Mike Grell

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Artist, Special Guests


(Artist – Green Arrow; Green Lantern; Warlord; Action Comics; X-Men Forever; Superboy; Iron Man; Jon Sable Freelance; The Pilgrim) *Appearing Courtesy of Coolwaters Productions

Mike Grell is a comic book writer and artist.  Credited with 618 issues.

Grell studied at the University of Wisconsin–Green Bay, the Chicago Academy of Fine Art, and took the Famous Artists School correspondence course in cartooning. His entry into the comics industry was in 1972, as an assistant to Dale Messick on the Brenda Starr comic strip.

In 1973 Grell moved to New York, and began his long relationship with DC Comics. His first assignment at DC was on Superboy and the Legion of Super-Heroes (SATLOSH), a high-profile assignment for an artist with no prior experience illustrating a monthly comic book. Grell says he got that job because he was walking in the editor’s door to ask for work, literally, as the previous artist was walking out the door, having just quit. These stories were written by Cary Bates and Jim Shooter. The Bates/Grell/Shooter run on the title is very well-regarded today by Superboy/Legion fans, who consider it one of the high-water marks in the character/team’s history. Grell’s work on SATLOSH is widely thought to be some of the best beefcake/cheesecake ever committed to comic book pages, and is affectionately referred to as the ‘disco Legion’ in retrospect by fans of the title.

A writer as well as artist, Grell cemented his status as a fan-favorite with his best-known creation, The Warlord. The character first appeared in 1st Issue Special #8 (Nov 1975) and was soon given his own ongoing title (The Warlord #1, Jan/Feb 1976). In this book, Air Force pilot Travis Morgan crash-lands in the prehistoric “hidden world” of Skartaris (a setting highly influenced by Jules Verne’s A Journey to the Center of the Earth and Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Pellucidar). For years thereafter, Morgan engages in adventures dressed only in a winged helmet, wristbands, boots, and breechclout, and armed with a sword and (years before Dirty Harry handled one) a .44 Auto Mag.

At DC, Grell also worked on titles such as Aquaman, Batman, and the Phantom Stranger, and with writer Dennis O’Neil on the re-launch of the Green Lantern/Green Arrow series in 1976.

Grell wrote and drew the Tarzan comic strip from July 19, 1981 to February 27, 1983 (except for one strip, February 13, 1983, by Thomas Yeates). These strips were rerun in newspapers in 2004 – 2005.

Through the 1980s Grell developed creator-owned titles such Jon Sable Freelance and Starslayer. Jon Sable Freelance was published by the now-defunct First Comics. Starslayer, a space-born science fiction series, started at Pacific Comics, but shifted to First.

The titular character of Jon Sable Freelance was a former Olympic athlete, later an African big-game hunter, who became a mercenary. First appearing with a cover date of June 1983, Jon Sable Freelance was a successful non-super-hero comic book in an era when successful non-super-hero comic books were almost unheard of, and a graphically violent comic sold in mainstream comic book stores in an era when such was also almost unheard of. Jon Sable was a precursor to what would eventually be called, by some, “the Dark Age of Comics,” when even long-established super-heroes would become increasingly grim and violent.

The character was heavily influenced by Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels as well as drawing on pulp fiction crime stories. Also, many of the stories of Sable’s hunting exploits in Africa were influenced by Peter Hathaway Capstick’s novels. At a convention in the late 1980s, Grell stated that his idea for Sable was “something like a cross between James Bond and Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer.”

Sable was adapted into a short-lived television series and the character’s origin tale, “A Storm Over Eden,” from the comic book, was expanded and novelized by Grell under the title Sable, which was published in 2000 by Tor Books.

In 1987, Mike Grell wrote and drew the 3-issue prestige format limited series Green Arrow: The Longbow Hunters. He redesigned the character’s costume, away from the costume Neal Adams had designed in 1969, and recast Green Arrow as an “urban hunter” going up against non-super-powered, real world villains such as serial killers, terrorists, street gangs, American mobsters and Japanese Yakuza. He did away with Green Arrow’s arsenal of “trick arrows” and instead rearmed him with penetrating broadheads with which he actually killed his opponents. Longbow Hunters showed the first instance in which Green Arrow ever deliberately killed someone; in the follow-on series this occurred frequently.

The popularity of Longbow Hunters led to an assignment writing – and occasionally drawing – a relaunched Green Arrow series for 80 issues from 1988 to 1998. During this run, Grell avoided references to the fantastical elements of the DC Universe (e.g. in a guest appearance by Green Lantern the character is out of costume and does not use his powers). Notably, believing “Green Arrow” was “a stupid name,” in no Mike Grell Green Arrow story (with the exception of Longbow Hunters #1) is the character ever referred to as Green Arrow anywhere other than on the cover.

In 1988, Grell authored and illustrated the graphic novel adaptation of the Timothy Dalton James Bond film Licence to Kill, and in 1989 wrote and drew an original Bond story, the three-issue mini-series Permission to Die, both published by Eclipse Comics.

Shaman’s Tears was a more ecologically themed outing for Grell. Main character Joshua Brand, the son of a half-Sioux father and an Irish mother, as an adult returns to the reservation he ran away from as a child. Discovering he mystically possesses the powers of all animals and the Earth itself, he becomes the protector of the planet. Jon Sable guest starred in issues #5-9 of this 12 issue series (May 1993 – Aug 1995). There was also a 0 issue published in Nov 1995.

Grell wrote and drew the covers, but did none of the interior artwork, for issues 1-4 of the Shaman’s Tears spinoff series Bar Sinister (Jun – Sep 1995) from Windjammer, the creator-owned imprint of Valiant Comics. This series followed the adventures of a group of escaped government experimental subjects, animals genetically engineered to human intelligence and, basically, human form, as potential bio-weapons.

During this time period, Grell also wrote and penciled a Shaman’s Tears/Turok Dinosaur Hunter cross-over limited series for Valiant Comics and a two issue Turok limited series entitled Turok The Hunted, as well as several fill-in issues of the on-going Turok series.

It was during Grell’s run that Iron Man chose to reveal his secret identity as Tony Stark to the world, a plot twist met with mixed fan reaction.

In 2008, Grell provided a variant incentive cover for Action Comics #861, part four of the Superman and the Legion of Super-Heroes story. DC sought variant drawings for this story from artists who had worked on the Legion in the past, such as Steve Lightle, Keith Giffen, and Grell.

Recent or upcoming work includes a new ongoing series of Warlord launched to coincide with the 35th anniversary. He is also re-writing the Jon Sable screenplay, working on an adaptation of Shaman’s Tears, and writing two stories for ComicMix.com, a new Jon Sable story and The Pilgrim with Mark Ryan.


Mike’s Comic Vine: http://www.comicvine.com/mike-grell/4040-6543/

Mike’s website: http://mikegrell.com/news/

Tommy “Tiny” Lister

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Actor, Pro Wrestler, Special Guests


Hardly diminutive, 6′ 5″ Tommy “Tiny” Lister is not just a highly recognizable figure on screen, but also a highly accomplished actor. Originally a professional wrestler known by the names “Zeus” and “ZGangsta” for the WWE (Formerly WWF), Tiny left the world of wrestling in the mid 1980s to pursue an acting career and he has not stopped since. Since his debut as an actor, Tiny has made an impression in over 80 films in a 25-year span, and continues his reputation of working with some of the best actors and directors from a wide net of genres – from thriller to science fiction and drama to comedy.

Tommy “Tiny” Lister grew up in Compton, California, but chose to break the curses of his generation at an early age. He stayed away from gang life, choosing instead to stay at home and watch westerns. He chose religion over wrongdoing, and developed an interest in films and television early. Growing up watching Gary Cooper, Jimmy Stewart, Charlton Heston and Errol Flynn allowed Tiny a chance to dream, and he envisioned his own life on film and television, creating characters on celluloid that transcended gender and color. With his will set in stone, Tiny went out to make it possible.

Tiny made his feature film debut in Runaway Train (1985) with Jon Voight, and spent the next few years learning the craft and appearing in films heavy in action and in talent: 8 Million Ways to Die (1986) with Andy Garcia, Beverly Hills Cop II (1987) with Eddie Murphy, and No Holds Barred (1989) with fellow WWE (WWF at the time) wrestler Hulk Hogan. In the 1990s, Tiny expanded his resume, continuing to make his mark in films with the best in the business. He joined Johnny Depp and the legendary Marlon Brando in the quirky Don Juan DeMarco (1994) and worked with director Quentin Tarantino and actor Andy Garcia in Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead (1995). He would later work again with Tarantino in Jackie Brown (1997).

Lister’s 1990s career benefited from the decade’s surge in African-American filmmaking, beginning with his starring role in Mario Van Peebles‘s western Posse (1993), in which he was thrilled to star with his childhood idol Woody Strode. In a move that was sure to cement his popularity with young audiences across the country, Tiny went on to star as neighborhood bully “Deebo” opposite Ice Cube in the hit comedy Friday (1995), reprising the role for the successful sequel Next Friday (2000). After appearing in comedian Martin Lawrence‘s A Thin Line Between Love and Hate (1996), Lister played a supporting role in Ice Cube’s directorial debut The Players Club (1998) and appeared in Master P‘s I Got the Hook Up (1998).

Tiny has continued with his wide, often eclectic range of roles. He played the President in director Luc Besson‘s science fiction epic The Fifth Element (1997) opposite Bruce Willis and worked with Adam Sandler in Little Nicky (2000), as well as Mike Meyers in Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002). He joined Dustin Hoffman, Andy Garcia and Rachel Weisz in the crime thriller Confidence (2003).

Tiny Lister has worked with some of the greatest directors (Quentin Tarantino, Luc Besson, John Frankenheimer), many of our most noted actors (Marlon Brando, Samuel L. Jackson, Johnny Depp, Peter O’Toole) and a good share of the top talent in wrestling and rap (Hulk Hogan, 50 Cent and Tupac Shakur, respectively) – but it is Tiny’s devotion to ministry and public speaking that makes the biggest impression. Along with his wife Felicia, Tiny now ministers across the country, reaching out to troubled youth, and sharing his powerful testimony and inspiration in churches and schools.

  IMDB:  http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001474/

Dragon Theater Puppets & Princesses

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Cosplay, Special Guests

Dragon Theater Puppets & Princesses

Dragon Theater Puppets & Princesses has a strong following and a reputation for presenting high quality entertainment for the whole family. Our goal is to promote love, understanding and fun through educational entertainment. We live for the chance to change lives and create memories that last forever. We offer playful puppetry, enchanting princess shows, face painting, animal balloons, games, crafts and much more. We perform for birthday parties, comic cons, fairs, festivals, libraries, schools, public and private events.

Find our more at: www.dragontheater.com

Parker Jacobs

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Actor, Artist, Special Guests

Parker Jacobs

Parker Jacobs Cherry City 2015 Exclusive

Click here for the Parker Jacobs Convention Exclusive featuring characters from Goon Holler, The Aquabats! and Yo Gabba Gabba!

Parker Jacobs is most known as the 4-time Daytime Emmy Nominated Art Director for the hit NICKELODEON TV Show, Yo Gabba Gabba! He has also consulted for Julius Jr. (NICK JR) and The Aquabats! Super Show! (HUB NETWORK). With a 7 year graphic arts background as senior art director for Paul Frank Industries, Parker has a long history of product design in all facets as well as collaborating with over 35 major brands including The Andy Warhol estate, John Deere and Vans Shoes. Parker recently has been authoring and Illustrating a series of children’s books, Welcome To Goon Holler, Goon Fishin’ (LITTLE BROWN PUBLISHING), The Goon Holler Guidebook (SOURCED MEDIA BOOKS) and previously, Only In Dreams: A Bedtime Story (CHRONICLE BOOKS).

website:  http://www.goonhollergeneralstore.com

Fred “The Hammer” Williamson

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Uncategorized


Former Oakland Raiders/Kansas City Chiefs football star who rose to prominence as one of the first African-American male action stars of the “blaxploitation” genre of the early 1970s, who has since gone on to a long and illustrious career as an actor, director, writer, and producer! Burly, yet handsome 6′ 3″ Williamson first came to attention in the TV series Julia (1968) playing love interest, Steve Bruce. However, his rugged, athletic physique made him a natural for energetic roles and he quickly established himself as a street wise, tough guy in films including That Man Bolt (1973), Black Caesar (1973), and Mean Johnny Barrows (1976). Talented Williamson established his own production company “Po ‘Boy Productions” in 1974, which has produced over 40 movies to date. Like many young American stars of the 1960s and ’70s, Williamson was noticed by Italian producers who cast him in a slew of B-grade action movies that occupied a lot of his work in the 1980s. From the late ’80s onwards, much of his work has been of the “straight to video” fare (often playing police officers), but none could deny he has kept actively busy in movies and TV for over three decades, both in front of and behind the camera. More recently, indie director Robert Rodriguez cast him alongside FX guru Tom Savini as two vampire killing bikers, in his bloody action film From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), and he has most recently appeared on screen (displaying his wonderful comedy skills) playing grumpy Captain Dobey in Starsky & Hutch (2004).

Fred’s IMDB

Niall’s Zombie Control Service

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Cosplay, Special Guests

Niall's Zombie Control Service

Mission: To be a leader in the Zombie control industry by delivering the best Zombie control service, using the latest proven technology in an environmentally responsible way and at a fair price. In terms of Zombie Control, we tailor our programs to the customer’s needs, whether it’s residential, commercial, property management or augmenting local and federal institutions.

To provide unequaled customer satisfaction by offering progressive, environmentally responsible services designed to provide immediate results and peace of mind. Niall’s Zombie Control Service promises to offer the best quality trained personnel who will respect your home or business and treat it as if it were their own and to always conduct ourselves in a caring ethical manner.

  • Focus on Prevention: — The Zombie Control Industry has changed dramatically in 35 years and so has technology.
  • What has changed the most is our clients and the demands on their time. Clients want the Zombie problem resolved quickly, safely and conveniently.
  • Niall’s Zombie Control Service focuses on safety, convenience and the prevention of the Zombie’s return.

Website: http://www.zombieservice.com

Jake “The Snake” Roberts

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Pro Wrestler, Special Guests

Jake "The Snake" Roberts at Cherry City Comic Con 2016 Menacing, intimidating and totally hypnotic in the ring, Jake “The Snake” Roberts was a Superstar capable of taking you down physically as well as psychologically. Slithering to the ring with a monstrous python concealed in a burlap sack, Jake used fear as a weapon as deftly as he used pain. His DDT finishing move is still one of the most brutal finishers ever unleashed on a Superstar. The son of noted grappler Grizzly Smith, Roberts was born into a sports-entertainment family. Eager to follow in his father’s footsteps, Roberts began competing in the early ’70s, making a name for himself in promotions throughout the South. In 1983, he tasted success for the first time, winning the NWA World Television Championship while wrestling with Georgia Championship Wrestling. Roberts then took his talent, and his patented DDT finisher to the pinnacle of entertainment, WWE, arriving at the promotion in 1986. Right out of the gate, the Snake sought to make a name for himself, targeting fan favorite Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat. He made his intentions known when he savagely DDT’d Steamboat onto a concrete floor, putting him in the hospital for weeks. As if that wasn’t enough to curry hatred from the WWE Universe, Roberts stirred the pot further each week, hosting his show, The Snake Pit. A talk segment in the vein of Piper’s Pit, Roberts’s show was the perfect forum for him to rile both Superstars and fans alike with his twisted point of view. As time wore on, Roberts soon became a fan favorite, thanks in part to his memorable rivalries with the Honky Tonk Man, the Million Dollar Man and Andre the Giant. WWE Universe fans from that generation will never forget the Giant’s paralyzing fear of Jake’s pet python, Damien. In the early 90s, after a series of bizarre skirmishes with the likes of Earthquake and Randy Savage, and Rick “The Model” Martel, with whom he faced off against in a Blindfold Match at WrestleMania VII. In 1992, after six extraordinary years, Roberts and WWE parted company and the Snake spent four years competing in WCW and other smaller promotions. Four years later, he returned to WWE and faced Stone Cold at the 1996 King of the Ring. Roberts came up short in the bout, but had a role in the creation of WWE history, when Stone Cold mocked Roberts’s perpetual quoting of the Bible verse “John 3:16,” by barking “Austin 3:16 says ‘I just whooped you’re a$$!’” In that moment, a catchphrase was born and a legend was launched. Following that historic event, Jake’s appearances in WWE have been sporadic but memorable, such as a 2005 appearance on Raw when he confronted a young Randy Orton prior to the Viper’s WrestleMania match against the Undertaker. Later that year he worked with the company to produce the tell-all DVD Pick Your Poison, which offered a no-holds-barred look at his tumultuous career. In 2014, Diamond Dallas Page inducted his mentor, Jake “The Snake” Roberts, into the WWE Hall of Fame. Whether competing in the ring, or burrowing into the psyches of his opponents, Jake “The Snake” Roberts will go down in the annals of WWE history as one of the most cunning and lethal Superstars ever to step between the ropes.  
Click here for Jake “The Snake” Roberts’ official website
Click here for the wikipedia page on The Snake

2Fast 2Furious tribute car

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Movie Cars, Special Guests

2Fast 2Furious replica camaro

The 1969 Yenko Camaro SYC is a car in The Fast and the Furious Series: 2Fast 2Furious. The Camaro is won by Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) after beating Korpi. O’Conner uses this car to escape detection of cops in the car scramble towards the end of the movie and uses it to jump onto Carter Verone ‘s moving boat. O’Conner ends up totaling the muscle car.

The 1969 Yenko Camaro SYC replica fan car was built as a Paul Walker tribute car with the donations going to the late Paul Walker Charity ROWW (Reach Out World Wide).

Jim Decker

Written by Cherry City Comic Con. Posted in Actor, Special Guests


Jim Decker not only books some of the hottest talent in Hollywood but he also acts as well. He has been in such films and tv shows as Contamination, My Name is Earl, The Bad Girl, Mantrap, Super Hell 3 and Little Creeps. He is also the sidekick manager Little Hoss for the Honky Tonk Man.