Sunsaints Comic Book Review and Arthur Interview

Friday, June 17, 2011 4:39 AM Posted by Savanah Jeanne
Sunsaints: Interview with Tom Vudtiyanon

Recently I was given a chance to look at some really great art work.  As those of you who know me best know, I'm an art teacher, assistant teacher, and camp organizer.  Sweetest jobs ever, no?  I know.  But with all this influence, opportunities and other such ways to experience art, on of my favorite ways to interact with art is through comic books.  I know most of you are thinking something along the lines of, "Comic books are great for art, but they aren't really books...".  And I'd have to agree with you.  They aren't novels, they are short stories.  But they have almost all the aspects of a novel: plot, story line, you have to make outlines, characters that need to be developed, understood, etc...To the left is a page from one of the comics in Tom Vudtiyanon's newest series The Sunsaints.  So far my favorite book in the series is the one this page comes from; the very last one.  I guess because I feel like them modernized feel to it makes me want to connect with the story more.  I found that all things that where a bit difficult for me to understand, where easily answered by Tom.  Here's what Tom had to say  in response to my questions:

Welcome to Ridiculous Reviews! Tell us a bit about yourself.

Alright, to start off my name is Tom Vudtiyanon.  I'm forty one years old.  I'm of Asian descent: I was born in Thailand but lived most of my life here in the US.  I've been a Christian for over twenty years.  I'm single, having never been married.  (That part I'm working on.)  I occupy myself with drawing, painting, writing, and taking care of my elderly mother.  Of course, I read and study the Bible and other literature.  Which means I'm sort of a Bible teacher but not in the formal sense.  I've been engaged in enlightening those (Christians and non-Christians) around me concerning the word of God.  And I continue to be enlightened by people who teach me new things about the Lord, history, and other things. I'd like to think I'm doing my part to help comic books be seen in America as a serious form of art, like the way they are considered in France.

I didn't know they were considered an art in France.  What do you base your stories of off?  Anything that is familiar to you in a personal way or are they all from scratch (mean completely made up)?  Where did you learn to put such depth into your drawings?

Yes, comic books are seen as a high form of art by the French.  They're not seen just as juvenile lit., though that has started to change here in the US.  I base my stories on my own studies into history.  I came upon the realization some yrs ago that most of the history we've learned (in school) is not true.  Also, I realize that the mainstream media slant on current events is highly questionable.  That's the stuff that feeds my stories.  I mix a little bit of stuff from my own life into my comic.  So, most of what appears in the comic is from scratch.  I'm just passionate about history and about the truth: in relation to history.  My own life has been fairly uneventful: I could do a more autobiographical comic, but that's not what I'm aiming for: I want to make an adventure/fantasy comic that has an aspect of a mystery thriller to it and some romance.
Thank you for your kind words about my drawing.  As for my art, I'm mostly self-taught.  I took some life drawing classes, but mostly I studied the art of other artists--mostly other comic book artists I admire.  And I practiced and practiced to get to a level which I felt was the same level as the top pro comics artists of today (that being within the last 2 years).  When it comes to painting I'm entirely self-taught. 
Of course I started with a good amount of talent in drawing that God gifted me with.  Also, it's sheer determination on my part to achieve great art (at least in terms of the drawing).  Whether I accomplish that goal is for others to decide.

Wow, that all sounds wonderful.  Being self taught shows great determination.  I also agree with you about history taught in schools.  Interesting that you mention God though.  It's one of the big social "no-no"s as you probably know.  Please tell me, if you don't mind that is, what your stand is on God?  Like what do you believe about God?  And do your beliefs ever fuel or inspire a certain amount of you comic book writings and/or drawings?  The plot, I've read all there is now from your blog, is very good.  I like the time travel feel it has to it.  Like I'm being pulled from one generation over to another.  Now that you mention history being flawed when taught in school, What historic events have you used to inspire your plots?  

Yeah, the mentioning God and Jesus are socially uncool, but I don't care.  I don't mind telling you about my stand on God.  I'll elaborate on this by first discussing the image of the face on the temple at the beginning of the comic.  This face is half human/ half feline.  Or half man/half lion.  It is based on what has become known as "the face on Mars." 
Nasa's "Viking" spacecraft took a photo (back in the '70s) of something on the Martian surface that appears to be a structure shaped like a face.  Nasa ("Never a Straight Answer") explained away this anomaly as a trick of the light on some rock formation.  Not everybody bought that answer.  Some people studied that photo intensely and came to the conclusion that it really was a face and, what's even more, determined that it was part man on its right side and part lion on its left side.
A Christian researcher named David Flynn came up with the most plausible, as far as I can see, explanation for why this Martian face is half man/half lion.  According to Flynn, whoever built that face did so to glorify the God of the Bible: in Revelation chapter 5 Jesus is called "the lion of the Tribe of Judah", which refers to Jacob's prophecy concerning Judah back in Genesis.  Jesus came down from heaven to be born as a human child to Mary and grew up to be a man.  He lived the perfect life none of us could live, then he died on the cross for our sins: becoming the propitiation for us between God and man.  (And both Joseph and Mary were descendants of King David, who of course was of the Tribe of Judah.)  Thus the face on Mars is a monument built to give glory to the Son of Man.  It was foreshadowing, through its symbolism, what Jesus would do and what he would become: a man.
So, I believe that the God of the Bible is the one true God.  I came to that conclusion from studying the Bible, which I came to see as being supernaturally inspired: it being an integrated work from Genesis to Revelation, which defies any explanation that says it originated with men.  (I tend to be open-minded and to question everything.)
Yes, my belief in God does figure to a significant extent in my art.  That's something that will flow from being a Christian; it's the most important part of your life and so will affect everything you do.
As for certain historical events/eras inspiring my plots, I would say that prehistory (Atlantis being a major aspect of that) has been a major source for what has driven the plots of my comic.  (Some people dismiss what Plato said about Atlantis, but I've concluded that he was speaking about a real civilization that once ruled over a great empire from its homebase on a large island in the Atlantic Ocean.  (Meanwhile, God created Adam and Eve in the Garden in Eden over in the Middle East.  (Yes, I'm implying that there were humans that lived before Adam and Eve: pre-Adamic humans.  It's something we can debate among ourselves within the church.))
The so-called "Dark Age" era of Britain--the era of the historical King Arthur--has been an influence that will figure moreso in later pages of the Sunsaints comic.  The era of the Founding Fathers of this nation will also figure somehow in later pages.
And then there's the whole subject of what happened to the "Lost Ten Tribes of Israel", after the destruction of the Northern Kingdom of Israel as a political entity (from 732 to 701 BC).  This important aspect of history figures in a big way in my stories.  And I must emphasize that Ephraim or the Northern Kingdom was annihilated politically: its people were first deported and then scattered: growing greater and greater in number, as God promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  The descendants of Jacob would become a group of nations, as God said in Genesis.  God has been watching over these Israelites.

Where and how do you base your theories of man before Adam?  It's an interesting theory.  I've heard of it before, I even had a whole section of one of my blogs dedicated to different theories concerning creation.  In other thoughts, are you implying you believe in aliens? All in all, I like that every theory you have is drawn right back to some way of glorifying God.  I'd say above all, that's really important. 

Now, I tend towards the belief that aliens from other planets exist.  I'm of the idea that some or all of these alien "races" are angels who dwell in our physical realm: planetary angels.  I'm even more certain that extra-terrestrial humans exist: on some of the other planets within our solar system, as well as beyond.  As I've said, I question everything.  For example, we've been told that the planet Venus is too hot and its atmosphere too poisonous to support human life.  Is this true?  It sounds logical since Venus is closer to the sun (I suspect that we haven't been told about the true nature of our own star.); There's the strong posibility we've been lied to.  What if in reality Venus is a hospitable planet?; that's a pretty bold proposition, I know. 
Certain factions within the US military/industrial complex (the Technocracy) don't want people going out into space: they can more easily manage us if we're all here and not partly flung far out into space and inhabiting other worlds.  The Technocrats are aware of these e.t. humans and are interacting with them and keeping it a secret from the general populace.  This sounds conspiratorial but the thing is this: conspiracies can be found throughout scripture.  And when it comes to human behavior, we're no different from our ancestors.  (What scripture says about human nature makes it relevant today.)
As for who built the Face on Mars, the builders were most likely angels: the very angels who rebelled against God (being a third of the total number).  This solar system was once governed by Lucifer, before he sinned.  He and the angels under him were once physical creatures who presided over an interplanetary civilization.  They built the Face on Mars to glorify their Creator, that being Jesus.  Then one day Lucifer got the idea that he should be as the most High, so God destroyed their civilization and cast them from this material plane--from this dimension.  Thus the way was cleared for God to create man.  How long ago did this occur?  Perhaps millions of years ago.  Some Christians (like the aforementioned David Flynn) say it happened some 12,500 years ago, because of the fact that the Great Pyramid of Giza was also built to glorify God.  (The three pyramids of the Giza Plateau line up with the three stars of the Belt of Orion (according to computer modeling) around 10,500 BC.) 
When it comes to the timeline of these earliest events, I like to keep myself open; I do tend towards them having happened "A long, long time ago", which I take to mean at least tens of thousands of years ago.  (George Lucas' Star Wars movies are a retelling of this great cosmic war in our distant past, though he won't admit it.  He's an insider and was made privy to information about humanity's past and the time before that.  This information is flawed, in that it totally ignores the God of the Bible, just like the Sumerian tablets--which I'm going to speak about next--ignore God.)  Of course I should say here that you shouldn't believe anything I say.  Look into it for yourself: keep your mind open.  You arrive at the truth by listening to everybody--no matter how crazy what they're saying sounds--and by testing everything, and that includes those things you've come to believe to be true (and have held to be true for years).  The name of Herodotus is held in deep respect among historians even today.  That's because he was open to hearing what anybody had to say about anything concerning history.
There is something special about planet earth.  In terms of locality, the earth is at the heart of the war between light and darkness--the war between God and Satan.  Sumer was a civilization that arose immediately after the flood, fully formed: meaning they received the knowledge of civilization from someone: Noah.  A group of tablets attributed to the Sumerians speak of a cosmic war, saying that it was a war between two opposing factions of the gods in earlier times.  And these cuneiform tablets--inspired by a group of gods (angels) called the Anunnaki--say that it was these Anunnaki who made man.  These angels (in reality) say they came from a planet called Nibiru.  They came to earth to mine for gold in Southern Africa.  At first they did the work themselves, but in time they decided to take the native population of hominids (Homo Erectus) and use them to create a new race (that's us) to be their slaves in the mines.  The Annunaki accomplished this by mixing their own DNA with the DNA of Homo Erectus, which resulted in modern humans.
If this claim by the Anunnaki is true, then why would they make us humans physically weaker than Homo Erectus?  After all, we were supposed to be slaves in the gold mines.  True, we're smarter but Homo Erectus was superior in strength and stamina.  Mining is hard physical labor.  The more important question is this: how did they (the Anunnaki) originate?  As far as I know, they don't explain themselves.  We know nothing of their origin.  And they expect us to believe what they say about us; in contrast, the God of the Bible explains himself.  He says that he has always been.  We can never fully understand God, but we can have a basic grasp of his nature.  The historical accounts in the Old Testament have time and again been corroborated by archaeology.   
Some claim that Genesis was taken from the Sumerian texts, that the latter is the true account of the creation of man.  It is true that the Sumerian tablets predate the Book of Genesis.  But we must consider this: Noah predates the Sumerians: Sumer was a post-flood civilization.  The Anunnaki, it appears, wanted to corrupt these descendants of Noah, and they succeeded in doing so.  Abraham and Sarah were born into Chaldean society, which had inherited the corruption of the Sumerians.  God called Abram out of Chaldea to a new land that his offspring (through Isaac) would inherit: Canaan.  God used Moses (a descendant of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob) to write down the true account of man's creation.  (And it was Moses whom God used to lead the Israelites out of slavery through the wilderness so that they could, after 40 years of wandering, move into the Promised Land (under Joshua's leadership).)  If you're open-minded, you will see all of this.
So, Genesis chapter 1 says that God created man (pre-Adamic man).  Gen. chapter 2 is about the creation of Adam and Eve.  That's why the account of the creation of man in both chapters appear to be different from each other.   In Gen. chptr 4 Cain takes a wife.  Where did this woman come from, whom he married?  The popular explanation in the church is that this woman was one of the many children that Adam and Eve had after Cain and Abel.  If you carefully look at the timeline given in chptr 4 and compare it with the geneological list in chptr 5, you should (I did, at least) come to see that Cain's wife must have been of the pre-Adamic humans.
Specifically, compare the timeline in chptr 4 with what Gen. 5:3 says.  Adam lived another one hundred and thirty years before he had another offspring: Seth.  In that intervening period: the one hundred and thirty years, in which the timeline of chptr 4 occurs and spills over, Adam and Eve had no children.  You can't read into it that they had a bunch of children during that time and that one of them became the wife of Cain.  There's nothing to indicate that.  What could have happened was that Adam and Eve were so traumatized by Abel's death that 130 years had to pass before they could bring themselves to have another child.  In the meantime Cain was exiled, becoming a fugitive from the law, so to speak (Gen. 4:14).  Cain saying "I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth" implies an already existing society.  Then he got married to an Atlantean woman (if you will) and had a son with her named Enoch.  We must remember that Adam and Eve were created directly by God and were in a state of innocence in the garden.  True, they lost that innocence once they ate of the fruit of the forbidden tree; but they'd never seen death, though they knew of it.  And then to be forced to leave that paradise environment to see the harsh outside world (with all the murder, theft, corruption, wars and diseases going on) and also to especially see their son Abel die...
Now going back to look at Genesis 2:4 it seems to be a transition: much time has passed since verse 26 of chapter 1, which speaks of man being made in God's image.  From Gen. 2:5 onward it appears that God has set aside a large piece of land from the rest of the world (a land called Eden, somewhere in the Middle East).  He has enclosed it within a sort of huge bubble, some sort of force field that's shaped like a great, large dome.  Within this enclosed environment you have an atmosphere also.  This self-contained place was like a greenhouse but many times more spectacular than the ones we've seen.  This was the garden of Eden.  There was no rain in the garden; a mist watered the whole area.  In Gen. 4:24 God placed "Cherubims, and a flaming sword" to guard what sounds like a portal to the garden on its east side, through which Adam and Eve were compelled to exit by God.  Reading this part of Gen. carefully, you get the sense that the garden was a place closed off from the rest of the world.  Well that's the sense I get, anyway.  Eventually the garden, specifically the tree of life, was removed by God.  We don't hear about the tree of life again until the Book of Revelation.
One last thing, Savanah.  You say on your blog that you intend to reread The Odyssey and The Iliad.  I've looked into the origins of both the Achaeans or Mycenean Greeks and the Trojans.  The Achaeans were (for the most part) descended from the tribe of Dan: Danites who left Egypt (in the 1600s BC) before the great Exodus of Israel under Moses.  The Trojans and the Mycenean Greeks of Athens were descended from "colonists" of the tribe of Judah who also emigrated from Egypt.  These were the wealthier Israelites (having their own ships) who saw the coming enslavement, when the Egyptians would rise up to overthrow the ever-growing power structure presided over by the Israelites. Also, here's a reason I brought up Noah.  Noah was a righteous man, and he knew the true account of the creation of man.  His descendants, the Sumerians and the Chaldeans, corrupted the true account (when they came under the influence of the Anunnaki).  God waited until Moses came along to right the wrong: to make sure the real story of man's creation was told.

 Are any of our faces in the comics based on people you know?

Now when it comes to characters being modeled after people I know, I'd be lying if I said that I did not base any of the characters on actual people.  The character of Jehrian (in the 1st story) is based on a friend of mine, whom God used to witness to me in high school.  The character of Iestin is based on another friend of mine, for whom I have a lot of respect.  The character of Darkon is based on myself (You might have picked up on that one.).  I fancy myself as some sort of actor, thinking that if I get around to making an indie film version or a tv show version of my stories, I could get to play a role in such a project.  (I don't watch tv, but I realize that a good number of people will never get around to reading my comic for whatever reason; I'd like to reach these people.  Not that there hasn't been some tv worth watching: "The Prisoner" series with the superb Patrick McGoohan is notable.  Stargate SG-1 was entertaining.)  Some of the other characters are based on some other people I know, and some I just made up out of my own imagination.

Is there anyway (meaning website) that my readers can find out more about you and your work?

As for any other websites, I have another blog where I present an alternative view to biblical prophecy (I've added the link below.) and discuss some other things of concern.  I definitely delve into history at this website.  The most popular model for interpreting prophetic passages is called Futurism, which says that pretty much everything will be fulfilled in the future.  The opposite of this model is, of course, Preterism which says that everything has been fulfilled.  I come from a much less known viewpoint: Historicism, which says that prophecy has been coming to pass throughout history, is coming to pass today and will culminate in the final war at the end of which Jesus will return to establish his throne here on earth.

You can read Sunsaints by Tom on his blog: Sunsaints (<--Click Me)

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