Thursday, June 29, 2006

Snapshots in Time

In Memories. It may not come as a surprise that I am avid fan of print comics as well as webcomics.

Print comics were my first love with the genre, and I still remain attached to them in this day and age. Some of what I read has changed - I have ditched all the original Marvel works, though I do read the Ultimate versions. I am still also quite the fan of DC, though my focus is much more heavily on the bat clan than Superman and friends.

As such, I can sympathize all too well with the concerns of Anne, part of the creative team over at the Wotch.

See, two characters from the DC universe - Stephanie Brown, the Spoiler, and Cassandra Cain, Batgirl - have been poorly treated of late.

I won't get into specifics - Anne has a post at the Wotch that covers the details.

There is a danger in print comics, one that is much less likely to rear its ugly head on the web. You see, the characters of DC, of Marvel... they are part of the company. They are not one individual person's work, and writers can - and will - change.

Which means the characters change, as well. Sometimes for the better - and sometimes the writers throw out everything that has come before, have their new test subjects completely break character, and have some 'dramatic plot point' happen just for the sake of something shocking.

It's infuriating.

I still like my print comics. Even as things change, sometimes those changes are well done. Sometimes I can see heroes die, or fade away, and accept it as the conclusion of a well-written story.

And sometimes it is meaningless, and serves only to incense.

Anne said it well, and drew a scene that captured well who these heroes once were. And I think all those who were true fans of the characters appreciate her for it.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Whatever happened to Sam?

I've been surprised that I haven't seen more discussion on the recent events in Sam and Fuzzy.

So. Half a year ago, Sam and Fuzzy wrapped up one hell of a storyline. And then the dynamic duo took the last bus out of town, and drove off into parts unknown.

Since then, well... stuff has happened. What I've really been grooving on are the little vignettes with the blank mask ninja - a rather likeable character - tracing the path they took, prepared to hunt them down for... well, vengeance, death, etc, presumably.

The rest of our time has been occupied by the band Noosehead, which has added a whole pile of new characters to the show. They've engaged in hijinks and drama - often instigated by our good friend Fuzzy, who seems to have joined their crew.

And it's good stuff. I mean, I don't think Sam Logan could make a bad comic if he tried. The strip still brings the funny, the strip still brings the story.

But still.... somewhere, in the back of our minds, we're wondering - Where's Sam?

Well, guess he's been right under our noses all this time.

The last few strips have hinted at, and then outright revealed, the truth: Aaron, one of the random roadies we've been introduced to, turns out to be Sam in disguise.

And it works. I mean, once you know what to look for, you can see Sam underneath. Looking back through the archives, you can see some of the signs. Heck, maybe everyone else figured this out months ago, and it was only a surprise to me.

Anyway. Sam's back. Sam is back!

Where does that leave us?

Sam has the right of it - all the mafia ninjas may have wandered on their merry way, but one still remains, tracking him down. We don't know much about him, but it seems clear that we're building up to a showdown.

From there? I suspect we'll be bidding Noosehead goodbye for a while. While there is still conflict within the band itself, I don't think it will stay that way forever.

Of course, things are nice and peaceful back in the world Sam left behind, too.

(Also, anyone notice that the person 'Aaron' really looks like is Lance?)

Anyway, I can't really tell where Sam and Fuzzy will be heading in the long run. But I sure as hell am glad that Sam is back in one form or another, and suspect the upcoming showdown will live up to the caliber of story that Logan has been recently cranking out.

So welcome back, Sam. Ninjas and all.

Monday, June 26, 2006


Ouch. Just... ouch. Right. Don't fuck with Fineas.

Duly noted.

Man, this sequence might well be a fine demonstration of the little orange fish kicking ass, but the eye-popping thing?

Really wigs me out.

It seems to be a theme of late - Ornery Boy has featured a bit of the same, and the threat of dangling orbs has made me hesitant to keep an eye on it (so to speak) to check for updates.

I know at least one other comic recently had something similar, though I can't receall exactly which one - my own faulty memory keeping me safe, perhaps.

Oy. I don't know why it gets to me, given how little I am usually phased by graphic violence. Tear out someones heart? Whatever. Stab them in the neck? Meh.

But popping out eyes? That's just creepy, man.

Friday, June 23, 2006

What's a friday without a good bit of evil, eh?

So I realized that every post this week was about strips that I had discussed, or at least mentioned, at some point in the past.

Well now, every blog needs a bit of diversity, so today, let's take a look at a comic never before mentioned by me! (cue echoes, ominous music, yadda yadda yadda.)

Ok, here it is: Evil Inc.

Oh, you say. But isn't that already a pretty well-known, mainstream webcomic?

Well... sure.

To be honest, I was a bit surprised to realize I hadn't talked about it before. Even aside from being one of those wickedly cool people over at Blank Label Comics, it's a pretty solid comic in its own right.

Still, I haven't really had much reason to talk about it before now. I had never read the prequel, Greystone Inn, and it was only when Evil Inc came out, and was garnering some sizable acclaim, that I checked out both comics.

I found that Greystone Inn was crazy awesome, but that I was only mildly attached to Evil Inc. The humor was ok, but not really my style, and there wasn't nearly as much character investment. (Though, I must say, I was quite a fan of the 'illicit' relationship between Miss Match and Captain Heroic. That, more than anything, is what convinced me to stay with the strip.)

So why am I talking about it now?

Well, I realized that it had finally won me over. This is certainly in part due to the big storyline current at hand, and the future fate of the company. I realized that after months of disliking Evil Atom, I'd finally started to take a shine to the big lug. Much like Straub built up the Crisis in SC, he'd managed to slip in development and get me invested in the series without me even really noticing.

When I first started reading it, my biggest gripe about the comic? "That's a silly premise. A supervillain company? Psh."

I think it was only once I realized that, like, half of the stories out there - including many of the greats - are built on perfectly ludicrous premises... only then was I able to actually sit down and, you know, enjoy the series.

So I count that a success. And I'm looking forward to the big news we've got coming...

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Simply an observation

Hat! I've mentioned No Need for Bushido before. When last I did so, I focused not on the comic itself, but on the many tasty extras scattered about the site, and how that level of content was very, very appealing.

It strikes me that in doing so, I may not have emphasized the fact that the comic itself is incredibly kick-ass.

Ok, see, here is the thing I like. We've got this comic with samurai, and ninjas, and monks. They've got bad-ass martial arts and the obligatory dude with a freaking huge sword. Plenty of action, drama and excitement.

Of course, what anyone reading the comic will notice right off the bat is that it is unrepentantly funny. It refuses to take itself seriously, as it demonstrates time and time again.

So what impresses the hell out of me is how well the story is developed despite the humor. Despite all the jokes and laughs and nonsense, you grow attached to the characters, you grow invested in the story. That takes some skill.

In any case, things have been heating up of late. Which means, of course, lots of moments for our cast and crew to demonstrate how supremely badass they are. That's always a good thing. I mean, can you look at our friendly blind monk above dramatically don his hat, and not know that some serious ass is about to be kicked?

Anyway, in summary? No Need for Bushido: Awesome site, awesome art, awesome story. Awesome comic. End of story.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Is there a name for this brand of repeated-image comics? Cause I can never remember.

I was going to do an extended post about the webcomics, er, anti-drama currently going on, but I think it's easy enough to just say:

Hey, people getting along.


Regardless of anything else, the first strip remains as well-crafted as they come.

Anyway, on to an actual review. Birdsworth has been going on for a little over a month now, and has been my first true experience with a comic of its genre.

Overall? I'm liking it. I'm a fan of language, and a writing-driven strip works just fine for me, whether it features recycled art or otherwise.

The one thing I am finding interesting / irksome is that the action matches the dialogue on some occasions, but not on others. Which is to say, everth fourth panel Bywren (I just realized how great that name is. Man, I'm slow. Anyway, tangent over.) exits stage left, followed by Shelley a panel later. Sometimes these departures seem perfectly natural - sometimes the departure seems to come just before the actual reason for it - at other times, the characters seem to simply depart mid-conversation.

That said, I have to imagine even getting the flow of action right half the time to be a daunting task, so I can forgive it if the template sometimes takes a backseat to the dialogue.

In any case, this element of the genre struck me as interesting, if only because it is a very rare genre where the action matching the scene is a plus, not a requirement. It only came to mind since Birdsworth normally delivers so smoothly, that when one or two scenes struck me as 'off', it stood out all the more.

Final analysis? The strip is staying strong, and I'm having to resist the temptation to dig up similar comics of that field. That's certainly a winning recommendation in my book.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The more things change...

Storytelling at its finest! Hahaha, vomit is funny!

Ok, in all seriousness, I've really been enjoying the Shecky storyline. I like the little guy, and I like seeing his interaction with the rest of the cast and crew - especially Skull.

Sure, the entire thing has been rather predictable - but that doesn't really detract from how enjoyable it is.

What I didn't expect was that the storyline would make me realize exactly how much I was a fan of Skull himself. It is something that has been developing more of late (especially since reading the Origin of Skull in the PvP comic book.)

In any case, these story arc seems to be coming to a close, and Kurtz continues to deliver. I, for one, am glad he was willing to stick it out.

Monday, June 19, 2006

"I dreamt of distant places, I dreamt of distant times. I dreamt of butterflies and barren deserts, and my own forgotten crimes."

So last week I used Starslip Crisis as an example of a comic with stellar pacing.

For the last few months, Anywhere But Here had decided to represent the other side of the road - the comics that don't have a sense of pacing. The ones with interminably long, slow, dragging scenes.

In this specific case, we've spent the last several months watching two characters sit in the same place and talk.

And talk.

And talk.

Now, Siebels tells a good story. And I love plot. And characterization. And backstory.

But several months of blank exposition, flashbacks, and talking heads?


Now, for most comics, this sort of thing would be a mark against them.

But, see... Siebels recognized what he had done. He came forward, apologized. He didn't intend it to go like this. But... life happened. (It tends to do that.) And he didn't have the time, he didn't have the energy, he didn't have the life to devote to the strip, so he half-assed it for four long, painful months. He knew it was crap, he knew that we knew it was crap, and he was sorry.

It takes balls to make a confession like that, and he gets mad props for that.

And when I saw that admission, I was happy. I mean, the strip had been dragging, but here was a chance for change, and that's all I was looking for - it was enough for me to know the strip would be leaving this stretch behind to the bowels of history.

But, see, he didn't leave it there.

Apparently he decided to make it up to us, as his latest post is a 26 fucking page sequence.

And it isn't just filler - this is a long, detailed, beautifully organic dream sequence. This is action. This is characterization. This is showing, not telling. This is the man at the top of his craft, and it is incredible.

I'd post a small sample of the strip, but Blogger is being a bit of a bitch. So just... go. Check it out.

Comics change. I can't count the number of strips I read that no longer bring the same delight they first did. There are many strips that make me wonder why. Why do I still read this? Why do I cling to a vain hope it will return to its former glory?

And sometimes, every once in a distant while, I find an answer.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Five for Friday

Notable things this week, at least in my humble opinion:

-Queen of Wands is back! It is still on reruns, but even those are pretty quality reading, especially with the daily commentary.

-All that stuff I posted about My Nemesis? Yeah, I was wrong, Kal's still a dick. But hey! the strip is still very pretty and has its own fun brand of humor. I'm not entirely sure where he is going with it all, but its fun to read nonetheless. (Now, as to whether this latest development makes the strip more or less deep I've not yet decided. Of course, as long as I'm enjoying reading it, it probably doesn't even matter.)

-Some interesting stuff going on over at Girls with Slingshots, and not just because they are at a strip club. Rawr!

-I'll admit, it was kinda fun seeing Rayne end up in over his head. He's one of those guys that always seems to come out on top (no pun intended), so having things not end up perfectly for him was perversely satisfying.

-Finally, I just started reading Goblins. It does the gaming parody riff rather well - but it also seems to have a good sense of more serious elements.

Aaaand, that's all for this week.

A slip in .... space... makes pace? Hmm, somewhat lost myself with that little line...

At heart, I read comics because I like stories.

This isn't to say I don't read my fair share of gag-a-day strips, or strips that emphasize art over writing.

But the comics I really find at the top of my list, the ones I find myself the most invested in... are the ones with a powerful story.

I'll confess something - I never read Checkerboard Nightmare.

I tried. I really did, several times. I tried reading from the beginning. I tried starting in at some later storylines. But... it just wasn't for me.

And that's fair, I can respect that.

Then he started Starslip Crisis. And I was able to get in on that right from the start, and hey - that worked out well. I found myself reading it consistently, and enjoying it - a random humor strip about an art museum in the far future. A chance for him to poke fun at certain elements without having be blatant about it. I tossed it on my list as some light reading material, and it was fun.

And because I started out with that mindset, I didn't really notice exactly what was going on in the strip. See, Starslip Crisis has a very good sense of pacing. It was developing a story right under our nose - but it was subtle enough I almost didn't notice it.

Gilead Pellaeon, however, saw the mechanics for a deeper plot being set into place. He was right - there were a lot of characters being developed in the background. Tensions were rising. We suddenly had rogue time travelers, killer robots and evil overlords in the picture.

And recently Kris Straub has been, how you say, taking things to the next level.

Yesterday we discovered the Starslip Crisis itself. And today... well, today things get a bit more personal.

So. It's possible that Straub will return to his normal style - tone things back down after the excitement, and them start bringing them up again.

But with every rising storyarc, things only get more intense. And with the way momentum is currently building, I'm having a hard time judging how far this current arc will go.

There is no denying Straub has something awesome going on here - and even more, there is the sense of more awesomeness to come. The fact that the story in the strip took me completely by surprise only impresses me more - and leaves me eager for more.

I can't wait to see what Straub has planned for the strip next.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

They grow up so fast...

As they say...

"Oooh, pretty!"

Happy birthday, CYS!

Once upon a childhood tale...

Click it. You know you want to. Wow.

Just... wow.

Especially given my current craze with fables and fairy tales, this was an enormously pleasant surprise.

Andy Weir's newest work is called Cheshire Crossing. It is, well... a crossover of epic proportions. Oz meets Wonderland meets Neverland meets who knows what else. With it's advent, I can accept the end of C&A stoically.

So, first impressions of this new strip:

Humor: Check. Unsurprisingly, Weir adds his usual wit to the story. The Wicked Witch and her monkeys are an especial delight.

Story: Well, it's early to be sure - but given this seems to be coming out straight from the gate with a sense of definite purpose, I suspect it will handily deliver.

Art: Weir seems to have developed a new art style for this project - which seems to essentially be a very refined version of his normal art. It's good, no denying it. There are a few perspectives it seems a bit weak at, but they are few and far between. The ladies are, ahem, a bit on the busty side, but I doubt you'll see too many complaints over that.

Overall: I think I summed it up earlier: "Wow." The strip looks amazing. Unfortunately updates look to be sparse - an issue will likely be coming out every 3-6 months. That may speed up with the retirement of C&A, but it still is likely to come sparingly.

Of course, the time put into it shows - it's damn fine stuff. It just means we'll have to suffer in anticipation over future issues. I'm already gathering up a whole pile of questions and speculation about the series. (Top on my list - who, pray tell, is the Man in Black?")

In any case, Cheshire Crossing just looks awesome.

Well done, sir, well done.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Spreading the love of Mad Science.

So you may have heard the news - Narbonic is going to be free again.

Good news for me - I can finally get all my friend to read the comic now.

Of course, Scott Kurtz raised an interesting question - is it actually worth going to the effort of reading it, with it scheduled to end within half a year?

Fortunately the answer is easy: Well duh. Of course it's worth it.

I read books, I watch movies, I engage in all manner of activities with a definite ending. Sure, it's a slightly difference experience to read a work that is complete vs one that has the promise of many on-going years - but that doesn't directly impact on the quality itself.

And rest assured, Narbonic is quality. No question about that.

Of course, Kurtz brought up another question, too: "Has the subscription model failed Shaenon Garrity?"

That's harder to answer. I've given my thoughts on Modern Tales before.

Since then, we've been promised that big changes are coming. Changes that they've been in need of for a long time, and become even more pressing with the departure of Narbonic.

We haven't seen too much of those changes yet. Graphic Smash has admittedly been adding more stuff to it's already solid roster. Girlamatic has had a few nice additions, and some comics have returned from hiatus.

Modern Tales itself, though... I dunno, man. I dunno. I'm still waiting to see what's to come. I mean, they've got Eric freaking Burns as the editor - that's a man who cares about comics! But half a year since the announcement, and Modern Tales hasn't shaped up yet. The change may be coming, but it is taking it's time.

Still, anyway, this isn't anything I haven't said before. It is simply that things are growing a tad more pressing with this latest bit of news.

So, Kurtz asks, has the subscription model failed Shaenon Garrity?

Well, I can't answer that question - I imagine only Shaenon can. But I have the feeling that if there was a failure at hand, it wasn't the subscription model itself... it was this specific implementation of it.

Anyway, enough of the duldrums. Narbonic will be free.

Let me say that one more time:

Narbonic will be free.

So on July 1st, if you aren't reading it already... well, I don't think anymore needs to be said.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

WCCAs 2006

So amidst the usual clamors of favoritism, popularity contests, redundancy and the like... I'm pretty pleased with the list of nominees for this round of Webcartoonist Choice Awards. There are familiar names in most every category, but also a lot of comics that are new to me, and I know this has been a great resource in the past to finding new and exceptional strips.

So, without further ado, here are the ones I am rooting for:

Outstanding Comic:
A hard call for me between Girl Genius and Narbonic... but since I am still in the intro stages of Girl Genius, while Narbonic is heading towards its grand finale, I think Helen (and co.) get my vote. One way or another, I'm hoping mad science wins the day!

Outstanding Newcomer:
I'm not familiar with a lot of the others, but I find it highly unlikely anything would be able to beat out Gunnerkrigg Court. This comic came out of nowhere to floor a lot of readers on the web, and I think it will have a stellar showing.

Outstanding Artist:
My initial response here was towards A Lesson is Learned but the Damage is Irreversible, but I think Sarah Ellerton (Inverloch) is where my heart lies - I remembered when I was first introduced to the comic (from last year's awards, even), it was the art that drew me in and kept me reading. That says a lot.

Outstanding Black and White Art:
Hard choices. Very hard choices. I think I'd be happy with either Digger or Sam and Fuzzy - both aren't just well-drawn black and white comics, but comics that specifically put it to exceptional and brilliant use.

Outstanding Character Art:
I'm thinking Ugly Hill here, though with some of the weird freaky characters from this last year in Wapsi Square, it could be a contender.

Outstanding New Character Design:
Aki Alliance works for me.

Outstanding Environment Design:
There are a few on here I'm not familiar with, but I'd be surprised if they can overcome the wonder that is Copper.

Outstanding Layout:
Man. As much as my heart would root for Copper again, I have to give credit where it is due - layout is what A Lesson is Learned but the Damage is Irreversible takes to all new levels.

Outstanding Use of Color:
These choices are getting harder. This one I'd be happy with any of the nominees winning, really.

Outstanding Use of Flash:
I'm gonna go with Hold My Life for this one, since the others are either unknown to me, I haven't actively noticed anything special using flash, or it has actively hindered the viewing experience. It's not just a default win, though - I actively like the little reading style Hold My Life has going for it.

Outstanding Use of Infinite Canvas:
Ah, infinite canvas. A lot of names new to me on here - I think I may do some research on these guys before coming to any conclusions.

Outstanding Web Design:
I am partial to the simple elegance of Starslip Crisis for this category. Some of the others are flashier (no pun intended), but don't really perform quite so well.

Outstanding Writer:
Hmm. Another tough call, but I think Shaenon Garrity (Narbonic, Li’l Mell, Smithson,Trunktown) is where my loyalties lie. Every one of her strips keeps me coming back, and are all at the top of my reading list. Can't argue with that.

Outstanding Character Writing:
Because the last category wasn't hard enough, see. Man, I dunno. Just pick something, they're all fantastic. I think OotS, Scary Go Round, or Something Positive would be at the top, though. That's about as narrowed down as I can get it.

Outstanding Dramatic Comic:
Something Positive. Period. Full stop.

Outstanding Comedic Comic:
Man, I knew I should have campaigned more for Dr. McNinja. As it is, I'll have to root for Shortpacked.

Outstanding Long Form Comic:
This is always something that is harder to tell in an younger comic, but I think Gunnerkrigg Court is the winner here. Whether it's potential holds out is yet to be seen, but I'd be surprised if it didn't stay true to form.

Outstanding Short Form Comic:
The Perry Bible Fellowship for the win.

Outstanding Single Panel Comic:
Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal. For all that it is occasionally hit or miss, when it is at its best, nothing else can even compare.

Outstanding Story Concept:
Both Girl Genius and Gunnerkrigg Court are exceptional. I think Gunnerkrigg Court wins by a hair, since some of the elements behind the scenes are truly inspired.

Outstanding Anthropomorphic Comic:
Digger, in my opinion. Where the anthropomorphism is actually related to the story, and neither an obsessive focus or completely tangential. And, of course, its a wickedly awesome comic.

Outstanding Fantasy Comic:
I know I shouldn't say Order of the Stick for this one, since it is more parody than pure fantasy... but I think I will, anyway.

Outstanding Gaming Comic:
Yeah, yeah, yeah, Penny Arcade is the obvious choice for this, the popular one, the 'sell-out'... but that's because it's the best.

Outstanding Slice-of-Life Comic:
So... of the ones on the list, Devil's Panties is the only one I feel really fits the category.

Outstanding Romantic Comic:
I know everyone's going to vote Questionable Content, but as much as I like the indie kids, Sordid City Blues feels a lot more real about the romance.

Outstanding Science Fiction Comic:
In a surprise (even to myself), I think Zap has my vote here. It's a clever little comic with gorgeous art, and I think it does a great job of preserving the sense of wonder that any good sci-fi comic needs.

Outstanding Superhero/Action Comic:
And finally a tough call for the last spot! Another selection of great comics, and I think I'd either go with The Green Avenger or Magellan. They are very different comics - one is very focused, the other more epic in scope.

Overall, I think the fact I had a lot of trouble picking out my favorites in each category says a lot about the selection - a slew of good comics that have gone up against each other.

We'll see what is to come, but I suspect I'll be happy regardless of who the winners really are.

My only regret is that the list needs more ninja.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Adventures in Political Cartooning

We now know the nominees for the 2006 Webcartoonist Choice Awards. I plan to take an extended perusal tonight and figure out which of the lot I'll be rooting for.

For the moment, however, I must prepare myself for an experience in "cartoons of culture," as I've been invited to an exhibition at the Walters Art Museum, featuring the work of good ol' KAL.

My only fear is that the locals will somehow penetrate my veil of disguise and realize I am merely a fan of lowbrow webcomicdom, and I'll be unceremoniously flung off the premises.

...or rather, I'm afraid it'll happen before I've snagged my share of the free wine and cheese.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Friday Surprise

I didn't even realize, but yesterday's post was number 100. Color me startled and amazed! Hopefully this blog has provided some merriment to the readers out there, and I plan to keep my (often overly verbose) chatter coming.
The perils of clothing.
Only one thing is really on my mind today - Ctrl-Alt-Del.

I've spoken about the strip before - specifically how I like the comic, but Ethan rubs me the wrong way.

He's always doing wild, zany stuff, see. Usually for the sole reason that the unexpected is, ya know, suppose to be funny and crazy and stuff.

And of course, whenever he does something stupid just for laughs, there isn't any fall-out. Ethan might have his schemes foiled or not turn out perfect - but he never gets in any real trouble for acting like a total dick to friends, family, strangers... anyone.

So, the latest story arc seemed true to form. Ethan gets to meet Lilah's parents - and unsurprisingly Ethan humiliates himself, he can't go five minutes without a gaming reference, and he manages to inflict bodily harm on her father.

And, as expected, her parents just smile and accept his tomfoolery.

I shrugged. I'm used to these arcs and the way they go. So be it.

And then Tim Buckley decides to throw me off my game, as Ethan recognizes he was acting like an idiot and seems determined to make it right.

Now, I'm sure that will consist of even more elaborate hijinks... but still.

That's more character than I've come to expect from Ethan, and stumbling across it was a very pleasant surprise.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Trolls as a unifying topic.

Blogger has been troublesome today, so you guys get to miss out on my thoughts on Digger, Fables, and other assorted myths... at least for a few days.

Instead, I'm simply going to say this:

Scott Kurtz, keep doing what you're doing. Your Shecky storyline is a blast. Even if it wasn't, follow the story where it leads you, regardless of what naysayers may pop out of the woodwork.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Yo espeako el espanish!

Upside to a sick day: Finishing Kingdom Hearts 2.

Downside to a sick day: Agony, pain, and assorted other synonyms for torment.

In any case, I'm back and mostly recovered, though still a bit hazy due to, say, medication and so forth.

Amidst my drug-induced haze, as I perused my daily comics, I found myself inordinately delighted that I could understand the small amounts of spanish found recently in Candi.

You see, I took something on the order of 6 or 7 years of Spanish, between High School and College... and came out with nothing to show for it, with many of those years having simply repeated the information learned beforehand.

(Disclaimer: I did, admittedly, come out with a large number of humorous anecdotes, as I've had some exceptionally interesting spanish teachers. I wouldn't be able to share those anecdotes in spanish, however, which is the matter at hand.)

In any case, being able to easily understand even 3 or 4 admittedly simple and basic lines in spanish was enough to make me quite happy! Some days the small and silly pleasures are the best.

Also, Candi is a great comic.

I'd say more, but yaknow, still drugged up. So I'm just going to go lie down now, k?

Monday, June 05, 2006

I'll never be able to look at a flaming car the same way again.

So I went and saw X-Men 3 the other day.

I won't go into too much of a review of the movie myself - others have already covered everything I could say.

In the end, it had quite a few nice touches I liked, some plot decisions I did not, but proved to be enjoyable in spire of my disagreements with it. So that's cool by me.

The movie-watching experience itself, unfortunately, went less than smoothly - upon seating ourselves for the movie, we discovered a band of twenty or so hooligans who proceeded to shout, laugh, throw shit, and do their best to ruin the experience for the rest of us.

Rather than get in a confrontation with that crowd, we consulted the theater managers - who seemed similarly disinclined to confront that many people. So, instead, they just moved us into the next showing for free. As good a solution as possible, I suppose.

Even in that room, we had a small infestation of warbling chattybitch just behind us - but compared to the previous scofflaws, hardly worth the effort of being irritated by.

The upside of the shift, meanwhile, was getting to see all the freaking awesome previews before each show. Ghost Rider, Pirates 2, Superman, etc - all the good stuff. (Also: that one with the angry superchick throwing a shark through a window. Wicked.)

The one that really sparked my interest was 3 Fast 3 Furious... er, Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift.

Now, watching the trailer made it look really cool. But I've never been a car person in general. I fell asleep during the original the Fast and the Furious, and I found Initial D to be the worst show I had ever seen in my life.

For a while, I had thought I just didn't like the subject matter - but Misfile has managed to keep me entertained - and not only that, but has had me actively excited and engaged during the racing scenes, and intrigued by the racing tricks and tactics.

So maybe the lesson is simply that it is a subject only interesting to me when done right.

Also, I don't know why, but I really thought the flaming car manuever rocked, as silly as it was. I mean, flaming cars. I am a man obsessed.

Friday, June 02, 2006

There is much to be said for brevity. Ironic, no?

Alright, let's see.

-Thank god, Ornery Boy is back. Just... please, please put his eye back in. I don't know why, but that really wigs me out.

-I really liked the subtlety in the other day's SMBC. Alright, it may not be all that subtle, but I thought it was clever, ok?

-Ah, right! Web Cartoonists' Choice Awards are into nominations. Go and give your suggestions, etc.

-Note to self: Gaming Guardians is going to have to go on my List of Really Good Webcomics That I Need To Reread The Archives Thereof In Order To Know What The Fuck Is Going On.

-Note to self: Find a new name for that list. Brevity, yes, good. Endless torrent of words, no, bad.

-I'm thinking of seeing X-Men 3. Should I see X-Men 3? I've heard really conflicting reports about it.

That is all.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Bane of Squirrels and Dragons everywhere.

Nothing much to report today - I'm just happy Flintlocke's Guide to Azeroth is back in business.

Flintlocke's is one of those niche comics that is freaking hilarious to those people who get the joke, but I can never judge how well the humor would go over for people not familiar with the game.

Still, it's a good comic, and I suspect a lot of the jokes will work for everyone. All I know is that having it on hiatus for several weeks was a grueling ordeal, and that says a good deal about the quality right there!