Monthly Archives: September, 2006

Expose-ition

Ok. Ok. Man.

So I just discovered this comic called Antiseptic Poetry. It’s about this superhero (named Sunflower {…yeah, seriously}) who we never actually see in action. Instead, she spends most of her time chatting with her roommate – usually while not wearing any pants.

Seriously. 90% of the comic is spent depicting this girl lounging around scantily clad, often striking pretty absurd poses for casual conversation.

It’s everything that is rant-worthy about the state of comics, and that is before the character gives a speech on her apparent modesty (which would ring a bit more resoundingly if the artist of the strip didn’t undermine that point, say, every other panel. Seriously. Every. Other. Panel.)

But the worst part about it? The absolute worst thing?

I really really like the damn comic.

The dialogue is clever and fun. I like the entire idea of a comic where the main character is a superhero, but we never actually see them in action. It’s tangential and irrelevent, and only serves to make for the occasional story. The casual, ordinary troubles they deal with are genuinely engaging. The characters in the strip are each individual and likable.

Man. I’m confounded.

Total Immersion

Into the rabbit hole...The Makeshift Miracle appeared on the web 5 years ago today.

I haven’t thought about the strip in years. It, along with Narbonic, was the reason I joined Modern Tales in the first place, and I find it amusing that entirely seperate from the recent debut of the new MT stars, events have conspired to remind me of some of the original ones.

This was a comic that had me checking for updates spastically. This was one of the strips that dragged me along by the toes, desperate to see through the mysteries behind it all, desperate to find out what was going to happen to the characters, desperate for the story at the heart of it.

And, ultimately… it was the strip that I found myself most disappointed by.

I want to make this clear – Makeshift Miracle is a good story. It is an incredible story. It is a powerful story.

But it was not the story that I was looking for. I had built up too many expectations of where it was going, and the fates that befell the characters weren’t the ones I would have chosen. It left me sad and melancholy, which was a vast shock from the enjoyment I had previously found in the strip.

And I think it speaks incredibly well of Jim Zubkavich that he wrote a story that brought about such intense emotional response. That alone is testament to the strength of the story – especially considering it only ran for a year and a half. A remarkably short time to leave its mark – but it did so.

Those who haven’t read the story before should do so. I know, I know, I just said that I found myself personally disappointed by the story. I walked away unhappy, dissatisfied.

But hey – that’s me. I’m just one guy. And there are plenty who walked away entirely fulfilled by the story. But while I can’t say whether you’ll love it or hate it – you won’t walk away bored.

I’m not going to say I like being discontented – that I like being left sad when I wanted to be left happy.

But I’ll take that any day of the week over a tale that doesn’t touch me at all.

‘Ting’

I know that I reviewed Errant Story the other week.

(My mind is not quite so far gone as to have forgotten this fact in the intervening period.)

Despite this, I felt the need to stop and take note of today’s strip – not much to say about it, other than the fact that it is seriously awesome.

While I am no great expert in the field of art, and may not be able to precisely pinpoint everything about the image that makes it resonate so well with me – it does, nonetheless, and does so strongly.

And that, if nothing else, is the mark of a good artist.

Starting things back up…

So yeah, I guess that thing about my return was… a blatant lie. My apologies.

Anyway! Modern Tales and Girlamatic have been rolling out a few new stars! (This is probably not news to anyone.) I’ve been pretty impressed with some of the additions to the rosters, and one over at Girlamatic has especially caught my eye – Shrub Monkeys.

It is a generally cute, down-to-earth comic, so makes for an easy and entertaining read. It has it’s share of in-jokes and random nonsensical moments.

Proof that humor can transcend the need to, say, understand what the hell is going on.The real kicker, though, was some strips that at first look like more randomness, but left me profoundly disturbed for several minutes after reading.

I’m serious – giant monster aliens, skeletal horrors, and all that just isn’t scary. Something like this, however – that is terrifying. You want to frighten someone, give them something based in reality, that seems almost impossible, but still has just enough of a grounding in fact to leave it stuck in their mind.

And that is what this strip does well – blends the ordinary and the whimsically surreal. It’s harder than it looks, but Shrub Monkeys pulls it off without missing a beat.

The Return

Just a note that I am back, and blogger appears to be enjoying devouring my posts. I’m sure you’re heartbroken – in any case, by tomorrow I should be caught up with my missed comics, and ready to unleash my usual ramblings upon the internet at large.
Be ready!