Category Archives: Random Quickies
I’ve mentioned this webcomic before, but it seems high time to revisit this gem again. Tyler Rhodes’ Castle Vidcons was around during the previous generation’s console wars. The Wii, PS3, and Xbox 360 were depicted as rival kings doing battle in a sepia-tinged medieval landscape. Now that E3 has come and gone, the knives are out again this year. Xbox One and PS4 are cruel new usurpers, parroting the fears, anxieties and loyalties all over the Twitterverse and the Tumblrverse. Given how hyperbolic and pitched the fight has gotten already, Castle Vidcons is the only way to watch this epic struggle between warrior kings with consoles for heads unfold.
Gather ’round children, and let me tell you a tale of webcomics past. Webcomics of yore! You see, there used to be a time when young men and women made webcomics based on unlikely prompts. Spam email! Palindromes! Ah, but the world is a more sophisticated place now, with no time for such primitive..,.
What’s that you say? There’s a Twitter: The Comic?
Yessiree, my friends, Mike Rosenthal (or, as he’s known on Twitter, “@vectorbelly“) has been moderating a posse of webcomic artists on Tumblr to create comics based on Tweets. They’re often quite funny. It helps that most of the Tweets selected tell a sort of minifiction in under 140 characters. Do you know anyone who actually tweets:
WELCOME TO APPLEBEES MAY I TAKE YOUR ORDER. DID U SAY “A PLATE OF SPIDERS” TOO LATE HERE IT COMES. U HAVE TO EAT IT ALL OR WE CALL THE COPS
Me neither. But apparently it got 1,000 retweets… and this rad webcomic.
Daniel Lieske’s The Wormworld Saga is probably going to get a proper review sometime in the future. But man, I just wanted to bring it up because it’s probably the best looking webcomic I’ve seen to use the infinite canvas in quite some time. It’s fairly simple: it’s just an up and down thing. However, panels blend seamlessly to the next as you keep scrolling downwards. The story itself is sort of a modern day Alice In Wonderland, and the visuals get more and more incredible the further you get into the story. Though, truth be told, I was already plenty impressed by the rendition of a red Volkswagen in the very first chapter.
I’m going to assume that, at some point in Chris McQuaid’s Celtic Shaman, we’re going to learn that a portal to the Forgotten Realms must have opened in Canada. There’s mystical creatures everywhere. The hero, a rugged loner named Mannix, punches his way through several of these creatures as he tours the country’s backroads: a sea monster in New Brunswick, succubi in Quebec, and an ogre dressed up as a mall Santa in Mississauga, Ontario. Fortunately, Mannix is a man blessed with magic powers, fists of steel, and a sexy genie named Dru at his side. It’s a light-hearted and breezy comic where shamanism is grumblingly referred to as “spiritual pest control.”
As a relative newcomer to Tumblr, I have only lately come to a surprising realization: animated gifs are everywhere. Like, on every single blog that has “F*** Yeah” as the title. They are back in a bigger way than when that dancing CGI baby was all the rage. (Readers under 20, please disregard this horribly dated reference.) I’ve also noticed that seeing a bunch of animated gifs in a row, usually recapping a segment on TV, is not unlike reading a comic.
So it should come no surprise that there are some webcomics out there following suit. Jen’s Thunderpaw follows two anthropomorphic friends, Bruno and Ollie, as they go on a journey that seems to fracture their very mental state. During the comic, looped animated panels make everything jittery and haunting. I can’t say Thunderpaw makes sense, exactly, but it’s long on environment and is pretty to look at.
(h/t to reader gosicht)
Some of you may remember comic book artist Travis Charest from WildCATs. I actually associate him with an earlier work, DC Comics’ temporary replacement for the Green Lanterns: Darkstars. One of these days, though, we may remember him for his webcomic, Spacegirl. Images burst with high adventure and Flash-Gordon-esque spacecraft as Spacegirl swashbuckles her way through the galaxy. it’s also delightfully retro: panels filled with bombastic expository boxes would feel right at home alongside the works of Alex Raymond, Hal Foster, and Milton Caniff. I gotta say, I’m excited for the inevitable Spacegirl Adventure Hour Radio Serial (sponsored by Lux Soap).
Hey, just because you’re writing a video game webcomic doesn’t mean you can’t have style. That’s what Zac Gorman’s Magical Game Time has in spades. It’s like reading video game humor — mostly filtered through a retro 80′s sensibility — and watching the Adventure Time cartoon. It’s also filled with fun animations, which is always cool. Hey, these are video games not … standing still games.