Second Verse, Same as the First

What are you, retarded? I'm the goddamn Johnny Saturn. Even when other members of the Modern Tales collective were running low on strips, Graphic Smash still had the quality and quantity to keep me reading nonstop.

Despite this, they’ve gone ahead and, like their brethren, added a nice little collection of new comics.

Which means they now officially have a metric fuckton of strips updating every day.

I mean, I’m counting ten strips updating today, along with an announcement of another five strips joining the roster. Almost all of which looking damn awesome. So that’s impressive – but not actually what I wanted to talk about.

One of the strips is Johnny Saturn, which was previously part of Graphic Smash. Which, previously, left and joined Komikwerks, and began rereleasing the strips thus far there. And, of course, the next arc in its epic saga has it rejoining the fold with Graphic Smash – and re-rereleasing its strips again, from the start.

Quite a few strips have done this, of late, as they’ve been joining these conglomerates. Usually they release their stored strips at an exceedingly souped-up pace, thus both impressing new readers with a substantial stock of story, while also giving themselves time to build up a larger buffer. Occasionally the strips have been touched up with spiffier colors and cleaner lines.

Now, I am not going to say that this is a bad practice. It can, in some ways, be wearing on your current audience, who is eager – even desperate – for new advancement. (Does a hiatus by any other name smell as sweet?) But it provides a sense of continuation even with the temporary break, and certainly works well to bring in new readership.

I know that while it may be jarring to have strips I am currently reading take this tactic, I’ve been delighted to find it in new strips. In the case of Girl Genius I willingly deprive myself of the newer material, gleefully proceeding at a calm, leisurely pace through the older works. I’m not sure why I haven’t bought the rest of the trades to catch myself up, or borrowed them from friends that I know for a fact have them – but in this case, I enjoy the anticipation of more to come, and the ability to engage in mass consumption of the works on the day the backlog catches up to the more recent comics.

I’ve wandered a bit off-topic. My apologies. I additionally appear to have avoided arriving at a point at all, aside from to say that rereleasing content could be good or bad, I guess, depending on the state of the reader at the time of the transition. You know, maybe.

In the end, I’m a fan of almost anything other than sheer hiatus. I like the artist going that extra length to say “Hey, I didn’t forget about you.” If whatever filler is provided is not to my liking, then I shrug and treat it like a normal hiatus, and come back when it starts back up. (Yes, even with shirt guy Dom. In time, I can forgive even that.)

And if the filler is to my liking – if the rereleased content has, indeed, been remastered artfully – then I guess I win. What do I win? Well, some additional hours of entertainment from a resource that has already provided amusement.

I know that replay value is a valuable thing in many games, and I suppose it shouldn’t surprise me that the same holds true elsewhere.

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