Cover Critique #4 w/ Dan from The Con Artists

So I lied last time when I said I would be starting the Forest of Doom this week.  Instead, I decided to fire off another Cover Critique, though I know it’s kind of soon after the last one.  Hopefully, no one minds.

For this edition of CC, I will be joined by my boon companion, Dan from the Conartists blog.  This will be his first time helping me out, though I doubt it will be his last.  Again, if you enjoy anime and video games or people making fun of the bad versions of that stuff, go check out their reviews.

So, barring the birth of my child in the next seven days, next week look forward to the start of the Forest of Doom!

Cover By:  “Jesus” Christos Achilleos

Matt:  “Welcome to Sizzlax’s Bone and Shield emporium!  We sell bones and shields and nothing else!”

Dan: “What about those axes and swords?”

M: “You deaf?  Bones and shields.”

D: I don’t know what that snake-man is about to do, but he is incredibly psyched about it. Or he’s high as a kite.

M: I have found in my time that these things often go hand in hand.

D: Imagine the high-pitched voice of Roberto the Robot. “Hey friends, what’s goin’ on out heeeeere?”

M:  I’m getting more a Skeletor vibe.

D: Not… Cobra Commander?

M: Not unlike …sigh…Cobra Commander but with a hint of a sexy Demi Moore rasp.

D: Can we also take in this scene for a second? You’d think this would be looking into the temple from the outside, but I’m pretty sure that through the archway is just more desert.

M:  Maybe he caught you breaking in?  Maybe in entry 144 you go on a snake-man panty raid.

D: Do not make me consider the mechanics of snake-man underpants, dude. We’ll be here all day.

M: That codpiece is covering something, Dan.  

Art By: Terry “Bury Me In Buttered Noodles” Oakes

D: Donald Pleasence? What happened to you, man?

M: He ate another smaller Donald Pleasence.  It’s either that or this is Darth Vader made entirely out of ham.

D: Or perhaps this is the Kingpin’s Martian doppelganger. He looks like he’s about to make you an offer you can’t refuse.

M: That or he’s about to commit genocide on a buffet table.  “Continue to supply me with pork cracklings, or you shall be atomized with my ray gun!”

MI imagine his voice sounding like an obese, Home Alone 2 era Tim Curry.   

D: I hesitate to ask… but what are those anchor points on his shirt for?

M: Sex harness.  

D: The gloves ARE ribbed for her pleasure.

Art By: Rodney “Nothing to See Here” Matthews



M: I hesitate to include this one.  There’s not really anything to poke fun at.

M: Maybe the plaintive look in the ship’s eye.

D: Yeah, it looks like it’s thinking, “Oh, great, hydras. Here we go again.”

M: I imagine that they would be a semi-regular occurrence in the SEAS OF BLOOD!

D: Sailing between the Island of Terror and Peninsula of Mild Distress is no laughing matter.


Art By: Brian “Wires are the Future” Bolland


D: Do you miss the days when computers had only 128K of RAM but were basically magic?

M: “This processor can compute literally 1mb of data in under 20 minutes!  BEHOLD THE POWER OF DR. COM-PUTOR!”

D: Is it just me, or does he look like a bargain bin Lex Luthor?

M: Only if he stopped flossing.

D: “Trident gum: for the mad scientist on the go!”

M: I feel like that is too pejorative.  He might not be mad.  Maybe just a bit loony.  Perhaps even eccentric on a good day.

D: I mean, we only have our guess and decades of pop culture art to say this guy is even the villain. At the very least he is a man who spends all day breathing through his teeth. He could be some kind of hero for all we know.  

D: “If I don’t eye-solder this circuit board in the next thirty seconds, those poor orphans will die!”

M: I’m going to go on a limb and say this man is no friend to orphans.

D: Yeah, I’m pretty sure he spends most days creating them. 

M: Or worse.  Though I don’t think “Free Motherboards” has quite the drawing power of “Free Candy”.

Thanks to Dan for his help.  If anyone is going to be hitting Genericon in march make sure you hit up the Conartists’ panels.  They are funny as hell and not at all informative. I also choose to blame Dan for us not trying to figure out what the hell F.E.A.R meant in that last image.

I also want to throw disclaimer up for all previous and future Cover Critiques, I in no way think any of this art is bad.  I would take any one of these images and frame them in a place of prominence within my home.  They are amazing examples of campy fantasy art that I love.

Anyway, Thanks for reading.   Hope you enjoyed it and that you’ll come back next week for the start of the Forest of Doom.  For real this time.

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