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Black Betty Unwinds
22 9 1K (1 Today)
By JoeEngland   |   Watch
Published: October 31, 2018
© 2018 - 2019 JoeEngland
The Vorpal Pook tend to conceal themselves beneath a veneer of respectability. Ever the exhibitionist, Black Betty sometimes uses Halloween as an opportunity to buck propriety and let down her hair.

Just a little.

Note:  This was inspired by an old drawing of Joe Madureira's, published a thousand years ago in a Battle Chasers sketchbook.  The Vorpal Pook had been a concept I'd been carrying long before they appeared in Zebra Girl, and I remember that at some point I thought to myself that his snake monster would serve very well as a representation of their "true form".  I lost the book long ago, but after finishing this image I finally managed to track down a picture of the pertinent page on Pinterest.  You can judge for yourself which creature is more horrible.
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zalabar's avatar
Something that struck me as particularly magnificent was how you managed to play with space from page 304 ( zebragirl.thecomicseries.com/c… ) and we get a little of that here. The intricate... lensing? around the large eyes draw attention, but if you gaze into that maw, there are those tiny motes that seem to look back out. Then there's the way that she seems to be peeling open her snake belly, revealing just rows of those long, bony, terrifying hands.

Which is to ultimately say I think yours is much more nightmareish. Betty here is a thing emerging from dreams, half formed, yet terrifyingly solid. She seems lovecraftian in that quasi-real state. I also particularly love how it looks like there's still some kind of a shadow hand... thing on the lower left side where her tail? starts to fade into the background.
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JoeEnglandProfessional General Artist
Oh, right, the shadow hand thing!  Glad you noticed that.  I've grown fond of mirroring my art in little ways to achieve a sort of symmetry.  Clarity's picture, the Volume 5 cover, the Seven Saints.... The hint of a claw in the corner here is a bit of the original image copied, reversed, overlaid, and mostly erased to provide a vague kind of balance.  It just seemed to work.
Voidbane's avatar
Now she gives even BETTER hugs~!
chaotik74's avatar
You know...i GET that Zebra girl was written from the perspective of the monsters.  I really do. Loved the series, would enjoy a sequel someday.  But looking at Betty, and remembering the antics of the vamps and Southpaw form the last arc..not to mention Zandra herself if looked at objectively WITHOUT the inside knowledge and empathy we have..I gotta ask...what/where are the monster hunters? The people who decide, "No, i DON"T particularly enjoy being prey or having my freinds and family made prey.  I do NOT like living under fear.  I do NOT like overly magical slacker pervs in plaid turning people into different species against thier will and putting them through years of therapy.  My sympathy for the victims outweighs my sympathy for thier attackers, and I am armed."   There has GOT to be a middle ground between "hate-fueled psycho worse than what he is fighting" and "totally inept band-aid that   never solves anything becasue evil is eternal and you can't win, so might as well shack up with them" o

I miss the idea of white knights before everyone insisted on slinging grey mud all over the place.   *sigh*
JoeEngland's avatar
JoeEnglandProfessional General Artist
Oh, there are people like that in Zebra Girl's world.  For a while I had a notion of introducing "Chinatown Brown," greatest monster hunter on the West Coast.  It didn't work out, but Professor Broadshoulders and Jack mentioned him by name (on pages 383 and 789, respectively), so he's canon.  And I assure you, he and his sidekicks are very traditionally heroic.

But monster hunters are rare, and the crux of the final storyline was that law and order would grow from within the "monster community", rather than from an imposition along the lines of traditional notions of good humans and bad monsters.  That's the purpose of Zandra's "MINIONs", monsters policing the community alongside mundane law enforcement like Suze Orman.

And on that note, it's worth mentioning that Black Betty came up with the idea, ultimately becoming an agent of order rather than chaos.  Pook carry themselves like wild troublemakers, but they actually have a very developed sense of justice.
TheHiddenElephant's avatar
TheHiddenElephantStudent Traditional Artist
Like, whoa.  I think we've just found the true form of Yig.
Scribbleykins's avatar
She's a handful, huh.
Hyena-Yena's avatar
I'd say send her to Trump but she doesn't deserve that kind of torture and punishment.
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