P:R Approved: theDURRRRIAN’s Fantasy-Styled Avengers!

Note: A Malaysian artist going by the moniker theDURRRRIAN has single-handedly rocked my socks and shoes with this Frazetta-esque fantasy take on Marvel’s Avengers. While it may not fit in with the 616 universe, I could easily imagine this being a great fantasy series like Avataars: Covenant of the Shield except, well… good. In terms of design, composition and technical skill each illustration leaps off the screen. – Chris A.

28 comments on “P:R Approved: theDURRRRIAN’s Fantasy-Styled Avengers!
  1. Love it.
    With such an extreme style, assessments of particular costuming elements become largely moot. There’s just no legitimate argument that So-And-So’s accoutrement (weapon/cape/mask/whatever) would or would not “work” in story or practical application.
    So I’ll just stick with my statement of overall appreciation: Love it.
    (Hawkeye is now my computer wallpaper.)

  2. These are spectacular. I don’t know how well they would translate into a comic book panel – but for pin-up pieces they rock.

    Hawkeye is the standout for me…maybe the color scheme does it, just awesome. I’d like to see Cap from the front, maybe just a rough sketch? I had to study Cap to figure out which way he was facing, the shoulder armor makes it look like he has a beard.

    One thought, in a world where arrows can pierce the Hulks skin he might want to pick up some of the bad ass armor that seems to be available!

    Nice work.

  3. I certainly agree with “composition and technical skill each illustration leaps off the screen”, the design part, not so much.

    Regardless if it is in a fantasy setting: “Design, when applied to fashion, includes considering aesthetics as well as function in the final form.” Now aesthetics are surely covered but the simple fact the acrobatic characters are depicted in full plate, proves that no functional thought went into this.

    Imagine what Edna would think of this, when she was so berserk about the encumbrance of simple capes ?

  4. But Edna was gifted with the aesthetic and principles of her time. These designs are seemingly intended to fit within a stereotypical medieval age and the aesthetics of that time.

  5. Chris A.: These designs are seemingly intended to fit within a stereotypical medieval age and the aesthetics of that time.

    Even within Magical medieval stereotype, there’s no way these can work. LOTR trilogy is there to prove that function+culture+aesthetics should be taken into consideration at all times.
    It’s simply good eye candy.

  6. The assumption that certain characters are inherently “acrobatic” is mistaken. Obviously the artist here picked a different trait to interpret and highlight, and not every trait. The Capt. America portrayal, for example, could just as easily represent a front-line soldier of particular type of combat arena. Iron Man is certainly not encased in an armor can as one *might* expect, but rather conveys the sense of wizardry via something vaguely tech-like.

  7. Don’t much care for the Hulk (who now appears to be the weakest of the lot), or Captain America (who is just too dark, regardless of the theme). The rest are really great, though, with Thor and Iron Man as the best of the lot. As has already been noted, these costumes don’t lend themselves to any form of visual storytelling, but make for very nice one-off illustrations.

    Could do without Black Widow and Ultimate Fury, but at least Agent Coulson didn’t make an appearance.

  8. For the sake of future feedback here (and the arguments it engenders), I propose a personal thought experiment of sorts: Consider what elements define any particular superhero as a meme, and then reduce that list item by item to test the strength of the character concept.

    Take Captain America, for example. Off the top of my head, I’d say that the color scheme of red, white and blue must always be present; stars and stripes motif, less so. A shield, yes, preferably round, but there’s some amount of flexibility possible in that design. His attributes might include nobility, commitment to a nation or cause, a sense of military authority, physically fit, combat ability and strategic ability. Maybe a man displaced in time.

    Could an artistic interpretation of “Captain America” be valid if everything was present except the American flag? — change the colors to green, purple and yellow and check your gut reaction. No? OK, how about keeping the list intact but make him an office executive in a suit and tie — could we still sense something Captain America-ish about him?

    That’s merely one instance, of course. I see a lot of negative positions posted on this site that come from a subjective assumption that nearly every trait of a comic book superhero must necessarily be present for a new design to be good. I think that’s an unfair limitation on the artists.

  9. the designs are hot! they resemble some of the art work for guild wars 2 which i like very much. also this site is a god send! keep up the good work chaps!

  10. Those first two are great. Probably the only version of the Purple Hawkeye outfit that I’ve ever liked and Iron Man is simply awesome.

  11. Bruce B.: I see a lot of negative positions posted on this site that come from a subjective assumption that nearly every trait of a comic book superhero must necessarily be present for a new design to be good. I think that’s an unfair limitation on the artists.

    a) If wolverine has no claws and shoots beams out of his eyes is he still wolverine?
    If you don’t keep the powers and modus operanti in mind how can you design gear for him? That aid, compensate or at least take consideration how the character works? Would you give armor to invulnerable supers as well? (everyone’s doing it these days)

    b)The only objective way the human Cap is going to keep up against guys like Thor (which he does) is to keep nimble and fast enough to put that magic shield between them, the obvious choice is to keep mobility up and encumbrance down. Of course in this version his shield could be mind controlled or sentient… then we’re back to problem (a)

    Good designs work for the styles they’re drawn for.
    Better designs work for any style, even computer games or movie props.

  12. the designs are cool but they follow the modern concept of fantasy designs,all visual and nothing realism and hystorical representation.
    With all these blast of light they resemble some Tron version than a fantasy version

    Thor is the only one I really like

  13. Mario Silva:
    a) If wolverine has no claws and shoots beams out of his eyes is he still wolverine?
    If you don’t keep the powers and modus operanti in mind how can you design gear for him? That aid, compensate or at least take consideration how the character works? Would you give armor to invulnerable supers as well? (everyone’s doing it these days)b)The only objective way the human Cap is going to keep up against guys like Thor (which he does) is to keep nimble and fast enough to put that magic shield between them, the obvious choice is to keep mobility up and encumbrance down. Of course in this version his shield could be mind controlled or sentient… then we’re back to problem (a)Good designs work for the styles they’re drawn for.
    Better designs work for any style, even computer games or movie props.

    In answer to your first question, he could still be Wolverine; he might have been subject to one of those “power-swap” issues/episodes that often happen in super-themed media. You could make a case for it radically altering his character to the extent that he chooses a new costume to complement his powerset, though – you’d need more context. Similarly, Wolverine could still be argued to be Wolverine if he lost his powers completely, didn’t have adamantium claws (which he obviously didn’t at one point), etc etc etc. Writers, artists and readers are free to interpret characters in their own unique ways, including what makes a character “essentially” them – some artists won’t consider certain elements of a character as “essential” as other people will, and will miss them out.

    Similarly, not all costumes have to be completely efficient and functional, because not everyone wears completely functional clothing all the time, even in battle – that could be down to anything the interpreter chooses, such as the in-universe’s character’s own whim, in-universe availability of resources, thematic resonance with other elements of the same universe, etc etc etc. And there’s a fine line between trying to make armor completely functional and being /too/ realistic. If the folk that tend to like a given comic are okay with realism being liberally abandoned every so often – as I imagine fans of the Avengers would be – I’m sure most would be fine with the armor not being 100% real-world efficient.

  14. It’s amusing how much the “Plate armor means you’re slow & can barely move” fallacy still affects people’s thinking.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pz7naZ08Jd4
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6aqRkxTjV1c

    If we’re to say Captain America still has his usual powers of being “Peak human” in speed/mobility out of armor, then he’d STILL have those qualities in the armor.
    It wouldn’t be cut down THAT much.
    He’d still be able to outmanuever those who are bigger & stronger but slower than him, especially if those folks are wearing armor as well.

  15. How much money must I throw at my screen for a framed poster of either Hawkey, Iron Man or Loki (but mostly Hawkeye).

  16. It must be more than 57 cents, because I threw that at my screen and the only thing I got was a cracked monitor.

  17. Mitch: you’d need more context

    And we don’t have it, making this re-THINKING that less complete. Aaron Diaz for example goes through great lengths to explain his rethinking giving them depth.
    Also, it is easy to observe how those great changes are often just fireworks and marketing, in time the characters continually go back to their former iterations. There is evolution, but it is slow and in the details: gloves turn to cybernetics, face mask and hair style become default…

    Decoration, sentimental value, historical value, social status those are functions too (function=/= efficiency). Function defines form, that is design, without the parameters of function the renderings become whimsical. If you follow the over the top characters powers as parameters, the designs will be WEIRDER then what most come up with while being totally free from context.

    Tony, i suggested LOTR as a good example, they wear true plates too, but if you ask that dude to do some Capoeira against me, he couldn’t even take the basic defense stance…

  18. I love that Hawkeye has a magic bow/arm/face combo. Don’t know why, but would read this book and look forward to finding out.

    I totally dig Hulk’s red eyes and skull belt.

    In a world where people where armor, it’s hard to to Thor stand out as special. I’d almost long for bare-arms Thor in a case like this. Also, is Thor’s head little, or are his shoulderpads oversized?

    And speaking of armor, in a world where fighting involves armor, it makes perfect sense that the perfect fighting machine (Cap) would wear armor. Keep in mind, the dude wears chain-mail in the real world anyways.

  19. Mario:
    First of all I’ll admit LOTR comparisons are lost on me.
    I tried reading the book, didn’t like it, and never bothered watching any of the movies.

    But i must ask.
    Wouldn’t someone in Chain-mail or scale-mail also have some restricted mobility & not being doing capoeria?

    Cap is quite often depicted as wearing chain-mail or scale mail in the modern era. Yet he outmaneuvers completely unarmored foes. (and despite the fact such armor wouldn’t really add to his protection against ballistic weapons)

    Someone in plate armor, in a general real life fight, can get out of the way of lots of attacks.
    Someone who is in the level of physical capability Captain America is at would be able to get out of the way of damn near any attack, plate armor or no.

    Also I’m no expert when it comes to spandex & such, but wouldn’t most superheroes classic comics outfits be uncomfortable as hell to fight in?

  20. As an illustration, with no possible ties to reality, I love this a lot. I’m big on a design having to WORK, but these designs work even when completely implausible

  21. @Tony
    Then you’re missing out on the best fantasy design ever put on screen. Armor, weapons, castles, everything visual is really detailed. If you don’t care for the story mute it, or watch the making of instead.

    The cap wears a chain mail shirt that conveniently ends with the rib line, for nimble waist line, if this mail is modern, then it would probably titanium mesh, like fish gloves, against stabbing and cutting (and vampire bites) very lite. Someone normal won’t be able to dodge people shooting at them, cap dodges energy beams from people that never miss…

    The spandex issue is a myth. Just look at what real athletes are wearing in competitions, swimming, skating, running… full body skin tights. Heck, they’re so efficient they constantly get banned or create controversy. They tighten muscles to help against injury and cramps, they breathe and dry ultra fast, they reduce air or water friction… When you are at this peak level performances every millisecond counts, the same would apply to cap when fighting guys like bulls-eye or the taskmaster.

  22. These are incredibly beautiful! Love them! The only thing that bothers me a bit though is Hawkeyes arm that is holding the bow, shouldn’t it be the other way so that the thumb is facing up? Seems a bit awkward, but maybe I’m seeing it wrong..

  23. all of these comments and nobody’s mentioned that Black Widow has a boob window and boobplate armor yet? disappoint.

  24. Chris, our original concept for Avataars -Len Kaminski, Ruben Diaz and mine- had little to do with what it ended up being, specially story-wise. In my original pitch -the original idea was mine, Len came onboard later, although we were agreeing on everything – the story had a much more serious tone, and was way more complex and less simplistic than what we ended up with. It was meant to be an epic tale, told in a 12-issue arc, but it was dragged down and ultimately butchered and by the powers that be to the point that it was left almost unrecognizable. We tried anyway, as we were commited to it and it was meant as a labor of love, specially for me, but even Ruben gave up after the first issue -left Marvel and the comic book bussiness altogether for good, and I can tell you that our hardships with that ill-fated series had much to do with it- so I ran out of steam short after he did.

    We did our best. Pity it wasn’t enough, but we tried.

    I stand by mi designs, tho. I wasn’t a great artist back then -neither am now- but I love designing characters and put an awful lot of work on them. They were the product of a coherent context and it’s a real pity than much -most, really- of it was lost in the process. I still like them today.

    About Thedurrrians designs, they look pretty, and he or she has an exceptionally good grasp on texturing, lightning and painting techniques, but his/her proportions and general anatomy are off. Also, most designs are hard to appreciate because of the angles chosen for their depictions. But they look cool anyway.

Comments are closed.