Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Bell of Splendid Awakening

One of the reasons I chose to draw Liberty Belle a few weeks back is because I wanted to draw a bell. But not the bell Libby was holding. I wanted to draw an Asian bell. I loves 'em. And, when I found that drawing Libby had not scratched that itch, I drew this picture.

And, well, every real superhero deserves a supporting cast that includes hordes doppelgangers and variations on one's theme. Batman has Batgirl, Batwoman, Batmite, Ace the Bat-Hound, and so on. Spiderman has a couple Spider-Women, Spider-Girl, the Scarlet Spider, and at least one Spiderman from the future. Superman... well, let's not even get started on Superman. So I decided that my mythical A-List Liberty Belle comic would include women from other cultures who also had bells that they used in various super-powery ways, collectively called the Bell Maidens.

Bell of Splendid Awakening is holding a nao, which is a clapperless bell that is kept upright and stuck with a wooden mallet. She uses it to focus and magnify her qi, granting her a range of wuxia-style abilities, including Libby-like blasts, healing, and, of course, sonic kung-fu.

Thanks to Memphis artist/ designer Kong Wee Pang, who translated Bell's name for this image.

12 comments:

the lovely wife said...

I'm so excited to so the final result! Bell of Splendid Awakening is beautiful. Really striking.

the lovely wife said...

Errata:
"to see" not "to so"

Apparently my brain has already left for Canada. The body will catch up in a couple of days. Jeez.

Dean Trippe said...

Wickedtastic. Sonic Kung Fu. Sold.

Joel Priddy said...

Thanks, y'all!

Jim Duong said...

I'm sorry, but I cannot help but laugh at "Bell Maidens". It's really good, just hilarious for some reason.

I changed my senior show idea again, I think. BE PREPARED.

Joel Priddy said...

Oh, Lord.

Chris Pitzer said...

It's like "What if Stan Lee had re-imagined the re-imagination that Joel Priddy had created"!

I'd like a Ruskie Bell Ringer, please!

Joel Priddy said...

Yeah, I thought about a Bell Maiden from Slavonia, specifically. And a Czech Jewish Bell Maiden. And a North African Bell. And, of course, an evil Nazi Bell called Death's Knell. And a Stateside sidekick for Libby named Jingle if she's a girl (she'd brandish two handbells) and Hoppy if he's a boy (he would, of course, be dressed as a bellhop).

But then I remembered I had real work to get back to. Maybe, one day, if Dan Didio makes a certain phone call...

Gus and Fer said...

BoSA v IronHide Tom - let's get ready to rumble!

Literature can never have enough sonic Kung Fu, by the way. That was my biggest problem with everything James Joyce wrote.

Joel Priddy said...

Stately, hunchbacked IronHide Tom came from the ship’s head, bearing a bell of bronze on which a kuzoo and a rattle crossed. A yellow dressing gown, trimmed with jinglebells, was sustained gently-behind him by the mild morning air. He held the bell aloft and intoned:

Aye, and what do ye do with a drunken sailor?

Halted, he peered down the dark winding gangplank and called up coarsely:

Avast! Yer sonic kung fu be not strong. Prepare t' be destroyed! Ha-ha!

Solemnly he lept forward and landed on the round gunrest. He faced about and, with folded hands, gravely acknowledged thrice the tower-sized gong, the surrounding country and the awaking mountains. Then, catching sight of Bell of Splendid Awakening, he dove towards her and made a rapid series of Screeching-Crane-in-a Thunderstorm punches in the air, gurgling in his throat and shaking his head. Bell of Splendid Awakening, displeased and sleepy, leaned her arms on the top of the dockpost and quietly revealed a pair of silver-and-tigerhide fighting tambourines, one emblazoned with a painting of a rooster, and the other with a phoenix.

Are you prepared to face my Birds of Earth and Heaven technique?

Gus and Fer said...

See, now that's what I'm talking about.

I'd read that book, all the way through, even.

Joel Priddy said...

The amazing thing - perhaps the most important literary observation of recent years, and certainly a thesis paper waiting to happen - is how easily Joyce's text converts into wuxia prose.