The webcomics blog about webcomics

Sufficiently Chunky

For those of you that don’t wake up to Morning Edition, there was a story this morning on the Center for Plain Language, their awards for good & bad writing, and one of their judges. In other words, suck it, Big Paper! David Malki ! has your number:

[G]ood, clear business communications to be rewarded with shiny trophies at a fancy ceremony; and horrible, confusing, misleading and/or opaque business communications to be savagely mocked by yours truly in as ruthless a manner as possible.

PS: Malki !’s one-time weekly publisher likes his latest book.

  • In other news, all sites utilizing ComicPress as their CMS should see what Phil “Frumph” Hofer has to say about the current state of the theme. Short version: the current implementation of ComicPress has one more release in it (2.9.2), then its underlying architecture is going to change a bit. Versions 1.0 through 2.92 will now be known as ComicPress Legacy, and versions 3.0+ as ComicPress Premium. Legacy will remain free, but new features will not be developed by the ComicPress team (although others out there are welcome to do so).

    Other shoe (and you knew it would fall one day): Premium will not be free, and the ComicPress developer that you purchase it from will be responsible for supporting it. Frumph himself (who has been a tireless resource to the ComicPress user base, volunteering much time and effort) is stepping down as lead developer, just as ComicPress starts to roll in the bucks. He’ll continue to provide custom site designs and contract support, but the demands of his life require that he spend less unpaid time on ComicPress. But for all that he’s contributed so far, send him your thanks; he deserves it

I have some webcomics to point y’all towards today; I’ve been following each for a while, but wanted to let ’em build up a bit more (archive size, or chunks of plot, or something) before I talked about ’em. Consider each worth your time.

  • Rich Barrett’s Nathan Sorry is (or perhaps was) an investment analyst who should have died in the World Trade Center; instead, he’s got a new identity and $20 million dollars that isn’t his which he didn’t mean to steal, not really (not that that will save him from the wrath of those it belongs to, I’d wager). He might think two months a small southern town are enough distance to complete his escape, but we know better, don’t we? Eventually, this one will be a graphic novel, about 250 pages or so.
  • Paul Dwyer goes absurdist and amps up the mental conflict between art and story in I Shot Roy!, which is built on images from comic books of the 1940s (don’t worry, it’s all in the public domain). In terms of surreality, I’m gonna put this one up next to God™¹.
  • Katarina Emgård adds to the profile of Swedish webcomickry with a sci-fi, hero-ish story called Kisenja. It’s got a Flash interface, so it may be a bit slow to read depending on your network and computer; it’s pretty, though, especially the design of the homepage. Six episodes so far, each with six to eight pages and new updates monthly (although Episode 1 is a comparative monster, with 26 pages).
  • Also Flash-interfaced (more on that in a minute) is Red Light Properties from Dan Goldman (you may remember him from ACT-I-VATE); SF publisher TOR is actually providing hosting until the story is complete. Every Tuesday brings you eight more pages on a Miami realty firm that specializes in haunted homes.

    Now, about that Flash interface: this one is a bit heavyweight on the loading, but you have some options.You can either load the comic by adding one panel (or sometime, one word balloon) at a time, or a whole page; while the incremental approach is quick, I found it somewhat distracting — or maybe it reduced me as a reader to too passive of a role. Instead of finding my way around the page, I was being led. Loading one page at a time, on the other hand, was distractingly slow on my computer, and (I can’t help but think) isn’t quite how Goldman wants it to read. Either choice detracts only slightly from a weird, wonderful work.

  • The precise opposite of Red Light Properties would have to be Don MacDonald’s Machiavelli; ol’ Niccolò’s name has become so famous that we mostly think we know his deal, but there’s a lot to that particular history that most people don’t know. Kate Beaton might try to get to the core of Machiavelli in six to ten panels, but MacDonald is in for the long haul, ustilizing a pen and ink to a beautiful, washed effect.
  • Finally, I thought I’d already written about Darwin Carmichael Is Going To Hell, but it turns out I hadn’t. D’oh. Through a convoluted set of circumstances that were utterly not his fault, the title character has a karmic debt that has doomed him to eternal torment, unless he can be the nicest, best, most giving guy in the history of, uh, history. Given that he lives in a hipster-rich section of Brooklyn, works in financial aid counseling, and has some stoner angels crashing on his couch, the odds aren’t looking too good. Very funny.

¹ Full title: Or, more fully, God™ © 2XX8 *** ***** ****** ******* Incorporated. All rights reserved. God and all related characters, titles, names and documents are trademarks of *** ***** ****** ******* Incorporated. No similarity between any of the names, characters, persons and/or institutions in this deity with those of any living or dead person or institutions is intended and any such similarity which may exist is purely coincidental.

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jeff Newelt and Rich Barrett, Dan Goldman. Dan Goldman said: Red Light Properties gets some love from @fleenguy: (we're working on the player) […]

Thanks for the nice little writeup on Nathan Sorry, Gary. Been reading your site for a while and it’s great to get a little mention here.

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This post was mentioned on Twitter by webaker: RT @richcbarrett: Wow, it seems to be a big day for mentions of Nathan Sorry in the comics online press. Here’s a nice blurb on Fleen:

Gary, thanks for mentioning I Shot Roy!. I really appreciate it.


Thanks for noticing and writing about Kisenja:)

[…] Back in the Spring, when snow seemed far away, we spoke a bit about Flash interface comics (also about David Malki !’s Big Paper conspiracy theory), and as such brought up Red Light […]

[…] could have been predicted to persist for so long and to have birthed opportunities for so many side projects. Curiously, no mention of this milestone appears on the Wondermark site, presumably […]

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