The Webcomic Overlook #111: Las Lindas
There are two sure signs of getting older. The first is that your parents’ lame jokes are suddenly funny. The second is that when you start watching movies of teenage rebellion, you start identifying with the stuffy old deans.
Like the time when you realize that the free-wheeling Ferris Bueller is really just tiresome, selfish, and destructive. In a stunning reversal,we root for the principal, who wants nothing more than to take that preening snot down a peg. The kid from Where the Wild Things Are is an annoying little brat. The New Radicals don’t quite sound so radical. Evanescence is less a paean of teenage rebellion than it is music that is, like, so totally embarrassing. Even Luke Skywalker starts to sound a little whiny.
The sense of being powerless probably leads us to idolize rebellion. On the flipside, gaining power means that we’re more careful to practice it since we know what happens when that power is abused irresponsibly. Or, to put it more succinctly, we’re growing up, and that means identifying just the teensiest bit with the oppressor.
This is one of the many reasons why the main character of Gonzalo Reyes’ Las Lindas made my skin crawl. So disgusted, in fact, that it almost made me lose sight of the two things this webcomic is really about.
Now, most of the links in this review are relatively safe for work. There’s some nudity, but not too much. STILL, I highly advise you to click on these links from the comfort of home. With no kids around. In fact, this review should come with the following notification: “WARNING — LINKS MAY CONTAIN WELL-ENDOWED COWS.”
Gonzalo Reyes goes by the pen name “Chalo.” He and two co-writers have been working on Las Lindas since at least 2004. The furry comic started out as a noble attempt to be the next Omaha The Cat Dancer, but, probably because it wasn’t working out, eventually morphed into something completely different.
Here’s a few key points about Las Lindas that I’d like to get off my chest. The comic set on a farm … but not just any farm! This one features the
firmest of cabbages, the roundest of melons, and the juiciest of mangoes. Las Lindas is about total strangers who squeeze together during hardships to become the best bosom buddies. The comic is also about the pains and hardships of cultivating a budding romance. Who takes the first step? Is it inappropriate to reciprocate love before you know it’s true? To crib a phrase from the Pointer Sisters, “He’s so shy, and he’s much too good to let me get bye.”
At the risk of milking a metaphor dry, lets get down to thick, meaty raison d’etre: boobs, boobs, boobs, boobs, boobs, and boobs. Also, sometimes crotch. But mostly boobs. When a comic includes the line, “I’ve just had more conversations about breasts at this job than over my whole teenage years with five brothers,” then your inner milkshake-detector should be going off the charts. In the spirit of equal opportunity, Chalo sometimes draws beefcake too. Male characters, though, are a relative rarity in Las Lindas. Once introducing them, Chalo frantically hurries them off the page so he quickly return to drawing his favorite Dynamic Duo.
Now, in Chalo’s defense: he does hail from El Salvador. Based on some South American children’s programming I’ve seen and that one Simpsons episode set in Brazil, I’ve been led to believe that taking in a view of the Andes Mountains are a wholesome national pasttime of Latin America. (And God bless them.) He and I have different standards when it comes to good taste, and that’s fine. However, judging by the page stats, 60% of readers are from the USA, and 12% are from Canada. I think it’s pretty safe to say that Las Lindas was tailor-made for the North American part of the world. Hence, I feel absolutely justified when I say that all this attention to oversized butterballs comes off as a tad trashy.
And yet it wouldn’t be so sleazy if Las Lindas had anything to offer beyond its religious devotion to the female fun bags. Charlie’s Angels was all about ogling the fine female form, but you also got action, decent actresses, and the sonorous voice of Charlie. Las Lindas can get away with cheesecake if it had, say, any semblance of a likable character we can root for, for example. Unfortunately, by and large all our “heroes” are one-dimensional nitwits with traits awkwardly hi-jacked from every single bad anime you can name. You know, I’ll go even further: each and every one of the characters are actively repellent.
Our cast is anchored by a ridiculously top-heavy gal named Mora, who should more appropriately be named “Mary Sue.” She is a cow-person, the most well-endowed of all furry archetypes … at least according to Las Lindas. She’s also not a very good farmer, and when the webcomic starts she’s in danger of losing the titular farm. (Wait. Did I just type…? Moving right along….) In a main plot that seems to have been written after countless hours playing Harvest Moon, Mora needs to recruit farmhands to work the fields and till the land. So what does she do? She sluts it up.
Step one: seduce a barfly named Miles into working on her farm. He falls for it, of course, and finds to his chagrin that he’s doomed to do hard labor. (Why he just doesn’t leave because work sucks so much is one of the comic’s huge plotholes.) This is played for laughs, but the only thing running through my mind was that these two are the stupidest, shallowest characters ever. Miles, by the way, gets even more shallow as the story gets on. Initially set up as a sort of breezy cad with a heart of gold, he turns into an unpleasant horndog who sabotages a stable relationship in the pursuit of getting laid.
Around the same time, Mora spots a big, beefy bull named Minos. He’s the sort of anime douchebag who stands around in a heroic pose as wind blows through his hair while the end credits close. I’m being totally serious when I say that this is the only personality characteristic that Minos has. To get Minos to pay attention, Mora tries to get raped so her hero has a chance to come to the rescue. (Ugh.) Mora basically hires him just so she can sleep with him. Minos is pretty standoffish. Good for him! He doesn’t cave in, until, several pages later, HE DOES. It’s laughably abrupt. I had to smack my head at the sheer ludicrousness of this “romance.” My face suffers the first one of many face palms.
As the story progresses, more and more are absorbed into the farm system that is Las Lindas. A girl at the bar named Taffy, while making a pretty good salary, gets roped into doing laundry work. Sigh. The hell, can’t Mora dry her own clothes? Or, better yet, given the fact that this is a technologically advanced society… run a dryer? Two vagrants stumble onto the farm and are given room and board… just because. The dark cat one is overprotective of the young one, whose blossoming womanhood becomes part of one of Las Lindas‘ longest running plots when she turns 18. (Which, is, frankly, a pretty flimsy excuse to have the kid dress and act slutty.) Two characters that were romantically linked with Mora (one of them possibly gay) show up out of nowhere and are also brought into the fold. Also, some annoying child-like deity named Digit joins in, as well as two equally annoying and far more superfluous demon sprites.
Good Lord, how bad is the economy in the Las-Lindas-verse if Mora’s the only person in her circle of friends who owns a house? How pathetic does life have to be if being conscripted into forced labor to an incompetent airhead considered an improvement? Does anyone have an actual life before they even came to the farm? Apparently not. Characters have nothing better to do than show off their enormous jobbers and to love and support our cow-like Mary Sue. The only reason for existing is to orbit the black hole of intelligence named Mora, bathing in her life-affirming Mary-Sue-ness and rescinding any shred of individuality.
But hey, who wouldn’t want to give that to live in the amazing rustic paradise of Las Lindas? I mean, it’s a magical utopia where every anime cliche comes to life in the most tiresome ways possible. And, oh, the jokes! Where else can you find humor that is both forced and headache-inducing? Las Lindas wants so badly to be a wacky sex comedy, but completely fails at being wacky, sexy, or even a comedy.
Except when it’s a tragedy … and then Las Lindas just gets phenomenally goofy. In a recent story arc, Chalo seems to acknowledge that his characters are flatter than dishwater by trying, God bless him, to introduce some its hand at drama and conflict into his comic. Yet, the years of damage have already done its toll. You root for no one in the ensuing fight, and you feel no emotion — other than supreme embarrassment over having actually read this tripe — when one of the twenty-or-so main characters bites it. But hey, it’s all good: in accordance with the over-arching theme of Las Lindas, all this calamity was just an excuse to give little Digit, the only non-endowed female at this point, some knockers. Because ogling the dozens of sweater puppies currently on display was clearly NOT ENOUGH!
(Smack your forehead with your palm … now.)
The dialogue is several levels worth of face palms, too. Here’s an actual line from Las Lindas:
“Don’t you think it’s funny that I’ve been blessed with a far better form, yet have not degraded myself to your level, and have succeeded far more than you could have ever dreamed?”
Rolls off the tongue, don’t it.
Those words, by the way, come from Mora’s rival, Alejandra. She’s one of the few women in the Las-Lindas-verse who has bigger hooters than our glorious Mary Sue. (Trust me, Chalo provides actual PROOF of this.) Alejandra accuses that Mora of being an incompetent idiot who has no business running a failing farm. She also sneers that Mora only ever uses her farm as a brothel. Hey, she only hired people with the promise of sex. That’s totes different from a brothel! Otherwise, it’s really hard to disagree with Alejandra here, and that makes it very difficult to accept her as a villain.
It’s revealed that Alejandra is ticked off at Mora because A.) Mora used to be prettier than her and B.) because when she was a kid Mora stole her boyfriend. GOOD. LORD. Let me get this straight. The only self-made woman in the Las-Lindas-verse only rose to become a titan in business just because she wanted to get back at her rival over a petty childhood grudge? Over a boy? Let’s hear it for the women’s rights movement! And apparently, the end result of Alejandra’s vengeance is …by robbing Mora of her pride? What, that’s it? C’mon girl… take off the kid gloves! Destroy this half-witted heifer! Gore! GORRRRRRREEEE!!!
But then, before our Mary Sue can experience anything that could be mistaken for hardship (and thus freeing her mind-controlled boarders to pursue their non-agrarian destinies), we get a visit from our friendly neighborhood deus ex machina, who arives in a ship stolen from The Phantom Menace. She turns out to be a High Muckymuck in the Las-Lindas-verse’s absurdly overcomplicated mythology. (Las Lindas, by the way, implies that Neo Earth is regular Earth with furry immigrants from space. So how come we see only one or two humans in the entire comic? My theory: genocide. By furries.) In a capitalist’s worst nightmare come true, our ethereal monarch with the big gazongas arrives to bail the worthless Mora out, because … what, how many times do I have to prattle on about how Mora is a Mary Sue and the entire world revolves around her, her, her? Cripes, maybe if the godlike beings of the Las-Lindas-verse wouldn’t waste their money on propping up clearly inadequate patrons, then maybe Neo Earth wouldn’t have such a huge number of homeless furries that are so hard up they’re willing to do manual labor on a failing farm.
And you know what? This really pissed me off. Everything in the story indicates that Mora is an unpleasant witch, a lousy boss and an even lousier business person… and somehow we’re supposed to take her side against Alejandra? Las Lindas insults the readers further by having Mora pull off a tie against her rival. Afterwards, Mora … our pure, beatific Mary Sue-chan… does the “better man” speech, where she wishes that she and Alejandra were friends again and this competition means nothing.
Alejandra, consumed by hatred, storms away, upset (but not until after Chalo has her gratuitously flash her massive milk jugs the crowd). Can you blame her? I was right there with her. Who the hell wouldn’t when the judges were fixing the contest because they were taking sides with your competitor the entire time? Even going so far as to bestow your hated rival some magic tools to ensure that you couldn’t beat her? And then she rubs it in with a stupid, “Let’s all be friends” speech?
Kiss my fat cow boobies, Mora.
If, for some ungodly reason, you’re still tempted to check out Las Lindas, I’d like to offer you a suggestion. Chalos did, at some point, put together a handy summary. Everything important about Las Lindas can be summed up in this four-part handy-to-use bust chart. Sure, it’s still tasteless, but it’s gets to the point a lot faster. Best of all, you get to skip the awkward dialogue, the awful characters, and a plot so hackneyed that even a two-bit manga publisher would reject it. It’s a deeply flawed and terribly unfocused comic, one that never, ever makes you give a crap about what happens next. To read Las Lindas is to be driven … um … udderly mad.
Hey, c’mon, it’s late people!
Rating: 1 star (out of 5)
Posted on March 4, 2010, in 1 Star, adult webcomic, comedy webcomic, furry webcomic, romance webcomic, The Webcomic Overlook, WCO Big Review, webcomics and tagged Las Lindas. Bookmark the permalink. 42 Comments.