Category Archives: webcomics

Robot 6: sticky notes and fantasy

Two more Robot 6 pieces debuted this week:

As for this site, I’m targeting end of this week for when a new review’s going to be up.

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El Santo on Robot 6: Webcomics are for the children

New article at Robot 6 is up! Here, I discuss Stripped‘s subtext about comic strips and childhood, and I theorize how Penny Arcade‘s recent moves may be steering things that direction in the world of webcomics.

EDIT: Also they decided to publish my review of Pole Dancing Adventures, a webcomic about pole dancing. On the same day I did that piece on kids’ webcomics.

WHEEEEEEEEE!

Lauren Davis talks up “51 Eisner-worthy webcomics”

Eisner Awards, eh? What is this malarkey! Some people are bechuffed — bechuffed, I say! — about some of the candidates that were passed over this year! Why, it’s enough to incite a riot!

… OK, so no one is bechuffed. They’re barely even bedraggled. I mean… there’s like a dozen comic-related award ceremonies this year.

But that doesn’t stop Lauren Davis from listing 51 Awesome Webcomics that she believes are deserving of recognition come Eisner time.

The category for Best Digital Comic launched in 2005 and it’s always been perplexing for avid followers of webcomics. We’ve hoped that the category would be an opportunity to highlight independent comics by lesser known creators and in some years, it has done an excellent job of doing just that. However, the nominees tend to include creators who have strong ties to the world of print comics, and sometimes digital offerings by big-name creators edge out people who have been working in webcomics for years. (Case in point, Joss Whedon and Fabio Moon took home the 2008 Eisner for Best Digital Comic for the Dark Horse digital release of Sugarshock!)

You dare impugn the name of the Honorable Master Joss Whedon, Ms. Davis? What, are you just asking for a thousand browncoats to be mailed your way? Because if you are … can … can you loan me one? It’s sorta chilly out here. My size is Extra Large.

Lauren Davis’ list is quite comprehensive, ranging from JL8 to Unsounded to Dresden Codak to Something Positive to… well… there are 51 of them. Read it for yourself, homies!

(Full disclosure, Ms. Davis mentions this humble site in her piece. Thanks for the shout-out!)

Random Quickies: Paradox Space

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So… sick of Homestuck yet? Well, you’re about to get sicker. Andrew Hussie just launched Paradox Space, a home for canon Homestuck fan comics. And while that sounds like something that could go off the rails, Hussie is savvy enough to get fan comics from people who know what they’re doing. People like that Paranatural guy. And KC Green. And … I’m not sure what Jonathan Griffiths and J.N. Wiedle do, but it looks alright.

The 2014 Eisner Awards for Best Digital/Webcomic Comics are announced and… oh, *#%@!!! It’s The Oatmeal

So the 2014 Eisner noms were announced today. My new employer, Robot 6, did not make it into the Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism category this year (though parent company Comic Book Resources did). Hopefully my coverage of webcomics will be enough to tip the scale next time the awards are considered.

Ehhh? EEHHHHHH?

Anyway, you know what you’re here for. What are the nominees for Best Online Comic this year, El Santo? Well, glad you asked. First of all, it’s now called “Best Digital/Webcomic.” Make up your mind, Eisners! Second, the awards are a pretty dang eclectic mix… and there’s only one here that I recognize.

Incidentally, the Sugarshock-o-Meter is starting to gain sentience, question its existence and purpose in life. Stay Calm and carry on, Sugarshock-o-Meter!

In other news, The Adventures of Superhero Girl by Faith Erin Hicks is up form Best Publication for Kids (ages 8-12) and Best Humor Publication.

WCO#239: Dresden Codak

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Aaron Diaz’s Dresden Codak is a strange creature. It debuted back in 2005, back when webcomics were developing a reputation as the sophisticated alternative to their comic strip brethren. xkcd launched in the same year, and A Lesson Is Learned But The Damage Is Irreversible not long before that. Perry Bible Fellowship was starting to gain a strong following. At the core of these comics as a brainy just-out-of-college mentality. The gags were still sometimes juvenile, but at its core were concepts and ideas that were smarter and more clever than ones on the Sunday Funnies. Except Marmaduke. That comic is pretty dang subversive.

And all of them, including xkcd sometimes, would surprise you by hitting you with some great looking art. It may be easy to forget, since a lot of art grads now know of webcomics as a great way to expand their portfolio, but aesthetically webcomic art was pretty dire. The medium, after all, was originally conceived as an amateur hobby where some folks got lucky despite the artistic merit, e.g. tons of pixel comics. As a result, comics like Dresden Codak were incredibly eye-catching in comparison.

Typical of early Dresden Codak is a comic like “Li’l Werner.” It’s a one-shot comic with no continuity baggage. Diaz is still experimenting with his art style: this time homaging the black-and-white cross-hatching of Edward Gorey. The strip hinges around a tongue-in-check parody of Aryan physics (the Nazi nationalist scientific movement to discredit Jewish scientists like Albert Einstein). There’s a sharped-toothed Philip Lenard recalling anti-Semitic caricatures, a tiny Heisenberg, and something about “current momentum.” I don’t pretend to know what the heck any of this is about. But it sounds smart and the multiple tiny Heisenbergs is a cute visual gag. It’s a lovely comic to introduce to your local Tesla fan.

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The 2013 Reuben nominees were announced… and it’s surprisingly a good list

Let’s face it… very few people had heard of last year’s Reuben winners. It was the second year, and the categories were split into two: Long-Form and Short-Form for Online Comics. While it technically spread the webcomic awards by double, I don’t know many people who’d heard of either Ten Cats (the Short-Form winner) or Untold Tales of Bigfoot (the Long-Form winner). Both comics were alright, by the way.

This year’s nominees, though, are a solid mix. Let’s check out the Reuben noms:

LONG-FORM
Dicebox – by Jenn Manley Lee
Family Man – by Dylan Meconis
Red’s Planet – by Eddie Pittman
Tuki – by Jeff Smith

Of these, the only one I haven’t read is Tuki. And, man, it’s Jeff Smith (Bone, RASL). Of course it’s probably good. I really can’t process these categories through the Sugarshock-o-meter to predict a winner, because I think all four have an equal and very deserving chance of snagging the award.

SHORT FORM
Watson – by Jim Horowitz
Buni – Ryan Pagelow
New Yorker Online – Mike Twohy

… I’ve heard of Buni. Still, I am not opposed to the New Yorker competing in a webcomic category. The New Yorker comics have been upping their online presence as of late, running caption contests and commission works from prominent webcomic types. Watson looks alright… if a little unremarkable.

Still, there’s your Reubens, and the fight over who wins the Long-Form category should be interesting at least!

(h/t Robot 6)

…and if you haven’t caught it yet… New Homestar Runner! Not April Fools! (Or… is it?)

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Guess what’s back for April Fool’s Day? If you said the original cast for Les Miz… then no. It wasn’t.

But what did return… was none other than that great … perhaps the greatest … of online flash cartoons, Homestar Runner. Like I’ve mentioned before, I’d considered making this site the Webtoon Overlook because I was a huge fan. (In fact, the HRWiki forums was where I discovered many webcomics and webtoons when most were in their infancy.) I put a stop to that because, well, Homestar Runner was the only webtoon that ever really mattered. Relive the days of out of date computers and questions about how Strong Bad can type with his boxing gloves on with this most welcome revival.

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