Thursday, July 5, 2012

Web Comics

I like comics, and used to scrounge for blocks seeking discarded bottles that I could turn in for a penny apiece (perhaps a nickel - it was long ago). When I could afford them, I'd buy Spiderman or Superman or Avengers, depending on which I was following at the time. Spiderman was my favorite for years. Who didn't want to be Peter Parker with his secret identity and Gwen Stacy as a girlfriend? Then they killed Gwen and I quit following Spiderman.
I still like comics and occasionally buy a trade paperback. I just got one with a rebooted Spiderman, where he gets a job with JJJ to fix his paper's web page. Nice touch. But Spiderman is a different story.
I also love a good story. If the story can catch my attention, I don't really need pictures. But that's the beauty of a good comic - a good story AND pictures.
I follow a number of comics on-line. There are hundreds, probably thousands, of on-line comics on the internet. Not all are equal. Some are simply strips. Some are on-line stories. If they are good, I might follow them on a regular basis.
The ones I like the best right now are the following, and I explain why.
Randall Munroe doesn't tell a story. He just punches you in the eye with something funny. One of the reasons I love a good comic is because the author is funny. Randall is no exception. Someday maybe I'll get to meet him, but I'll probably be overwhelmed and go shy-locked. It happens to me more than I'd like to admit. One of my best friends in the entire world started out thinking I was a stuck-up engineer. Eventually he realized I was paralyzed by shyness.
Girl Genius
If I have a favorite (and I do) then it's this comic. As the tag-line says, Girl Genius is written by Professors Phil & Kaja Foglio of TPU, with drawings by Prof. P. Foglio. I've not bought any of their merchandise, but this is a good story, great drawings, fascinating characters with personal twists that keep me on my toes. These guys win all kinds of awards for their comic, and rightly so.
The Dreamland Chronicles
Scott Christian Sava is a good story-teller, and this is a good story. There are enough twists to keep it interesting. The art is good and you end up loving the characters. I dare you not to. Scott puts his books on sale and I buy them. So I have the hard copy of these comics, too. Scott also seems to be a great guy from the little communication I've shared with him.
Day By Day
Chris Muir does this comic. It isn't as good as Doonesbury, but it is from a conservative viewpoint, although at this point we're all sick to death of every politician out there. I'm almost to the point where I would support anarchism, but anarchism doesn't need support, by definition. Anyway, I sometimes support Chris and buy his stuff to keep him in business doing this strip, since it is now his full-time job (at least I think it is). Once a year he runs a fund-raiser to keep it going. That's creative business at its best.
Wayward Sons Legends
Benny Powell does a good job with this one. I don't always get captivated by the story, but I like to keep up to date on it. It has a lot of the gods and goddesses and mythical beings in it, or some form of them. Recently he's moved into something resembling the present day, so that might turn interesting.
Benny does this one, too. I'm not as sold on the plot for this as on Wayward Sons. I'll give it a little time. A plot with teenage heroes is hard to pull off. A number of story arcs with them will certainly not be easy.
Wayfarer's Moon
Okay, I'll admit, I'm not a big fan of the comic. I've yet to see a plot that reaches out and grabs me. I follow it because Jason Janicki's blog cracks me up and anyone that funny deserves a little of my attention.
Supermassive Black Hole A*
Ben Chamberlain's comic is interesting, but his written material about space is what keeps me coming back for each page. Ben's artwork is amazing. I follow him on Google+ as well, just to see what new art he's created. His discussion of art, technique and methods baffles me, but I love to read it anyway.
Quantum Vibe
Scott Bieser writes this one and it is published by Big Head Press. I don't know what else to say about it. It's a good story and the art is pretty good. I'm waiting to see what happens next; that's a good thing.
Steve Cheng is a good story-teller and the artwork is state-of-the-art with modeling software. He has an extensive page explaining how he does the art. Sometimes the pages are NSFW, and he displays the characters in order to advance the plot. Not that the graphics are gratuitous, but you're warned. The story seems worth it. I'm wondering what happens next on this one too.
Grrl Power
I'll admit this is the newest of the comics I'm following, and I'm almost not following it. The premise has me fascinated, so I'll keep coming back until DaveB, the author, convinces me I shouldn’t bother. I don't like Sydney's language at all - and the author warns you about it. I'm warning you too.
Quitting My Job And Living In Costa Rica
This one isn't a comic, but they all have something in common. What would I do in my life if I could do something fun.
So there it is. You may not care about any of these, but that's okay. At least I archived them for myself!


  1. I am actually intrigued, and will probably investigate a good many of them...that is, except for "Day by Day." If it's political, I admit, I'm not interested yet.

    Did I introduce you to xkcd? ^.^ Can that be my good deed of the day?

    Curious about the funny blog. Will check it soon!

  2. You most certainly may claim credit for introducing me to xkcd. Thank you for that.

    It never hurts to read a political comic. I may not agree with the author's politics, but at least I can learn to see their point of view. Humor is often our best mirror.