Monday, March 19, 2007

Moving On

Big news today - this blog is moving to a new location.

Why the move?

It's been something I've wanted to do for a while now, mainly so I can streamline my writings a bit more, and have a slightly more effective presentation. I go into the reasons a bit more at the new site, however, so you might as well head over there to find out more.

I'll be leaving this site up for now, but all the archives have been moved to the new site, and all new posts will only show up there. So... enjoy!

Also, starting tomorrow I'll be relaunching my short fiction site, so feel free to to take a look at that as well!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Shattered View

I talked about Home on the Strange just last week, yet already I find myself needing to discuss it again.

As mentioned back then, hefty stuff has been happening, and we knew we were going to be coming upon a scene of significant disaster.

I just didn't think it would involve the brutal mauling of an almost-naked woman.

Ugh.Clearly we're intended to be cheering for the possum. I mean, Ann is a bitch. She treated Tanner horribly and was in the process of trying to sabotage his current relationship.

(Of course, he bears no small blame for both how she treated him and her current presence in his apartment, but nonetheless - she's not a nice person.)

Ferrett says, regarding the strip, that hopefully this is everything the readers wanted to see.

And maybe, for most of them, it is. As I mentioned, Ann isn't a figured designed to deserve sympathy.

Still, given the flaws and actions of the other characters, she has been established - at least in my eyes - as such a villain as to deserve this level of brutalization.

This isn't to say it kills the story. It is, in many ways, an interesting development. But I just don't think it is the development the writer intended it to be. He wants us to feel triumph from this, not disgust. He wants us to be laughing, not staring at the screen in horror.

Reading the script he wrote for the strip, it says the following: "The possum is violent against Ann, clawing at her in a cartoon frenzy of animation (funny, not realistic) as she flails about, knocking all sorts of shit over and smearing blood around the room."

I'm not quite sure what went wrong. Somewhere in there, the 'cartoon' and 'funny' parts didn't get through - and if they had, I probably would have been able to accept it. As it is, though, the woman fled the room completely drenched in blood. We saw the possom tearing into her face, possibly disfiguring her for life. And we're supposed to find it funny.

Well, like I said, maybe other readers do. I suspect I won't be the only one a little put off by the brutality of it. I wonder whether this will result in any change in what plot they have planned ahead. There certainly seems a difference between the way the script reads and the way the art itself plays out, and that could certainly play havoc with whatever they intend to come next.

Of course, it is to the credit of the strip that, as much as the scene pushes me away, I still find myself left with curiousity. Where will the plot go from here - will future strips be written with what this scene was intended to be, or what it actually ended up as?

Monday, March 12, 2007

Anything But

I mentioned Home on the Strange last week (which is already moving in directions that I, at least, certainly didn't see coming), and I mentioned The Ferrett, the writer of the strip.

In addition to scripting out each installment of the feature, he has a rather entertaining blog of his own - which happens to feature weekly webcomic reviews. His goal, primarily, is to focus on some of the strips that aren't directly in the spotlight, and which deserve some solid attention. Unsurprisingly, that's a goal I can easily agree with.

The right ammo for the jobEspecially as this introduced me to Yet Another Fantasy Gamer Comic, which really is anything but.

The Ferrett's review does a good job of covering what makes the strip stand out - the vibrancy of the art, the unrepentant fun that manifests throughout, the skill with which a world full of characters and plot is interwoven without ever leaving readers lost or confused.

But that isn't really why I wanted to talk about the comic today.

It is, hands-down, definitely a good strip, for all the reasons mentioned above and probably a few more. But what really impressed me was the resolution to the latest little round of plot. (Spoilers ahead, so now would be a good time to go and read through from the beginning.)

The comic began following the tale of Bob the Beholder and Gren Razortooth, a beholder and a goblin who happened to fall in life. Antics ensued, and the strip went from there, developing an immense and fascinating cast. Some characters have popped in and out, and some have had more focus given to them then others... and then along came Glon, just over a hundred strips down the road.

And from that point on, Glon became the star of the show. Oh, the other characters were there, but he was the central figure. He had his quest, even though it wasn't what he thought it was. He lost family and he gained family, and it was his actions, however indirectly, that led to the massive fight that took center-stage these past few weeks, with nearly the entirety of the cast involved in a epic battle. Other characters had their time in the spotlight, sure, but it was almost all revolving around him.

And then he died. After being the primary character for more than half of the strip's run, his show is over. Characters grieved... and moved on.

We're back with Bob and Gren in their underground home sweet home. The strip has come full circle. We have had, essentially, the entire story of this one character's life, and how that life changed those close to him, and affected countless others far and wide.

And Rich Morris, the strip's creator, is somehow able to have the intensity and impact of all that sit side by side with the same silly humor, day after day, and somehow make it all work perfectly.

That's why Yet Another Fantasy Gamer Comic is such a damn good comic.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Second Chances

I have something of a confession to make - when it first started, a bit over a year ago, I didn't like Home on the Strange.

Or rather... I just didn't get it. It didn't click for me. I went there on day one, sent via Websnark, and was surprised to find that it just left me shrugging.

(Ironically, I went on to check out the words of the strip's writer, the Ferret, and was impressed by them.)

But the strip itself... nothing. I kept up with it for a few weeks - after all, it would be downright foolish to judge it by a single strip. And it didn't grab me, and I eventually just stopped reading.

A couple months later, I saw notice of it... somewhere... and decided to take another look, and quickly went through the archives. And was promptly blown out of my shoes.

I was trying to figure out what exactly had changed, and realized only one thing - the strip had had enough time to start actually developing. Character interaction, full-on plotlines, drama - all the good stuff.

Let us make one thing clear - Home on the Strange is a sterling example of an almost perfectly designed webcomic. Clean site design, die-hard update schedule, connects to all manner of audiences (albeit almost all of them geeky), and has a great mix of humor and plot.

The early humor? For me, it didn't work. But once it had the plot rolling... bam! Snagged me without a chance of escape.

First glimpseIt isn't because I only like story-heavy comics, because I enjoy plenty of strips that run on nothing more than humor. But with Home on the Strange, the humor alone wasn't enough to pull me in - and one instance where I was sad that I had first come upon it while it was starting out, rather than later, once it had built up what it needed to draw me in.

Which goes to show that it doesn't hurt to hedge your bets. Home on the Strange was very carefully constructed to appeal to a multitude of people. Not that there is anything wrong with that - it isn't any less good for being planned out that way!

In any case, as time moved one, I became a devoted reader of the strip. The last few arcs have been especially compelling - they focus on the relationship of Izzy and Tanner, whose relationship has been one of the central developments through the strip's run thus far. A relationship that, ever since it began, has teetered precariously on the edge of disaster.

When Izzy was confronted by an attempted seduction by Seth, local GM (as well as an incredibly wealthy womanizer), things didn't look good. But instead, his attempt helped her take a closer look at her relationship with Tanner, and head home, intent on making their relationship a real thing.

When she got home, however, things didn't look so good...

...and the storyline was then followed up by a retelling of what was happening to Tanner while Izzy was away. This involved getting drunk, and inviting over his ex-girlfriend, which would have been a bad idea at the best of times.

Second ChancesBut in Monday's strip, he seemed to have his own epiphany. And here is where I give credit to the artist Roni as well, because that strip floored me with its simple change of posture. I thought it was all going to work out, having somehow forgotten the horrible scene that had to somehow transpire by the end of the night.

The battle clearly isn't over yet. I'm hoping - really hoping - that everything works out in the end, because these two arcs have really matured Izzy and Tanner an incredible amount... but the creators of the strip like to toy with us mere readers, and the ending could go any which way. Right now I find myself checking this strip first thing on every day it updates, and I'm confident that will stay the case until the arc is done.

And in the end, I'm just glad I had a second chance to discover it.

Thursday, March 08, 2007


I considered spending today giving my own thoughts on yet another bit of drama making the rounds, involving the comic book industry and the fallout from certain massive crossover events. But... others have already written about that, and I don't think there is much more I can add to the discussion.

I did, however, notice that it is International Women's Day. And being that my mind was on the topic of comics, that made me think of, a site with a very strong, and very important, message. The focused campaign of the site is to get recognition for Stephanie Brown, who took up the mantle of Robin, and then was brutally killed - at which point DC mostly forgot about her.

I originally agreed with the site's goal, largely on the basis that this was a character I had grown up a fan of. One of, sadly, many that DC has done terrible things to in recent years. But it wasn't really until I started to read Girls Read Comics! (And They're Pissed), by Karen Healey, that I started to 'get' the message they were trying to get across. That I started to genuinely notice the sexism and misogny unfortunately all too present in modern comics.

That was really what struck me about the state of things. That until it was pointed out to me, I just had not noticed. I didn't agree with women being demeaned in comics, nor could I defend it - but until I had my face shoved in it, it didn't occur to me to question it.

I think highly of myself as a rather reasonable, open, and well-meaning individual. So being put face to face with my own... ignorance? Apathy? Unawareness? Well, whatever it was, it wasn't exactly the best feeling.

Since then, I've continued to read Karen's column, and to genuinely keep my eyes open when I'm reading comics. (Both in print and on the web.) I couldn't claim to have accomplished anything more than become aware of when I am reading something that is slealthily offensive, but I'm glad to take that as a start.

Some time after this point, I was talking with a friend about All Star Batman and Robin. It's by Frank Miller, and it is pretty damn terrible, in all manner of ways. Most people are aware of this by now.

I was telling a friend how bad it was, and he asked me exactly what made it so bad. My response: "The gratuitous amounts of fanservice, the exceedingly lame dialogue, and the thoroughly incompetent pacing of time."

His response: "Well, only two of those are really reasons not to read the comic."

Now, this individual is one of my most intelligent friends, and a person I have a considerable amount of respect for. So seeing him just as stuck in that mindset, not even seeing anything wrong with it... well, that was another shock.

I don't know how to stop the problem. But I think talking about it, getting it out in the open, is definitely an important part of the process. Making people aware of it is important. Because it really is far too easy for someone not directly affected by it to just not notice. And that says plenty of bad things in its own rights, but also means that the more people that can be made aware, the more progress can be made.

I'm sure there is plenty more I can do to contribute. For now, though, I'll point people towards, and recommend they take a good long look. They've said it better than I ever could, and are saying things that damn well need to be said. And, honestly, it shouldn't take it being some special day of the year for me to mention them - but the topic has been in the back of my mind for a while, and I'm glad I had something prompt it to the front.

And hopefully, in the future, I won't need even that.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Shifting Focus

Let's talk about Wikipedia.

Wait, wait, wait! Don't run away! At least not yet!

I know that the subject has already been beaten into the ground. Repeatedly. I know that the majority of people are either tired of the entire debate, or only growing more upset the more they hear about it. And, honestly, I'm halfway in both camps - equally frustrated by the situation itself, as well as all the drama (often meaningless) it's creating.

So why, then, am I writing about it?

That's a very good question.

Quick summary for those who somehow missed the rest of the drama: Wikipedia has had a tendency to delete non-notable webcomics listings from their site. Their definition of non-notable clashes significantly with that of the webcomic community itself. Thus, conflict.

One thing I've noticed, recently, is that many people seem to have a hard time pinning down the purpose of webcomic listings on Wikipedia. They aren't there to lead people to the comic - if you are listed on Wikipedia, it isn't going to get you any noticable new traffic. It is a nice mark of accomplishment - but a webcartoonist who has thousands of readers should feel that regardless of whether Wikipedia recognizes them as notable or not.

The primary use of those Wikipedia entries, in my mind, is to provide information. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia. It is a catalogue and compilation of information. With the majority of its topics, that information isn't something easily found elsewhere on the web. If I am trying to learn about a specific novel, and I don't have that novel on hand, Wikipedia just might have an entry with some valuable information.

I don't go to Wikipedia to find new books to read - I go there to find information about books I already know about.

When I go there looking for webcomic information, it is usually to dig up random facts about the webcomic itself. When it began, names of characters, etc.

All information, by and large, that I would much rather have on the webcomic's site itself. After all, webcomics are on the web. If I can get to Wikipedia, I can get to the webcomic's homepage. In a perfect world, everything I need to know about a strip would be right there next to the archives.

Unfortunately, many webcomics don't have much more than the bare bones around. They've got archives, and usually a forum or place for comments. If we're lucky, a cast page (which, more often than not, isn't up to date).

If I get more than that, I count it as a genuine accomplishment. Having a storyline guide, detailed character pages, searchable archives - those are amazing things. But generally, the webcartoonists are too busy with, say, actually producing new material (entirely for free), and simply don't have the time, energy, or know-how to put those features in. I can't complain about it - that's just the way it is.

It would be nice if every webcomic had all the info we needed right there on the page, but it just isn't going to happen.

Hence why I go hunting through Wikipedia. Or, with Wikipedia yanking out entries left and right, to Gilead Pellaeon, over at the Webcomicker, gives his own response to the matter - he plans to work hard at fleshing out and the information there. Which is an idea I can certainly get behind, and I plan to do my own fair share of work on the database there.

There have been those who have... well, let's not say criticized, but rather, been dubious of the use of The arguments have often been that it isn't going to do what Wikipedia does, and that only people already in the webcomic community will even know about the page.

But that's ok. The purpose of is to be a collection of information on webcomics. Not a guide to introduce us to the outside world, not a guide to lure newcomers into the fold. Which isn't to say we don't need more along those lines - but being posted on Wikipedia certainly didn't do that. It collects knowledge in a place we know where to find it.

The more people working on it, the better a tool it is. Gilead's got the right idea. If you want to worry about notability at Wikipedia... well, go for it. I do agree that their current standards are fundamentally flawed, regardless of whether the concept itself is or not. But I think Wikipedia is a lot less important to us than we think - and while it is easy to feel it is a personal attack, the amount of energy wasted on the matter could be put to far better use.

Like fleshing out the websites of the comics themselves. Or working on Or finding new and innovative ways to draw people into webcomics.

I suspect if we could spend half the time being productive as we do ranting, we'd see a world of difference.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

"Everything is connected... no one thing can change by itself."

Longevity can be a dangerous thing.

The majority of webcomics are still in their youth, these days, but we have started to get more and more passing the decade mark. Which isn't a sign of old age, persay - but it does occasionally make me worry. How long until we have gag comics that go the way of Garfield, reduced to a formula and devoid of all real humor? How long can a story run before wandering over its own tail in complex plot after plot, needing to hit the reset button over and over again in the fashion of so many comic-book superheroes?

There are a lot of comics I have faith in to avoid such fates - but the more solid the world of webcomics becomes, the longer it survives and evolves, the more likely that many of my favorite strips see similar dilemmas to those that plague the newspaper strip and comic book industries.

Which is why it is often a relief to see a story that has a beginning, a middle, and an end, and enters into the game fully aware of this fact.

Empty Words is one such strip.

LifeEmpty Words is a beautifully illustrated story that deals with some very heart-wrenching issues, and more importantly, some very realistic people dealing with those issues. And as of last week, the story has come to an end.

There aren't many characters in the story. There aren't many locations. The plot itself is driven almost entirely, intensely, by the people in the story and their interactions with each other.

Which seems perfectly appropriate, given the topics the comic is about. Loneliness. Family. Relationships.

The art is striking, and despite the almost hollow eyes of the characters, they convey a very real - very powerful - sense of life. The story adds that realism as well, with people and moments that connect the characters to a larger life, outside of what we see. They have a past, and seeing bits of those details helps ground the story in a much larger world than what we are shown.

DeathSome pages have many words, and some have nearly none at all. Both have their place in telling the tale of Audrey, a young woman who works in a caretaking home for the elderly, and Greg, a journalist in search of a story.

As I said above, it is a very powerful story. At it's heart, it deals with the connections between people, both those they yearn for and those they try to run away from. Along the way it touches on motivations, infallibility... Life. Death.

Serious stuff, but it manages to deal with it without ever feeling forced, without ever feeling fake.

It took three and a half years for Ben Rivers to tell this story.

I'd say it was worth every minute of it.

Monday, March 05, 2007

The Return

My apologies for the absence last week, as life was exceptionally hectic. Given that I would have likely spent most of the week whining about the latest Sluggy storyline being lame, it is probably for the best everyone was spared that.

I'd like to start things off on a good note this week, however, so let's talk about Penny and Angie.

Last week, it is altogether likely I would have spoken poorly of the current storyline. The premise: Aggie's dad Nick is introducing her to his girlfriend Charisma, and her son Marshall, whom she has a major crush on despite him currently dating Karen, an enemy of both Aggie and her rival, Penny, who happens to be stalking the lot of them.


I mean, even from the start it seemed clear it would be one of those stories about a bunch of people embroiled in an atmosphere of extreme awkwardness, with all sides embarrassing themselves and various hijinks ensuing.

Which is fine, but is simply a brand of humor that has never really worked for me. Watching a trainwreck in action, knowing that there is going to be misunderstandings and silliness and so forth... just leaves me feeling frustrated, not amused. Which is my own personal taste, and no real fault of the humor in question. Still, it is a good comic, so I knew I would keep reading through the storyline despite it not being for me.

My suspicions about the direction of the storyline were confirmed when I saw the interactions between Aggie and Marshall. The parents own little run-in left me mostly confused.

And then I got to today's strip, and realized I was starting to enjoy the entire fiasco. I'd say this is in part because the dialogue is finally starting to ring true, whereas the Aggie/Marshall interaction felt a bit too idealized. But honestly, it is also just due to the set-up itself finally growing on me.

I found myself looking forward to whatever was coming next, and the fall-out thereof. I found myself actively enjoying a brand of humor that normally leaves me numb.

I'd say that is a damn fine testament to the skill of T Campbell and Gisele Lagace, the minds behind the mayhem.

Penny and Angie has been running strong for two and a half years now, and has definitely come into it's own. Perhaps the defining moment occured in this strip, right near the start of the storyline.

Didn't notice anything too special? Penny trying to chastise Aggie, and Aggie blowing it off - doesn't seem all that important, does it?

But if you dial way, way back, to the very first storyline, and to a moment when Penny learned that Aggie had lost her mom, and filed it away as future ammunition, imagining it was knowledge that would cripple her rival if she brought it to the fore.

Except... she couldn't bring herself to do so. It came up, time and time again, but for over 400 strips it faded into the background.

And finally, humiliated, she breaks it out - and it is shrugged off. And that - that hits Penny hard. That's what truly drives all the frustration and hate to the surface. That is what brings her into the entire catastrophe we have unfolding before us.

I can't deny that sort of connection. So I really shouldn't have been surprised that even the storyline I was dreading has won me over, and left me coming back for more.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Spread the Word

Punch an' PieI think it is pretty commonly agreed that Queen of Wands was a hell of a comic - so good, in fact, that it ran a second time with commentary for those who couldn't get enough of it.

And now the sequel is out. Punch an' Pie, written by Aeire, drawn by Chris Daily, and featuring Angela, still the same tiny, crazy blonde as before.

So here I am, getting the word out.

The one thing that I am sad about is that the strip is black and white. Don't get me wrong - the art looks great, and I've been a longtime fan of Striptease, wherein Chris Daily does some amazing things in black and white.

But Queen of Wands was one of those comics that really felt alive, and in large part thanks to the brilliant use of color.

That said, given the overload of work the artist is involved in, I certainly can't find fault in the quality of the strip. And I'm certainly looking forward to many more comics to come.

Friday, February 23, 2007

So it was written, so shall it be.

In the grim darkness of the far future, there is only wang.Penny Arcade's latest adventure into continuity has involved an imaginary world wherein the duo behind the strip unleashes Olympus: the future of the arcade, and/or the arcade of the future.

It's a fun little tale, and delivered as brilliantly as usual. People ask me why I like Penny Arcade, and even occasionally accuse me of rapid fandom, but I'll hold by my guns - these guys have the comic art down. Even aside from my particular enjoyment of Gabe's art and Tycho's writing, I find the rhythm of the strip to be invariably spot-on.

But what struck me the most, in the latest two installments, was that I had several moments of pondering whether or not the plan proposed in the strip was grounded in reality. It's a foolish, ludicrous thought - but immersed in the grand vision of what Penny Arcade has become, it seems almost tangible.

I'll get back to why that is possible in a few moments. For now, let me make mention that I picked up a copy of the Warsun Prophecies.

As with their previous books, it is an unsurprisingly quality - and professional - piece of work. The only thing that astounds me is how fast they are coming out with these, without even any noticeable slowdown in their production of new strips.

But aside from the book itself, what caught my attention was the bonus feature in the last few pages - some previews of concept art on their upcoming video game, On the Rain Slick Precipice of Darkness. It's pretty brilliant stuff - the game is set in New Arcadia, a humble city in 1920s America, no doubt infested with hobos, gangsters, and more.

What especially stood out, though, was the following statement: "Rather than simply licensing the property to a developer and then standing back while they make the game, we're actually partnering with Hot Head and making the game together. That means Tycho and I are writing the entire thing and I'm doing all the concept artwork."

So, obviously, that both bodes well for the game itself, and again, leaves me wondering how they have the time to accomplish all of this. (Enslaved colonies of clones? Diabolical machinations? Potential radical temporal manipulation?)

The big realization, though, was that I expected the game to rock. To rock hard. Which wouldn't seem so weird... if I didn't realize how little faith I had in other webcomic pros similarly branching out into new areas.

The foreward of the book is by Scott Kurtz, and is a clearly tongue-in-cheek attack on the success of Penny Arcade over PvP (along with a brief shot at Ctrl-Alt-Del.) And yet, for all of Scott's cracks at Ctrl-Alt-Del, and his claims that PvPs animated series was going to blow Buckley out of the water... he failed to deliver.

Oh, the PvP animated series isn't bad. It also has barely even started - I'm sure it will ramp up as they polish the show and get into their proper rhythm. But I am confident that even at it's best, it won't blow me out of my shoes. It will be a nifty little novelty, but not ground-breaking. A nice addition to the strip itself, something for the dedicated fan to enjoy, but that's about it. And, generally, all I can see from most similar endeavors from many and sundry webcomics out there.

Somehow, Penny Arcade inspires a much higher level of faith in what they can accomplish. Partly because of what they have already accomplished. The most readers of any webcomic, by a landslide, if I remember my numbers right. Child's Play. PAX. And, yes, it helps that they have the weight to through around to get something like this done.

But having the ability to make it happen isn't as important as having the drive to make it happen right - and that's what I've got faith in.

That's why, if they said they were going to sit down and open their own utopia of a gaming arcade, I'd take them at their word. And I know for damn sure there isn't any other webcomic that would get the same response from me.

Sure, they aren't perfect - for one thing, they need to fix their archives into a slightly more functional state. (Read: a state wherein navigating feels more like searching for strips, and less like wading through a rabid pack of mutant weasels.)

But damn, New Arcadia is gonna rock.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Ow. Ow. Ow.

So I'm recovering from a weekend of gaming my health away, the WCCAs are out and the usual deliverances of injustice have occured, Sluggy is only a day away from a dramatic reveal whose countdown has thoroughly sapped my interest in the matter, and yet... overall, I'm content.

You see, I noticed that the William G has pointed out the return of KraziKimchi and the artistic stylings of Hyung Kim, old school webcomics madman.

Even better, he's actually got several months of solid, consistent updates, which is pretty good evidence for the continuance of said solid, consistent updates.

So that's pretty darn good news.

My apologies for the brevity in updates - hopefully I'll be back to a more regular schedule once I stop feeling like I've been repeatedly bludgeoned into senselessness.

Friday, February 16, 2007

In which I rant far longer than is necessary


Today, I rant.

I normally tend to look for the positive in a comic rather than the negative. Given that you don't (usually) pay for webcomics, pointing out bad ones to 'steer people away' doesn't strike me as quite as effective a service as it is for critics in other fields. I'd rather, say, point people towards the good stuff, right off the bat.

But the last few days have been a major pain, what with ice, ice, more ice, and the occasional spider.

So you get a rant.

When I do tend to focus on the weaknesses of a strip, I tend to focuses on strips that have promise despite those weaknesses. Like I said - singling out an irredeemably horribly strip is pointless. A strip that has potential, if it can overcome one tiny hurdle or another.
In this case, Trouble Konflik might have potential, or it might not. For the last six months that the strip has been updating, I have been entirely unable to discern what is happening or whether it is interesting or not. That in and of itself should be a sign something is wrong.

Now, let me pause for a moment, and read through the archives...


There is currently just over one chapter updated. And, reading it in one fell swoop... it's actually not that bad. The art is really cool, with vibrant and engaging character designs. The plot... well, hard to say, as the story is exceptionally slow-moving.

Which is the problem. Or part of the problem, at least. A story doesn't have to move fast to be good - but Trouble Konflik is relatively unique, in that each update consists of no more than one. single. panel.

There are good single-panel strips out there, sure - but they are gag strips. A new joke every update. They don't have to deal with the struggle to tell a story, because you can't tell a story with one context-less frame every week. It is completely incapable of conveying the necessary information to actually understand - let alone enjoy - the story being told.

Until I read through the archives today, my impression of Trouble Konflik was essentially a memory of watching a slideshow of disjointed images. Indeed, there were times when I wasn't sure if it was updating with a story, or just... sketches, filler, meaningless images. I could not tell.
That, I say, tells me there is a problem at hand.

Reading the archives - having the entire story on a single page - is a different situation entirely.

And, sure - anyone reading the strip can skim back through the archive with every update, to refresh themselves on what is going on. And once they've done so enough, it will probably start to fall more into place with each strip - though some will still feel empty on their own.

When a strip relies both on what comes before for the entirety of its context, and what comes after, and is presented independent of either of those, it isn't a strip at all. It is nothing.

That's the tragedy of Trouble Konflik. Looking back through the archives, I can see a promising tale. But I read it for half a year without getting anything out of it. A newcomer, glancing at the latest strip, will be completely lost. Sure, the archives are there, but isn't the purpose of a strip that updates on the web to be about the updates, not the archives?

The strip is just now starting to hit its stride - from what I understand, just starting to see newly crafted pages (panels) twice a week. Which is great - if anyone is still reading. If anyone will continue to remain reading.

The solution is a simple one - don't update one page at a time. Cut the updates from twice a week to twice a month, and update four panels in one fell swoop. Update, basically, with one full page at a time - or hey, only update three or four times a year, but give a full chapter every shot. It might seem like less output - but it would be output that a person could actually read.

The whole is more than the sum of its parts. Alone, they are nothing more than pretty pictures. Together, they tell a story. Which is the goal of the comic? That's the decision that has to be made.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Wednesday!

A few short notes today:

NEWS: Hob has shown itself to the light of day, and it is very pretty.

CATS: VG Cats wins for best Valentine's cards ever.

HEARTS: Something*Positive wins for best Valentine's Day strip ever.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Whisper on the Wind

It starts with a bang.As a reader of what is, in all honesty, far too many webcomics, I tend to find myself often trying to share my favorite strips with my friends. Occasionally I manage to spread a winner like xkcd through the whole crowd - occasionally I'll ramble on about Cigarro and Cerveja, and everyone will just smile and nod.

It was something of a surprise when one of my friends gave me a taste of my own medicine, and told me - repeatedly - to read Storm Corps.

I'm ashamed to say I didn't listen to her for months.

Partly because I already read - as previously established - far too many webcomics. I'm doing my best to keep my list manageable - adding another to the pile is just asking for trouble.

But nonetheless, I keep stumbling across ones that I just can't say no too, and trying to find the time in the day to keep track of them all.

Hence, when I finally got around to taking a look at Storm Corps, I resigned myself to yet another addition to the list.

Storm Corps is science fiction that I can get behind. It has just the right amount of action and deliberation, it is filled with its own nifty brands of sci-fi tech, and it has interesting - and mysterious - otherwordly happenings shrouded behind it all.

The art is gorgeous (I'm a sucker for pretty much anything fully colored and developed.) The characters are distinct, the premise is great.

Most of all, it leaves me wanting more. The second major story arc has just kicked off, and I'm even more desperate to find out what is going on. There is a ton of things currently up in the air, I've got no idea what is going on behind the curtain, and I'm loving every moment of it. That's a very nice trick to pull off.

If you like a good story and good art, and a fair share of almost psuedo-mystical science fiction, check it out. And hey, if you feel up to it - tell your friends, too.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Tales and Tribulations

Giving ThanksOf late, Modern Tales has definitely been winning me back.

The site's design remains... well, not what I would expect from something calling itself "professional webcomics." Navigating to the latest updates requires extra clicks, trying to determine if you missed updates requires checking every strip one by one, and the design itself is a tad cluttered.

But, you know - I can live with that. Because MT has finally gotten it's groove back, with a ton of new content that seems perfect for the site. Being able to load the page and see over a half-dozen updates a day? That means the site is alive, and that is totally awesome.

The latest additions in particular have been a great crop. Not long ago I reviewed the brilliance that is Alma Mater - now that the rest of the line up has hit the page, I see that they definitely know how to pick 'em.

One of the other big winners that has really grabbed me is Steverino! The title character is a hopeless little guy who fails at life, and relationships, and yet makes for an incredibly charming read. It's odd, because normally I shy away from humor that revolves around failure, and people making fools of themselves - but Steverino is a modern Charlie Brown, still forlornly chasing after his Little Red-Haired girl, and I'm able to empathize with his heartache even while it keeps me laughing.

Now I'll just cross my fingers for Girlamatic to breathe again,and then I'll be a happy camper.

Monday, February 05, 2007


ChancesMost people have noticed that, lately, Order of the Stick has been "rocking the house," as the saying goes.

While not an incredible surprise - Burlew has always written a strong story - what has impressed me is how strong and fast the hits have been coming. The recent arc with the linear guild was brilliant, we have a confrontation with Xykon moments away - and suddenly we have a brilliant series of strips focusing on Miko. Things get taken from one level to the next with every single strip, and I'm confident OotS has been at the top of a lot of reading lists for the last couple weeks.

But what I really wanted to make note of? That Burlew has been churning out double the content over the last week and a half. We've recieved nine pages over the last four updates. We've had two triple-length days!

Now, that is clearly awesome, yeah. But what it tells me is that as much as we are enjoying reading the latest plot developments, Burlew is enjoying writing them twice as much. And, really, I'm perfectly ok with that.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

WCCAs 2007, Part 2

I find myself having a difficult time making a choice in this category, and not for the usual reasons. Usually the problem is having too many outstanding comics and having to choose just one. In this case, despite pretty much all of these comics being on my reading lists, and being among my favorite comics, none have really blown me out of my shoes this year.

The exception would be Sinfest, which had a fantastic year - though less due to its humor, and more due to the addition of full color sundays and some genuinely strong storylines. Still - it did so without losing its sense of humor, so I'd say that would be enough to put it at the top of the pack in my book.

Something Positive. The death of Faye. Mike having a kid. Aubrey and Jason's marriage. The fall of Kharisma. No way this doesn't win.

I'm gonna go with Order of the Stick, which had a really good year - and one primarily built around long, well-developed storylines.

Penny Arcade remains, in my opinion, the masters of the three panel strip.

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal is the only one of these that I read, so... yeah.

This is a rather tricky category. Many of the comics that end up in this category have anthropomorphic characters, but don't really put any emphasis on that in the story itself. Digger has always been a strong choice, due to actually having a great deal of background and detail on the wombat element itself (and the occasional psychic slug). Personally, I'd like to see Dan and Mab's Furry Adventures win, as a comic that is pretty much defined by anthropomorphism at it's core.

But my money's on Digger taking it home again.

This one is a genuinely difficult choice, with all the comics being top notch. I'm torn between Gunnerkrigg Court and No Rest for the Wicked, but I suspect GC will be the popular choice.

Toss-up between Order of the Stick and Penny Arcade. OotS had a stronger year in general, but is much more confined in its gaming roots. And Penny Arcade is, well... Penny Arcade.

I might like Questionable Content and Something Positive, but they don't really fit the category in my mind. They might capture life well at times, but they have a lot of absurdities and unrealisms that should take them out of the running. Sadly, I suspect one of them will be the winner, though I'd take any of the others over them, as The Devil's Panties was my pick last year, and Stuff Sucks one of my top discoveries of this year.

Smile, really, is the best of the lot - perhaps unsurprisingly so, given its autobiographical nature, but it really is much more true to life than any of the rest. It won't win, I suspect, but it really deserves it the most.

I'm afraid Questionable Content will likely claim the prize here as well - or Megatokyo. That would make me exceptionally sad.

I've heard good things about Red String, though I still haven't managed to get around to reading it. Still, I'm rooting for Girly - some of the romantic plots going on this year have been years in building, and have been incredibly well done.

I think Schlock Mercenary really resonates as science fiction more than almost any other comic out there, and will win accordingly. I'm hoping for Girl Genius to win, myself, but with the other comics on there, it will be a tough run either way.

Given the plethora of superheroes in print comics, it remains a surprisingly small category online - though still solid enough to produce a lot of quality choices for this category. I think Dr. McNinja will take the cake, which I can't really complain about. Nonetheless, I'm going to have to root for Magellan, which has really been on a roll this last year, and deserves the chance to finally win this one.

So there are my predictions - accuracy will be verified in some two and a half week's time. I'm looking forward to it - if nothing else, the online ceremony has always been a clever and enjoyable production, and I suspect that is something that won't be changing any time soon.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

WCCAs 2007, Part 1

The list is out, the usual discussion has ensued, the usual drama has flared, and despite the different date, the Web Cartoonists' Choice Awards are proceeding pretty much as normal.

Here is my list of the categories, who I'm rooting for in each one, and occasionally who I actually think will win the award.

The biggest surprise for me, this year, was how many comics I simply had never heard of. Admittedly, I have been actively trying to keep my webcomic reading list in check - but given the frightening number I read already, and how many of the categories I looked at without having any sense of most of the comics, I'm wondering who really is capable of genuinely evaluating each category.

Let's be honest now - after Narbonic wrapping up in their grand finale, it would be surprising to see anyone else take this one home. All the nominees are quality strips, and if it wasn't for the sheer emotional impact of the end of Narbonic, I'd have a tough time deciding.

I was very, very sad not to see Minus make the list. The ones on there... are good, but none of them really knock me out of my shoes. I'd be happy seeing Out There as the winner, but suspect Lackadaisy will be the popular choice.

Given that Perry Bible Fellowship is the only one of the lot that I read, it seems like the natural choice. Still, even after glancing at the other strips, I'll stand by it - it isn't the fanciest or most visually cinematic, but Gurewitch is able to very effectively, very vividly, capture and display his ideas. That seems like a good qualification for the title in my book. I think Lackadaisy will win it, though.

I suspect this will be another win for Scary-Go-Round has really floored me this year, so I'm rooting for John Allison.

I'll stay Stuff Sucks, just cause it's awesome, and should win something. The only one of the lot that I feel fits the category is A Lesson is Learned... who didn't quite have enough content this year for me to really feel they qualified.

Gonna be Digger. It's won it the last two years running, and honestly, hasn't had any others that could really challenge it.

I'd really like to vote for Copper, because it's gorgeous. But, again, it's been absent much of the year in question.

I don't read any of these, but from the little I've seen, I'd say A Softer World is where my money lies.

There has to be a better name for this category. Templar Arizona all the way, in any case.

While Gunnerkrigg Court hasn't been quite as intense at dominating the field as last year, it this is one area where it just rocks the house.

This is a tough choice, as for me, it usually comes down to "Which of these elaborately designed sites least impairs my reading endeavors?" However, this year both Halfpixel and I Am A Rockey Builder actively had some good stuff going for them, so I'd be happy seeing either of them win.

PvPs new design really is slick. And yeah, he didn't design it, and doesn't want the award 'cause he's busy being a grouch, but credit where credit is due - it is the best of the lot.

Now this... this is a tough choice. I'm betting Something Positive takes the title back, though I'd personally rather see it go to Scary Go Round.

Tomorrow... the Genres!

Monday, January 29, 2007

Moments in Time

I had a lot of different topics I was thinking on writing about this weekend. The WCCA nominations have been listed, momentous happenings have been ongoing in The Order of the Stick, and the fact that little blog of mine has now been around for one whole year.

Instead, I must give props to Arthur, King and Time and Space, for the following strip:

It isn't the funniest joke in the world. I'd go so far as to say that, as far as many of the jokes Gadzikowski makes, this is one of the weaker ones.

But the second I saw the strip on Saturday, it instantly got my attention. You see, I have always been a picky eater. Less so now than when I was younger, but the fundamental nature remains. And when I was younger, in my highschool days, I would invariably eat in the same manner as L does above. Take one item on the plate. Clean it out, precisely and efficiently. Move on to the next. Repeat.

My parents pestered me about it. For years. That very same question!

And suddenly, a decade later, I stumble across a comc that perfectly captures that moment, and the frustration of hearing that question, yet again. And I connect. Bam.

It wasn't the strongest joke in the world. It wasn't the strongest set-up. And there are probably a lot more people who won't get any connection than those that do.

But when you can capture a moment like that - something real, something that people will recognize, remember, and take to heart - you've managed to get their attention in a much more personal way. You've given the joke a little special meaning that they can see as their very own. And they'll keep that with them, and keep coming back, because your comic seems that much more real.

That's a touch that's hard to fake, and one that will stay with people a lot longer than just another punchline.

Friday, January 26, 2007

As usual, I'm a sucker for stories focused around the bad guys.

Richard is officially the best name for a warlock, ever.Looking For Group is a comic by Ryan Sohmer, the guy responsible for Least I Could Do. While they are rather vastly different comics on the surface, any reader of LICD will know that Sohmer is as much a geek as the next man, and it's no surprise that he now has a comic more directly focused on it.

More of a surprise is exactly how well his humor works in the new setting. LFG, which is a pretty clear-cut parody of a certain MMO out there, follows a band of characters from the horde side of things, and their merry travels across the land.

Despite being loosely based on Warcraft, though, Sohmers is telling his own story. In WoW, regardless of the faction you join, your characters are presented as the good guys in their own fashion. The characters in Looking For Group, on the other hand, seem to have no qualms about being the evil guys on the block - though ones with character, and their own brand of snarky humor that Sohmers excels at.

So it's a good comic. Big, brilliant pages of art, good characters, good humor, yadda yadda. Now it's moving to twice a week, which floors me - given that will be in addition to the six pages a week of LICD, plus the work on the LICD animated series, and the running of Blind Ferret in general. That's a ton of output from Sohmers - as well as Lar DeSouza, the artist behind the constant, full color output. Credit where credit is due - Sohmer gets a lot of notice as the public face of the comics, but DeSouza must be a working machine to produce all those strips.

LICD might not always appeal to me (what with my 'morals', and 'sensibilities'), but I have to give props for the quality strips these guys keep on delivering.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Surprisingly Fulfilling

Killroy and Tina, brilliantly funny to the end.Today was the last Killroy and Tina.

It might return somehow, someday - but when an author puts his comic on indefinite hold, it tends to be the exceptions that return to life. Justin Pierce has put Killroy and Tina to rest, and the safe bet is that they won't be seen again.

He's done so masterfully, admittedly. When you consider that the strip was all set to build up to a grand, epic story, when you had glimpses of the future to come, you would imagine that cutting things short would be a recipe for disaster.

But he ends it well. He finds the point where we can disengage from the story without feeling cut off. Where we can appreciate the five years of comics he's given us, rather than despair over the fact that there won't be five years more.

When I first heard the news, I'll admit I was distressed, despairing, dismal, and sundry other words that begin with 'd'. But that state has passed, and we do still have nonadventures to embark upon, and in the end, I suppose we can safely say, everything is fine.

Monday, January 22, 2007

In a galaxy far, far away...

BanishedBanished returns.

For me, this was unexpected.

It is not that I thought poorly of Banished in any way. It was an enjoyable comic, sure. It had a good sense of humor and was developing into an interesting story.

But the artist left. And while that isn't a guaranteed deathknell for a comic... well, I've seen too many fall by the wayside. Rising from the ashes is the exception, not the norm.

Banished seems to have pulled it off.

Now, there is only one strip by the new artist thus far. We've yet to see if they can maintain a solid schedule, etc. But that one comic... damn, but it is promising.

Previously the strip has been more of a gag comic than anything else. The art was very cartoony, which worked perfectly. Freaky aliens, silly robots, even mammazons - the strip was clearly driven by laughs.

Over time, though, story began to develop. And with the emergence of the new artist, it looks like the story will have the chance to shine. The new art is really, really forceful. Before, the cartoony looks helped convey the jokes and punchlines of the strip - now, while the laughs are still around, there is instantly a much more powerful sense of action and drama.

Making that change can be good and can be bad, but with this one strip, I've got high hopes about what is coming. That in itself is pretty promising.

Friday, January 19, 2007

The Fundamentals

Well, *I* found it clever.I was pleased to discover a new comic, Alma Mater, over at Modern Tales today. I was surprised to discover it - namely because I hadn't heard of it before, and MT has a tendency to pretty thoroughly hype new additions to the collective.

But there it was, updating 3 days a week, apparently available for mass consumption. With nothign to lose, I took a look - and was rather glad I did so.

It wasn't the strip's characters that won me over, though they are good, quality characters. It wasn't the humor, though it definitely had moments where it shined. It wasn't the art, though I really enjoyed it once I got used to it - and thought was especially cool on occasion.

No, what did it was that the creator, Whitney June Robinson, knows her material, and knows it well.

Given the name, one can pretty easily extrapolate that the comic is about going to school. But a comic could easily be set in a school without being about one, and in a lot of cases, setting is just that - background material, scenery, nothing more. Alma Mater, on the other hand, perfectly captures a lot of the school experience, and delivers that material brilliantly.

It may not have experiences that will tap into absolutely everyone's memories - what with being set at an all-girls secondary school - but it manages to capture a lot of the fundamentals, and that can be all one needs to connect with an audience, and win them over.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Who says superheroes have to be filled with angst?

Click for full hero-worshipping fun.There are surprisingly few good webcomics about superheroes. I suppose on the one hand it is understandable - superheroes have been done. You've got as many as you can handle in the print world of comics, and it is hard to find a story that hasn't been already written a dozen times before.

A few good ones do still manage to crop up - and the latest one I've stumbled across is Special School.

The name... yeah, leaves a bit to be desired. But the comic itself is good.

The premise of the comic, as one might surmise from the name, is that is about a handful of young, super-powered kids who are taking a government-sanctioned class training them to be heroes. So it is both a superhero strip and a college drama, and maybe that's what works so well.

See, the characters have character. They are normal, fun-loving college kids - who just happen to have powers. The powers aren't irrelevant, but don't define them. They tend to reflect their personalities, sure - but they are themselves first, superheroes second, rather than the other way around.

At four panels a strip, gags and punchlines about, but that doesn't stop the strip from developing a story - and generally doing so with ease. We've got one conflict after another within the first dozen strips. The ability to blend drama and humor without letting either take control is the sign of a very talented creator.

And, of course, he pays homage to the evil overlord list. Which gets him a free win in my book.

So check it out - Special School, by Andy Mason. Enjoy.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Dancing with the Devil

Skull's favorite movie is clearly The Little Mermaid.Ok - I'll admit I was rather dubious when the latest PvP storyline seemed to be an arbitrary strike against those who weren't entirely happy with Skull's voice in the upcoming PvP animated shorts. Grinding the point into the ground... well, it seemed to be doing the very thing that Kris Straub spoke out against not long ago.

Kurtz wants to use a high-pitched voice for Skull. That's how he views the character, it's his property and his show, so no problem - that's his call to make. Of course, he shouldn't be angry at fans for giving their honest opinions on the topic - they are entirely able to feel however they want about it, and certainly free to not spend the relatively insane price of purchase if they don't want to. Regardless of which side you are on, it's not worth continuing to beat the topic to death - which is what I was afraid Kurtz was doing in this sequence.

But while the first strip or two seemed along those lines, I was pleased to realize that wasn't entirely the case. Kurtz has taken the topic and run with it, with some very funny results. But more than that, I realized what was actually going on.

See, one of the worries about this just being a grudge-fest on Kurtz's part is that it would be meaningless to the majority of readers. If they didn't watch the animated PvP teaser - or if they did so, but didn't pay any attention to the discussions that sprung up regarding it - some of the strips just would have neither point nor punchline.

But what Kurtz is doing is establishing Skull's voice within the story. Readers generally have to invent within their own minds how each character sounds. Given that this is a character that clearly engenders all manner of different possible voices... Kurtz is putting his view of the character clearly in the story.

This way readers who have read through this arc won't be as startled if they go on to watch the tv series. More than that, it allows Kurtz to flesh out details of the world that normally he can't convey on paper.

So I'm ok with that. I'm hoping the storyline doesn't feel the need to make any more low blows at those who originally imagined Skull's voice different than Kurtz did, because attacking a loyal fanbase over such an irrelevant detail is... well, let's just say that Kurtz has spoken out against other webcomic creators who have acted like that, and here is his chance to prove he is better than them.

In other news, given that I realize that I've had a lot of posts on the same strips of late, I'm making an on-the-spot, Third-Tuesday-Afternoon-of-January Resolution to spend the next few weeks focusing on new comics, or ones that have fallen by the wayside. So if Kurtz does descend into rampant villainry, or if the current Sluggy storyline proves to be as inane as it looks to be, you won't hear about it from me!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

I'm Back!

When Randy first introduced the little blue... thing... during some of the holiday filler at Something*Positive, I was officially horrified. Despite the desensitization of the modern age, I finally had found something in a webcomic that seriously made my skin crawl.

But it was just filler, right? I can live with that.

Horrors man was not meant to see...When he mentioned he had a way to work it in as a ongoing cast member, I again felt that feeling of absolute dread sinking into my stomach. S*P has some odd characters, but Choo-Choo Bear and Pepito - even Twitchy-Hug - managed to work within the confines of the strip. And I couldn't for the life of me think of any possible way the blue thing could be worked in without entirely disrupting the strip. I pondered, with no avail, what possible bribe I could offer to keep this monstrosity from appearing.

I should have known better than to doubt. It's in the strip... and it works perfectly.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Nothing Special

Starting off the new year sick has not been the best experience to me, and refreshed me on exactly why I dislike the common cold. Despite thinking I was just about over it, it decided to hit me for one last day of 'fun'.

So no rants or insights today, I'm afraid. Instead, I'll just share that my day was fortunately improved by the unexpected (at least by me) return of CRFH, along with noticing the eerie similarities between today's Sam and Fuzzy and Something Positive strips. How about that, eh? Coincidence or conspiracy, the world may never know.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Second Looks

Websnark is back, in force. Websnark is the grand-daddy of webcomic blogs, but I'm pretty sure everyone already knows that. The esteemable Eric Burns has set a challenge for himself in 2007, and set out to accomplish a certain amount of writing by the end of the year. Towards this writing, he'll be endeavering to post daily on Websnark.

I'm pretty pleased to see this for a number of reasons. One, my own webcomic blog was inspired largely by Websnark. Two, the final motivation for actually starting it was to give myself something to keep me actively writing day in and day out. And three - well, let's face it, he writes some damn powerful stuff.

Already worth checking out is his final tribute to Narbonic, which says it better than I ever could.

I'm confident he doesn't need the plug, but for those who weren't aware of his resurgence, I figure it can't hurt to mention it.

The Webcomicker is launching similarly forward with a hefty goal of a post for every single day in the year - and has brought back his webcomic, Birdsworth, as well.

While I don't have any such lofty ambitions for my own blog, I do have some big ideas in store for the coming year. More will be revealed in time!

Moving on to other topics - I've got to give props to Questionable Content for some strips earlier this week. After suddenly (and skillfully) making Ellen into a villain a little while ago, he equally skillfully has rendered her human again. Despite being let-down by a lot of the other storylines in the strip of late, J.J. has done this little exchange extremely well, and I have to give him credit for that.

PvPAnd finally, Scott Kurtz seems to be continuing his recent trend of stealing material from Tim Buckley, as he suddenly has his characters launching their own winter gaming holidays (complete with bizarre holiday outfit) in eerie similarity to Ctrl+Alt+Del's Winter-een-mas.

Which, let me clarify, I don't find despicable for its own sake. Stealing ideas you like from other sources is a long honored tradition in pretty much all forms of creative work, and there isn't anything inherently wrong with that.

The problem is that Kurtz has spent so much time lambasting Ctrl+Alt+Del for just that - being a rip-off of PvP and Penny Arcade. Taking their ideas and somehow finding success with it. Kurtz has ripped into Buckley time and time again for this very thing. I simply find it rather... ironic that Kurtz is now doing the exact same thing. The plagiarism is fine - the hypocrisy, a little less so.

PvPI'm sure Kurtz would give the same defense he gave when he launched the Animated PvP Series - namely that even if he was doing the same thing as Ctrl+Alt+Del, he was doing it better, funnier and with more quality than Buckley ever did. While I don't believe that renders the hypocrisy null, I can't deny the truth of it - I've generally flinched when I saw a new Winter-een-mass storyline, whereas this last week of PvP has been one of the funniest I have ever read.

So I can't deny having enjoyed this storyline. I just hope that, after all this, Kurtz will at least ignore Buckley, rather than continue accusing him of ripping off other artists.

Oh, and a final disclaimer - I'm not saying all this in defense of Tim Buckley. Even if he's behaved himself in recent drama this year, and regardless of his comic's quality or lack thereof, his actions in the past have still rendered him, in my eyes, the vilest webcartoonist I know of.

Rather, I'm simply taken aback by Kurtz's actions after his rants in the past. It seems a strange note on which to start the new year, but I suppose if Brent can do it, then so can he.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Happy New Year

A new year is here, and unsurprisingly, many changes come with it.

Some comics have ended, others have merely toyed with us, more than a few sport shiny new site designs, and while some comics are returning from hiatus, entirely new ones are beginning.

I hope everyone wrapped up 2006 successfully, everyone's resolutions are working out well, and 2007 is off to a good start.

I'll be back to regular updates on Friday.