Furfunding Week in Review: 7-14-13
For the birds: Birdland and the Gothitropolis “Raven” line.
This week, two Kickstarters focusing on that rarest of birds, the anthropomorphic, well, bird. One’s a graphic novel set in Jazz Age NYC, the other’s six inches tall, plastic, and pissed off. But both have an attention to detail that’s nothing short of amazing. No more bird puns, I promise. Well, one.
And then a bunch of other stuff.
“Jazz, European Classical music and Baroque opera converge to help track a killer in this anthropomorphic 1930 New York City crime noir.” —Kickstarter
Imagine the lush detail, dense and full world realized in Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. A world so packed with energy, detail, and scope that it could only exist in black and white–adding color would simply be an overwhelming explosion, a riot that washed away the art. This is the rich, detailed B&W imagery of Shane Murphy’s Birdland, but with a sound track inspired by the fading strains of the Jazz Age, the Roaring Twenties, and a little classical/baroque.
Birdland unrolls a noir detective yarn about Rezno Piano, a man–well, a bird–trying to solve a series of deaths linked by a mysterious piece of music. Music and musical metaphor runs throughout the story, informed by jazz, classical, ballroom, opera…it’s unfortunate that Murphy didn’t include a soundtrack as a stretch goal! “Music,” the author says, “is arguably the main character of Birdland.”
Speaking of characters–it makes sense that in a story that’s about music should be told using a full aviary of herons, raves, doves, peacocks–a city full of birds, reveling in a world caught between the swirl of the 20s and the crash of the Great Depression.
The art of Birdland is amazingly detailed, and completly hand-drawn. I’m most strongly reminded of the illustrator David Macaulay, whose books Castle and Cathedral carried so much fine penwork you could read every line in the brick. The kickstarter has several completed pages from Birdland to look through, and it’s already made goal. Is it too early to be looking forward to pages from Issue #2?
Gothitropolis Raven (and other) Action Figures
To paraphrase a dated commercial, “with a name like Gothitropolis, it has to be dark, brooding, and overwrought.” And we have achieved that goal. It’s just possible that anthro birds aren’t your thing–maybe you’d prefer Anubis or the minotaur lines and hippo/boar/elephant figures from the related series, “Seventh Kingdom.” But if you ARE of the feathery persuasion, and frustrated that you haven’t been able to fill your toy shelf with a collection of strapping, vaguely Egyptian bird warriors, well, carpe that diem.
Four Horsemen Studios has a long and storied career, so far as involvement in the “Action figures for boys who grew up, kind of” market goes. The company’s four chiefs originally worked for Todd McFarlane’s miniatures company, with a hand in the work that defined horror miniatures in the mid-90s–I still have their awesome werewolf set somewhere in my closet. So, these guys have cred. Their strategy lately has been to survey the internet to get fan input on their new lines, which may be why they’ve been sculpting species that are a few steps away from the usual cat girls and warrior tigers.
The “ravens” Kickstarter takes nonstandard and runs with it, with a warrior cardinal, vulture, griffin, phoenix, and a duck named “minotaur” (there’s a joke there that I’m not getting.) In the event that they meet their higher stretch goals, wings, both skeletal and feathery, make their appearance. Each of these figures is filled with little details–fretwork armor, sidearms, and so on. They will absolutely own your toy shelf at work, and put your coworkers’ pictures of their children to shame. However, Four Horsemen tends to work from the “collectible, short time only” model, so these may never make it to a toy store near you, and individual models may be harder to find than others, so the Kickstarter may be the only way to get a complete clutch of these guys.
Sockweb Werewolf (Ends: 7/22/2013)
8-year-old grindcore artist Joanie and her dad–Sockweb–working on “the only concept album ever made by an eight year old,” all about a girl that made friends with the werewolf under the bed. Oh, and musical screaming.
“The Incredible Hare” (Ends: 7/20/2013)
Illustrated book/ebook project: Harold Hopper, Man to Rabbit to Reality TV Show celebrity. A gentle parody of fame, and a kid-friendly book about fame and the media.
The Dragon Princess (Ends: 8/2/2013)
A princess cursed to be a half-dragon, half-human creature looks for love to lift her curse.
Talonridge: Book II (Ends: 8/5/2013)
Heavily-illustrated young adult series of mice on a mission in a fantasy world, very “Mousegard”
Part two of a planned 63-book series. That’s ambition!
The Tales of Shakespuss (Ends: 8/3/2013)
Stripped-down, lightened up, and retold versions of Shakespeare for kids, live action, theatre, and animated.
Halo Mini Illuminated Pet Collars (Ends: 7/26/2013)
LED-illuminated pet collars with deep color and flash mode.
I know, these are for dogs. But they’d match one of my costumes!
Right to Bear Arms tees (Ends: 8/9/2013)
Tee shirts with long, furry sleeves
Cute tees, unfortunately the shirt slogans aren’t as funny as the concept.
Kings of the Wasteland (Ends: 7/17/2013)
Action, revenge, and anthro dogs and cats in an apocalyptic wasteland
“Not Enough Rings” – A Sonic the Hedgehog Parody Comic (Ends: 7/19/2013)
A side-project of the Bittersweet Candy Bowl folks, a little romp through the wackier side of Sonic the Hedgehog.
Of course, you can already read the webcomic online, but lots of people have already made the book a success!
Dreamkeepers: Prelude (Ends: 7/31/2013)
A bound edition of the Dreamkeepers “prelude” webcomic, with a cast of graceful, stylized and colorful critters.
More artsnstuff on the Dreamkeepers FA account.
The Legend of MonkeyRonin (Ends: 7/31/2013)
A comic series featuring a Monkey King sort of character, very nice illustrations!
Animal Inphantry: Hupsalupa Beginnings (Ends: 8/2/2013)
A team of five critters takes to the street in a war against bullying.
Rabbit (Ends: 8/3/2013)
The graphic novel story of a rabbit working as a bar bouncer (among other things) in a city of carnivores
Sam & Fuzzy – Two Volume Omnibus (Ends: 8/7/2013)
The story of a man and a bear, in a crazy absurdist comic universe, a 1500-page epic comic collection.
World War Kaiju graphic novel (Ends: 8/12/2013)
What if the ultimate weapon that ended World War II didn’t usher in the atomic age, but the Kaiju (giant city-crushing monster) age? Excellent video, great retro propaganda visuals, and bizarre immersive stretch goal toys.
“Furry” is a stretch, but there’s a lot to like here for fans of giant, Tokyo-crushing armadillos.
Of Mice and Madness: Tails from Out There! (Ends: 8/15/2013)
The adventures of the mouse bounty hunter Othello and his trusted if dim cat steed as they travel the galaxy in search of riches.
More galleries and info at ofmiceandmadness.com.
Birdland (Ends: 8/22/2013)
A comic set in New York City, thick with jazz, noir, murder, and anthropomorphic birds
CANterlot, Ontario MLP Con (Ends: 8/9/2013)
Funding campaign for Ontario’s MLP convention in November
DerpyCon South (Ends: 8/14/2013)
Fundraising for Year 1 of DerpyCon South: the New Orleans Brony convention!
Batweasel: The Audacious Animated Web Series (Ends: 7/16/2013)
A loveable nerd falls victim to reality TV and becomes a terrible ass. Until he’s rescued by an evil genetically-mutated batweasel. You know, like you do.
The Taxidermy Wonders of Walter Potter (Ends: 7/17/2013)
A documentary about the man who single-handedly made Victorian anthropomorphic taxidermy a thing.
Razor: The Hipocrisy Eating Hyena (Ends: 7/19/2013)
Comedy/horror/action about a one hyena’s crusade against lies and double-speak. Live action, animation, comedy, and a bit of splatter. And hyenas.
Watch the video on this one :)
The Walking Tedd (Ends: 7/25/2013)
A young 20-something juggles her life, job, romance, and the sudden appearance of a zombie version of her favorite stuffed animal.
Finally, one zombie project reaches out from underneath the pile of hundreds…
“I Was Loved by a Rat” (Ends: 7/29/2013)
A twisted off-broadway fairy tale of a lonely woman, a chivalrous rat shut behind walls all his life, and their ill-fated love.
This theater group has launched some amazing dark comedies, I’m curious to learn more about this one, not a lot of information though…
Fursona Non Grata (Ends: 7/30/2013)
A play written for the fandom by the creator of American Dragon: Jake Long. What happens when a young woman brings her fiancée home to meet her all-furry family?
“This will be awesome if you can make it to California” seems to be a running joke in the fandom.
Solrac Ventures (Ends: 7/30/2013)
Animated short series for the bronies. Ponies: you can make it happen.
The art on this one’s pretty high quality. Pony fans should definitely take a look!
Cat’s View Feature Film (Ends: 8/21/2013)
A crime thriller filmed from a cat witness’s point of view, along with information about the life of a feral cat, trap/neuter/return projects, etc.
Anthro: Animating the Soul (Ends: 8/27/2013)
A documentary look at beloved anthro characters and their creators.
Stitchfan has broken this project up into a series of small-goal IGGs, interesting model and I hope to see it succeed!
BiPolar Bears (Ends: 9/1/2013)
Animated series about manic and depressive polar bear twins Manny and Preston (orderilies in a psych institute), the Post-Traumatic Puffins, Randolf the Alcoholic Reindeer, and other friends.
Bleah. The promo vid is “join me in my philosophy” rather than “here’s this cool product idea.” That plus very high goal/60-day campaign is a bad sign.
Little Moon God Plush (Ends: 7/24/2013)
“A soft huggable little moon god to call your very own!” A tiny little Miyazaki-esque plush.
Gothitropolis Raven Action Figure (Ends: 8/12/2013)
Six action figures of 6-inch anthro birds in gothic fantasy inspired armor, with stretch goals for several more within reach.
Laika Believes: The Sun at Night (Ends: 8/9/2013)
A 2d action platformer featuring Laika, the Soviet space dog. Check the trailer.
Laika’s such a tragic story, I can’t blaim anyone for creating an alternate reality to give her a happy ending…
Questria: Princess Destiny (Ends: 8/18/2013)
A life simulation game with very familiar characters, human versions of the “mane six” from My Little Pony.
Fable Kart (Ends: 9/1/2013)
Multiplayer kart game in which the hare, turtle, and lots of animal friends crash and zoom around as they try to rescue the pages from Aesop’s storybook.
The Travelling Unicorn (Ends: 7/29/2013)
“A blog and vlog series about a girl who travels the world in a unicorn onesie.” Travel, interviews, a bit of randomness.
Naughty Dog Toys (Ends: 7/20/2013)
“new and exciting bedroom toys,” limited information on the IGG itself but you can check out their “Kaiju” model on FA, and more info in their FAQ/Blog.
Kaiju sex toy. Awesome.
Neko Adventures: Real Cat Girl Porn (Ends: 7/29/2013)
DVD/web release of cat girls, free from their imprisonment on DeviantArt and sexing it up IRL. Not just for manga anymore.
Pocket Pussies: The Legend of Seven Purity Seals (Ends: 8/9/2013)
Zelda/Pokemon hybrid exploration/battling seizure monsters game, loaded with cheesecake pokemon, cat girls, and assorted anime-esque hotness.
A Petgirl’s Story (Ends: 8/11/2013)
Petplay meets the children’s book format in a VERY adult and yet charmingly innocent story of a catgirl and her owner.
Okay, “charmingly innocent” is a stretch. Half the illustrations are online already. NSFW seriously. There’s a leather dogboy for canine fans.
Erotic Werebeast (Offbeatr voting period)
For transformation/female bodybuilder fans: a group of women test a formula that turns them into monstrous werebeasts (and soft-core stars).
“Meet the Mascots!” Animation (Ends: 8/18/2013): Relaunch of the “Mascots” project, teen angst with anthro sports mascots. No change to business plan, which already failed once…
Amazon Rage: Curse of the She-Wolf (Ends: 9/6/2013): A Buffy-esque miniseries featuring a female werewolf, possibly from outer space. Mmm, mediocre CGI werewolves are so hot right now.
Wildcast of the World (Ends: 8/25/2013): A web-based interactive resource to spread awareness of the remaining sildcat species.
Save Virachey Park (Ends: 9/10/2013): Campaign to install motion-trigger cameras in Virachey park, Cambodia, to show it’s a worthwhile preserve of endangerd species. Do it for the dholes!
…Just For Fun
Good Idea, Bad Idea (Ends: 7/17/2013): The New York City “Aniamiacs”-themed burlesque show goes to Minneapolis! Do watch the video, just…not at work…Hellooooo, nurse!
Stories of Bappa (Ends: 8/22/2013): Children’s graphic novel series featuring Bappa and Mushakkraj, an anthro elephant and his mouse steed.
Art Story: An Original Animated Film (Ends: 8/23/2013): Animated feature film: grandson and granddad get dragged into a wild ride through the worlds of famous paintings, by a pair of Disney veterans!