Monday, February 12, 2007

TenNapel in the News & Will We
See A Creature Tech Film? (Please, Yes!)

I'm mad about Doug TenNapel's graphic novels. You already knew that--right?--given my glowing reviews of CREATURE TECH, EARTHBOY JACOBUS and, er, did I review IRON WEST here, or Tommysaurus Rex? Hmmm. I think I forgot to. Oh, well.

(And I'm still waiting for GEAR to come out. I have to continually approve my preorder with amazon, since it's been preordered for, oh, a long time!)

The Daily Dispatch has an article by Terry Mattingly, with the following:

It helps to understand that he grew up in rural Turlock, Calif., in a home that, during his childhood years, contained many religious influences - from atheism to evangelicalism. He studied art at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego and eventually took a TV animation job with "The Attack of the Killer Tomatoes."

Then he moved into video games, leading to his 1994 hit "Earthworm Jim." Two years later, Steven Spielberg hired him to create the "Neverhood" games for Dreamworks. TenNapel was a digital success, but he also spiraled into burnout. Then, in 2002, he created "Creature Tech."

The key moment came when the blogger called "Moriarty" posted the following at the Ain't It Cool ( site for film insiders.

"There's no doubt. It's weird. ... It's also very funny, profoundly sweet and heartfelt, touching in a strange way, and serious about concepts like faith and family without being in any way preachy or corny," he wrote. "Simply put, 'Creature Tech' is the best American animated film since 'The Iron Giant.' ... Better than anything from any studio. ... It's a movie that just happens to be in print."

Of course, there is always that wall when it comes to writers who add Christian faith elements to a work, speculative or otherwise. The bigotry remains on one side, and the narrow-mindedness on the other:

Part of the challenge, admitted TenNapel, is capturing his blend of fantasy and Christian faith. Some critics wish he would quit weaving sin, redemption, politics and science into his plots. Then there are church people who think he should be drawing evangelistic, "Christian comics" and avoiding his occasional blasts of sci-fi potty humor.

And perhaps the simplest bit of wisdom for the day is this:

"Christians are going to have to learn that art isn't automatically good if it's made by Christians. And Hollywood will have to learn that art isn't automatically bad if it's made by Christians."

If you want to try the wonderful CREATURE TECH or EARTHBOY JACOBUS, I have links to these on my sidebar. Ues 'em! Put some change in the Mir kitty at amazon. Thanky.

1 comment:

SolShine7 said...

"I'm covered in demonic cate pee!!!" - that's just classic.