By Tatsuya Ishida
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July 29, 2001
She blinded me with science
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Life imitates art? I've always thought of art as life lite. It's almost like the real thing, but it tastes better and it's less filling. It's sort of a starter kit, a primer, the gateway drug to a bigger and badder reality. Take superhero comics, for instance. Like Jerry Seinfeld said, superheroes weren't just stories. They were options. I used to flip through comic books like they were catalogues on lifestyles. Do I want to be the wise-cracking do-gooder a la Spider-Man? Or the dark and brooding Batman-ish type? Very tough choice. Of course, Aquaman could communicate with fishes, which would sure come in handy during a tsunami. Speaking of which, they really oughtta bring back the old school Aquaman with the cheesy orange outfit. That ruled.

July 22, 2001
Ain't no mountain high enough
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

The San Diego Comic Con was surreal. I actually met some of the alleged humans known as webcartoonists, and it went over okay. They didn't hurl bricks at me. They didn't tar and feather me. They didn't burn me in effigy. So it's all good and gravy. They even said things like "Nice to meet you" and "Let me shake your hand." How about that! I had to do a double take and make sure I wasn't hallucinating. Webcartoonists addressing me with respect and decency? When did this happen? Was there a memo I missed? Did they take their friendly pills? Maybe the water in San Diego is laced with ecstacy. Who knows?

July 15, 2001
We built this city on rock 'n' roll
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Y'all know by now that I'm a badass. And I'm known to do some pretty crazy badass things. I double dip. I leave the seat up. I wait in the express lane with more than the designated amount of items. And sometimes I even utter profanities. I'm like a wild man. Totally out of control. But as bad as I am, I'm also a force for good. It's one of my endearing contradictions as an explosively fascinating being. Dig it: I don't dog people. I don't slam their work. I don't smear their character. To me these are no-brainers. I may not be the sharpest spoon in the drawer but I know my right from wrong. Yeah, I got me some morals and shit. A badass with a heart of gold. And modest to boot.

July 8, 2001
You will know when you are calm
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

The test of a vocation is the love of the drudgery it involves.
-L.P.Smith

Artist Meets Muse. Artist Loses Muse. Artist Wins Muse Back. The creative process is often characterized as a romance, and in my case it's a torrid affair, a dangerous liaison, pure 100% unadulterated passion. Me and my Muse, we're the stuff of cheap romance novels. We're like a Red Shoe Diaries movie. Or, dare I say it, an episode of Baywatch. It's that good. Sure, sometimes it's like a French movie where I don't know what the hell's goin' on. Or a student film that makes no sense. Other times it's like a slasher flick, and I think the bitch is out to get me. But that's inspiration for ya. It ain't always smooth, but it's worth the ride.

July 1, 2001
Whisper words of wisdom
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Give me a beat

Buddha and Christ
Long been iced
Loungin' afterhours at Club Zeitgeist

Confucius on the bongo
Krishna on the mic
Moses at the turntable spinnin' what he likes

(deejay scratches)

Serpent do a lip sync
Messing up the mix
This is how he got his ass 86ed

(sample chorus from Milli Vanilli's "Girl you know it's true")

So keep it on the upswing
Keep it goin' live
You can jam and slam and then STAGE DIVE!

Ungh! Too funky!

June 24, 2001
I have to praise you like I should
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

The Way of The Hero Artist. As a force for good, I battle all sorts of villains and wrong-doers, like the Legion of Critics, Biter-Man, and Bizarro Tat. You know, clowns who talk trash, rip me off, even impersonate me. It's just one thing after another in this business. Life as a cartoonist, as you can see, is certainly fraught with peril. Hell, I may soon be dodging assassination attempts. Find my rabbit boiled and my thoroughbred decapitated. I could end up like Tupac: "Cartoonist slain in Las Vegas shooting. Jealous rivals seen fleeing the crime scene. News at 11." But these are the hazards of my profession, so it's--Woop! The Tat Signal! I'm needed in Gotham. Probably Imbecile Boy or StalkerChick is acting up again. To the Tatmobile!

June 17, 2001
Soylent green is people!
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

While reading over some old Resistance entries, I thought to myself, "Whoa. That is one cocky sumbitch. Who the bloody hell does he think he is?" Fortunately I, like Madonna, have the uncanny ability to reinvent myself. Like a chameleon, you might say. So I've decided to take a crack at this "modesty" thing you speak of. You know, mix it up a bit. But before I do, let's say good-bye to the Tatsuya of old. (Roll video montage of Tatsuya running through a cornfield in slow motion, sipping pina coladas with the Bush twins, clutching the Stanley Cup awash in champagne, while "Don't You Forget About Me" by Simple Minds plays in the background.) Standing ovation. Not a dry eye in the house. Truly a moment for the ages. Aw, damn. There I go again...

June 10, 2001
Bring in da noise, bring in da funk
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Not to brag or anything (y'all know I don't like to brag) but I know how to treat the ladies. I'll show you what I mean: A typical date with the Tatman ain't your average dinner-and-movie deal. Oh no. I go all out, baby. First I drive up in my tricked out '82 Datsun hatchback with my ABBA eight track blasting. I honk twice. When she comes out I immediately shower her with compliments: "Girl you smell nice. What is it, Lady Speedstick?" Then we hit a drive thru where I super-size our extra value meals without even asking her. This always impresses the honeys. It says, "Hey, for you I'm going first class." Then, after she pays the tab, we're headed for my favorite sports bar to catch the NBA finals. Woo hoo! Pass the beer nuts, wench!

June 3, 2001
We are, after all, professionals
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Sinfest-related headlines to look out for in the new millennium:
Tatsuya launches new clothing line: "T. Diddy." Says he is no longer bitter about breaking up with J.Lo.
Slick hairdo becomes hot fashion craze.
Grand opening of Comic Strip Cafe. Celebrity cartoonists team up to start global franchise. Among items on display: Matt Groening's hair piece.
Blaxploitation Funk Bible goes into eighth print run.
Sinfest Theme Park opens. Lawsuits filed after the giant Hand of God malfunctions and flattens several patrons. Reached for comment, park officials say it was "ironic."
Pooch and Percival dolls outsell all that Disney crap.
Jerry Bruckheimer announces plans for live action Sinfest movie starring the Rock, Missy Elliot, and the guy who played Mini-Me.

May 27, 2001
Y'all come back soon now, y'hear?
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

The meaning of life, the reason for being, the purpose of all the cosmos is...

We interrupt this column with a message from the emergency broadcast system.
(Run test pattern)
Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep.
Had this been a real emergency, storm troopers would have busted into your house, declared Martial Law on your ass, and confiscated your hard drive. Then you would have been shuttled off to a secret underground base at Area 51 for immediate deprogramming, then get hooked up to the Matrix to serve as a power source until we solve the energy crisis. Thank you for your cooperation. We now return you to the column already in progress.

...and that, my friends, is the key to happiness.

May 20, 2001
Excuse me while I kiss the sky
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

All rise.
Put your right hand over your heart.
Ready.
Begin.
I pledge allegiance
To the 'Fest
From the East Side
Down to the West End
And to the Resistance
For which it rocks
One Love
Under Big Daddy
Ineffable
With Liberty
And Phat Beats
For all y'all

May 13, 2001
And the beat goes on
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Some theories on Tatsuya Ishida's origins:
He was bitten by a radioactive cartoonist and decided to fight crime when Uncle Benihana got killed.
Top secret government experiment to create the ultimate philosopher that obviously went wrong.
Millionaire playboy whose parents were gunned down by a gang of outlaw editors.
The reincarnation of Van Gogh. "I'm back," he says. "And I'm gonna make bank."
One of those Bladerunner clones.
A bug in the Matrix construct, wreaking havoc on the system. Viva le Resistance!
Madonna's latest persona.
The last son of Nypton, shot into space as the planet exploded. Earth's yellow sun makes him get all jiggy wit it.

May 6, 2001
All in favor say "Awwight."
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

A day in the life of Tatsuya Ishida:
8:00 AM. Wake up.
11:30 AM. Get out of bed.
11:45 AM. Continental breakfast, poolside. Read Wall Street Journal.
1:00 PM. Meet with military advisors. Plan strategic embargo on Mars.
2:30 PM. Notify Aaron Sorkin that the "cargo" has arrived.
2:35 PM. "Test" the cargo.
3:00 PM. Oprah.
4:30 PM. Video conference with Writer's Guild reps. Our line: Even though we don't employ writers, we want a piece of the pie.
5:30 PM. Arrange meeting with Heidi Fleiss's "people."
6:30 PM. Inform Robert Downy Jr. that the "package" has arrived.
6:35 PM. "Analyze" the package.
8:00 PM. Tae Bo.
9:15 PM. Scribble down tomorrow's strip idea, fax it to Sinfest Headquarters.
10:30 PM. Nightcap. Jacuzzi, Cognac, Doritos.

April 29, 2001
All your babes are belong to us
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Sometimes I dream
That he is me
You've got to see that's how I dream to be
I dream I think
I dream I ink
Like Tat
If I could Be Like Tat
Like Tat
Oh, if I could Be Like Tat
Inspire awe
With what I draw
For just one day if I could
Be The Man
I dream I rock
I dream I rule
Like Tat
If I could be like Tat
I wanna be
Like Tat
Oh, if I could Be Like Tat.
(guitar solo, dancing girls grind in rhythm, pour Gatorade on each other)

April 22, 2001
Think fast!
Posted by Tatsuya Ishida

Some artists worry about crossing over and losing their street cred. I totally understand this. So often I think to myself, "Will hitting the big time tarnish my cult hero image? Will turning filthy stinking rich and super-duper famous obscure my aura of streetness?" It keeps me up at night, I tell you. Sometimes I have to buzz my in-house chef to fix me a drink and a shrimp cocktail to calm my nerves. I really dig on that dipping sauce. Tangy yet sweet. The butter sauce ain't too shabby either, especially the way Wolfgang prepares it. Anyway, uh... What was I talkin' about? Oh, right. Street cred. Yes. I've got lots of that. I got street cred comin' outta my ears. I am street incarnate, boy. Just ask my masseuse.

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