Friday, September 30, 2016

So, You Think You Know The Inspiration For The Witch And The Butterfly Dragon...

If that title doesn't get your attention then I don't know what will.

I'm a comic book fan in case you don't know. I've been as such since my early childhood. Part of a multicultural revolution a bit before my time (Woodstock,  Trudeau, United Nations, Comic Books, Star Wars). Get the picture? I've never been in a time where heroes weren't represented in just about every culture.

Some of the action superhero action figures I had from the order I had them thanks to my parents:

Superman (x5 over my life)
Spiderman (x5 over my life)
Hulk (x4  over my life)
Batman
Iron Man (x3 over my life)
Falcon (x2 over my life)
Thing (x1 over my life)

My friends and I were avid gamers. Video games hadn't really matured because most computers were card based (punch cards I mean) or video games just didn't exist.

Women superhero figures just did not exist.

That may sound a bit sexist but I was one of the fortunate guys to live around a generation of Women who were really heroes. Hence heroes of our own referring to Women heroes of my time who stood beside, not behind the male heroes.

I lived in a time where roleplaying games (Dungeons and Dragons, Marvel Heroes were the two main role playing games we'd play) were the means of expression of this idea. However! While we were playing pen and paper and pythagorian dice based games, we knew real life Women who were actually living what we were playing!

Miranda was one such Woman, who is amongst the inspirations for the real life Butterfly Dragon. She's a real life mixed martial artist ahead of her time and rightly beside Tamela an inspiration for all Women. Miranda has been as such for as long as I've been taller than 4 feet. I mean literally that she's a real life superhero much like Tamela Hutchinson and Kelly Hu. While we were playing role playing games, they were Women who were really out there doing what we were imagining.

Between them (Miranda, Tamela, Katrina and a plethora of other Women that really did it! They became superheroes!). My Mother was a costume designer as a hobby and seamstress, designing outfits for her stage performances (she's a Juno nominated vocalist) eventually designing outfits for multicultural visual artists. Between Miranda, Tamela, Katrina, Kelly Hu and my Mother, and the Woman of my dreams (Yi Chen), the Butterfly Dragon emerged.

So for superheroes, my friends and I played via pen and paper for years before the onset of computer games. Pen and paper games allow for a lot of great characterization and interaction not to mention one of the greatest arts: thespian arts.

When I see the Marvel and DC universe emerge before my eyes as envisioned by their creators, I am absolutely amazed and inspired. I mean we saw and played heroes of incredible proportions in ways few could imagine long before they became manifest on the big screens.

It is incredible to be inspired by such heroes now whether through pen and paper, video games or a real dojo where heroes are inspired constantly.

If you are a parent raising children. I would highly suggest martial arts training through an official Sensai. The Women that I've known in my life have literally become such heroes of training etching a path for the humble to follow to become the enlightened and heroic.

By the way, heroes of role playing like Gary Gygax are inspirations etching paths in ways that few of us (Women and Men) have ever dreams despite our culture. They've broken down cultural doors that few of us even knew existed.

Anthony Mackie is an amazing Falcon by the way just as had Toby Macguire been the most amazing Spiderman. Toby until this day has been the Spiderman I'd seen in the comics. Sam Raimi took Stan's vision from it's innocence into a mature graphic interpretation of the web head. I so wish that Sam's Spiderman had visited the Secret Wars but maybe that will occur under Marvel's universe. Andrew Garfield evolved Spiderman into the Tod Rungdren penned Spidey that we'd all known in the post Spawn era.

Secret Wars? I mean Secret Wars the original. You don't know about Secret Wars? The Beyonder? The real and I mean real origin of Spiderman's black suit?

So thanks to all those thespians and actors performing our childhood with such incredible imagination and performance.

That's what makes it an art.

Thanks Mir, Tam, Kat and Rita (my Mom!) for making Women into heroes!

Brian Joseph Johns

PS: If Scott and Rob and I have to live through this again, I'd suggest following Lucas's vision because he had it right. Listening to Disney because they are concerned with reminding us all that we're all heroes of every background. We're all a part of this wonderful and conflicting world.

Most of all. Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Ancient history has reminded us of this again and again.

Thank you Disney and the great thespians that have realized the vision.

I'll bet that they'd make great! role players in a role playing game like Dungeons and Dragons or Marvel Heroes.

PPS: Buzz, Miles, Pete, Darryl Olsen (the best DM I've ever heard of), Eric Weisengruber (the best DM next to Pete Borav and Miles Hutcheson that I've ever played). Steven Sampson, Darrell Haines and many others of epic creativity.

Why then does the Aerth Mother of A Lady`s Prerogative have that look in her eyes?

I hope that Disney and other media conglomerates look into what it is that makes such great story tellers as my friends. They'd realize that I grew up in a time and place where we could all be heroes and inspirations. Women and Men of all origins and cultures alike.

If they look at my stories, well that's a bonus but not required.

After all, I'm a product of great family and friends. :-)

The Butterfly Dragon is a Mandarin Chinese female character who has emigrated with her family from China at a young age. She symbolically is the concept piece behind the motif of the books which essentially is about East meeting West. Her family name in the book is Ai Yuanlin Ying. Her Father gives her and her family a new name upon their arrival in North America of Heylyn Yates in order to avoid stigmas that might affect her development in her new home.

Chances are in person you'd never hear me talking like this. I'm a much harder character than I etch onto the digital or paper page, and very different than the person I started out as but suffice it to say that this is the real me. Unchilled and unarmored and way different than the person I have to be in my daily struggles. Most of those struggles are against people who'd much rather paint me in a different light.

Brian Joseph Johns



PS: There have been a lot of attempts to steal my identity or my creative works by impersonating my computer and some of my online accounts from other computers. In other words, someone operating under one of my online accounts but using that account from another computer other than the two that I own. Mostly so far that I have seen this has occurred with some of my gaming related accounts (possibly my Steam account and perhaps one or two other accounts). So no official communication has been made by any identity thieves through my social media accounts as far as I can tell but they've been trying to impersonate my computer activity from other computers. In my city I live in 200 Sherbourne Street in apartment 701 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. All of my computer activity should only originate from within that place and from one of two computers in that apartment. I operate both via a VNC client and server within my residence.

Recently one of the reasons that I have not posted any new material for The Butterfly Dragon or A Lady's Prerogative was to investigate these occurrences which have seemingly been used in effort to steal some of my intellectual and creative properties. I don't mean like a VPN (which I've used maybe three or four times myself), but rather someone purposely trying to make it seem like that accounts associated with my computers and identity were coming from somewhere and someone else in another location other than my living space in Toronto.

The first Butterfly Dragon book was actually published online as I wrote it from August of 2012 on http://poetryandfiction.blogspot.ca. There has been many attempts by a cult to steal it and even to associate it with other cultures (to steal it away from its relation Chinese culture).

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