The webcomics blog about webcomics

This Is Dumb

It’s nice when Ryan North does my work for me. I can sip my morning coffee, squint through my hangover and have a steaming goblet of web comics news sitting right there in my inbox waiting for me. Thanks Ryan.

So anyway, the good Mr North was point us bitter, haggard wordbeasts in the direction of For Better or For Worse – where Lynn has started to “animate” the comics. I’m all for that sort of thing. I’m a big Homestar Runner fan. I loved the Dilbert cartoon. I like most things animated/internet/comic related, but a character blinking in a panel or two is not an animated comic.

Maybe I’m being a little harsh, but when you read a piece of sequential art you have to read it in order to experience it fully. This is quite difficult to do when your eye is constantly being drawn to some sort of movement in the upcoming panels. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if the movement was something exciting, but it isn’t. It’s blinking.

It’s probably one of the stupidest ideas ever.

The blinking actually reminds you how *static* the rest of the panel is. It does nothing to preserve the suspension of disbelief. It’s distracting. It’s pointless.

It’s SO stupid.

How Stupid Is It?

Pretty damn stupid!

Approximately three units of stupidity.

Today wasn’t blinking! So HA!

Today was, um…making the “bad word” symbols blink.

Orneryboy had some recent animated comics that were enjoyable, made a nice climax to the current storyline. But they were full panels, and were in comics with very little text (except for the last one).

You can always hit the little stop buttons to stop them from blinking, I suppose. But I completely agree. The first time I saw them blinking a few weeks ago, I just rolled my eyes.

Lynn Johnston entered the “modern age” in the worst way possible.

The best way possible? Garfield. He has a FULL archive all the way back to the first comics Davis ever drew in the 80s. Now THAT is cool. Too bad I don’t care to read any of them.

correction… the 70s. Garfield started in the 70s. Like most terrible things.

permit me one more: Orneryboy animations were on another level. That comic has so much movement in the feeling of the comic already that the animation WORKED on those strips.

For Better, on the other hand, has more of a feel like “moments” in time… paintings almost. The feeling is beautiful, subtle. Like the artwork. Why the animations, which are really cheesy, need to be there to spoil that effect of timelessness is beyond me.

NOW, if they can only get some of those comics to just completely BLINK off of the goddamn comics page, we’d be onto something.

I’m surprised she hasn’t started making them flash like those annoying advertisements you see everywhere.


You’re missing the point. The reason that this is news is that it confirms that FBORFW is now a webcomic which happens to run in newspapers, rather than the other way around.


My wife is a big fan of FBofW, and even she thinks that the animations are king dumb.

You underestimate Lynn Johnston – the goal of the blinking eyes is merely to send the readers spirally down into the inky black maw of madness.

I can’t really hate it, persay – its like a kid discovered a nifty new toy, and simply has to play with it, even when doing so is entirely inappropriate.

But man does it look dumb.

Ryan North did not sufficiently prepare me for the terrars involved in looking at that. I feel as if I’ve gazed upon some sort of blinking Cthulhu.

Oh, please.

Think back to the first time you lot ever started messing around with “web stuff” — I don’t mean the first time someone ever set up a cool feature for you, but the first time *you* ever tried to do something web-specific on your own. I’ll imagine, by and large, it was equally minor and probably annoying to at least two or three people. The only difference was that I imagine none of you were actually making money off it at the time.

I suppose we’ve all become too sophisticated to appreciate this for what it is — someone taking her first steps in a different medium — but even so, this reaction seems over the top.

Well, it’s hardly Lynn’s “first steps in a different medium” – FBoFW has been online for years, and their website is really complete. If you look on the site, she’s got a whole team working on the strip, including one person just in charge of the website.

Anyway! I’m not making fun of FBoFW (it’s a comic I respect), but we are having fun with the jarringly bad animation.

What I want to know is, did they introduce this before or after Alfred of Goats started flickering?

Sure, Christopher… we can all think back to when we first started messing with Web Stuff. But Lynn has professionals in multiple fields at her disposal — including some great web-designers, as the slick layout of her site shows. Certainly SOMEBODY could have pointed out how silly and/or ugly the blinking eyes were.

Sadly, there is a poll up, and people who like the animations outnumber people who don’t by more than 2:1. It’s possible the only people who hate this are artists…

RSS feed for comments on this post.