NY-based Pinoy showcases talent at San Diego Comic Con
Fil-Am artists, animators, and comic book creators showcased their talents to almost 150,000 attendees of the recently-concluded annual San Diego Comic Con on July 21-24.
Popular figures of the Fil-Am comic book circle such as Ed Natividad, who started out as a car design artist and then ended up working with the creators of Justice League and Suicide Squad, attended the event.
Randy Reynaldo is the creator of the spy comics series ‘Rob Hanes Adventures.’ He is a self-published author. Photo courtesy of Comicvine
While many of the Fil-Am artists are now working for big comic book publishing companies, one man seems determined to make a mark in the world but not through his contributions as an artist for Marvel or DC – as a self-published author.
Randy Reynaldo, a New York-based independent comic book creator who popularized “Rob Hanes Adventures,” is one of the self-published authors who graced Comic Con. A huge number of fans greeted him at his stall, proving that his work is now revered by many. Currently, his Rob Hanes Adventures is being published by WCG Comics.
Reynaldo is the recipient of the Xeric Foundation Award and a previous Russ Manning Award nominee, which is an American prize presented to a comic book artist whose first professional work appeared within the first two years. The Russ Manning Award is in conjunction with the prestigious Eisner Awards, which are only given out at the Comic-Con international event in San Diego.
Before coming to the US and starting a life of his own, Reynaldo’s life in the Philippines was colorful to say the least. Coming from a political family, Reynaldo’s life in the Philippines has always been mired in mystery. In 1970, his father, who was a State Department official, suddenly disappeared after it was discovered that he may have been a mole planted by the Soviet Union. Reynaldo wrote a short story about it in the Rob Hanes Archives Trade Paperback instead of giving a thorough interview of what happened. Reynaldo doesn’t seem to talk much about his family and instead expresses the past through his work.
Reynaldo graduated at the UCLA with an English Major and a Master’s Degree in Communications Management. Although he has a full-time job, he spends most of his extra time on his comics. According to him, his biggest influences are Alex Toth, Howard Chaykin, Milton Caniff, Will Eisner, Roy Crane, Joe Kubert, Noel Sickles, David Mazuchelli, and Mike Golden.
Rob Hanes is an agent for Justice International, which is an independent organization that provides intelligence, security, and private investigative work to individuals and institutions. Rob Hanes, simply put, is a spy for hire like James Bond. What sets Rob Hanes from Bond, however, is that Reynaldo writes Hanes’ stories based on today’s headlines.
Inspired by the adventures of popular comic strip icons such as Terry and the Pirates, Spirit, and Buz Saywer, Reynaldo breathes life into the spy genre with Rob Hanes at the center of the action. Reynaldo’s art is comparable to that of modern-day comic book artists that use the style of timeless cartoonists Paul Dini and Darwyn Cooke.
Rob Hanes’ stories can now be read using smartgadgets. Experts say that the move to port his comics online was a smart one since many millennials today prefer reading material via their gadgets. According to tech experts Gaming Realms, the software company that hosts superhero-themed games and documented on the rise of Slingo on the online market, they state a product should in fact be published on a broad range of digital platforms in order to promote efficiency and user satisfaction. Rob Hanes already has a decent following, and bringing it online would definitely yield a bigger crowd especially with the vast array of platforms it could be viewed on.
Follow Randy’s life as a comic book artist and works on his Twitter account! —The FilAm