In years past (2004, 2005) we undertook the monumental chore of picking out the biggest headlines of the year. This year, I took another swing at it. So without further adu, here's the biggest webcomic headlines of 2007.
If I missed a story you think was key to this year, please post it in the comments to this article.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on November 13, 2007 - 17:55
I have been utterly lame at giving feedback this year during the BSC Webcomic Idol contest. And at this point it's down to three comics:
- Lucid TV: an utterly brutal but often funny comic about what, dear god!, I hope is an unrealistic portrayal of most doctors.
- Templar, Arizona: which is about a town and a cast of characters and is hugely enjoyable to read.
BlameThank creator Spike for not making it so simple I can actually explain it in a sentence.
- Simulated Comic Product: I'm less familiar with this one but I've laughed at the recent ones I've checked out.
Vote, read. It's all good!
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on October 21, 2007 - 21:51
- Derek Badman is back with another installment of Panels & Pictures -- this month Badman shares some examples of color use in a variety of comics, with an emphasis on the use of shifting color palettes within the same work.
- Xaviar Xerexes interviews this month's cover artist -- Spike. Spike is the talented creator behind the well-received webcomic (and book) Templar, Arizona. The comic is a story about a town that may or may not completely conform to the regular laws of reality and features a growing assortment of interesting characters who both intrigue and intimidate the protagonist, a young man named Ben. Spike has also created other webcomics, including Sparkneedle, Lucas and Odessa and Playing With Dolls.
- And don't forget to check out all of the feature articles from October: Tim Broderick's article on taking your comic to a traditional book publisher; and interviews with creators Jon Morris; Jamie Robertson; Bill Roundy; Thomas K. Dye; and Lee Adam Herold.
- Jeff Rowland got a nasty-gram supposed from the copyright owner of the O'RLY owl photo that's infested the intertubes for awhile now. Apparently one of Rowland's designs incorporates the image from the photo. FLEEN offers some thoughts on the matter. Damn Good Comics blog offers its two cents too.
- Wizard Online interviews Kris Straub about the Alterverse War miniseries and his ongoing sci-fi webcomic Starslip Crisis.
- Comic Book Resources talks to Unshelved co-creator Bill Barnes about his library-themed strip. (h/t Journalista!)'
- Lynn Lau interviews Tara Tallan, the creator of Galaxion.
- Boston Globe interviews Randall Monroe, creator of xkcd.
- Meg Heald has a review of Looking For Group.
- Mr Myth lambasts Chris Crosby for creating an infinite loop of repeats without a proper ending for the webcomic Wicked Powered.
JUSTIFY MY HYPE
- I thought David McGuire's Webcomics Are Awesome is pretty funny as a parody of webcomics community (not sure if he's going to update it further) on the level of "lots of this absurd stuff happens and it's always healthy to make fun of yourself" since McGuire is a comic creator himself and as part of the now defunct Bag of Chips collective has certainly been "in" the webcomics community as much as anyone. On the otherhand I don't really know David (met him once at SPX) so I'm not sure how he views this comic.
- Everyone's making comics about the latest videogame Portal. This one's from Hijinks Ensue (whose creator Joel Watson also makes comics that appear on the website Apple Insider)
- Tough Guys is a pretty good concept for a comic (or probably more likely an Adult Swim animated series) but the execution of this webcomic by Zac Marshall and Nuno Teixeira is all wrong. The art is strange and largely looks cut and pasted. Maybe a chibi style would have worked better here. It's also largely not funny nor interesting yet. You're aiming at a huge chunk of American pop culture over the last 30 to 40 years (the "action movie") -- that's a big fat softball across the plate, if you're doing jokes you ought to be hitting multiple base hits everytime out.
- The Tower by Saki Miyamoto and Brendon Bennets is a textless comic about a princess who escapes her intended role in search of adventure.
- David Wright (creator of Todd and Penguin) has a new webcomic out called The Best Kids Show Ever - sort of if Fox News decided to get into the children's television business.
- Butternut Squash versus Mahna mahna. (Original muppet song here!)
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 BLOGS
- A fairly good discussion has emerged from Joey Manley's post asking about how popular a webcomic needs to be to be able to successfully sell t-shirts.
- I can't decide if this videocast called ComiXtrips was fun or just annoyed me but I will say this - it was short, the guy clearly planned out what he was saying before he shot it and he had an opinion. If someone did this about webcomics I might watch it.
- Tastefully Done 2008 is out. It's a fundraiser for Cancer Research and features sketches of your favorite webcomic artists sans fabric.
- The Tonight Show with Tycho! It certainly would suck less than Jay Leno seems to do.
- The Beat has video of Chris Onstad's (Onstad or someone in a gorilla suit at least) Ignatz award acceptance "speech". (h/t Journalista!)
Charlie "Spike" Troutman is the talented creator behind the well-received webcomic (and book) Templar, Arizona. The comic is a story about a town that may or may not completely conform to the regular laws of reality and features a growing assortment of interesting characters who both intrigue and intimidate the protagonist, a young man named Ben. Spike has also created other webcomics, including Sparkneedle, Lucas and Odessa and Playing With Dolls (which used Sims Online screen captures for the artwork).
I thought things were changing. Apparently I was wrong.
When Zuda released its contracts last month, I think they showed that the major comics publishers are more interested in acquiring properties than publishing books. As Gary Tyrrell over at Fleen said about the contracts, "Webcomics can do better and so can you."
Believe that! Contracts like Zuda's play off the insecurities of creators -- you're the harshest critic of your work. Put that aside. If the comics industry refuses to change the way they operate, go to the publishers who will give you a fair deal.
I have a book coming out in January with a small but respected publisher, and receive compensation comparable with others in the prose publishing industry.
I thought things were changing. Apparently I was wrong.
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on October 1, 2007 - 08:49
Welcome to October! A big thanks to Spike, creator of Templar, Arizona, for creating this month's cover art. This past weekend we posted the rest of the September issue: interviews with Gisele Lagace and Shayna Marchese; a feature by Grant Thomas examining the integration of text and images with an interesting look at different ways to use speech bubbles; and Michael Payne looks at some great print comics that have moved to embrace the web. More interesting articles are on their way in October...
And in other news...
- Jerzy Drozd (Make Like A Tree Comics) announced the launch of a new anthology series: Sugary Serials -- inspired by the kinds of stories found in Saturday morning cartoons, and created by some of the finest artists of the webcomics and print comics industries. A few of the many creators signed on to create stories include: Kitsy and KimonoStereo, Nemu*Nemu; Scott Neely, Scooby Doo; Robert Burke Richardson, Elf Help; Richard Stevens, Private Eye Butterfly; and Sara Turner, File 49. Read Jerzy's full blog post for all the details.
- Tim Demeter's Reckless Life is over! The End. Finale! Wow - congrats to Tim for finishing the whole story and crafting a great webcomic.
- The Devil's Panties reaches 2000 episodes. Congrats to Jennie Breeden.
- Congrats to Corey Marie who announced she's expecting her first child next March.
- The opinionated webcomic Cox & Forkum has called it quits. In this case it appears the writer has decided he can't spend the time needed on it anymore because of his day job and family life. (Daryl Cagle has an interview with them here. ComixTalk reviewed them way back in 2003.)
JUSTIFY MY HYPE
- A recent Big Fat Whale from Brian McFadden on why protesting maybe doesn't always work so well at getting results...
- If you're in Chicago tonight, Tim Broderick flags a special event you should know about.
- Check out the upcoming Sinister Bedfellows exhibit in Carrboro, NC, USA.
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 BLOGS
- Andrew Farrago has an interview with Jason Thompson, the author of Manga: The Complete Guide. Thompson read and reviewed every English-language manga ever released in preparation for his new book. (h/t Dirk Deppey)
- At The Telegraph, Robert Colvile writes up webcomics with comments from Chris Onstad, Gary Tyrrell and others. (h/t Dirk Deppey)
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on September 12, 2007 - 20:34
Hey let's try a give-away this month since I have something to give away!
BLADE: HOUSE OF CHTHON is a sequel to one of the Blade flicks and I have five (5) DVDs of it to give away (from the studio). And it's the un-rated version... Anyhow if you're interested post a comic about the Blade movies or vampire stuff in a comment to this post. I'll give one DVD to the one I like the best, one to the one that's funniest and the other 3 I'll draw names out of a hat from those who posted sketches in this thread. You have until Friday, October 5th to enter and we'll announce prizes sometime before the end of the following weekend.
They made another Blade flick, you ask yourself? Yes they did (and you gotta love a show where Blade is played by someone with the name Sticky Fingaz):
The ultimate vampire hunter is back, and he is badder than ever! Blade continues the battle against his immortal bloodsucking enemies in Blade: House of Chthon, arriving on DVD from New Line Home Entertainment on September 18, 2007. Based on the successful Blade franchise, Blade: House of Chthon is the feature-length, extended and unrated pilot of the hit television show, Blade: The Series.
Here's some more details on this if you're interested. (I'm actually not getting anything for this -- I'm doing it all for you the readers!)
Submitted by Xaviar Xerexes on July 27, 2007 - 13:06
Here's hoping we get many more from talented creator Spike.