Tuesday, May 29, 2007


Comics which feature talking animals as the main characters always make me wonder what is going on in the creator's mind. Do they have an animal fetish? Is it difficult for them to draw humans, but easy to draw dogs, cats, bears, etc. who walk upright? Or do they just enjoy focusing on animals instead? Hm. Antibunny, created by Vincent Davis, features said talking creatures, this time bunnies, who live in a place called Gritty City. Updates come every Monday.

I've read many webcomics in my day, well, lately anyway, and I've come to observe that quite a few have this sterile, overly produced look to them. No mistakes, not even little ones like a line that goes slightly outside the panel, or a small coloring boo-boo, things that show that this is a hand-drawn piece of art. Nothing against comics done entirely on computer, I just like my pens and pencils. Antibunny, however, and from what I was able to read(after the first chapter it said "file not found" or something to that effect, and I went to today's comic and clicked back, and found the same message) is a bit UNDERproduced. It almost looks like an unfinished product. I don't think it's even inked, from what I can tell. That would definitely improve the art many times over. Also shading the entire comic with a pencil gives it a pretty sloppy look, not an artsy one. The art would look much cleaner inked and without all that unnecessary shading. A little darkness goes a long way! The characters themselves are likable enough, but could be a little more distinct. I guess all bunnies pretty much look alike though, right? Maybe throw in some other animals. A goose or crocodile or something could make things more interesting.

The writing is another thing that could use some work, as the story was pretty basic and didn't introduce me to the characters in a way that would make me want to read more. All I really got from it was that Pooky (the main character) is angry and hates everything, but why, I don't have a clue. Maybe because he's a bunny, and it's tough for them in the city. It needs to be clarified who he is and why he's there and what he does, etc. The storyline of chapter one wasn't really a story, but more of a couple of events that went nowhere. These could be some really interesting characters with a little more time taken on giving them personalities and some focus to the storylines. There is a nice setup here, now it needs to be followed through.

Antibunny has quite a few problems that could be worked out pretty easily with a few tweaks to the art and some filling out of the characters. With that being said, I WAS only able to read the first storyline and the last comic, and I know some people will object to my review on that basis. I wanted to review it because it's been on the backburner for some time. I did notice that the newest comic had some improvements in the art. Keep improving and maybe this will become a comic to look into.

I give this comic...

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Scene Language...

I remember days gone by when I would hang out downtown with my friends, riding bikes and doing tricks, going to The Velvet Elvis(local dive bar with lots of rock shows), and drinking cheap beer. I also remember struggling to get out from under my parents iron fists. Scene Language reminds me of those days. Written and drawn by Corie Marie, the comic follows the day to day comings and goings of a group of not-so-enthusiastic young people coping with the present, all the while struggling with the fast approaching future that is adulthood. Updates Monday thru Friday.

This comic has a great art style that I can't say I've seen before. The characters have a sort of doughy look to them that I find pleasant for some odd reason. The backgrounds are also well drawn with nice little touches here and there. Corie cuts no corners as far as I can tell. I did like the overall look of Book 1 more than Book 2 however, as the coloring is much brighter and Book 2 looks like it's a comic book that has been scanned in and the images not sharpened, resulting in a dull drab look. Overall though the art is very nice and the I did love the coloring job done in Book 1.

I always find it odd when a comic is drawn in a cartoony style, yet is written as a drama. It just doesn't fit well to me. Not to say Scene Language is total soap opera, but it leans pretty heavily toward it. There is humor, but it is downplayed to focus on the relationships and real life situations, which the writer has a talent for displaying. I've dealt with one or two of these things myself, so I was able to relate, which is always good for the reader. I just can't help but wish there was more humor to go with the art style though.

I recommend Scene Language for anyone out there who is struggling with finding themselves and going though ups and downs in their relationships, etc. Corie Marie finds humor in these things and maybe it will help you in some way, who knows? A good comic that will remind you of those nights when you had one too many shots and maybe cheated on your girlfriend and then tried to cover it up all while trying to get your band signed to a label......

I give this comic...
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Monday, May 21, 2007

Back from the dead!

Hey, sorry I've been away but my computer must have been full of tiny devious chimps, intent on my destruction. I have the bugs, or chimps, worked out now and can safely return to my webcomic reading and reviewing. Thanks to all those who were patient and kept checking out the site, and welcome to any and all new readers. The new reviews and interviews will begin again soon! Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!-Jack

Friday, May 11, 2007

Interview time once more!

Hey everybody, just stopping in to drop off another juicy interview, this time with Zoology creator Nathan Birch. Digging into the brains of fellow webcomic geniuses always gets me excited, but not in an icky way. Read on!

1. I know it may seem obvious, but tell the readers out there what the title Zoology means to you.
- Before Zoology I briefly did a comic that starred Baker and Shandy as it's sole characters. That comic was a flop creatively and a lot of what I did with Zoology in the early days was a direct reaction to the failure of my earlier comic. The name of that earlier comic was "Of Monkeys and Mutton". Seemed kind of clever at the time, but I almost immediately started hating it...it was just way too cutesy. I was embarrassed to even tell people about the comic because of the lousy name, so with my new comic I wanted to go with something super short, simple and straightforward. I originally named it "The Zoo", but within about a week I got an email from some guy who already had a comic named The Zoo, so I had to change it and went with "Zoology". There's no real deeper meaning to the name...I like it because I can repeat it without feeling embarrassed.

2. What was your motivation for doing a webcomic? And why a zoo?
- I've wanted to draw comics since I was a wee tot. One of my dad's friends bought me a number of subscriptions to classic Gemstone Disney comics when I was very young. Each month I got Donald Duck, Uncle Scrooge and Mickey Mouse stories by great guys like Carl Barks and Don Rosa. I should mention I got these comics before I could even read, so I just looked at the pictures and made up my own stories in my head. Later I went back and actually read them and it was amazing how close the actual stories were to the ones I had made up in my head...that's how you know quality cartooning! Anyways, pretty much ever since then I've been interested in cartooning.

As for why a Zoo, we gotta go back to the old "Monkeys and Mutton" comic again. It was basically a concept comic where the entire thing revolved around only two characters... a sheep and monkey who are best friends but are separated by a wall they can never cross. Unfortunately the concept was too limiting and I only managed to make about 20 strips before I quit. So for Zoology I wanted to bring back Shandy and Baker, but I also wanted a much larger cast so that my writing would be far less restricted. Setting the strip in a Zoo allows me to play with an unlimited number of characters, and since they're split up into different cages and whatnot Zoology basically becomes a number of different comics within a comic. You've got Shandy and Baker, the Octopuses, Ernest, the Zookeepers and more...each falls under the Zoology banner, but is more or less independent and focuses on unique themes and humor.

3. Are any characters in Zoology based on real life people or animals?
- It's a big jumble of stuff. Some are directly based on people I know, some are purely made up, and a bunch are basically facets of my personality turned into funny animals. The newest Zoology character, Zag the Turtle, was inspired by own pet turtle who died recently after being with us for over 20 years.

4. About how much time do you spend on the comic per day/week and describe your creative process.
- I figure it takes between 4 and 6 hours to create a typical Zoology strip (not counting the time I take mulling ideas for strips over in my head). Multiply that by 3 for how much time I spend in a week.

Oh, and as for my creative process it goes something like this...procrastination, procrastination, procrastination, start working on comic at last minute at 2 in the morning, finish comic and sleep.

5. Who are the biggest influences on your work?
- Jeez, I don't know...there's so many. I've gone through a million phases when it comes to what I was trying to emulate in my art. First it was the Disney comics, then it was traditional superhero comics (specifically Superman and Batman), then it was a lot of really wonky stylized superhero comics, then it was Manga, then it was classic (and a few select modern) cartoons and now it's a mix of a ton of stuff. I haven't specifically tried to emulate or copy anyone in a long time though...my influences are working on a purely subconscious level now.

6. If you could do a crossover with any other webcomic, which would it be and why?
- Penny Arcade for the sweet sweet hits. Wapsi Square because Paul Taylor draws the cutest girls ever and I want him to draw Shandy. Really though I don't have much interest in crossovers. I'm pretty damn anal and controlling by nature and wouldn't want to let my characters out of my hands. It could be the funniest, best-drawn strip in the world and I'd just be thinking "but...he/she would never say *that*".

Thanks for taking the time out of you busy schedule to answer these most scintillating questions. One more thing. Why should readers check out Zoology?
- Because Baker, Shandy, Angsty and the rest would be happy if you did! The strip is really all about character...I'm not trying to offend or shock, I'm not up on the soapbox preaching or trying to hit you over the head with boobs and violence...I'm just telling fun little relatable stories staring characters who, if they weren't animals, would be the kind of good likeable people you wouldn't mind hanging out with yourself. It may not be the flashiest strip on the out there, but if you give it a shot there's a good chance you may like it (I haven't recieved any hate mail yet, so I must be doing something right!).

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Monday, May 7, 2007

Bug Report...

Bug Report is a humor comic about gremlins who secretly work at a place called Haywire, Inc., a company that gets paid by big corporations to sabotage other corporations technology and equipment. Sound confusing? It really isn't. Bug Report updates on Mondays and Thursdays. The writer/artist is Mike Mann.

I've seen comics featuring demons and imps and such before, but this one has a unique look to it. The color scheme coupled with the nice fluid art style was a new experience for me, and I liked it, but it once or twice it was hard to follow. Example: it took me two reads to understand what happened in this strip. But overall the character designs are cool and the coloring job is very professional, which I guess I should expect from a guy with a degree in Graphic Design.

The writing is good, with the characters having pretty distinct personalities, but the jokes didn't make me laugh, only smirk. But to be fair, I rarely laugh out loud at comics that I read, I just thought that these could have been a bit funnier. What I mean to say is that these are gremlins and demons and such, yet they seem like normal everyday humans. Let's see some crazy gremlin humor! Now, I don't exactly know what crazy gremlin humor would be like, but that's the fun of it. You could do anything with these characters, and we couldn't say "they wouldn't do that". Am I making sense? I don't even know anymore....

Bug Report is a fairly new comic, actually it's a VERY new comic, so I can't pick it apart, so I'll just say it's a good start and can only get better from here. It's a well put together comic with a nice website, good art and not bad writing. I'll give it a more thorough look-see once it's got a nice archive behind it. What does the future hold? Only time will tell...

I give this comic...
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Sunday, May 6, 2007


Annihilicious, created by Andrey Pissantchev, is random humor of the wacky variety. Characters include Harry the Homophobe and Lil' Possession Johnny. I couldn't put up a pic of the comic due to the format, so here's a link to a sample comic. I'll bet it's already piqued your interest, hasn't it? Updates are every Monday.

The art here is perfectly suited for the jokes. Oddball humor abounds and oddball art fits it like O.J. Simpson's bloody glove. Wait. Scratch that. It fits like Michael Jacksons white studded glove. It does have a slight amateur feel to it, but that's a good thing in this case because the randomness is helped by it. The coloring looks really good too and helps by covering up empty backgrounds in some cases.

The jokes occasionally are kinda lame but most are pretty funny, such as the flower salesmen with Tourette's. I don't really enjoy the current small storyline that's going on, but nobody can be on point all of the time. Maybe fleshing out some of the current characters, such as Pierce Steele. Heck, make the whole comic about him! He's a cool character that I would like to see more of.

Annihilicous is a solid comic if you like humor that is sometimes ridiculous but for the most part funny, with decent art and writing. Take a look and decide for yourself if this is the kind of humor you go for.

I give this comic...
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Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Interview time!

It's time for a new interview! This week The Nineteenth Century Industrialist's Renee Katz stops by to let us into her head. Enjoy!

1. So I was wondering, why a nineteenth-century industrialist? Could you explain your motivation for doing a comic of this nature?
Because I love the nineteenth-century industrialists and all the stigmas around them, so it seemed obvious to me to make a webcomic about a fictional "robber baron." I wanted to pick an idea and a character I wouldn't easily get bored with.

2. Are any of the characters in your comic based on people in your real life?
None of the characters are based on people I know. Mr. Thorpe is obviously based on the notorious Victorian capitalists and factory-owners, Grimey is an archetype of a factory worker, Colonel Earth is a parody of Captain Planet - my characters are
based on stereotypes and abstractions rather than people.

3. Take us through a comic creating day in your life. How much time do you take on writing and drawing and do you ever find yourself not being able to make time for it?
During the work week, I go to work for eight hours, come home, and basically the rest of the time is spent on the comic - either writing or drawing it. On my days off, I don't do any of the things a normal 21-year-old girl would do - I write and draw comics! As for making time for it, well, I wish I could do this as my career, but nonetheless I always make time for it, because it's important to me.

4. Did you or do you have another comic that you worked on or are working on?
No. I have basic concepts floating around in my head for other projects, but I don't think any of them are going to come to fruition anytime soon.

5. Who are the greatest influences on your style?
On my art style, I'd have to say Jhonen Vasquez, John K (Ren & Stimpy), Kyle Carrozza (Moobeard the Cow Pirate), and the old Warner Brothers toons.

As for my style of writing, probably Stephen Notley (Bob the Angry Flower), Schmorky (Purple Pussy), KC Green (Cat! and Droop) and Vasquez again. These are what I consider the big ones. But I can't say for sure - I read/watch alot of cartoons!

6. If you could crossover your comic with any other webcomic, which would it be and why?
I'd like to do one with Cat! even though KC doesn't do it anymore. It'd be easy and fun to make an episode for Cat! and I'd love to see his take on my characters.

Well, thanks for taking the time to do this short interview. One more thing. Tell all the readers out there why they should check out your comic.
People should not only check out my comic, they also should subscribe to/bookmark it because it isn't going away anytime soon; updating is very consistent and reliable; it doesn't suck; and it's only going to get better! This is what I want to do for the rest of my life.

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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Bear and Kitten...

Ren and Stimpy. Cow and Chicken. Milk and Cheese. And now Bear and Kitten! Conceived by two people
who don't reveal their names but go by Bear and Kitten in the news section, the
comic has odd humor centered around these two characters. It's very early in it's run, so there are only ten strips up as of this review. Updates are on a Wednesday/Sunday biweekly update schedule.

It's good to see a comic with a unique art style such as this one. You might even say they are slightly surreal. The comic's themselves are set against a stark white background that is the website. I do find it a bit strange though that there is so much unused space on the site. This leaves a large area around the rather small comic, and it feels almost wasteful. The characters themselves are cute, even when bloodily eating a rabbit, or having spiders burst out of a sore. I know, weird right? Subdued colors work here as well, because the comic doesn't have a happy wacky colorful world feel.

The writing however is hard to explain. The jokes don't really come across as jokes to me. That is to say that I don't really find them funny, but I'm not even sure if that's what they are trying to accomplish. Take this particular strip. Is it funny because a bear and cat riding bikes is funny, or is it that kitten has a protective helmet on and gives bear a little hat that won't help at all in an accident? Am I just thinking too much? I don't understand. Most of the jokes are like that, so it makes it hard to say whether the writing is good or not. If I knew what they were going for it would be easier to say. I get a bit of black humor from the writing, but more black than humor. I guess what I'm getting at is if it's supposed to be funny, it should be funny without having to be explained.

When I was finished reading Bear and Kitten I was left with a sense of wanting. I really liked the art for it's sense of uniqueness. I enjoyed the setup of a bear and a cat sharing an apartment and living fairly normal humanlike lives. I did however have issues with the writing, as I didn't understand what the point was. A better sense of where they are going with the comic would make for a much more enjoyable experience. Cute, in a dark and uncomfortable sort of way.

I give this comic...
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