Fanboy: (look it up, and see if you like it.)

A big part of me resents the term “fanboy” in comics. The word/phrase started out as a derogatory term back about 20 years ago. It was mostly coined by the former “fanboys” that were now on the other side of the convention table as either a creator or on the business end. It was like they had finally got to hang out with the “cool kids” in high school and now they knew they had to spit venom on their former chess club members at least until one of them made it over the fence to join them.

“Geek” is a more universal term that the general population uses for people that go to extremes for anything in pop culture. I’ve never much been a fan of that word either. I don’t like the double standard for the terms. It bothers me that people that don’t read comics are so eager to label someone that does as a geek. They think that everyone that reads comics also dresses up in Star Trek or Star Wars costumes and is an online pervert. They make fun of someone that has a passion for something creative.

Don’t Call Me Fanboy

That same person would get upset if you called them a geek. They’d deny it and find it absurd that you could even utter that word with them in mind. That person doesn’t count themselves as a “geek” just because they read tabloids, know the names of celebrities children, talk about what movie stars wear, watch Entertainment Tonight and can tell you what Paris Hilton is famous for.

That same person might wanna shove their fist in your face for saying they’re a geek because they know how many times their favorite NFL running back has been arrested this year, because they stood in line to get their favorite baseball player’s autograph on a card they have encased in a plastic cube all the while every article of clothing they have on has that team’s logo stitched on it. Gee, does that count as a costume?

How dare you compare them to a comic book reader! You Geek!

I guess the part that really pisses in my beer is when comic book “professionals” call their consumers and readers fanboys. Trust me in 20 years I’ve heard almost every pro my age and younger (Older pros rarely ever said it. They had class and were just that? Pros) refer to their readers and consumers as that at some point if not all too often.

Billy Tucci,
Before He Broke Into Comics

I’ll be very honest with you, I’ve said it myself. I’ve said it in jest, I’ve said it with spite and I’ve said it “to be one of the boys”. I will state here and now that I am sorry and ashamed that I did. Every time I used that term deep inside my black, sin-filled, little heart I knew what I was saying was wrong. I always regretted it seconds after it cleverly spilled out of my ever clever mouth. So I started making a point not to say it. Not to use it like that anymore. Like any other bad habit, it was hard to change.

Just this week here at the SBC website in All The Rage a pro called some readers / consumers fanboys It came from Marvel Comics Max Punisher Editor, Axel Alonso in an interview conducted by John Voulieris.

    ATR: Why do you think Ennis’ run has been so well received? What elevates it from some of the 90s pseudo-exploitation Punisher tales that were just action sequences and big guns?

    AA: Garth is writing this for an adult audience. He’s not looking to push Fanboy’s buttons; he’s looking to write a compelling thriller.

I think I understand that Mr. Alonso really means that Ennis is writing for adult readers and not looking to upset adult readers that are extreme with their passion for the Punisher character. Well, I kinda figure that any adult that takes the time to pay close to $3.00 to buy and read a comic about a guy that wears a human skull on his shirt and kills bad people is gonna have an extreme passion for that character. This fanboy term comes off like the manager of McDonald’s calling his customers “The FatBoys”. Yeah, they teach calling your consumers names in business marketing 101?I must have skipped class that day. Extreme passion or not, that fanboy is still the bulk of your consumers.

Art by Brian Romero

Sometimes I think we as creators create comics for ourselves/adults because we don’t know or have forgotten how to create comics for all ages as well as adults. I see online and print media talking to their readers in a “dog pile on the rabbit” mentality of “let’s make fun of the fanboys so they won’t call us one.” all the time. I sure as hell hope they’re talking in a mirror when they do this.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand that everyone can overdo things to an extreme, but we should only be alarmed when that person’s passion hurts other people or themselves.

Art by Franchesco

The fanboy term has gotten so readers will even call themselves that name. I hope it’s meant that they have such good, solid self esteem that they really don’t care that the term isn’t that flattering to themselves. I hope that it’s not a case of them making fun of themselves first so they won’t have to hear it used on them by others. Sometimes I think there are too many readers/creators/publishers that are some what ashamed of what they read, create and publish. If so, I’d sure like to see that change as well. I don’t know if most feel that way or not. Only you really know.

Passion In Film Making Gets SHIFTED

For any of you that have ever read, created or published an “Independent” comic book you know that it takes money out of your own pocket and time away from your family, but what it does give to others is your passion. There’s no major publisher funding your efforts of putting your creation in the headlines of the top media. Anything that happens comes from you and your grit to get it done and get it out there.

It’s the same in making films. As most of my regular “knuckleheads” know I’m always looking out for new things in pop culture to bring back to the cave. Recently I was lucky enough to find a new film that was not only entertaining but extremely informative as well.

The film I’m talking about is SHIFTED. SHIFTED is an un-rated 88 minute film from Nelson Madison Films. Now most of you Knuckleheads might jump to the conclusion that SHIFTED is a jaw busting, multi-explosion action movie? well? it’s not.

SHIFTED is a modern Frank Capra / Jimmy Stewart type of film that not only shows you where you go when you lose it all, but where you end up. SHIFTED was made on an ultra-low budget by the film’s actor/director/producer/editor Michael Madison and his partner producer / writer Linda Nelson. By ultra-low budget I mean ULTRA LOW. That’s a fact and not a bad thing. If anything, it made me admire the film even more to think how they pulled off such a good movie on their own smarts, resources and the kindness of others.

The film is about a corporate executive that has the company he works for shut down amongst scandal and dirty dealings by those higher up. The character, David soon finds himself going from the fast lane to skid row in a hurry. The meat of the movie shows what it’s like to live on the fringe of life and reflects how one simple turn in life can shift you from one end to the other. SHIFTED is a story with a moral, but not in a preachy way.

Just so you won’t think I’ve gone completely soft there is a knee to the nuts scene, open wounds with blood, some tough guy intimidation and gun fire. There is also the lovely, leggy, Jill Wagner (Past Busted Knuckles Babe Of The Week) star of the new hit TV series BLADE done my friend and yours, Geoff Johns. Scarlett Johansson‘s sister, Vanessa is also in this as well as one of the best tough guy actors in film, “Rhino” Michaels. He’s everything you want in a tough guy and more. SHIFTED‘s star, Michael Madison at 6 feet 1 inch and a former top notch baseball player is dwarfed by Rhino? as is everyone else in the movie.

One of the highlights for me and will be for you is the special feature with commentary by Michael and Linda. This is anything but boring. It is a wonderful class in film-making and not by jaded creators that find their own remarks witty and clever. This is great bare bones behind the scenes stuff. It’s like getting a war story from the grunts in the trench and not the Generals back in Washington. I learned a lot from this and will no doubt refer to it again in my own creative process.

Michael even had the “De Niro” factor in this by not cutting his hair and beard for a year and a half to be realistic during the “down in the dumps” portion of the film’s story. I think my female Knuckleheads will love the clean-cut version of Michael’s character a lot. Not that I’d know if a guy was good looking or not?my wife tells me those things.

Here is all the info you need to check this film and now DVD out:

You can also buy it at and

If you stop by Michael’s site just tell him Beau sent ya.

Busted Knuckles Babe Of The Week

– Geoff John’s MySpace Photo

I have no idea who in the hell this lovely young lady is. I do know two things, she is the babe on Geoff Johns page and that she wears the Canadian Maple Leaf better than anyone on the Toronto NHL Hockey team. If this is an Ice Queen then I wanna be in her kingdom. If you want to find out more about this tan snow goddess then check out Geoff’s page at

Who knows? Maybe Geoff grew boobs? I heard he was working out.

Busted Knuckles Manly Cover Of The Week

Showcase B’Wana Beast Comic Book Ad by DC Comics

You Knuckleheads know that I have a manly admiration for the DC Comics character B’Wana Beast that first appeared in Showcase Comics in the 1960s. I do not recognize that politically correct version of “Freedom Beast”.

Anyway, this week I skip doing a cover because this classic ad was just too damn manly to pass up. I had to share it with you and ask you to join my Kool-Aid drinking army that is after DC Comics to let me do MY B’Wana Beast mini-series.

I hope you enjoy this ad and use it as your manly avatar online and everywhere you surf for porn and information about me.

Don’t forget to stop by Chuck Dixon‘s message board to check out his puny human attempt to out man my choice for a manly cover. His weakness disgusts me!

The Roundup

Another episode of Busted Knuckles has come to and end. I wanna thank y’all for stopping by because I sure do appreciate it. (Unlike those other columnist. Do they ever thank you for coming by? )

I wanna thank all of your that wrote in about last week’s column and talked about your thoughts on the tough guy situation in Hollywood. You had some great ideas and opinions that I appreciate? and will also claim as my own when you’re not looking.

I wanna thank big knucklehead Tom Pritchard who is exiled in Maryland right now (He still pines for San Diego) for sending me the book ICE STATION by Matt Reilly. It looks to be an action packed testament to testosterone that I am gonna enjoy. Much thanks, Tom. I hope you and the beautiful Jeannine will get out of Maryland before the snows hit this winter.

I’m gonna leave y’all with a piece of art that noted comic book artist and former McFarlane Toys designer, Flint Henry did for me this past week after he read Cobb: Off The Leash #3. It seems while he was talking to the ghost of Warren Oates and Wally Wood, that the spirit of John Wayne also came by for a beer and to read the latest issue of Cobb.

Y’all stay outta trouble.

Your amigo,

Beau Smith
The Flying Fist Ranch
P.O. Box 706
Ceredo, WV. 25507

Prove your manhood by visiting Beau at the Flying Fists Forum!

About The Author


Beau Smith is a writer for Comics Bulletin