday, August 31, 2003

It just occurred to me that our Komikero group celebrated it's one year anniversary this month. The Komikero group, which I didn't name by the way, as I just considered it a Laguna Artists' Group composed of people who visit the Komikero Message Board, has been meeting once a month, usually the last Sunday of the month. I guess that as an artist, I was just getting lonely here in San Pablo and I wanted to call up my artist friends so we can get together so we can talk about art, comics, movies, share artwork, check out each other's drawings, etc.

We had our first meeting August of last year and it turned out to be a really good idea because everyone who was there responded really well to it. Friends called up friends and pretty soon I, and everyone was meeting new artists not only from Laguna, but also from Manila, from Cebu and from Mindanao as well. I decided not to make the group formal with officers, a constitution or other stuff like that. I felt that it would rupture the easygoing and spontaneous spirit that I liked about our meetings. But I liked for us to be productive as well so I proposed a number of activities including making a "challenge" comic book that we will finish on the same day of our meeting. One member would write and draw one page of a comic, using characters and a story that he will come up with on the spot. It's up the the next member to continue the comic depending on what the first member has done. Each member would have an hour to finish his or her installment. We managed to pull it off effectively for two meetings.

Today I proposed that we bring our art materials and just draw for an entire day on the banks of Sampalok lake and just draw whatever we see. Here's what I did. :)

Just pen and ink on paper. Someone wanted to bring a loptop, but I discouraged it. I wanted people to experience art at it's most basic, at its barest. People are getting so used to doing things digitally, it would be nice to get down and dirty once in a while. I wanted everyone to draw from their surroundings, not only to practice their drawing, but to also practice their skills of observation. It all turned out well, and I think we'll do it again next month.

Saturday, August 23, 2003

Of course I'm always thankful that I've got this job doing comics. But I'm specially thankful during times like this because I can afford to buy something like THIS. I just got my Lord of the Rings: TWO TOWERS 2 Disc DVD (Widescreen) and I've done nothing nearly all day (apart from cooking some mean tongue burning chili) but watch the movie again, and watch all the documentary stuff. It's still playing as I write this entry. I mean, how cool is this trilogy? Once all three are done and are in the can, I have no doubt that they, as a whole, will be considered as one of the greatest, if not the greatest movie ever made.

This is actually the first DVD I've bought in a long time. There were lots of noteworth titles that have been released that I would have wanted to get like The Right Stuff: 2 Disc Special Edition and Black Hawk Down: 3 Disc Edition, but maybe one of these days when I got the money to spare.

I can't wait for November when THIS motherfucker gets released. I'd have to sacrifice a Superman page or two but what the hell. This DVD is mine. :)

Thursday, August 21, 2003

Siya ay hindi lang mukha sa limang daan
Walang takot lumaban sa diktador
Namatay para sa bayan.

Siya si Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

E-Main Problems 2

If any of you emailed me at gerry @ in the last 24 to 48 hours and I didn't reply to you, please send your message again if it's allright. I had some tinkering done with the configuration of my email to prevent some spam messages from coming in. Unfortunately, it looked like it ate up all messages and not just spam. This would explain why those who emailed me did not receive a bounced message back. Lan, did you send the pages? Nil? Budjette thoughts on our script? Anybody? You can use the komikero email now, although my yahoo mail would be allright too.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

E-Mail Problems

If any of you guys have been sending email to my work address gerry @ and it bounces back to you or you haven't been receiving replies from me, write to gerryalanguilan @ The spaces around the "@" are intentional for this blog so my address won't get harvested by those damned spam robots. Just remove the spaces and you can use that to email me... ;)


And now the man, himself, LEINIL FRANCIS YU gets interviewed by Arune Singh of the Comic Book Resources website. Thanks Arune! If you guys have been following the interviews, some of you may think that we're saying all these nice things about our co workers, and the comic itself simply to promote it. But truth be told, I'm really excited about this project. I'm not exaggerating or blowing smoke up anyone's ass when I say Mark, Leinil and Dave are doing terrific, tremendous work. Because they are. God bless em, they rock!

The Restless Season

I had done some work for Fleshrot: Book of the Dead for Frightworld Studios not too long ago. It shows the half rotting face of a man in the rain. To be honest, that piece of work I did is ten years old. It was supposed to be a cover for Mass Media's Terror Comics. But it got rejected, not because it sucks (I happen to really like that drawing), but because someone else had turned in a very similar looking cover ahead of me, so they won't be able to use mine. So the drawing sat there for nearly 10 years and I didn't know what to do with it. When John Pearson contacted me about doing something for Fleshrot, I thought about giving this artwork to him for publication in the book.

When my complimentary copies arrived a few weeks ago, my eye was immediately drawn to a short story about a rat named Li-Gui rat and a bird named Fan-Chong bird. The story, entitled "The Restless Season", was written and painted by Socar Myles, a writer-artist I've not heard of before then. The art is really beautiful, even in black and white. It has a dreamy, ethereal kind of quality to it that seems out of place at first in a gore-filled zombie comics anthology. I was busy inking Superman at the time and as a deadline was looming, I knew I didn't have the time to read anything. But for some reason, there was something about this story that demanded my attention and that it just had to be read. So I just dropped everything and just sat to read it.

After I had finished the 10 page story, I thought that was one of the most moving, beautiful, poignant, albeit twisted stories I've read in a long time. It's quite haunting as well because images of Fan-Chong bird and Li-Gui rat danced in the back of my mind as I inked, as I ate, and as I took a bath. If this is truly the work of a newcomer in comics, then it's a remarkable piece of work. The artwork, beautiful as it is, is quite professionally done, and the writing poetic, lyrical and dreamlike.

I strongly recommend to anyone who reads this, buy Fleshrot! if only for this story alone. I guarrantee it's worth the whole book. I forsee great things in store for Socar Myles. This writer-artist has the potential to do great stories and the comics companies would be losing big if they pass this burgeoning talent by. Visit Socar Myles' site here.

The artwork above is from The Restless Season by Socar Myles.

Sunday, August 17, 2003


Now it's our colorist DAVE McCAIG's turn to be interviewed. I've said it many times how impressed I am with Dave's work. And it's not just promo stuff I'm doing. I really truly am impressed with it. The last time I was wowed by the colors on a book I worked on was High Roads with Edgar Tadeo doing the colors.

Superman: Birthright #3, Page 14

Leinil's interview is set for Monday. I think I'll go collect all these interviews once they're done, print them out and put them in my Birthright folder. This is one series that I will remember fondly.

Saturday, August 16, 2003

I've been buying on and off from Amazon books and DVDs for quite a while now. Whenever I need info on any particular book, CD, or DVD, I'd immediately look at Amazon to see if its already available, and if they are, I'll go see what features they have. Needless to say, Amazon has become one of my favorite sites to visit.

So it was with much surprise did I find a couple of books I had worked on listed there. My name actually listed on Amazon! It's so cool! :)

Friday, August 15, 2003


My Interview is finally up! I can't believe it, but there it is. Thanks Arune! You're a swell guy. Thanks for helping us promote the book by interviewing Mark, Leinil, and myself about our project. Were you able to get in touch with Dave? And thanks also for letting me rant about the deal us inkers get a lot of the time. ha! ha! Thanks also for letting me shamelessly plug my other work.

Leinil says he will be sending a cover for me to ink really soon, with pages for the next issue to follow soon after that. I'm hoping to wrap up the Creation story as soon as I'm able. I may no longer have to time to color it myself. I may need to ask a friend of mine to do it for me. But I will of course continue to pencil, ink, and letter it myself. I'm very happy at how my art is turning out here. I think I may have finally nailed the style I have always been looking for. I'll post a page or two of it here soon.

I gotta go. I gotta start walking.


I'm back. Not only did I go around Sampalok lake, I also went walking into town to buy breakfast and then walk back home. I resolve to just walk to anywhere I need to go in San Pablo, just as long as its into town and nearby areas. I always feel tired afterwards, but I feel great!

Right outside our gate, a watermelon plant suddenly sprouted. The flooding of a few months ago most likely brought the seed and deposited it just outside. At first I thought, what the heck is that weird looking vine thing that's growing just outside the gate? I thought it was a weed, but it was so strange that I always watered it and saved it whenever we have our grass cut. It wasn't until someone said, "Hey, that's a Watermelon plant!" did I realize just what it was. And it's true! A couple of watermelons are actually growing out of the vine right now. One of them is still small, the size of a marble. but the other one is getting huge with each passing day. I mean, you look at it in the morning and in the afternoon you can swear it's larger. Right now it's as big as a softball. I just wish no one picks it up, at least before it's ripe.

Times like this I wish I had a digital camera. I'm tempted to say that as soon as I get some money I'll buy one. But I have to buy a dining room set first, have some cabinets built, me and Ilyn go on a much needed and much delayed vacation (although a camera would come in handy when we finally get to go). But I really want a camera like that. It's all Jun Dimaano's fault for sales talking me into it when he came over and showed me his Olympus and what that little damned thing can do.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003


A fella from The Comic Book Resources website named Arune Singh got in touch with me about doing an interview for Superman: Birthright. This surprised me because very few inkers actually get to be interviewed. I hardly think of myself as newsworthy in this regard. And I don't say this out of false modesty mind you. I've been interviewed a couple of times some two years ago by similarly high profile websites and with all glee I answered all the questions given to me, taking at least half a day to answer them all properly. But at the back of my mind I kept you really want to interview me? I'm pretty sure all your readers will be wondering who the hell this is. Maybe they want to talk to Whilce or Leinil. But I answered the questions anyway, believing that they really wanted to talk to me and really wanted me for their websites. I didn't refuse because they came to me in good faith and I thought I'd do the same. But the interviews never came out. Well I wasn't really surprised. Like I said, inkers aren't THAT newsworthy. At least they could have told me that it wasn't coming out. But I never heard from them after that. Except one time: one of those who interviewed me emailed again not too long ago, seemingly forgotten all about the interview I did, and requested that I tell them if I have any scoop on the projects I'm doing. I'm sorry, any emails coming from this person goes straight to the recycle bin from that time on. Maybe I'm in no position to act like this specially since I'm not really a "player" in the industry, I mean, I know my place and all, but shit, I gotta make a living and every minute is precious, so if you please, don't waste my fucking time!

2 page Spread from Superman Birthright #3

I'm glad to say that I can't say the same for Arune, who seems like a stand up guy, who genuinely wants to talk to me about the stuff I'm doing. And he's all set to come out with my interview at the Comic Book Resources website this week. Part One of the Interview has just come out, where he interviews Superman: Birthright writer Mark Waid.


People can be so uncivilized. I've been living in this rented house for more than half a year now, and I really have no complaints, aside from the people who live in the back. I don't know if they're just dumb, or simply just don't care. Once in a while they would gather up their trash right next to our wall and set fire to it. And I'm talking about a fire that is less than a meter from OUR HOUSE. Yes, there is a wall there, and the fire is behind this wall, but the wall is not that high, and the smoke gets EVERYWHERE and fills our house if we don't close the windows. Once in a while paper with burning embers fly up and land on us. Well, it wouldn't be too bad if paper was all they were burning. No, they're burning fabric, they're burning RUBBER, and they're burning PLASTIC. What the FUCK is wrong with these people? Don't they know that they're fucking with our health? Our environment? Our future? I went ballistic one day and went berserk on them to put the fucking fire out. I reported them to the Barangay Captain and I thought that would be the end of that. But it seems they're RELATED to the Barangay Captain and while no fires have been lit for a while. They're AT IT AGAIN RIGHT NOW. I can't believe how selfish people can be. All they think about this THEM, right NOW. They don't think or care about other people, they don't care about tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 12, 2003

I've been playing a little bit with Painter, as I'm considering coloring my own pages for this story I'm doing for PSI COM. I did this little painting really quick and gave it to Ilyn. It was really fun to do! Once I'm able to come up with some pages, I'll try to color them this way.

This is actually a big step for me because I've always avoided anything digital when it comes to my art. Before this, all my colored work, with the exception of the cover of Crest Hut Butt Shop #2, have been done by hand. Actually, I really do have no problem with computer colors just as long as they're done well, and that they're not overdone. Edgar Tadeo was brilliant with his coloring on High Roads, as is Dave McCaig on Superman Birthright. But a lot of computer coloring I see today are just garishly colorful and overdone. I want to start and try coloring myself.

I had thought coloring would be where I draw the line, but I'm slowly becoming partial to computer lettering as well. I will attempt to computer letter that very same PSI COM story, but of course, I will be fully drawing it by hand. Pencilling and inking is that aspect of comic art that will forever remain handmade for me.


People are getting really nasty on the Internet. A few months ago, I came across a site that offered good advice with regards to originality in comics artists. I liked the advice so much that I wrote the author, saying I thought what he wrote was brilliant. He wrote back, biting my head off telling me:

"Um... I'm not sure how to take this. Are you being sincere, and saying you like
my phrasing? Or are you being frustrated and sarcastic...?

Of course, this surprised me a lot, wondering where the heck the cynicism came from, and why is this person was biting my head off for a totally innocent comment (and indeed praise). It happened again today on one of the message boards I visit. A discussion was going on where I felt a very imporant aspect of it was being left out which was important in resolving the discussion. I offered my opinion with all sincerity, but the owner of the forum itself replied, biting my head off, asking me if I was fucking with him. Needless to say, I feel as welcome there as decomposing roadkill so I guess it would be best to save them from my abhorrent presence from now on.

Of course, I am not beyond fucking with anyone, which I do with glee on my own message board (hey, Johnny, Ed!), but I only do so with people I know quite well.


I took a long walk today, as I have done for the past couple days. My health hasn't been the best in the past several years and I seriously need to excercise. My bad health has contributed in part to the reason why it has been difficult for me to continue doing the Wasted movie. On a couple of planned shoots, I came down with either high blood pressure, or the flu. Noel Lim, the director, must be totally pissed with me now, and I can't blame him if he gives up on me. And being a good 20 pounds heavier than the last time we shot, the difference will surely be evident. I wish I could reassure him that I haven't abandoned the project. I'm still hanging in there, trying to get fit enough to continue. I have been watching what I eat lately, and I've managed to lessen my want for pork and beef. But man, don't get between me and my chicken. I can give up eating a lot of things, but never chicken, not when I've stumbled on a new recipe for cooking awesome broiled chicken. I've cut down on softdrinks as well, reducing my quota to just one or two a week. I used to drink everyday. I don't smoke, drink alcohol rarely, and I don't do drugs, so I'm not really that awful, I think.

I've also been watching my finances. I haven't bought DVDs in a long time. I still buy comics, but only those I find in bargain bins that go for like 20 to 35 pesos each. But I guess I'll soon break my fast because the 2 Disc DVD set of Lord of the Rings: Two Towers is about to be released. Screw saving! I gotta my have my Lord of the Rings! he.he. Much of what I earn now goes to paying for the bills, groceries, rent, and other necessities. I have to budget my money well so I can come up with my own self published books. I have a comic story completely written, just waiting for the art to be finished. I've seen some art, liked what I see, and I can't wait to see it done.


Last movie I saw is still The Matrix Reloaded. I really haven't gotten the opportunity to go out to watch because of work, and because I have to go to Manila so I can watch a movie in the cinema properly. To me, I can no longer watch movies if its not in Greenbelt 3. I like the fact that I can reserve a particular seat, the patrons are civilized enough to shut their fucking phones off, and latecomers are not allowed in to mess up you view. It's getting so that the next movie I will see on the screen may well be Lord of the Rings: Return of the King.