Gerry Alanguilan's Big Bag of Comics!

Name: Gerry Alanguilan
Age: 38
Status: Married
Current Location: San Pablo City, Laguna, Philippines
Occupation: Comics Writer and Artist, Licensed Architect, Publisher
Group Affilications: Komikero, Alamat Comics, UAP
Online HauntsKomikero, Philippine Comics Art Museum , Komikero Comics Message Board, Philippine Comics Message Board, Alamat List, Inkers List


January 1989
5th Year College 
UST College of Architecture and Fine Arts

Shooting the crap out of a coconut.
Jolo, Sulu, 1989

P. Noval, Manila

San Francisco, 1997

Quezon City, 1994
From Left: Mark Gatela, Budjette Tan, ?, Arnold Arre, Brandie Tan, Gerry Alanguilan, Whilce Portacio, Ian Orendain, Chris Bernardo, John Toledo, Oliver Pulumbarit, Alex Manabat

Alamat Exhibit, Robinson's Galleria, 1995

My long hair phase. 1996


I'm Whilce! Stone Media Blitz, 1998

Island Cove, Cavite, 1998
From Left: Edgar Tadeo, me, Gilbert Monsanto, Roy Allan Martinez

My Birthday 2002, San Pablo City
From Left: Ner Pedrina, Gilbert Monsanto, Mayette Medina, Dino Ignacio, Brandie Tan, Budjette Tan, Noel Lim, Cecil Lim, Ilyn and Me, Leinil Yu, Ed Tadeo, Angela Paman, Augy De Lara, and Paul.

Komikero Meet, Los Baños, Laguna
August 2004

Family Photo, 2004

Bohol, 2004

"An unbelievable, extraordinary effort has not gone "Wasted"
by Charlene Sawit
Hatch, Bluprint Magazine Vol 4/6 2004

"It's not a glamorous job. 90% of the time you're tied to your desk, with interviews like this as your only chance of sunlight. If prestige is the reason you want to make comics, forget it." He may sound discouraging, but aspiring comic artists can very well look up to Gerry Alanguilan for inspiration. Arnold Arre cites him as a truly original artist; and remembers being "blown away" when he came across Gerry's "Wasted" in the early 90's. The violent, rage-filled comic eventually prompted Warren Ellis (creator of the similarly gritty, critically-acclaimed series "Transmetropolitan") to urge American readers to hunt down a copy of this "Filipino comic", raving that Gerry was "potentially brilliant." Like Carlo Vergara's "Zsazsa Zaturnnah", "Wasted" was created during a period of hopelessness; but instead of being an escape, the comic was truly a catharsis; it is all of Gerry's poisons put on paper.

In the early 90's, when the newspapers announced that Whilce Portacio was coming to the Philippines, Gerry was an architect who did comics as a hobby. "I've always admired Whilce's work, but I didn't know he was a Filipino. When I saw him it was like a slap in the face. I realized it was possible for Pinoys to do work of that caliber in the States." Gerry locked himself up in his room and started drawing, consumed by tunnel vision to break into the international comics scene. His savings dwindled and his then-girlfriend did not understand his obsession and eventually left him. "It was devastating. You have to understand, until that point I had been doing everything for her. I was working so hard in comics because I believed that it was that, not architecture, that would allow me to follow her to the States." 

After a year of "bumming around", he finally  did "Wasted"-which started as a "xerox and staple" comic, and eventually published in Pulp magazine's comics 101. "I didn't want it published at first; it was such a personal thing. I was afraid people would see me differently--just the first eight pages are full of violence, sex and profanity." The positive response was enormous. His confidence returned, he was able to meet Whilce Portacio again, and one thing led to another. 

He's now worked for many local and foreign titles, including some for Image, Marvel and DC (currently the "Superman Birthright" series with fellow Filipino Leinil Francis Yu). Aside from many local projects, he has a new obsession: to track down old Filipino komiks artists and collect their original artwork; he hopes to compile enough to publish a book and open an exhibit in the city. "Many of us are unaware we have such a rich history of local comics. Local comic artists are influenced by Japanese and American styles, but if they were given the opportunity to see the artwork from the Philippine golden age of comics ( the 50's-70's), maiiyak sila sa ganda ng art ng Pinoy artists." 

As for his ex, he says he's emailed her to check out "Wasted" but has received no comment about it. "She wasn't the type who really read comics." He says; unlike his wife, daughter of an artist who drew the old Filipino "Tarzan". Gerry tracked the comic artist down (who coincidentally lived in San Pablo, Gerry's beloved hometown) and his future wife answered the door (Gerry adds laughingly that in her youth, his wife swore never to marry a comic artist). He has many epic projects he plans to tackle next, which aim to spur people's interest in their local heritage. "If you really want something desperately enough you'll get it. The bigger the risk, the bigger the returns."