Sunday, August 14, 2016

Equine the Uncivilized #6

Originally published by: GraphX Press
Publication date: March, 1989

Script: Richard Konkle
Art: Mark Wallace, Donna Barr, Darin Davis, Dave Garcia, Mike Kazaleh, Kevin Eastman, Peter Laird, Ed Luena, Ken Mitchroney, Beth Mitchroney, Stan Sakai, Jon Speidel, Mel White, Monika Livingston
Letters: Richard Konkle
Edits: Jim Groat

"Painting the Town Orange"


In this jam session issue, Equine decides to use his powers to invite every anthropomorphic indie comics character he can think of to a party.  A whole host of critters (all drawn by their creators) appear and party down, but Equine soon finds that he's kicked out of his own shindig.

Equine tries to infiltrate the get-together under numerous guises, but is kicked to the curb on all occasions by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, who are working the door as bouncers.

Turtle Tips:

*The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles previously guest starred in Equine the Uncivilized #3.

*The Turtles as they appear in this issue are drawn by Eastman and Laird.

*Among the guest characters featured in this issue are two whom have had previous/future crossover experience with the TMNT brand: Stan Sakai's Miyamoto Usagi/Usagi Yojimbo, and Dave Garcia and Monica Sharp's Panda Khan.

*This issue also featured a bonus pin-up of all the characters partying, each drawn by their creator.  Two of the Turtles feature in the pin-up, trying to steal hors d'oeuvres off a platter without being seen.


Thanks again go to Tokka and his Flickr account for cluing me into this obscure cameo.  Jeez, just how many indie comics DID the Turtles guest appear in back in the day?  Those guys got around.

This issue of Equine the Uncivilized is full of the same lame gags as the previous one I reviewed, but the gimmick makes it worth picking up.  It's an "art jam" issue, full of guest characters from other indie titles, all drawn by their respective creators.  Fact of the matter is I didn't recognize ANY of them aside from Usagi, Panda Khan and (of course) the Turtles.

Funny thing about Panda Khan.  This is the only time, so far as I know, that he appeared in a comic book with the Ninja Turtles.  And that's despite getting his own action figure in the Playmates TMNT toyline.

Panda Khan was one of only two "guest stars" in the Playmates line who were licensed from other indie comics (the other being Usagi Yojimbo/Space Usagi).  But whereas Usagi crossed over with the Turtles all the freakin' time in comics and cartoons, Panda Khan never met them... Beyond appearing in a crowd shot while putting in a cameo in this incredibly obscure indie comic.

So for that novelty alone, I suppose Equine the Uncivilized #6 has it's place in TMNT brand history.  I mean, it's still a footnote, but a slightly more important footnote than it otherwise ought to be?  Eh.  That's pushin' it.


Anonymous said...

The Stan Sakai character that appears here is Nilson Groundthumper, NOT Usagi.

Mark Pellegrini said...


Nilson appears on the cover. Both he and Usagi appear in the comic.

Mattkind said...

I wonder if there's a list of every character that appeared some place

Adam said...

A note on Panda Khan history: he only had two stand-alone issues, so far as I know. Beyond that, he appeared in anthology collections and apparently ran as a back-up feature in other Indie comics. I found one of those appearances recently, the 1986 Warp Graphics Annual, which advertised "Follow the adventures of the Panda tribe in A Distant Soil," another comic that got its start in the 80s through Warp Graphics before switching publishers in the early 1990s. Not sure how many guest stints PK got in A Distant Soil, but issue #6 at least advertises his presence on the cover. I suppose it's possible the TMNT might have appeared in a very obscure PK back-up story. Unlikely, but worth keeping an eye out.

How in the world did Dave Garcia have a good enough relationship with E&L to get his character turned into an early run action figure, but not to do an official comics crossover with their franchises?

Adam said...

Ah, my bad, the recently updated Comic Vine now lists a few more issues with Panda Khan as the titular character. Looks like he had a short-lived ongoing series (4 issues currently listed) and received at least one "special."

Anonymous said...

For reference, here's a list of all of Panda Khan's appearances:

Note that Laffin Gas #8 also features the Turtles, and that Panda was only on the cover of normalman/Megaton Man.

Chet said...

Just a hunch, but could it be possible this particular issue of 'Equine The Uncivilized' was what brought Eastman and Laird's attention to the very existence of Panda Khan?

At the time, Ryan Brown and some other guys at Mirage Studios was pitching many, many toy concepts to Playmates, and the idea of Panda Khan fit right in with ninjutsu practising turtles, a ronin hare, a skateboarding lizard and aircraft piloting fowl. In fact, the blue armor made me assume he was supposed to be paired up with Usagi. In the same year Panda Khan received a toy, Playmates also introduced Leo the Sewer Samurai, with a similar color scheme as Garcia's character.

Unfortunately, we never got that cartoon were Leo, Usagi and Khan teamed up to do cool samurai stuff.

Adam said...

Chet, as a kid I also thought that Usagi and Panda Khan were intended to flank Samurai Leonardo in some time-traveling feudal Japan-ish battle story that I just hadn't seen yet!