Thursday, December 13, 2007

Review of The Day: LowRoad75

LowRoad75, created by Carlos G., has all the gothy stylings of The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy mixed with the teen relationship humor of a John Hughes movie. The main characters consist of a goth girl named Natasha with an aversion to R and B music, a demon inhabiting a stuffed pig named Doom Piggy, and a nerd with a crush on Natasha named Eugene. Updated...wait. It's been on idefinite hiatus since August. And here I already have the review written. Ragh! Well, I'll go ahead and give it a short review anyway, because it's the one I had ready for today. Sorry about this....

The art for Lowroad went quickly from ok to really good. Nice shading effects mixed with the sepia tone the comic has is really different from the b&w and color we usually get, and I liked it for that reason. The chibi-esque style the characters are drawn in isn't overly annoying, even though I don't really care for the anime style for the most part. The pages are layed out pretty professionaly, and aren't hard for the eye to follow at all, as with some comics which are sloppily put together.

The comic starts out introducing Doom Piggy, which I thought would play a bigger part in the comic than he turns out to, as he simply fades into the background after a while. Natasha is the most interesting as she is goth without being too pretentious or being completely holier than thou, but she still doesn't like the trappings of mainstream society. The writers interest in large breasts is all too apparent as a lot of jokes center around this issue, which gets a bit creepy after a while, unless you're into that sorta thing too. The comic as a whole hasn't decided whether or not it's a humor story comic or a straight forward gag comic yet. I would like to see it move more toward story with humor though, as I see a lot of potential in the characters, and would like to see where the Eugene/Natasha romance could lead. Pretty well written so far.

LowRoad75 is a decent goth comic with good characters, great art, and not bad writing. It could use a good sense of where it's headed, but otherwise I would give it a read if I were you. As of this writing, and I mentioned it above, it's in hiatus, but I would like to see it continue. Check it out and let Carlos know that it's worth being resurrected.

I give LowRoad75...
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(This comic should be considered pretty adult by the language and sometimes overt
sexual nature of the jokes.)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Back from the half dead!

Hi all, just wanted to let you know I haven't decided to shut down the site or anything. The fact is I've been so sick for the past week that I haven't had the energy to even get online, much less do reviews or interviews and the like. My girlfriend and her son are also sick(we were at the hospital till 4 in the morning two nights ago for him), and we've both missed a couple days of work. I promise to have a new review up tomorrow, and get back into the swing of things. Keep the contest entries coming in too, because it's going to be really interesting to see who wins! Thanks for the support!!!!!!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Webcomic Beacon: New venture coming soon!

Hi all, just stopping in to inform you of a new podcast coming your way soon called The Webcomic Beacon, created by Fesworks of P.S.I. and Two Cents In 60 Seconds fame. This site will feature a weekly podcast about webcomics for amateurs, by amateurs. Joining Fesworks will be his cohost Tanya Higgins of the charming BetaPwned and Wednesday Webcomic Weview, and I will hopefully be playing some small part as well. The estimated day of arrival for the first podcast is Dec. 7th, so keep your eyes and ears peeled for podcast goodness!

Contest recap!

Hey everyone, Jack here letting you know that I've received a few entries into the create a comic from just a title contest, and they're looking good! You have all the time in the world(well, until the 24th of Dec.)to enter, so check out the contest by scrolling down and enter ENTER ENTER!!!!! Flex those creative muscles, and win a prize to boot!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Todays Review: FUI: Flying Under The Influence

Flying Under The Influence, by Devin Dion, updated on Mondays and Fridays, is the story of Dariel, an angel who has been kicked out of Heaven for his rebellious nature, much like the nature of any teenager. I doubt you would be able to get drunk in heaven, which Dariel does to pass the time, but this is a comic, after all. Dariel must then quest to regain his presence in Heaven, all the while making friends with humans.

There is lots to see here. From traveling to the deepest bowels of Hell to being in High School, it all translates nicely to the page in Devin's style. I enjoyed seeing his drawn image of Hell and it's many components. I liked the art style with it's muppet-esque characters with their huge eyes, and the thick brush/pen strokes evoking many comics I grew up with, as opposed to the perfectly calculated, no line out of place look that is so common in todays wacom tablet-carefully edited webcomic era. The coloring is also well done with great use of shading and blending effects.

This is one time when I have more to say about the writing than the art. I liked the mix of gag style humor with storylines such as an attempt to slay Satan for entrance back into heaven. Devin bridges the gap between situational comedy and action sequences very well. There is lots of metaphysical mumbo jumbo, and it's layed on pretty thickly, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Who knows, maybe someone will learn something from all of the messages being layed down in the comic. It's very interesting to see his take on Hell and the sorts of things people are punished for.
On a different note, here's one thing I would like to mention. From the moment Dariel finds himself on Earth, he's very confused, like a country hick in the big city for the first time, but more so. He doesn't know what a phone is or how to use it. He doesn't know what a car is for. So why does he know the slang term "chicks" for women? I didn't get that. One small blip on the radar, but not a big deal, I just found it odd. Aside from that, I didn't really find anything to complain about in the writing, but I did take slight offense to a bit of the "artistic license" taken in the way Heaven is portrayed, seeing as how I come from a Christian background, but this is, again, a webcomic, and for entertainment purposes only. I still enjoyed the comic, and even with over a hundred comics in the archive, I breezed through it in one sitting with no problem and my interest kept throughout.

FUI doesn't take a lot of time and energy to read as it is fun, well illustrated, and brightly colored. I'll be honest and tell you that the premise had me a little skittish about reading and reviewing it, but there is no overtly insulting or offensive material here, aside from a couple of slight curse words. One thing I didn't care for was the one shot comics interspersed in the comic that have nothing to do with the story. Perhaps a seperate archive for those would be best, to not distract from the storyline? Something to think about. In closing, Flying Under The Influence is a very good comic and you could do worse than to check it out. I'm going to continue reading it, because I like Dariel as a character and I think you will too. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say you'll have a "Hell" of a time with FUI!

I give Flying Under The Influence:
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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Mini Review-Pick Of The Week: Crowfeathers...

Hi again everyone, I'm here with a sorta new feature, the pick of the week. Here I'll pick a great comic to mini review and let you all know about, if you don't already, and suggest that you give it a try. And away we go!

Crowfeathers is the story of Chase Corbeau, well, let's let Amy Watson, creator of said comic, tell it in her own words: Crowfeathers is the coming of age story of the legendary 1880's Arizona Territory bounty hunter, Chase Corbeau. A jinku child (half human/half harukulkuun, or nature spirit), he has more than his fair share of challenges in life. Plagued by nightmares, spirits of all kinds, the unpredictability of his genetic inheritance, witches out to destroy him, and slightly more mundane hardships, he is forced into adulthood before his time. However, he is never completely alone on his journey, and finds himself in the company of good friends from both the human and spirit worlds.

If you like very professional and dynamic manga-esque black and white art(I would love to see some color though, although it isn't screaming for it) and intricate well plotted out writing with twists and turns at every corner, then you'll like this comic. I've read a good portion of it, and it's an enjoyable experience with an original story and plenty of archives to pass the time with. Updating on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, and rated for ages 16 and up, you may find yourself eagerly awaiting that next page. This is one comic that is steadily climbing up the popularity charts, so why not get in on the groundfloor? I'm going to give Crowfeathers a chimp ranking of
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for a job well done and suggest you check it out when you get the chance. Read more webcomics!

Sunday, November 25, 2007


Hey everyone, it took me a few days to recover from getting my stomach pumped from too much bird on Thanksgiving, and that stuffing, oh man, that stuffing. Anyway, I have a great new fun contest cooking, and I'm sure you'll want to taste it. Here it is!

I know you all love to draw, so why not draw something and enter it into this contest? Okay, the jist. I want you all to check out the list of titles below. They are simply names of comics that could be. What I want is for you to pick a title, and create a brand new comic out of it! With the title you pick be sure to create brand new original characters and settings, not use the characters from one of your own comics. It can be a three panel gag, four panel, full page, any format you want. The most original, creative,and just plain best will win the contest! Simple, right? The contest starts now and ends on Dec. 24th, with the winner being announced on Christmas Day! That's right, you'll get an extra present that day by finding out if you won! What will you win? Well, a complete art set, which means pens, pencils, rulers, paper, notepads, and whatever else I can think of to throw in there, and if you have a webcomic of your own, you get a permanent banner on the site. Intrigued? Well, here are the titles:

Stick And Moove
Buttercup Sunrise
French Tickler
Cram Session
Apples And Oranges
Happy Go Lucky
Blood Simple
Chris Mess

There they are! Entries can be any size, for I will shrink them to what I need. By the way, you can enter as many as you want, of as many different titles as you want. Email entries to in Jpeg or Gif format under a subject name like "Contest Submission", and be sure and have the title you worked with in the comic or in the email. Now, get drawing, because I can't wait to see what all you talented people out there come up with!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Webcomic Burnout: Have YOU Experienced It?

I'm the first to admit I've felt the burn quite a few times in my three or four years in the webcomic game. There were(and still are)times when I didn't feel like doing ANYTHING, much less coming up with ideas, writing, and drawing new strips. I even went two weeks once not doing a new review on this site, which I've tried to avoid ever doing again, even though I've felt the hand of laziness gently caressing my shoulder every so often. What causes your burnout? Let's discuss..

Pretty much anything can cause someone to skip updates. Breaking up with a girlfriend, hospital stays or sickness in the family, you ate too much pizza last night, hangover, etc. Running out of ideas is a fairly regular one. Writers block can be devastating. You sit down to write out some ideas and BAM!, blank mind. You might think, "Man, what else can I say about these characters? Should I kill one off? Introduce new ones out of nowhere? Are they even worth continuing? Should I just start a new webcomic? AGGH!" Don't panic! One way to remedy this is to just give it a rest for a day or two, relax, and go about your daily life. This can go a long way toward rejuvenating you, and toward deciding whether this is something you want to continue or if you're writers block was just a small hiccup on the road of your comic. You have a job, right? Everyone needs a vacation from that, so why not from your comic?

After doing GothyMcgee(of which I actually took off around a year of doing it, shamefully), I wanted to get back into webcomics, but wasn't sure in what capacity. Then I started reading review sites, and even the one review I received of Gothy. I didn't care for the layout or ranking style of that site, and was pretty miffed. I decided that I could give my opinion too! It doesn't take much for me to get excited and start something new. I made a Blogger account and slapped up my very first roughshod review. Shaky as it was, it felt good to write and give what I hoped was a good review with constructive critiques of what was right and wrong with it, in my honest opinion. I felt great! I wasn't drawing and writing a comic, but I was still able to do something webcomic related and be a part of the community. That, in part, even got me energized enough that I changed Gothy to Difference Makers(until ComicGenesis malfunctioned, and I stopped again)for a bit, dropping the three panel gag format and making it a superhero storyline format. Since then, I've created TwoHeadsTalking, and just recently, Off Kilter Comics. I'm feeling better than ever writing, drawing, and sharing what I can do with all of you. Sometimes all you need is a change of direction to get your juices pumping again.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you need to change your comic at all to get recharged, those are just suggestions. You can always request guest comics to give you a week, two weeks, or even a month off to regain some sense of why you're doing this. You might read the guest strips and start feeling that need to create your own strip again. Other people can give you perspective on your characters and style of writing. Try it! If anything, it'll give you that break you may need.

If it's just plain laziness that you're feeling, then I don't really have any advice for you except if you really care about your comic, then you should push yourself to update for the fans. They depend on you, and the least you can do if you can't make yourself update is let them know you're taking a day or two off and when the next update will be. Be cordial. The fans are a big part of why we do this, aren't they?

In closing, you're not alone if you feel the burn. We all experience it, you just have to find a way to get past it, for yourself, the fans, the principal of the thing, you name it. Webcomics should be fun, and if you take that out of the equation, you'll definitely lose your spark. Do you have any stories of burnout and how you coped that you would like to share? Please, feel free, we would love to see them. Thanks for reading!


Sunday, November 18, 2007

New OFFICIAL Off Kilter Comics Site!

I know I've been beating you guys over the head with my new comics and what not, but I made a new site for Off Kilter Comics with the help of Myxo, owner of Somewhere In San Francisco, on ComicDish, a great place to put your comic up. It's much better than the other one I had up, so check it out and gimme a shout!

Friday, November 16, 2007

It's interview time once again!

Hey everyone, I've got here one heckuva interview with Kathy Peterson of Kidnapped By Gnomes, so tape open your eyelids and read on!

1. So, in the words of Jerry Seinfeld, what's the deal with these Gnomes? Why not Gremlins?

I suppose they do kind of look like Gremlins don't they? But to me the whole point of fantasy is that it can be anything you want it to be. People forget that before J.R. Tolkien came around there was no one definition of what a dwarf or elf was. He created this fantastic new world and filled it with creatures how he personally saw them to be. Unfortunately, 99% of fantasy since then has simply followed his lead and dwarfs are always beer drinking metal workers and elves are always beautiful, tall, and wise. I'd argue that the only fantasy novels since The Lord of the Rings to have wide stream appeal outside of the core fantasy audience is J.K. Rowling and the Harry Potter books. Not surprisingly, the Harry Potter books have also created
this brand new world with house elves, quidditch, and goblin bankers that no one has ever done before. Now I don't want to compare myself to either Tolkien or Rowling (as they are both way better writers than I will ever be) or criticize all fantasy (I like beer drinking dwarfs as much as anyone), but I wanted my gnomes to be how *I* imagined them to be, not how anyone else told me they should be. What's the point
of fantasy if it can't be anything you want?

2. I noticed many comics and references to politics. Who are you pulling for in the presidential race, and will you be using this as a source of humor in your comic?

I can already tell this is going to get me in trouble :) From my comics it's probably pretty obvious I'm a liberal, but I try to keep my exact support a bit secret. I've never voted for a Republican president, but I actually kind of like McCain on the Republican side. He's one of the few candidates to stand up and say that torture is100% wrong all of the time and I really respect him for that. It's
absolutely unfathomable to me that as a country we are even debating whether or not torture is ok. I don't agree with McCain on everything, but I think he'd be a fine president. As for the rest of the Republicans, I'm seriously worried about what would happen if any of them were to win the election. On the Democratic side, none of the top three (Hillary, Barack, Edwards) have really impressed me all that
much. I kind of like Bill Richardson but he hasn't won me over yet.

As for using the race in the comic, it will definitely show up, but probably nothing specific. I try to keep the political comics somewhat vague because I want them to still be funny several years from now. The one exception to this is the "Pandora's Box of Political Lies" which is when I allow myself to blatantly make fun of the hypocrisy and absurdness of the day.

I am however debating whether or not I want to do a running set of comics where Ed runs for president, but we'll see...

3. What artistic tools do you use to create your comic?

I draw out all the comics by hand with paper and pencil. I then scan them into my computer where I ink and color them digitally using a Wacom tablet and the Gimp. For anyone just started to use a Wacom tablet the trick is to zoom in as far as possible. I then arrange everything and add the panels and text before scaling it down to the
correct size. Note: it's really important to add everything before scaling the image! If you shrink everything down before adding the text and panels, your resolution won't be high enough for printing. As my readers know, I recently had to go back and reformat my first 80+ comics to get them ready for printing. Trust me, it's not something you ever want to do.

Recently, I've also been trying to add backgrounds to every single comic, and those I'll sometimes draw out before hand on pencil and paper, but most of the time I do them purely digitally. After I have everything else positioned on the screen, I'll add a sketching layer and sketch out how I want the background to look. Then I'll add a layer on top of that and use the "Curve" tool to get really nice and smooth lines for the background. Part of the problem with doing backgrounds with say the "Pen" or "Paintbrush" tool, is that if you zoom in to get smooth lines you have to constantly pick up your pen to move the screen over. Then when you try and continue that line, it never quite lines up. Therefore I've found the Curve tool works great
for backgrounds.

4. How and where do you come up with the ideas for KBG?

I listen to NPR way too much, and every time I hear a politician or government figure say something absurd, I try and imagine how Ed and Wilson would view that topic and just let their personalites run wild with it. Other times, I just write comics about what's happening to me in my life. For example I hurt my back awhile ago and did a comic about that. More recently I did a comic about my frustrationswith self-checkout lanes at the grocery store. My third source of inspiration is my Cat. In particular the fact that Ed and Wilson are always waking me up at 3 to 5 in morning or getting into some sort of mischief at my expense.

I'd love to talk to other cartoonist about this, but in my head Ed and Wilson are completely real. Therefore I just try and let them run wild with a basic concept and hopefully it works out.

5. What's the last good movie you've seen?

V for Vendetta. I liked what it had to say about politics and being true to yourself. However, I almost died laughing at SuperBad.

6. Do you let your friends read your comic, and what do they think?

Of course! My friend Sam actually proofs reads them for me so that she can see them 3 weeks before anyone else. As for the rest of my friends, they all know I do the comic but I try not harass them about reading it because I know none of them are really "comic people". However from time to time people will mention a comic they found particularly funny so I know that most of them actually read it. Recently I was surprised when a close friend who I didn't think read the comic mentioned one he liked.

7. If you could do a crossover with any other webcomic, which would it be and why?

Scary-Go-Round. I think Ed and Wilson's lack of commonsense and propensity for mischief would make them eager participants in any of Shelly Winters misadventures.

8. Who are your main influences?

Bloom County and Count Your Sheep. Growing up I loved reading Bloom County, even though I was too young to get most of the political humor. I just liked the zaniness of it all as a kid. Having reread a lot of it, I also like how the political humor is more about the absurdness of politics then about specific events, which is something I try to capture in my strip.

Count Your Sheep, I love it for the simplistic yet beautiful artwork and the sweetness of it. When I started my strip I specifically decided to try and never come off as snarky, bitter, or mean. Politics is too divisive as is, and the last thing anyone needs is another jerk yelling about how everyone else is wrong and they have all the answers. So in the vain of CYS, I wanted it to be light hearted enough that anyone could enjoy it. I realize I may not have always achieved that goal, but that's at least what I'm trying for.

9. Pizza or lasagna?

Pizza. But no olives and no mushrooms.

10.Thanks for answering these soul-wrenching questions! One last thing, tell us why we should check out Kidnapped By Gnomes.

If for nothing else, you should check out Kidnapped by Gnomes because it's aways there and it's always on time. There's nothing worse than an erratic update schedule and I pride myself on the fact that when my readers check in on Mondays and Thursdays there will always be a new comic up.

Great interview, and as always, thanks for reading!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

New Review: Tourist Trap U.S.A...

I've stayed in a couple of hotels in my day, but never really had any problems with the staff. I suppose they do tire of people like us that they have to be nice to and clean up after. Tourist Trap U.S.A., by Anthony Hunter, is about the staff of a time share resort/hotel and the tourists they deal with on a daily basis. It comes to you every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and every other Sunday.

The art for Tourist Trap isn't bad, as the characters are easily distinguishable in their work uniforms and the comic as a whole is drawn neatly and without a blemish. The problem is that it's so sharp and sterile as to be a little bit boring. There isn't anything exciting about the art, as it seems to be somewhat cut and paste, with the only thing different sometimes is a raised eyebrow here and a frown instead of a smile there. The colors are almost always baby blue and white, which grates on the eyes after a while. Liven things up a bit! I don't think I saw a bit of black or shading in all the strips I read. I know it's his style, but a little black goes a long way. I also found that I liked the characters that popped up once and awhile better because they seem to be drawn more cartoon like and with other colors. But maybe that's just me. Anthony does employ some sparse backgrounds, and that's much better than half the comics out there that don't use any. Not bad, but a little extra detail in the artwork would make the visuals stand out more.

Writing-wise there seems to be plenty of source material when talking about bad guests in the hotel, with their constant complaints and needs. The punchlines are in every strip, and many of them are quite good, but the constant, and I do mean CONSTANT references to things such as Star Wars and Heroes got tired after so many reads. I like geekdom as much as the next guy, but it can't seem to decide if it's about tourists or gamers. I suppose they can coexist if the right balance is stricken. Besides that though the writing is solid with the characters having their own identities and the strips being entertaining without beating you over the head with attempted slapstick comedy. I would however like to see the characters step out of the hotel sometimes and show what they like to do outside of their jobs, as everyone has more to them than their 9 to 5.

Tourist Trap U.S.A., to me, had this average feel to it. Not the best, but not the worst. I wanted to like it more than I did, but the bland feel to it, whether it was the boredom that the characters exuded or the two or three color palette used, kept me enjoying it completely. Good for an occasional read, but I don't think I'll be bookmarking it. I guess it wouldn't hurt to check in, but you might have trouble deciding whether you want to stay or check out early.

I give Tourist Trap U.S.A.
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(For not bad art and kinda enjoyable jokes)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

ANOTHER new comic by me? Ahem...

Seems I'm not content having Webcomic Asylum, Two Heads Talking, and GothyMcgee! I went and created another comic, this time called Off Kilter Comics. It's basically all the stuff that won't fit into one of the above sites, and by all the stuff that won't fit, I mean all the crazy stuff about superheroes, doctors, celebs, commercials, games, random acts of violence, and just whatever else I can think of in a few minutes time. Check it out at the bottom of the page and go to the site three times a week for new comics!

Monday, November 12, 2007

New Review: World's Worst Webcomic...

Ahem, before I begin, let me just say that you should go ahead and look at the title of this comic one more time before reading the review. Take a sec to think about what that means. Okay, ready? Let's do this..

World's Worst Webcomic is an abomination by design created by EvilCouch, and it is a continuity challenged gag comic(I think?) that has the characters of EvilCouch and Sacarasc doing battle with whatever comes around and themselves in crazily scribble alternate dimensions or something. I'm confused. The comic takes a bit of a mature slant, not in content really, but more in use of the f-bomb. Updates are, supposedly, five times a week, but it hasn't been very consistent as of late. Onward!

I'm going to just go ahead and jumble the art and story part of the review together, because there isn't a lot to wrap your head around here. Artwise you could crazy glue a crayon in a guppies mouth and have him flop around on a sheet of paper and get basically the same effect. Stick figures have never looked worse! Seriously, the comic is going for awful and it delivers every time, so that's a success unto itself. The jokes aren't really jokes, just crazy nonsense formed into sentences. And yet, I found myself enjoying some of it. What? Hey, World's Worst Webcomic here, folks. It's meant to be bad, and bad it is, but on purpose. It's so bad, in fact, that it's funny. I even spotted a Bruce Campbell reference in there, and anything that mentions Ash can't be horrible. I like the thought of EvilCouch coming home, turning on his computer, thinking for a second, "Hey, mashed potatoes are funny!" and five minutes later, putting up a new comic. I'll bet tons of webcomic creators would like to do that sometimes, right?

I kept it short because there is no story, no real jokes to gush over, and no constructive criticism to offer, because it's meant to be exactly as it is. What could I say, make it even worse? This made it difficult to give a rating to WWWC. What do I base my review on? EvilCouch went and made a horrendous comic, but by doing so, stands out from the crowd. So, can it truly be called the World's Worst Webcomic? Hmm....Apparently he hasn't seen Solipsism....

I give World's Worst Webcomic...
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(For being just crazy enough to work)
(What do you think, was this the world's worst review?)

Interview Time!

What? Another interview so soon? And of a comic we haven't reviewed yet? In the spirit of doing something oh so wrong, here is terrible interview with World's Worst Webcomic creator, EvilCouch. What's wrong about it? The interview is up before the comic review! Look for it tomorrow. But for now, melt your brain with question and answer fury!

1. Thanks for doing this, because otherwise I would have had to put up pics of me before and after drinking an entire bottle of vodka. With that said, tell us about your comic, WWWC.

It's the World's Worst WebComic and it's an ancient curse that I found during one of the archaeological digs that I had my minions on. It dates back to Ancient Sumeria and was the cause of the Tower of Babylon myth which resulted in the complete collapse of the singular language system that at one point unified humanity. It is my belief that through the application of the Enki nam-shub in reverse, all affected humans will have their higher order language knowledge disrupted and supplanted by the original primordial language and be completed enmeshed in its more direct hold on the human brain.

The reason why I'm telling you this, is because you're already infected and your knowledge of it will actually impede in any possible defense against it.

2. When you started it, what were you thinking?

I began writing and drawing WWWC because while there was a glut of poorly written and illustrated comics out there, no one had the balls actually call themselves the World's worst and stick to their guns about it. Several people called themselves by the name, but lost their motivation along the way and either ended their projects after only a handful of strips or simply stopped believing in the awfulness of the comic and instead "moved on".

3. What other projects do you have currently or in the pipeline?

I'm currently writing several comics for various projects, both online and in print, mostly collaborating with Hope Hooper of Wynd of Change. We're entering the Zuda Comics competition sponsored by DC Comics with a project called Affinity. I'm also currently participating in the National Novel Writing Month competition with a novel of my own devising called Cyclopean Highway. There's a few other comics that'll get made sooner or later and I have a fistful of other projects on the back burner, such as rewriting the Chinese equivalent of the Iliad, The Romance of the Three Kingdoms into contemporary English, as it's even more difficult for modern audiences to read than anything written by Grecian bards. Oh, and there's also the whole taking the world over thing that I'm in the middle of.

4. Describe your style.

My style is mostly blunt trauma of words. After they've been properly brutalized, I pack them into a steel drum and then run air at very high pressure through the drum, creating a sort of sand or bead blasting technique. Also, I draw like a toddler who's had his bottle replaced by espresso.

5. What do you feel about the ongoing violence in Iraq and the repercussions on gas prices here in the states?

I actually took place in the violence in Iraq from early summer 2004 to late summer 2005. It's pretty sad that we invaded them. The US interests would have been much better served by continuing to use the Food for Oil program to maintain petroleum imports at pennies on the dollar. By treating them like a real country, we really squandered a great opportunity to have a slave country/colony. With an almost universally reviled dictator at the helm of Iraq, we could really rule by proxy and establish virtually any sort of rules that they would have little choice but to abide by. In a very real way, invading Iraq was more humanitarian than leaving them the way they were.

Also, your mom's fat.

6. Sorry bout that last one. What tools of the trade do you use to create your masterpiece?

I use the GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP to do my bidding. Early WWWC strips were drawn with a trackball. More current strips are mostly drawn with a Wacom Intous 3 tablet. Any special effects that I can't do inside of GIMP are done with Particle Magic, which is a particle effects generator that I started using when I was doing machinima.

7. If you could do a crossover with any other webcomic, which would it be and why?

I don't know that there's really a webcomic that could truly work synergistically with the ocular horror that is WWWC. A comic that focuses on its art would probably the best bet to really capitalize on the stark contrast of the two art styles. Something like Inverlock or whatever the new one by the same artist is. Or perhaps a well-drawn comic that I actually read, like Marsh Rocket.

8. About how much time per day/week do you spend on WWWC?

The more simplistic comics take about 2-3 minutes to think of something to draw and then about the same amount to actually get it done. More complex strips, like the puzzle's saga, which involved a lot of special effects can take an hour or two, simply because there's so much tweaking that goes into rendering particle effects to make look like what I want them to.

9. Any advice for budding webcomickers out there?

My suggestion to anyone wanting to make a comic is to draw something. If you like it, keep doing it. If you don't, do something else. If you end up creating something that you enjoy doing, don't bullshit yourself and take whatever criticism you get. If you're creating the one millionth Penny Arcade rip-off, you'll win a prize, simply by virtue of being that far removed from your source material. The prize will be the undying hatred of everyone else that has every picked up a drawing instrument and the every lasting embrace of obscurity, because you will never ever stand out.

That said, if you really like doing it, fuck it. You shouldn't be in this hobby if you don't like doing it. You should have utterly no blinders on. You can take criticism to create something better, but you should never start doing something that you cannot stand, simply for the sake of allowing yourself to stand out. If you like what you're doing and actually believe in your project, then you'll keep doing it and it'll be a source of great fun. Your love will show through your work.

10. One last thing: why should people peruse WWWC?

Everyone should gaze upon World's Worst WebComic, because in the future, it will be required by my Imperial decree, so you might as well get caught up now.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Chimpy has a smiiiiley!

Hey everyone, just a small update for today. Michelle from BitMapWorld made a smiley character of Chimpy, which I think is really cool. Check it out here, and be ready for new reviews coming soon!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

A Werewolf Story...

First new review post-Halloween! This time it's for A Werewolf Story. Fred Monasterio brings us this tale of a young fellow named Jack, who it looks like is going to be having some difficulties in the werewolf arena later on when the comic gets into full swing. He's accompanied in the story by his girlfriend Claire and good beer-named friend Guinness. The site doesn't tell when the comic updates, but I deduced that it's on a once a week schedule. Read on!

First off the art is dynamic, crispy clean, and one of the better styles I've been witness to in my webcomic reading and reviewing days. I'm reminded of my anime watching days, particularly of the Street Fighter movie I watched a few years back, with all of the big muscles, big feet, and sharp and flowing hair. Quite cool as I was always fond of that style. Very detailed and pleasing to the eye, as is the coloring. The pages are vibrant and nicely colored, but after a while started to make my eyes ache a little with the polished metal sheen to them. It's a minor quibble though, as it is still miles above many other comics out there. You can tell Fred puts a lot of time and effort into producing quality work on every page.

Some writers attempt, pretty weakly, to have realistic dialogue between characters but just come off sounding stilted and wooden. Not so here. While it still has that comic book taste to it, I really liked the interchange between Jack, Claire and Guinness. It was believable and written without being contrived. I've seen mainstream comics that didn't achieve this so well. The comic is taking a bit of time to get to the story, but it didn't drag and kept me interested long enough to get to the meat, which is where it's just started to go. I would like to know a little more about Jack though. Forty pages and all I really know is that he works with computers and has a girlfriend. But I'm sure with a little more time things will pan out.

A Werewolf Story is cementing itself as a top tier comic early on in my opinion. Great writing and dynamic artwork and coloring that look like an Image comic book give Fred something to be proud of. Anyone should be able to check it out and find something to enjoy, and with it not having any swearing or, so far, any over the top violence, can be a real all ages crowd pleaser. Read it!

I give A Werewolf Story...
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(For excellent art, nice coloring, and solid writing)