The webcomics blog about webcomics

WCCA 2007

So the new WCCA nominations have hit, and one may notice a few changes over years past:

  1. Per Mark Mekkes’s report a month or so back, the genre categories remain, but fourth-tier categories for next year are up for nomination.
  2. The voting round will continue until 11 February, with winners announced on 19 February; this is not only a compressed schedule compared to last year (with nine full weeks between preliminary nominations and final winners), it’s much earlier in the year. Recall that last year, the awards weren’t announced until more than halfway through the year, which probably lessened their impact a great deal.

All that being said, what’s an award without some Whaaa moments? I mean, seriously, Best Adapted Screenplay? Similarly, some headscratchers at the WCCAs:

  • I thought it slightly odd that A Lesson Is Learned … is nominated for Outstanding Layout despite being officially on hiatus for fully a third of the year and having released a total of seven comics in 2006 (and none after May). But they are very good comics, it is a very nice layout, and the question of Should there be a minimum amount of work in the year to qualify for nomination? has been asked before.
  • I like the redesign of PvP that Thin Slice did; since the site took a nomination for Outstanding Website Design, I hope that Scott Kurtz will share it with them if he wins.
  • There’s always going to be differences of opinion; for example, I probably would have put Gunnerkrigg Court up for Outstanding Science Fiction Comic, instead of Outstanding Fantasy Comic as it was. Even Scott Kurtz seems to wonder if PvP is really a gaming comic (which would be a prerequisite to being Outstanding Gaming Comic). And in a crowded field of seven (!) entries, Outstanding Single Panel Comic inexplicably omits xkcd; if only for his tireless efforts to keep us warned as to the continuing threat of velociraptors, Randall Munroe deserved a nod.

But if these are the biggest things I can bitch about (and they are, pretty much), then the WCCA committee did a pretty good job. It’s especially gratifying to note that the nominees for Outstanding Comic represent a wide variety of artistic and storytelling styles. If you’re not familiar with Girl Genius, Gunnerkrigg Court, Narbonic, Perry Bible Fellowship, Scary Go Round, and Templar Arizona, now’s the time to get started.

I used to get mad that I didn’t get a WCCA nomination, but then I realized until they invent an “Outstanding Movie Comic” award, it’s all pretty much moot.

They have categories for Outstanding Fantasy, Anthropomorphic, Gaming, Romance, Slice-of-Life, Science Fiction and Superhero comics. I don’t know if those categories speak specifically to the artistry of web comics.

I mean, sure, there are stylistic cliches to superhero or sci-fi comics. But can anyone tell me the difference between a slice-of-life and romantic comic? As if, at first glance I could look at them and say “Oh, yes! THAT’S what romance looks like!”

If anyone can tell me why the artistic merit of anthropomorphic critters measures higher than any other sub-genre of comics, I’d love to hear it!

My point is, until the WCCA’s create awards for every single sub-genre of the medium, it’s really all subjective and therefore, not worth the time.

It’s not like the Oscars have “Best Comic Book Movie,” do they?

[…] Fleen: How does it feel to be nominated for such a controversial award as the WCCA? What do you think are your odds against such illuminated masters as Kris Straub and Phil Foglio? […]

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