Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Cartoon Interlude

So this is a cartoon, not a comic, but it's close enough. I adore this video because of both the visual ideas and the verbal fireworks of "Weird Al" Yankovic. The idea is that it's parodying Trapped in the Closet, but instead of plot twists and sexual escapades, it's all about a couple's very banal drive-thru experience. The attention to detail and the sheer boringness of it all is hilarious. (To me. I know some people find this utterly dull, but to each his/her own.)

The song is off "Weird Al"'s Straight Outta Lynwood and the cartoon is by Doogtoons.

Recommendation of the Week

Hyperbole and a Half is awesome. The drawings are intentionally shoddy and childlike, and that adds to the appeal of this childhood story. How dare the annoyingly perky little sister not be scared when you tell her scary stories of monsters! The story is beautifully real and shows the cruelty and selfishness of children, even sensitive artsy children. The characters look amusing, particularly the parents. I especially love the father's chubby white body, complete with a random-shaped wad of chest hair.

I love how the story is drawn out gradually - more and more closets appear, blood appears, the bear turns into a snake-bat-bear thingy, etc. It's like a children's story hour with drawings, except that the events are pretty ghastly. (Although it's amusingly overdone from a grown up perspective, the drawings have the potential to be truly frightening.) The half-child, half-adult point of view works well.

It's a simple childhood memory, but the visuals and storytelling have turned it into art. It's like a textbook case of what to do if you want to make a comic of your memories.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Sick Day Ranting.

Called in sick today, so I might as well rant about comics I haven't liked lately. Ahem.

Skipping Out the gay comic is suddenly making fun of trans...gendered people? -vestites? It's problematic on many levels. I can't tell where this is going, partially because the comic moves so slowly and you never know where it's taking us (and sometimes it just goes nowhere). There are many stereotypical things going on here already: "Kevi", the hair, the sassiness, the fact that the trans part of town is called "Trannytown" and their food is "Trannese". Schlegel may have been going for "Chinatown", but the word "N***ertown" comes to mind equally fast. Why is Skippy so horrified to go out to "Trannytown"? Are we supposed to identify with him (trans people are scary) or with the other characters (trans people are a fun and exotic other)? The comic already features a butch dyke barista who obviously hates not just men, but people in general. The main characters are gay, so they're a minority, but they are still cisgendered white men, and this privilege should be acknowledged. "Tranny" is a term reclaimed by some trans women, but I'm not sure if it's OK for cis gay men to use it just like that.

Courting Disaster! It's that comic about how men - ha ha - are so different from women! Ha ha! You see, men are nymphomaniacs and women are bimbos with giant boobs! And all of their interactions can be summed up in one-panel comics! Hahahaha, oh mercy! Somebody tell this artist it's actually 2011.

Ctrl+Alt+Del is too boring for commentary. Just saying, it's "Most popular" at the webcomics list, and has been going on forever and has a bunch of paid content but who reads it anymore? It's like it's not even trying.

Questionable Content takes us to the bar where guys leer at hot chicks and nothing happens. I tell you, this Marten/Dora breakup really perked things up. Yawn.

Not a huge fan of this Question Duck. The question is a little too "celebrity joke" to be timeless and unanswerable. But so far, it's the only Question Duck I haven't liked, so I'll forgive this.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Monday Familiars

I was going to do one of those "browsing through Webcomics List" posts, but the list is down, once again. Well, I've always got my favorites...

Brainless Tales: Concatenate. Cats will not let you do that though! At least mine won't. As soon as you touch the tail, it gets all rigid. Try to make a braid with another tail, and he'll bite you. I guess it would be too adorable to be real...

I may have said it before, but I worry about James Kochalka when I see strips like this. But maybe we all get those moods. The point is, he chose to cuddle with Oliver, and that's beautiful.

Regular sex puns and flirtation - unfunny. Flirtation dissected scientifically by Hannelore - FUNNY. More of this please.

The true meaning of superbowl, according to Sinfest. I shouldn't read this strip when I'm hungry. *goes and fries some bacon*

Is this gay comic anti-trans? Or is it just some gay man in-joke? Is it talking about transsexuals or transvestites? Huh?

Thank god for Rooster Tails. The real super hero - binary challenging gender identity! Could. not. be. more. awesome.

Life Before Google

I try not to post/hotlink other people's comics in here, but honestly I can't find this strip at the shoebox blog. And also, I feel like the blog looks kinda dull without any pictures.

I had a dream last night where I went back in time and tearily explained to my younger brothers how the Internet would come and change everything. I really feel it's changed my life, mostly for the better. Stop talking about "online" vs. "real life" - the Internet IS real life. And it rules. 

Friday, February 4, 2011

This Week in My Favorites

Marc Johns waxes deep and somewhat political: we are all holding the spear. So true. I think he should do more texts in the illustrations.

Sinfest warns us against letting the cat sleep on the laptop! I especially liked "aaaaasssss". Unfortunate keys to step on, indeed!

Continuing with the cat team: the legend of the turbo cat! Bravo, Buttersafe, you've done it again. Utterly surreal yet so good. Surreal stuff+serious/dramatic tone = WIN.

And still more cats! American Elf can hear Spandy's angry motor. I heard my cat's angry motor this week at the vet's, when a dog tried to say hello to him. I also loved this strip, where the boys imagine they're ghosts. A big snowfall can make you feel pretty invisible. And while I'm at American Elf, I must comment on this strip. It's beautiful - the idea that you shouldn't delete your least favorite artworks, because they may be someone else's favorites. What's more important - the artist's own opinion or the audience's right to have the art? It's actually a very deep discussion to be having with a seven-year-old. I love that Kochalka doesn't talk down to his children.

T-Rex is excited about the snowmageddon - time to reinvent society in our own living rooms! This is actually amusing from a Finnish point of view. Granted, we've also gotten more than our fair share of snow, but the plow trucks are going early every morning and the roads are always clear. No cancelled school or work here. It's just par for the course. (The trains can't handle it, though.)

Isaac Newton sits under the tree - and down falls a squirrel! What would have happened? Abstruse Goose gives us the answer.

Here's a Finnish comic in English! Rather chaotic and very true to her style, a travel diary entry from Norpatti at En Vaan Osaa!