Thursday, January 1, 2009

Introduction

I have faint memories of being a child, parked in front of the television, and getting starry-eyed everytime Lynda Carter would twirl and become Wonder Woman. That show is what sparked this hobby of mine -- this undying interest in comic book collecting. I don't remember comic book shops existing back then...but I do remember quaint spinner racks located in the back section of our local newsstand. Each slot filled with the colorful heroes and villains of DC Comics (and Marvel too). My little fingers would flip through those racks seeking out whatever caught my eye. The Justice League, X-Men, Wonder Woman, Teen Titans...and yes, even Marvel's old school Dazzler.

I knew of the super-men...but I was always drawn to the super-women of these fantasy worlds. They were exciting to me -- so strong, yet vulnerable, beautiful and smart. Also let's face it, they had the better costumes. Eventually, I became restless with Wonder Woman...she was simply too much of a do-gooder for my changing tastes. In fact, my entire interest in comic books vanished during my early teen years. But, like many I found my way back. I lay that blame on Catwoman in Batman Returns -- watching Michelle Pfeiffer whip her way through Gotham City was big fun. I felt that same sense of excitement and wonder as I did during my Lynda Carter years...and I have been celebrating this comic book culture ever since.

So, about that plant lady...

I discovered Poison Ivy while watching Batman: The Animated Series -- plain and simple. (It horrifies me to realize that was 17 years ago!) I was actually quite surprised that I never knew of this character before her animated debut. I really liked her style. It was bold, and colorful -- a woman dressed in all green! With fiery red hair, and a personality to match. I also found the plant motifs to be fascinating and original. Of course, this discovery prompted me to the back issues of many a comic book store -- buying up every book featuring Poison Ivy. I soon realized this character didn't quite hit her stride until about ten or so years ago. Those earlier appearances are few and far between for Poison Ivy.

This Ivy fixation exploded upon hearing that Poison Ivy would be a featured villain in the fourth Batman film. I couldn't believe that my favorite villain was going to portrayed by one of my favorite actresses. (Uma Thurman) Around the time I realized what a useful tool the internet was for finding out information about...well...anything really. So I went online to do research about Poison Ivy -- looking for any type of site that would offer up pictures and information beyond the paper comic book format. I looked for online communities or fan clubs. Much to my dismay there was little or nothing to be found. Well...like any crazed and motivated person...I decided to build my own website -- that's when "The Flora Lounge" was born.


I knew nothing of web design -- so I just browsed through online tutorials, books and whatever else would teach me how to build a basic website. Eventually, the site took shape. I bought a scanner and uploaded whatever images I felt were worth posting. It's funny, I look at The Flora Lounge now and it's so garish in color and amateurish in design and function (a 640x480 template!?) -- even the name makes me wince and blush. But, it served a purpose and was received positively by passersby. I've met lots of very nice and very cool people (because of that site). All crazy Poison Ivy fans just like me. You all know who you are! I've been at this for 12 years and I've loved every second.

As of this writing, the Lounge is retired (it's simply too old) to make way for my newer vision -- my new pet project, DEADLY GARDEN! I chose the name based on a chapter title I read in Batman: Shadow of the Bat Annual # 3. The 4th chapter is titled, "The Deadly Garden of Poison Ivy" -- I liked the sound of the words Deadly and Garden together and the ideas and images they conjure. And that was the first step towards a new and better direction. I consider this new site/blog the more mature and sophisticated version of my former effort.

All of my knowledge and all of my passion for this character can be found here. You found your way to this site -- so chances are she is just as important to you too. The May Queen...Earth Goddess...Plant Mistress...Vine Vixen...and true Queen of Gotham City -- Pamela Isley, better known as Poison Ivy! My gift to you.

POISON IVY, and all related characters, names, and indicia are trademarks of DC Comics. This website/blog is non-profit, and intended for entertainment, and informative purposes only.

3 comments:

AfroMonkey said...

Hey! You're back! It's great to see you're still live and kicking! I've been a fan of your stuff since the Flora Lounge but I thought you had since vanished off the face of the Internet...
I remember you had- a really rather cool- website under the same alias "Deadly Garden" that I really liked too but that seems to have gone too. I can't pretend to know much about the inner workings of domain names etc but I assume they're quite costly.
Sorry if I'm going on a bit but I only just found this and you've made my day! I hope you'll keep up the great work!

Tiziana said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Leah said...

This is an awesome, wonderful, fantastic site! Poison Ivy rocks! Absolutely love her character. :)

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