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Captain Stone Is Missing

Wed Feb 11, 2015, 6:44 PM
97-img-00 by techgnotic














A Madefire motion book by Christina McCormack & Liam Sharp


Without going into all the wonderful enhancements (not only frame motion and dramatic juxtapositions, but also musical scoring and sound and flash effects) possible with the Madefire motion books process, it should be emphasized lest one get lost in all the bells and whistles that the actual story narrative of Captain Stone is Missing is stand–alone worthy of feature film treatment (and every other possible iteration). This is the second “Madefire motion book” produced by Wolstonholme and Sharp to receive this highest assessment, the first being Mono. Both titles represent achievements a cut above standard comic book fare. In each, the storytelling is genuinely literary rather than stalely clichéd, even before the addition of “motion book” technology is factored in. Liam Sharp’s masterful artwork alone would be reason enough to celebrate “Stone,” even if nothing “moved.”



The first grand conceit of the “Stone” series is that there is no Marvel nor DC Universe.


Captain Stone is this world’s sole “superhero,” and he is a cartoonishly muscle–bound, classically–costumed force–for–good. He and his “Stone Corps” team debut in the aftermath of real world disasters like the Manila earthquake, distributing medicine and food and providing protection to the devastated population. Stone and his Corps render aid at other natural disasters. Then this hero turns vigilante, bringing international drug lords and other “untouchable” criminals to justice. He is admired by both liberals and conservatives for getting results. He becomes a pop hero with comics, novels, movies and an animated series on TV. But he doesn’t thwart 9/11 or capture Bin Laden. He does capture Hussein as part of his support for the Iraq war. But the absence of WMD makes him look misguided and foolish. The moonlighting CIA agents who make up his Stone Corps leak that his immense wealth is running out. There are rumors of illicit means securing further funding of his operations. His image already tarnished, the bombshell revelation that he is “Flint Clayton,” son of a despised and recently deceased media mogul billionaire, tanks what was left of his popularity. A disastrous appearance, unmasked, on a cable news interview show, effectively “ends” the hero Captain Stone. Reality TV shows, allegations of ‘roid rage and a sex tape mark Stone’s descent from Captain Stone to Fred Flint–Stone. Stone’s secret North Carolina Appalachian mountain HQ blows up. It is not known whether he is dead or alive. Captain Stone is missing. So ends the wild witty preamble that is “Book One.”


The constant interpolation of current pop memes that suffuses the narrative sets up a brilliantly “knowing” rise, fall and redemption tale well–resonating with today’s Internet readership. No comic (non–underground) has ever dared to be quite this hip and political before.



Charlotte “Charlie” Chance (aka “The Pet”) is the other half of the Stone story.


She is the daughter of Lord Charles Chance, delightfully 60s–style millionaire playboy and international Robin Hoodish jewel thief. From age 6 to 12, Charlie accompanies him on heists. Then, during a robbery, the Craven Panther is forced to kill a guard dog about to attack her. She is psychologically traumatized, quitting the “family business,” and becoming a vegetarian and a PETA activist. In her work with PETA she uncovers the plot of a group of meat suppliers to introduce a hormone into the population through their product that will addict them to red meat. The evildoers go to prison. But Charlie is paid back with an ambush injection in the leg. She suspects she has been given the AIDS virus. Instead, the injected bug, courtesy of the meat–men, turns her into a sort of vampire, ravenous for human blood. It gets worse for her. Clayton’s widow calls up to reveal that Charlie and Captain Stone are half–brother and half–sister. Even as cable news helicopters circle the smoking remains of Stone’s mountain HQ, covering the big news story “du jour” on Charlie’s TV screen, she learns that Stone is the “love child” of a one night stand between mogul Clayton’s trophy wife (and now widow) and Charlie’s Craven Panther jewel thief father (retired).


Despite the impediment of her bloodlust addiction, Charlie decides she needs to join the search for her missing half–brother, Captain Stone, regardless of whether he’s dead or alive. So begins “Book Two.”


It’s amazing that a digital comic, presented as a prototype showing off the possibilities of a revolutionary new system like Madefire motion books, and having what one would assume to be profitability as a part of its business plan, would go so far out of its way to have fun with and, to a great extent, subvert the current popular mainstream of superhero characters in comics, on TV and in the movie theaters. But Captain Stone does not offend pop superhero fans’ sensibilities. Instead, the storytelling, being so elevated and engaging above the common bar, makes it representative of the next level of its genre’s future, rather than being perceived as a mocking wrecking–ball. This is quite a feat, given the rabid loyalties of comics fans, especially of the superhero genre.


Captain Stone is indicative of a new creative positive growth in comic storytelling, pushing back against the naysaying trolls harping on a supposed creeping atrophy.



















Your Thoughts


  1. Do you prefer a wholly–imagined different world — the better to help you escape in some measure the actual horror of 9/11, etc?
  2. Do you think certain superhero clichés need to be satirized, so long as the mockery is not too disrespectful of our beloved childhood heroes?













The first grand conceit of the “Stone” series is that there is no Marvel nor DC Universe. “Captain Stone” is this world’s sole “superhero,” and he is a cartoonishly muscle-bound, classically-costumed force-for-good. He and his “Stone Corps” team debut in the aftermath of real world disasters like the Manila earthquake, distributing medicine and food and providing protection to the devastated population. Stone and his Corps render aid at other natural disasters. Then this hero turns vigilante, bringing international drug lords and other “untouchable” criminals to justice. He is admired by both liberals and conservatives for getting results. He becomes a pop hero with comics, novels, movies and an animated series on TV.


For more articles like this, visit depthRADIUS.
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Add a Comment:
 
:icondarkchroniclescom:
DarkChroniclesCom Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2015  Student Digital Artist
I loved CapSone right from the beginning. You have to read the latest episode. Thanks for sharing my CapStone Fanart ;)
Reply
:iconsolus-carlpanda:
Solus-CarlPanda Featured By Owner Mar 13, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Love this.. it's the series that is neither Marvel nor DC universe but something unique or secret. Gotta like it!
Reply
:iconhelsinki2019:
Helsinki2019 Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2015
Very nice. I'm sure that will greatly
Reply
:iconfabiokeiner:
FabioKeiner Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
if any alien culture ever would have the chance to judge human culture by viewing us-american telly-soaps, comic-books, your super-heroes weirdoes - they will have to conclude, that this is a society of morons constantly running amok... (in ferguson, e.g.)
...
and that would be the truth, I fear.

here really you could watch the face of westen civilization in all its uglyness: brutal killers without brains, grotesquely... deformed war-machines - but without genitals ! :)) they all are castrates, your all-american heroes.

('the actual horror of 09/11' - even for that sick stuff your CIA's false flag operation must serve! you should rather put: 'the lasting shame of getting spyed on 24/7 hours a week by our own  national 'security' agency NSA and in case of disobedience getting shot by police like a dog (in case you're black).


not even nazi or communist propaganda was that low as  'democratic training in westen values' today via mass media.
Reply
:iconxxshadowrosexx:
XxShadowRosexX Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
I'm not comparing this to Kick Ass but it kinda reminds me of that comic. I definitely be looking forward to reading it!
Reply
:iconbewow:
bewow Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2015  Hobbyist Photographer
amazing:woohoo:
Reply
:iconwwatson1970:
wwatson1970 Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2015  Professional General Artist
Regarding the questions in "Your thoughts":
1.  Horror can happen anywhere.  Comfort and the belief in security are just as illusionary as imagined worlds.

2.  Childhood?  Yeah, right.   I think we have too much blind respect toward those who don't deserve it.  Not everyone in the comic book industry are good people.  For example, I find it tragic the creators of Superman were only paid $130 dollars for their work.  I recommend reading "Supergods" by Grant Morrison.  It is a good history of comics, as well as a glimpse to his writing method.    

Satire doesn't bother me just as long as the storytelling is good and the characters are relatable.
Reply
:iconliamsharp:
LiamSharp Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Professional General Artist
Nice answers! With you 100%. :-)
Reply
:iconwwatson1970:
wwatson1970 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2015  Professional General Artist
Thanks.  Love to see what you come up with.
Reply
:iconemoelikue:
EmoEliKue Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
he is your brother...

i love it that part because i want to know what happen after.
Reply
:iconliamsharp:
LiamSharp Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Professional General Artist
Thank you! That was my hope! :-)
Reply
:iconben-abernathy:
Ben-Abernathy Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2015
Be sure to enjoy the FREE Motion Book of Captain Stone is Missing #1:

Captain Stone is Missing... - Episode 1: Chess by MadefireStudios
Reply
:iconseancumiskeyart:
seancumiskeyart Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2015  Professional Digital Artist
I think it's up for argument exactly how well "The Boys" explored anything. 

I love the extremely bulky look that Liam Sharp brings to Captain Stone. Some of the more painterly pieces remind me of 2000 AD. Awesome. 
Reply
:iconliamsharp:
LiamSharp Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Professional General Artist
Thank you for the kind words! I cut my teeth in 2000ad back in the 1980s, and this is very much a tribute to all the work I loved in the 80s and 90s, back when comics were really pushing the boundaries... :-)
Reply
:iconloliloster:
Loliloster Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
OMG I love this! This is really great. Ihaben no words to describe how I feel.
Reply
:iconliamsharp:
LiamSharp Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Professional General Artist
Thank you so much! Really appreciate the kind words. :-)
Reply
:iconloliloster:
Loliloster Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
ovo b
Reply
:iconnopurposenaji:
NoPurposeNaji Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2015
Meh.... Nothing special.

Garth Ennis's The Boys explored the concept in much more depth.
Reply
:iconliamsharp:
LiamSharp Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2015  Professional General Artist
I hope you stick with it. Garth's an old friend of mine - we started at the same time back in the 80s - actually I think I preceded him by about 3 years, not that that counts for anything!

Cap Stone is not as dark as Garth's awesome work by any means, but I think we're actually doing something very different... it's certainly going to very different places long term...
Reply
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