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The Guardian

The other evening I was watching an episode of SUPERGIRL

<Brief SPOILER>

In this episode SUPERGIRL discovers that Jimmy Olson is the Guardian who has been fighting crime in the streets of her city, and even catching those that escape her.

<End of SPOILER>

Looking at the design of The Guardian’s shield made me think of the creation of the original character.

Jack Kirby created The Guardian in his Newsboy Legion series. In the 1970s he, and they, were part of the Cadmus Project in Kirby’s Fourth World books, but back in the 1940s he was Jim Harper and basically the guardian of these street kids.

As a police officer he did a good job, but felt it necessary to put on a mask to protect these kids all the more. He also carried a golden shield.

It is that shield that is important. Even though he was forced to put on the mask, Jim Harper saw himself as a police officer first, and even his shield was designed to look like a policeman’s shield, his badge. In later incarnations of The Guardian this part him is lost. Many masked vigilantes are forced not only to fight the bad guys, but also the police. For Jim Harper, The Guardian’s role is something much more. He had to be a hero to the Newsboy Legion and the people on the street, but also to his fellow police officers.

Years before Jim Harper put on the golden helmet of The Guardian, policewoman Peggy Allen saw flaws in the regular justiciable system and so put on a costume and became the WOMAN IN RED.

The idea that these police officers saw a necessity to step out of their uniforms to wear masks in order to fight crime spurs a lot of thought and potential stories.

I’d love to tell a story about that original version of The Guardian.

Post Script – The Golden Guardian which I posted for Jack Kirby’s 100th birthday.

 

Jack Kirby – The Golden Guardian

Earlier in the year I sketched an image of the Golden Age super hero The Guardian in my blog about the character and his use in the TV series Supergirl.

This Silver Age version of the character called The Golden Guardian Kirby incorporated into his Fourth World New Gods story line in the pages of Jimmy Olsen. As part of the Cadmus project this Guardian is what many later versions would be based on. Whether it was in later comics, in the animated series Young Justice, or in Supergirl.

Continuing to celebrate Jack Kirby’s 100th Birthday.

Kevin Paul Shaw Broden
Four Names of Professional Creativity

 

Meet the Artist

Meet the Artist by KevinPSB4

I found out about this a little late, but thought I’d do my own drawing and throw it in the mix. That’s me, or a bad clone.

Walking the Plank with Christ

As a little child I usually attended Sunday School while my parents went to church and their own adult classes. For our group of kids we were taught through colorful Bible stories in ways that were understandable for little ones. Hearing about the animals on ‘Noah’s Arc’ comes to mind.

As fun as those stories were, they were the simple beginnings of my understanding of the Bible. This period of my young church life I look back on as the ‘Jesus loves me’ time; for we sang that song over and over. I was only starting to know what that truly meant.

My first Bible lesson that struck deep with true meaning probably came to me one Sunday while I was sitting on a pew with my family in church. I was probably no older than 7 years of age.

Our pastor was giving a sermon on Mathew 7:3-5/Luke 6:41-42

Luke (NIV)

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

The visual image of a plank (or ‘beam’ as used in the King James version) was something my young mind and vivid imagination could see.

Every child by that age has gotten dust or dirt in their eyes and knows just how uncomfortable that is. So to imagine what it must be to have this massive plank of wood stuck in ones eye is a horrifying thought. Then to think trying to get a dust out of another’s eye with this thing stuck in my own is equally horrifying.

This imagery embedded itself into my mind.

It was my earliest lesson in not to judge others and it has stayed with me ever since.

It seems like an easy lesson to learn; don’t make such a deal out of pointing out the flaw in someone else’s life and act like you are the only one who can fix them, while completely ignoring the major problem within your own life. Yet we do it all the time.

Though I try not to judge others, I would be an equal hypocrite if I said I never judge other people. It’s far too easy to do so. But I try very hard not to. I have to stop and realize that I could end up going through the same thing they are and if others point out my faults with such an attitude, would only make my situation worse.

If you can help me, great, but don’t treat me as a flawed and only you can help me. I won’t do the same thing to you.

However, in an attempt to not judge people, sometimes I imagine my plank is much larger than it truly is, or imagine it is there even when it is not. It can be too easy make your own flaws greater than they actually are. So in your attempt to not judge others too harshly, don’t judge yourself too harshly either.

Check out the short story NO EASY WAY TO DIE!

The author of REVENGE OF THE MASKED GHOST has released his latest short story:

NO EASY WAY TO DIE

Johnny Graves is a hired killer for the mob.

For the right money, he’ll kill anyone for his bosses.

Tonight he’s been given a new mark, but this time his orders are to keep the man alive at all costs.

An ebook for Only 99 cents.

Pick it up at any ebook dealer:

Amazon Kindle: http://amzn.to/2hlcyDz

Apple iBooks: http://apple.co/2i3Dg3l

Smashwords: http://bit.ly/2i1q8Ji

and others.

After #AnimateAugust

Wow!

Thank you all for following, liking, and sharing, all my #animateaugust sketch series of animated characters whether on instagram, deviantart, facebook, twitter, tumblr, or pixiv in Japan.

Really appreciate the support and encouragement.

It began as turning my

instagram

account into an art portfolio of my work in a more animation styles, as I’m use to drawing in a traditional comic book style (such as my webcomic Flying Glory and the Hounds of Glory –

www.flying-glory.com

), and to promote myself. So I decided to devote all of August to drawing characters from current animated series I enjoy and some I didn’t even know about.

This has become a really enjoyable experience and challenge, as I discovered what drawings people liked best, what worked in one picture and didn’t in another. Discovering what shows are popular, not only here in the U.S. but also around the world.

Images in this series got more likes and shares than any other post I’ve every made.  That’s kinda thrilling.

“Music on Swan Lake”Duchess Swan and Sparrow Hood from Ever After Highreceived 27 notes on Tumblr, and 24 likes on instagram

“Is her destiny to be forever alone” of C.A.Cupid also from Ever After Highreceived 39 notes on Tumblr, and 26 likes on instagram

In the process of doing these sketches I discover shows I knew nothing about:

Miraculous Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir (a sketch that got 63 views on Pixiv).

LoliRock

Regal Academy (which I felt awkward about after drawing all the Ever After High princesses).

I also drew characters from:

Monster HighVoltron Legendary DefenderDisney’s Descendants’ Wicked WorldDC Super Hero GirlsStar DarlingsMy Little PonyEquestria GirlsGlitter ForceWinx Club

Some people wanted me to color some of the drawings, others gave me a suggestion of shows I had missed out on, and others wanted me to draw one of their original characters, (I might do that in the future, we’ll see.) I am contemplating doing commission work, but don’t know how that works or if anyone would be interested.

Anyway, as I said, it was a great experience and experimenting in art styles I’m not use to working in. I hope to do a lot more of it, and I’d really love to be able to work on any of these shows or ones like them.

I plan on expanding my portfolio of work, drawing more of my own character sketches, designs and animation art experiments, but from time to time I’ll sneak in another drawing of some of your favorite animated series characters as well. I have an idea for another Monster High sketch, but it maybe a while and will probably give it more time than the ones I did this past month.

Again, thank you all for your supportive likes and shares, and encouragement.

See you around the sketchpad.

Best,

Kevin Paul Shaw Broden

Four Names of Professional Creativity

 

Excerpt from Kevin Paul Shaw’s Novel CLOCKWORK GENIE

Both Cecilia and Kramer watched as the detective pointed out what he described.

“Coroner puts time of death between eleven and midnight last night. As you saw, there was a scuffle in the hallway, which led into here. Perhaps Granger was attempting to escape his attacker. There doesn’t appear to be any weapons in the room or elsewhere in the house for him to defend himself with though. The desk phone was in place and we’ve already checked that no phone calls were made during that time, so no help was on the way. We still don’t know what he was intending by coming in here. He was trapping himself.”

He then turned and indicated the doorway and the stain of the floor.

“Granger was just a few feet inside when he was struck on the back of the head by a blunt object. We believe it was a brass sculpture we found near the body. The lab boys have it now and we’re testing it for prints. Though it is likely a burglary gone wrong, and Granger surprised the thief, there are also indications that this may have been a crime of passion.”

“Crime of passion?” Kramer asked.

“Yes. Grabbing something close at hand could have been the thief’s attempt to take out who had discovered him. But Granger’s head was pretty much smashed in, multiple times. Caving his skull into his brain.”

“Oh, God,” Cecilia turned away into the hallway, feeling sick, and leaned against a cupboard, full of Waterford Crystal. What am I doing here, she thought as she saw her reflection in the glass.

“You know,” Lambert was now talking to the lawyer, giving Cecilia a moment to recover from what she had seen and forget what her mind had imagined, “for a guy whose worth billions, the security here is rather lax. Though nothing appears to have been stolen, this room alone could mount up a pretty penny for any burglar. Yet there is no alarm system and he never has a security guard at the gatehouse.”

“From what I know of Mr. Granger, he didn’t feel the extra security was necessary,” Kramer cautiously suggested.

“You said the guy was eccentric, but in this city security is a necessity.”

Cecilia felt somewhat better and joined them once more, while trying to avoid looking at the bloody stain something else caught her eye in the study.

A massive painting hung high above the fireplace mantle. It was a portrait of who she surmised to be Granger himself. There was something odd about the image; the man looked ancient and childlike, with a large muscular frame. His hair was white, and wrinkles of age cut across his face, and yet there was also a youthful excitement in those eyes and mischievousness in the smile that was barely there. It did make Cecilia think of her father, just enough of a family resemblance. Maybe that was just wishful thinking on her part; it had been ten years since she had last looked upon her father’s face.

The oddness of the painting only continued. Granger was seated in the same red leather wing back chair that sat behind the desk in this very room, but Cecilia noticed a hand on his left shoulder. A woman’s youthful and slender hand attached to an arm that vanished into the darkness behind the chair. In a near black, dark red background, she could just make out a silhouette of a figure, yet there was no definition. If it weren’t for the hand, the figure would never have been noticed. Had this mystery woman been painted over?

Cecilia’s eyes were drawn down from the hand through the painting to the mantel where several photos and other knickknacks sat. She’d have to get closer to be certain; but one of those photos was of a small boy. Could that be my father? At the other side of the mantel was an ornately carved glass case and inside hung on a chain was a golden pocket watch. The sun light from the window sparkled off the gold creating an almost magical glow.

Cecilia felt drawn into the room, but the thought of the blood on the floor and what had happened there broke the dream like feeling. Turning away she faced detective Lambert once more, she blushed as she realized he had been watching her the entire time.

“Sounds like you’re pretty confident this was a breaking and entering case that went wrong,” Cecilia said as she recovered. “Yet you still consider me as a suspect. Your prime suspect even.”

“There were no signs of a break in. Someone may have surprised him when he got home last night. We’re following up on all potential leads, and the inheritance still keeps you at the top right now.”

“Well, not to do your job, Detective, but do I really look like I’m strong enough to smash someone’s head in?”

She stepped back to let him have a look at her frame, and found that she liked him looking. The pants and blouse she had thrown on this morning for work didn’t fit very well, but she hoped it hid the extra pounds she felt had gathered around her hips. She suddenly stopped, and realized how weird it was to think about her weight and clothes when she was the suspect of a murder.

“In the heat of passion,” he responded after giving her the once over, and maybe the twice and third over, “anyone is capable of the most violent acts.”

Cecilia watched him looking and tried not to judge what he was thinking.

“And a ‘crime of passion’ is quite often the act of a woman,” she stated.

“Not every time, but it is frequently the case,” Lambert replied.

“Let me see if I’ve got this straight,” she began, pushing aside her own feeling, and looked for clues in his response. “You think Mr. Granger, my apparent grandfather, had already made contact with me. And that a young woman desperate for cash would be quite thrilled to discover she could inherit all this.” She waved her arms about to indicate the opulence of the mansion. “All her troubles, bills, loans, and lousy job would be behind her. The only thing that stood in her way was old man Granger himself.”

Lambert seemed quite amused and wasn’t going to stop her little performance.

“So this desperate girl travels all the way out here, maybe to ask ‘Daddy Warbucks’ for a loan, but when he tells her ‘no’ she grabs whatever is convenient and starts taking the inheritance out of his skull. How am I doing?”

“Ah… you just summed up the case against you. I think your lawyer here would suggest you not say anything more.”

Cecilia looked from the detective to Kramer who was standing off to the side watching the entire show. He nodded in agreement.

“Thank you,” she smiled at Lambert, “I’m a writer. Sold a detective story last month. I see myself more as a fantasy writer, but I grew up reading mysteries so wanted to give it a try. Didn’t think it was great, to my amazement they bought it so I’m not complaining. As to your case, I’m not all that concerned; I never met or knew who Granger was. If I’m not wrong, you’re already looking elsewhere. Otherwise we would be having this discussion in an interrogation room at the police station and the trip out here wouldn’t have been necessary. I suppose you were gauging my reaction to being here.”

“I wouldn’t act so cocky around the next homicide detective you come in contact with.”

“I’m hoping you’re the only homicide detective I come in contact with.”

Amazon Kindle: http://amzn.to/v5f7v2

Nook:  http://bit.ly/smHLZX

iBook: http://bit.ly/rV8gCc

Smashwords: http://bit.ly/trpoJd

Excerpt from “Bargain Basement Murder”

“BARGAIN BASEMENT MURDER” is a short story found exclusively as a bonus in REVENGE OF THE MASKED GHOST, 5TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION. Here’s a sneak peek…

 

Slipping quickly through an adjoining door, the Scarlet Spirit began searching through the Accounting department. What Margaret expected to find, she wasn’t certain, but began with files related to the ‘Bargain Basement’ and the sales held down there. Would Douglas Chodzik have been involved in anything down there that would have warranted his death? She had no real direction to go, except that Gimple was really making a fuss to prevent the police from looking through the files.
Where the police are not allowed, a ghost must go.
That seemed to be her brother’s belief anyway.
“Stay right there!”
The hall door flew open and the lights came on.
It was that side of beef security guard Bruno that had so manhandled Margaret earlier. The Scarlet Spirit wasn’t going to go so easily.
“What’s with da’mask?” he asked, moving closer, watching her hands more than her face. The expectation of a thief having a gun kept him alert.
After what had happened to Adrian, Donald and Margaret had sworn that neither the Masked Ghost nor the Scarlet Spirit would use guns, but there was no reason to let this bull know that.
Quickly, the Scarlet Spirit grabbed a stapler from the desk at her side and flung it at Bruno. Instinctively, he threw up a hand and ducked. The stapler bounced off his arm, but before he registered what it was, the vigilante was running for the door.
Bruno followed and was only yards behind the Scarlet Spirit.
The Scarlet Spirit ran for the stairwell, but found it locked. The guard must have locked it after discovering someone was up here, hoping to trap a mouse.
This mouse felt trapped, but that only meant it was time to find a hole to crawl into. The other offices were locked, and in her excited state Margaret knew she couldn’t pick a lock fast enough, and there wasn’t enough time with the guard only yards away. His heavy footsteps echoed down the hallways.
Her luck changed when she turned to the elevator. For security purposes, the crew had shut it down away from the store levels, so it was parked right here. She forced open the gate of the elevator. Once inside, she pulled it shut and yanked down on the lever. With a hard jerk the box moved downward.
As it began a laborious descent, the Scarlet Spirit looked about the small box. There was a small latch on the ceiling. Margaret had heard about escape hatches in elevators, but she had no idea what she would do if she were able to actually climb on to the top of the elevator. That would only get the mouse further trapped.

Interested in reading the rest of the story? Then pick up my ebook novel REVENGE OF THE MASKED GHOST, 5TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION.

KINDLE:  http://amzn.to/1QKhQ3W

SMASHWORDS: http://bit.ly/1pdiJsx

NOOK: http://bit.ly/1nDhfH3

KINDLE UK: http://amzn.to/1pdiWMg

 

Kevin Paul Shaw Broden Interviewed by Lisa Collins

Read Lisa Collins’ interview with author Kevin Paul Shaw Broden on the 5th Anniversary of his New Pulp Fiction novel REVENGE OF THE MASKED GHOST.
http://bit.ly/29P0E0Y

Look What Still Makes the List…

The great author Derrick Ferguson has expanded his list of New Pulp Novels titles he recommends. Now, it is increased to 35 New Pulp Books To Get You Started.

This Friend of the Masked Ghost is still greatly honored to be included.

There are a lot of great stories here. Start reading.

Celebrating 15 Years of a Webcomic

Celebrating 15 Years of a Webcomic by KevinPSB4

Though only a few months have passed for Debra and her friends, the webcomic FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY have been around for 15 years.

FLYING GLORY AND THE HOUNDS OF GLORY (www.flying-glory.com) is the story of ambitious Debra Clay who’s grandmother was the wartime super heroine FLYING GLORY. Now the teenager always looking for ways to promote her rock bang, The Hounds of Glory, is thrilled to discover that she has inherited her Grandma Elsie’s super powers. Once she’s convinced her friends to put on costumes as part of their performance, a new team of super heroes is formed even if they didn’t want to be. Because they are soon fighting super villains between, and sometimes during, their rock concerts.

Be sure to pick up FLYING GLORY FLASHBACK a special 15th Anniversary edition that my co-writer Shannon Muir put to get. It includes all the song lyrics she wrote for the series as well as character bios. (amzn.to/293eI1L)  Only 99cents.

Kevin Paul Shaw Broden at Long Beach Comic Expo 2016

The Author of REVENGE OF THE MASKED GHOST will be appearing at the Long Beach Comic Expo

Photos of LEGENDS OF NEW PULP FICTION

Look what arrived just before the New Year – LEGENDS OF NEW PULP FICTION. A massive anthology of the greatest authors and artists in New Pulp. Pick up a copy at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Legends-New-Pulp-Fiction-Fortier/dp/0692601139/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451628201&sr=1-1&keywords=legends+of+new+pulp+fiction

Legends of New Pulp Fiction

I have an illustration in this book along with other great artists and writers.

Look who made the list

The great author Derrick Ferguson has put together a list of New Pulp Novels he titles: “25 New Pulp Books To Get You Started”

This Friend of the Masked Ghost is greatly honored to be included.

There are a lot of great stories here. Start reading.

“The Crypt”

Been rereading HP Lovecraft this past few weeks. He’s not my normal read, but I like it from time to time. While reading the story “The Tomb” an idea of my own popped in my head whole though the ending surprised me. Wrote it in about three hours, and took a couple of days to edit. It maybe more Bradbury’s Dark Carnival than Lovecraft.  What follows is my very short story (Flash Fiction?) Let me know what you think.

“The Crypt”

by Kevin Paul Shaw Broden

The sun was only minutes from setting when I drove between the freshly white washed walls and rod iron gates. There would be less than half an hour before the caretaker would lock up for the evening so we didn’t have much time.

“Thank you for coming with me Arleen,” I said to my fiancée next to me as we drove between expansive green fields dotted with flat rectangular stones.

“Of course, John. I know family means everything to you.”

“I’m glad you understand. Especially since most of my family is here.”

My car left the newer green lawns behind and pulled on to gravel-covered paths between ancient trees that stood sentinel with weeping branches for those they guarded.

After parking, Arleen and I walked deeper into the darker and older parts of the cemetery.

Before us stood dozens of massive stones, each with my family name etched and carved into the marble and granite with a litany of names and dates. This land had once belonged to my family, and this had been their private graveyard. Over the years as the family spread out, and the population of the town increased, these fields were donated to the community and a necropolis was born.

I led Arleen between the cyclopean monuments, telling her of this great uncle, or that great great-grand father who went insane.

“There seems to be a lot of that in your family tree.”

“What?” I asked with great concern.

“You’re marrying me, aren’t you,” she laughed at her own joke. I did not find it all that funny, but politely smiled.

“Back here we have the oldest of my ancestors. They’re all in the—”

That’s when I saw them.

Three teenage hooligans huddling around iron-gate of my ancestors’ final home. One of them was rattling the lock and chain that sealed the ancient crypt.

“Hey, stay away from there,” Arleen shouted at them, “That’s private property!”

The boys turned at the sound, their faces drawn, eyes sunken; they looked like skeletons freshly up from their graves.

Quickly glancing about I spotted matches, aluminum foil, syringes and the rest of their drug paraphernalia sitting atop cousin Herbert’s stone. I half smiled realizing that if he was alive he’d probably join in their festivities.

The tallest of the three, who perhaps hadn’t yet lost his manhood to the drug, snarled at us. “Whose property? Ain’t nobody here to complain. Go away if you know what’s good for you!”

“This is his family!”

“Oh, it’s his family is it? Maybe he’d like to join them.” At the man’s words the other two pulled out knives.

Arleen now really was scared, but I took her hand and gave it a squeeze of reassurance that everything would be all right.

“You do know there are reasons why that gate is chained and locked up strong,” I said as one of the boys turned back to attempting to break open the old rusted lock.

“Ya, to keep out thieves like him!” Arleen snapped at them with a renewed surge of confidence.

“There ain’t a lot that can keep me out.” The man snarled again.

“Perhaps,” I let him have his ego, “there are some locks that aren’t meant to keep people out, rather they are to keep things from getting out.”

It took a second to sink in to their drug addled brains. The two knife wielding lowlifes looked at me then glanced at the old rusted lock and chain on the crypt’s iron door.

“Follow my lead,” I whispered to Arleen as the leader of the small gang swatted the heads of his compatriots like the stooges they were.

“Don’t listen to him, you fools. He’s just messing with you. There’s nothing there—”

“Shush.”

“Don’t ‘shush’ me!” He snapped back at me.

“I wasn’t talking to you.” I replied matter-of-factly, but stared into the darkness of the crypt behind him and then said; “Go back to sleep, they won’t be bothering you much longer.”

Arleen looking at me like I was crazy, but I again squeezed her hand in reassurance.

“Who the hell are you talking to?” He shouted at me.

I sighed, “You see, my family doesn’t like to be disturbed.”

“Do you think we’re mad?!” He shouted.

“There is little doubt.” I replied with a smirk and then made my eyes go wide with fear and took a step back.

“I warned you,” I said with as much terror I could muster and pointed a long finger toward the crypt behind him.

“Run!” I screamed and pulled Arleen with me. We took off towards the newer plots, but at an angle I could keep an eye on the three drugged out trespassers. They must never have confronted anyone like us before for their leader just stared at us in utter confusion. His lackeys were even more so. One of them must have jumped at my sudden shout and stepped backwards bumping into the rod-iron gate. The rusty old chain rattled into the darkness of the crypt and echoed out against at them like a cold breeze on their necks.

That’s all it took. The three jumped and screamed as one and ran as fast as they ever could. They soon over took us and were many yards a head and running for the exit of the cemetery. Perhaps the caretaker would catch them, perhaps not.

We stopped running and I gave a loud laugh at such a sight.

“That was very cruel to do to them,” Arleen said but couldn’t help laughing herself as we headed back to the stones.

It was then, as the last rays of sunlight faded, we heard the rattle of the chain once more as it fell loose, followed by a low screech of rusted hinges of the ancient iron-gate.

My family had arrived to celebrate our engagement.

The End

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