Copyright Acknowledgment: All images of THE OUTER SPACE MEN , THE WORLD OF THE FUTURE and other Products and Images, created by Mel Birnkrant, are Copyright (c) MEL BIRNKRANT
Move over Mickey, The OUTER SPACE MEN are BACK AGAIN! Remember them? Thatís right! They put this roof over your head. So, I donít want to hear any complaining! For 40 years youíve been the center of attention. Now itís time to step aside, maybe, just a little, and make some room for an old friend.
When the Four Horsemen began this endeavor, about a year ago, I never dreamed Iíd sharpen my drawing pencil, and point it at the Stars again. It suddenly occurs to me there is a certain irony in this situation that suggests itís, somehow, fitting. Just as it was Manís first footsteps on the Moon, some 40 years ago, that brought the Outer Space Menís pioneering journey, prematurely, to an end. Perhaps, the fact that Americaís Space Program is ending, signifies itís time for them to venture out ďTo the farthest reaches of our GalaxyĒ again.
A month or so ago, the Four Horsemen asked me if I had any suggestions for minor accessories or alterations to existing figures that could be added to the molds they would be making. Nuances that would constitute a variation, novel enough to merit being offered as a limited edition. As an example, a new head for Astro Nautilus with 3 trunks, was mentioned. I said Iíd try some sketches.
Naturally, I got carried away. And the catalyst that elevated both the project, and me, encouraging my mind to soar free of Earthís gravity, and the gravity of the mess the Earth is in today, was GLYOS. Curiously, it was not Itís great Play Value that excited me, although I can grasp and assimilate that conceptually, without actually playing with it. As, Iíve often stated, I have never played with the toys that I collected, nor the ones that I created.
But the thing I fond most Fascinating about the GLYOS concept is the fact that it makes it easy to transform a character into a whole new entity, with very little expense, in terms of time and money. Furthermore, these limitations can be liberating. The possibility of just adding this or that, rather than starting from scratch, requires one to, in a way, be even more creative. And if you look and listen hard, the existing character, itself, will play an active role in showing you the way.
And so, each of these ďvariations has become a whole new Outer Space Man, hopefully, a natural and logical extension, and a suitable companion, for the one thatís there already. Each has a new name and a brand new story, as usual, chocked full of almost comical clichťs that portend profundity. Alas, if any of them has a future, it well might be light years away. I suspect they may be more ambitious than what the Horsemen had in mind. But I have no idea what they think about them. I only know Iím having more fun with a pencil than Iíve had in a long time.
Sincerely, Mel Birnkrant
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