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.
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.