June 20, 2013


The first week of summer break has been filled with work on book projects. Edits continue on my forthcoming spy novel, Miki Zero, and I've been working on a new comic-related non-fiction ebook (more details later!). I've also been enjoying some R&R, feeding my vintage Batman obsession by building up the ultimate archive of fine art, pop art, artifacts, and comic imagery devoted to The Batman on Pinterest. If you love the classic Caped Crusader, are nostalgic for the movies, animated series and TV show, or are looking forward to the new Batman 66 comic and toys, check out my Pinterest board here. You'll find artful Dark Knight, from vintage painted cards and Japanese manga, to Andy Warhol and limited prints and sculpture. Here's a teaser collage with some samples.

While searching for old tin toys from Japan, I came across this cool one-of-a-kind treasure. According to the artist, he painted a Space Walk Man with a Robby the Robot reproduction head and then inserted a vintage Sean Connery image (vintage Japanese toys in this style had human faces). Ingenious! If these were ever produced, what Spy Viber wouldn't want their own James Bond Robot? I know some of our For Your Shelf Only series contributors sculpted movie props, but have any of you ever crafted your own toys or collectibles like this? If you could have a talking version of this robot, what Sean Connery dialog would you program into it?

Get ready to meet MIKI ZERO, a Japanese fashion model and spy from 1965! That's right, I've written a novel inspired by Spy Vibe. More info at my website here.

Check Spy Vibe for recent posts about Batman '66 and Warhol, our fiendish villains archiveCold War Comics, Sam Mendes back for Bond, Spy Vibe heroes and Wild Things, book design dopplegangersChristopher LeeBettie PageDashiell HammettMiles Davis, WWII spy Krystyna Skarbek, recycled James Bond covers, interview with Fu Manchu author William Maynard,  Man From UNCLE mangaOrson Welles the Shadow, rare Piero Umiliani Kriminal soundtrack, new Beatles Yellow Submarine game, James Bond audio book re-issues, Mid-Century Modern in Peanuts, my review of SKYFALL and more. Spy Vibe is now on Pinterest! Check out our image archives and follow us here. For Your Shelf Only collecting series links
Jon GilbertRaymond BensonJeremy DunsPeter LorenzDavid FosterRob MallowsRoger Langley, Craig Arthur, Fleming ShortMatt Sherman. 

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  1. That last image reminds me of this comic from 1968:


    If memory serves, the Spider-Slayer had two-way communication: while the operator remained in safety, microphones and speakers in the robot allowed the operator to communicate while the somewhat unnecessary tv display showed a live picture of him at the controls. As a matter of fact, I've always wondered if this might have been inspired by the artist seeing one of those Japanese robot toys...

  2. Great comic find, Richard. Thanks for putting that on my radar! Yes, I'm sure the artist must have seen those old Japanese tin robot toys with human face images in the helmets. Boy, I would be scared to meet a JJJ robot :)