It's no secret that Cagayan de Oro is booming with so many talented individuals. From singers, actors and actresses; to photographers, fashion designers, playwrights, graphic artists, and comic book writers — the city is never short on creative geniuses. Carlo Occier and Ajae Evangelista are among those who matches talent with hard work.

Carlo and Ajae share the same love for comics, not only by big comic book companies such as DC and Marvel, but also those published by Filipino comic artists such as Filipino Heroes League, Trese, and Mythspace. Last August, they both attended the Asia Pop Comicon in Manila and met Harvey Tolibao, a Filipino comic artist who is from Bukidnon.

Being a huge comic book junkie, Ajae was fascinated with the idea of combining the stories of Daredevil and The Punisher, both comic book characters by Marvel. He already thought of coming up with a storyline that crosses both concepts of the said comics.

"I thought 'What if there was no regulatory board that monitors the amount of blood, gore, conspiracies, and other twisted ideas for Filipino action films?'  I wanted to do that story and add several cheesy 80's one-liners, the kind that Fernando Poe Jr. did before" Ajae recalled. At first, he wanted to make the story a short film, but he knew it would mean a massive budget and a team.

Carlo, on the other hand, needed a story for an art piece to showcase in a local event. So he asked Ajae if he had a story to pitch. Both were apparently agreeing on the same vision. Ajae had a story, and Carlo was on board in designing for it.

After several tweaks to the story and finalizing the aesthetics, Tasyong Bulag was born. It took almost two months for Carlo to illustrate and design the entire comic. When asked about what inspired the general look and feel of the comic, Carlo said, "We're leaning to a darker and gritty style. Something more like noir."

The two also sought advises from their friends who were comic book junkies like them. "We thought of making the main character a superhero with super powers. But we decided not to push through with it. Instead, we added a twisted sense of morality, something that will relate to the character's inner demons," Ajae said.

The first release of the comic will be sold in Sribbles' booth on November 26 and 27, 2016 in Limketkai Rotunda for the CDO Toy Show. Ajae and Carlo hope to produce not only the condensed version of the comic but also the backstory of "Tasyong Bulag." The two also looks forward to ultimately turning it into a film.

Cagayan de Oro, indeed, boasts of creative geniuses. Seeing Carlo and Ajae aspire to turn their passion for comics and graphic design into a huge collaborative project, inspired us to continue fuelling our passions too.


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