‘Ping Pong’ Recap: ‘Smile is a Robot’

Determined to unleash Smile’s potential, Coach Koizumi devises a relentless schedule of training that culminates in a death match pitting old veteran versus young hopeful. Smile’s resistance finally cracks under the pressure, and he begins to get serious. Meanwhile, the appearance of a new rival – the tough-looking Ryuichi Kazama – sets the stage for a later showdown.

A Major Stop Motion Exhibit in Barcelona Explores Starewitch, Švankmajer and Brothers Quay

“Animated cinema is the demiurgic art par excellence: matter comes to life and is transformed in the hands and imaginations of the creators. They, more than anybody, know about the secret life of objects.” This description, comes from the exhibition “Metamorphosis: Fantasy Visions in Starewitch, Švankmajer and the Quay Brothers,” now playing at the Centre de Cultura Contemporanea (CCCB) in Barcelona, Spain, and it’s a good summary of the work of these four visionary animators.

Can You Identify These Legendary Animators?

Tonight, just for fun, I posted a series of photos of legendary animators from the Golden Age of theatrical animation. We owe them a great deal. Without the pioneering efforts of these artists (and hundreds of others like them), animation would not be nearly so advanced as it is today. How many of these animators can you identify? You can click through to Instagram for the identifications.

‘Johnny Bravo’ Creator Van Partible Talks About New Dance-Combat Game

Van Partible, the creator of Cartoon Network’s Nineties series “Johnny Bravo,” is making the rounds with a new third-person video game concept called Dancers of War. In the game, Marine Sgt. Jack Dancer is out to save the world from a maniacal pop star by strapping on an exoskeleton/leotard called “The Exo-Tard 3000.”

Artist of the Day: Arik Roper

New York City-based artist Arik Moonhawk Roper illustrates fantasy art in full washes of color or in limited colors for black light posters, books, and shirts. He has illustrated a handful of covers and articles for “Arthur” magazine, and he also frequently gets commissions from musicians that find his art to evoke exactly the right visual mood for their music.

‘Steven Universe’ Recap: ‘Steven the Sword Fighter’

It’s been a few weeks but the last few times in Beach City we witnessed a lot of growth in the series. Steven had an anger revelation after he hung with the cool kids and really showcased the father-son relationship thanks to little Onion. Now we’re back and “Steven Universe” went and explored the maternal dynamic within their group after Pearl took a blade through the chest.

British Studios Locksmith and Double Negative Plan To Make CG Features

There are big developments in the UK animation industry in the wake of a much-heralded tax break received by the British animation industry that went into effect last year. Sarah Smith, the former creative director of features at Aardman Animations, is setting up a studio named Locksmith Animation. She bills it as the UK’s “first high-end CGI feature animation studio,” and it is focused on creating a long-term slate of films for worldwide distribution.

Gawker’s io9 Launches Animation Website

This week the influential Gawker Media brand launched an animation-specific site called, quite simply, Animation. The blog is a subsite of the larger io9 brand, which already publishes a fair amount of animation coverage. Another Gawker site, the gaming-oriented Kotaku, covers anime and will continue to do so.