In recent months, commemorative poster-creating powerhouse Mondo has expanded its reach to more realms of film-inspired memorabilia. While the Austin-based company has been pumping out vinyl soundtracks, VHS re-releases and clothing options, to name a few, Mondo has only just begun dipping its toes into the figure and statue game. However, this year at San Diego Comic-Con, Mondo made a big splash, offering early looks at a variety of new comic and movie-based pieces inspired by some of the most iconic characters and creators of our generation.
We spoke with Mondo's Creative Director of Toys and Collectibles, Brock Otterbacher, about the company's fresh slate of offerings, and how he hoped to stand out in an ever-crowding market. With new items based on Hellboy and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on the way, Mondo is clearly setting the bar high for itself. Factor in the wealth of artists and creatives at Mondo's disposal, and you have a company that seems poised to make a major dent in the collectible space (and wallets) in 2015 and beyond.
Remember how last year at San Diego Comic-Con, Mondo released an amazing vinyl soundtrack album for Batman: The Animated Series that was actually shaped like a Batman symbol? Remember how much you --- and by "you," I mean "I" --- wanted that thing, even though you --- same deal --- do not actually own a record player? Well, get ready to want again.
This week DC and Mondo announced that they are following up the B:TAS album with this year's offering, featuring the theme from Superman: The Animated Series on a die-cut disc shaped like Superman's emblem, complete with a screenprinted S on the b-side. I'm going to go ahead and assume that in this case, it stands for Hope They Don't Run Out While I'm Waiting In Line.
Many of us have been fans of the numerous limited collectibles Mondo's released since the company got its start. Over the years, there have been countless movie posters, soundtracks, VHS tapes and other niche items offered by Mondo, with more and more seemingly coming each and every day. Recently, Mondo started dipping its toes into the figure/statue game, with a fully-articulated Iron Giant and a few Teenage Mutant Ninja Turltes pieces already on the way.
Today, Mondo took another step towards obscure geek memorabilia masters with the announcement of the First Hellboy statue. Before appearing in his own self-titled series, Hellboy existed merely as a sketch done by creator Mike Mignola at a convention in the early '90s. This First Hellboy shared a few things in common with his eventual successor, but lacked the trenchcoat, Right Hand of Doom, killer sideburns and proclivity for pamcakes. Now, nearly 25 years later, the First Hellboy is finally getting his due.
Before the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles had been fully fleshed out, they were nothing more than an idea on a napkin. One simple idea on a piece of serviette in a bar launched a franchise and brand that's still going strong today. To pay homage to Kevin Eastman's original drawing of his and Peter Laird's creation, Mondo is bringing that original concept art to life in a limited edition action figure known simply as The First Turtle.
Over the past few years, Mondo has put on some pretty amazing showcases of pop-culture inspired art at their gallery in Austin, Texas, complete with limited prints featuring some of our favorite characters, and it looks like they'll be back at it again next month. On May 22, they're kicking off "Pulp Menagerie," a gallery show featuring the art of Tom Whalen, featuring some truly fantastic posters based on Godzilla, Batman, and Mad Monster Party.
Two Christmases ago marked the 20th anniversary Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, a film that’s arguably its creators’ most perfect expression of their enduringly influential animated vision of DC Comics’ dark knight — a vision that many believe is the most perfect expression of Batman in any medium. While Warner Bros. has yet to announce any plans for a high definition reissue or any other offerings connected with the special occasion, the film fanatics at Mondo — purveyors of extremely fine illustrated film posters and other cinematic celebrations — decided to honor Mask of the Phantasm with an anniversary event in connection with the famous Alamo Drafthouse of Austin, Texas, where they screened the film in its original 35mm format for a sold-out house. As always, Mondo came prepared with an extremely limited quantities of an original screen-printed poster, which serves as an update of the film’s original theatrical one-sheet and an homage to the aesthetic legacy of co-directors Bruce Timm and Eric Radomski’s work. Naturally, being a Mondo release, the poster is no longer on sale except on the collectors' market, where it fetches hundreds.
Now, ComicsAlliance was in attendance that night in Austin, and we were lucky enough to procure a variant edition of the poster -- illustrated by Phantom City Creative -- to offer to our readers in this giveaway contest. It took us quite a while, but we finally tracked down Timm as well as Andrea Beaumont herself, actor Dana Delany, who graciously signed the poster in the presence of former CA editor Andy Khouri, making this a truly one of a kind collectible.
During San Diego Comic-Con 2014, sellers of outstanding rare art prints and vinyl records, Mondo, revealed it would be getting into the collectible figure game. Not ones to do things halfheartedly, Mondo announced one of its first two figures would be of the Iron Giant from the beloved animated film of the same name.
As part of their year-long celebration of Batman's 75th Anniversary, Mondo has produced an art show, posters, and a truly beautiful soundtrack album that sold out of all five designs at San Diego, and now, they're giving me the most compelling reason yet to get into vinyl: a die-cut single of Danny Elfman's theme from Batman: The Animated Series. I definitely do not need this because I don't even own a record player, but y'all... it's shaped like a bat. How can I not get this?
Every time I think that our friends at Mondo might be taking a break from putting out art that I want to cover my walls with so that I can never not be looking at something awesome, they go and prove me wrong. This time, they're following up their series of amazing Batman-related art by heading back across the street to the House of Ideas for two new Marvel posters, featuring Ghost Rider and Storm.
Over the past few months, we've been slowly freaking out over the Mondo gallery's tribute to Batman's 75th anniversary. Every time a new set of art was revealed, the show looked better and better, and now that it's actually open down in Austin, our suspicions have been confirmed: The art for this show is incredible.
Not only do they have the portraits inspired by Batman '66 and the beautifully designed posters inspired by the movies and classic episodes of Batman: The Animated Series, but the gallery features work from comic book artists Francesco Francavilla and Jock, too. Fittingly enough, the two collaborated on an amazing piece based on "The Black Mirror," the excellent Scott Snyder story they both contributed to, but Francavilla also took on a poster inspired by Kelley Jones and Doug Moench's classic Elsewords Batman & Dracula: Red Rain, and Jock produced a pair of pieces based on Frank Miller's Batman: Year One that I'm pretty sure I desperately need to own.
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