zustifer: (comics: buster brown: try food)
Also Worth Your Time:

Buster Brown, a completely fabulous strip about an insane little weirdo with 'bad judgement'. Usually that means destruction and/or crazy eyes (but sometimes it is completely incomprehensible); check the graphic part of the last panel of this strip for some high-grade proof.
I also love the scary wide-mouthed profiles, the difference in drawing style and morphology between the householders and the help, the occasional big awkward hands, the amusing signage, and the baffling rambling 'resolutions' that Buster makes every strip. Oh, and the way he hates his mother wearing hats with birds on them. God, it's just a wondrous thing. I think you should read it.

Curses from 1920.
“[...]some reporter in the West referred to him as a regular guy. At first Mr. Chesterton was for going after the fellow with a stick. Certainly a topsy-turvy land, the United States, where you can’t tell opprobrium from flattering compliment.” [...] The American derivative verb, to guy, is unknown in English; its nearest equivalent is to spoof, which is used in the United States only as a conscious Briticism.

The Victorian era saw a great growth of absurd euphemisms in England, including second wing for the leg of a fowl, but it was in America that the thing was carried farthest. Bartlett hints that rooster came into use in place of cock as a matter of delicacy, the latter word having acquired an indecent significance, and tells us that, at one time, even bull was banned as too vulgar for refined ears. In place of it the early purists used cow-creature, male-cow and even gentleman-cow.

(I rather enjoyed today's Eegra, too.)
zustifer: (comics: hold on tight kids)
I've been spending an inordinate amount of time reading all the old-timey newspaper comics over at barnacle press. There are some clunkers, and some which are microfilmed into illegibility, but there are several series at least that are pretty terrific. I'm sure there are more that I haven't linked that are also good, but I think I'm sick of sifting.

The Newlyweds' Baby is a funnypapers-style sexually dimorphic strip about a couple whose baby (Napoleon) is an unbearable little beast, but they are entirely oblivious to this.

Barney Google turned into the dull hillbilly newspaper strip we have now so gradually I didn't even notice! No, actually it was pretty obvious, and I wouldn't recommend reading past 1929. Before that it's a classic loafer story, wherein Barney Google tries to win money with his horse, and succeeds and fails seemingly at random. I enjoy the style.

Doesn't It Seem Strange is sort of a 'They'll Do It Every Time' for 1903-4, only with pretty impressive art and lettering. Also it's focussed on hilarious old-timey behavior, naturally.

The Hurry Up New Yorker is one-joke, but it's sort of a cute joke which entails a lot of amusing rushing-around poses. Every strip spends most of its real estate on depicting New Yorkers running around and claiming to everyone that they are in a terrible hurry, only to end up doing some small thing for either one, two, three, or twenty-three hours in the end (to the consternation of all). Mostly read it for the art, which is pretty charming.

Foxy Grandpa is, fortunately, not what it sounds like; it's 'foxy' in the sense of 'wise' or 'clever'. It's sort of a reverse Max & Moritz story wherein children try to play tricks on their grandfather, but he is always too smart for them. The best part is his 'ho ho, boys, what wacky crap are you engaging in to-day?' faux-innocent behavior upon 'finding' them soaked with water or tied up with fishing line after their unsuccessful attempts on his dignity.

Diary of Snubs, Our Dog is, as the summary reads, almost offensively cute (if you decide to read it, you can skip the first year; it's harder to read and less interesting). It's the story of a puppy who is strangely cognizant of most of his owner's wishes, and not only instructions given, but intent behind them. He's an oddly resourceful puppy who thinks at the level of maybe a particularly well-adjusted six-year old child, bears malice toward none, and spreads goodwill and love all over the damn place. Things relentlessly turn out for the best. There are hints of a slightly darker world on occasion, though, such as the neighborhood dog (Togo) whom I'm fairly sure used to be a pit fighter. Oh, and these strips show pretty good illustrations of model/rival instruction.

Sometimes the strips are just weird, like Poor Little Income which personifies the concepts of income and expense as children, and is... just... weird.

Here's a fun, short one: Cinderella Suze. It's a one-trick pony, but the cultural gap and era-indicative art are pretty cute. Oh, smart-mouthed proto-flapper. Truly you must win out in the end.

My favorite of those I have read is easily Ella Cinders, of which a year's worth is available (the plot is ongoing, and the site doesn't have the strips all the way to the end, so if the lack of a concise wrap-up is going to bother you, beware. But if you are only going to follow one of these links, this should be it). The art is charming, though with less of the physicality alluded to by the site's reference to Will Elder, but the real fun is the dialog. Everyone's speech is crammed full of nigh-hard-boiled similes and clevernesses, and it's really a lot of fun to read. (The wordplay is even acknowledged in-world a couple of times, which is amusing.) Here's a random example, but really each strip is equally well-put-together. Toward the end of the archived strips there is a courtroom segment, which is a difficult thing to do in the format, and the creator obviously gets a little excited about the dialog (there are a couple of strips that are essentially just scripts) but usually this isn't a problem.

And I will close with an AAAAGH. The Terrors of the Tiny Tads is by turns horrifying and unfortunate.

Oh Yes

Jul. 29th, 2008 08:56 pm
zustifer: (Beetlejuice: Otho rocks out)
My guest strip is up today-yesterday at Goode Olde Name Removed. SOMEONE needs to put out a book. And t-shirts.

In other news, aaaaaaaargh, DWARF FORTRESS!
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
I've just only finished chapter 3, but I am enjoying this comic. It is slightly TenNapel-ish, and slightly Woodring-ish.

(Special Spatchel Interest Inherent in said chap. 3 especially)
(Also one of the characters reminds me of the telepresence avatars from Stations of the Tide, even though it is autonomous)

[later edit: I have just finished it all, and it's so, so good. Best use of live-action imagery I've seen in a long time, too. (Possibly some apophenia on my part, but in at least a few cases it is definitely not.)]
zustifer: (comics: achewood: what death looks like)
So, I'm confused. Did Ray's mom clap for the death of Grace Jones, or has she been put off clapping because of it? Does 'haven't clapped since' mean that before it was okay to clap and after it's not, or that nothing has been as worth clapping for as that was?
zustifer: (comics: achewood: what death looks like)
Death Note (2006), Shusuke Kaneko. January 21, 6pm. View count: One.

This is essentially part one of what seems to be a two-part TV-movie, adapted from a fairly long-running manga. It's not a particularly good adaptation, but then I couldn't get through more than the first 40 or so chapters of the manga. It just got too insufferable. Two supergeniuses who know everything the other does almost instantly, playing cat and mouse with one another is just not terribly suspenseful or indeed interesting. It starts out well, with good intentions leading to complete nutjobness, but from there it's just downhill. The movie doesn't help that at all; in fact it rockets into the nutjob realm almost immediately, so that the 'pure' original motives are all but lost.
I'm not actually sure why we watched the movie; I guess I was hoping it would be redemptive (despite reviews to the contrary). The casting was okay; I felt like they cast the main character because he was the most abstractly manga-looking person available. Ryuk was cute in 3d, but he was so inexpressive and his Sci-Fi channel lighting and animation didn't help. The guy they cast as L was pretty good, and he sure tried with all the little weird character traits.
We will probably watch the second part, since I have heard it is better, and I'm curious as to how they wrap things up (since in the manga I think the torch is passed on to Death Note Babies or something? Man, I'm so glad I stopped reading it.)
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
So, the new Scott Pilgrim.
I... actually am not as enamored of it as I was of the earlier three. The visual stylistic changes are mostly fine, although I think they have contributed a bit to all of the female characters looking more similar than ever. But tonally, it's just not as... happy-go-lucky? Everyone is a little meaner, and the background details are a little darker. And, this is the big one, Scott and Ramona's relationship? It's not a good relationship. It's actually sort of awful (so is Stephen Stills' and Julie's, but that's less central). Maybe this is intentional; maybe this new slight-depressingness is part of the trek toward adulthood and responsibility, but somehow it's beginning to strike me as the tale of a partially functional boy in a world of unhappy people.
(Definitely worth reading, though. I did like it.)
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
Hi internet! We are back from our little DC trip. It was nice.
SPX was interesting; next time, though, I will do my research beforehand. It's not a venue (at least for me) for finding out about new things. I don't have the fortitude to go up and leaf through people's work in front of their faces, while they're trying to convince me that I want it, or even to connect with me at all, personally. I don't want people to try to sell me things. Anyway, only one component (the art) is ascertainable as good or bad at a glance; things like pacing and writing are invisible at first. Subtle stuff fares the most poorly, and that stuff is often my favorite. So essentially, you (I) have to know what you want going in, or at least know your creators and what they're likely to have. I realise now that I failed to bring myself up to the minimum level of conversantness with the work/people in question. (This is why I only ended up buying a t-shirt, which is a goddamn excellent t-shirt, but probably I could have tried harder.)

The rest of the time was more overtly and effortlessly fun, though, since we got to go to museums and hang out with people. Everything worked out. So, here are some pictures.

zustifer: (comics: creeper)
You guys should check out these posts on Michael Sporn's blog; they're collections of 'The Gumps'; purportedly the first serial comic strip (began in 1917).

There's some standard 'marital troubles' kinds of stories, but then there's some clever 'he said she said' sorts of almost interview-style strips. Ah, it's fun.
zustifer: (comics: achewood: what death looks like)
So, not that this person is still doing this, but if you were going to get a free achewood tattoo, what would you get, internet people? Please feel encouraged to look through the archive and write things regarding it in my comments, if you have no serious objections.

I am thinking of the classic What We Need More Of Is Science, although the Hr. Currywurst! logo would also be good. Or the Teodor-and-Roast-Beef on Roombas, complete with dotted line (note: I would never actually get this). Also Roast Beef's thought bubble in the last panel. Also also the second full-length Cartilage Head frame.
zustifer: (Default)
I am pleased to note that Hanna has a tattoo of a Seabee. I wish there were an actual picture around.

Maybe a spider jumping will cheer me up. Today was my last day of teaching for a while. I feel somewhat pleased about this, even though the students were pretty cool this time around. It will be nice to do something different for a little while.
zustifer: (Dogtato and Boartato)
Hey, check out this manga, which is rather nsfw but which does this tee-riffic structural thing with placing panels on sides of 3d structures. The people and things inside the panels are cut off at the edges, and melded into one another where they meet in the center. It's really a fun concept.

Yotsuba 4 is also out, guys!


May. 14th, 2007 12:00 pm
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
Look, the creator of the comic I was talking about commented on the post. Somewhat illuminating.
zustifer: (Beetlejuice: Miss Argentina)
I want to like this webcomic, which is reasonably well-drawn, amusingly-conceived, and very clever, but... the protagonist. I am made irrationally angry by heterosexual male creators who insist on mary-suing (Okay, not quite mary-sue; what's a term for this? Galatea-ing?) up their female pinups characters with all the positive attributes they can possibly think of, but oh noes she is too smart and therefore socially awkward in an adorable way! That is not cute at all, sincerely! It is also totally irrelevant that she is half-asian and has big tits for some reason!
False character flaws. What a burden. It troubles me that this kind of shit mars up the potentially really pleasant surface of an otherwise fun work.
I mean, for serious, check out the too-small button-down halfway down, as well as the obnoxious sleep-splay-boobs on the shot immediately to the left. COME ON.
zustifer: (comics: Griffy as Wolverine)

Apologies to unpleasant for some style-ganking.
zustifer: (comics: Warlock)
Speaking of superheroes, I've been mucking about with illustrator s'more, since that Jubilee thing.
It's actually really fun. (One of my self-imposed restrictions was that all of 'em had to fit into an essentially square format, by the bye.) Suggestions for more are, naturally, quite welcome.

zustifer: (comics: Beetle Bailey: we're all going t)
Chmmr found this page: The Religious Affiliations of Comic Book Characters. It's pretty entertaining, not least because of the Baby-Cakes-like Superman, and the Lex-Luthor-like J. Jonah Jameson entry: 'Hates Spiderman.' Rock.
Loads of Catholics. Hardly any Hindus. Total cop-out with the Red Skull though.
zustifer: (comics: creeper)
I dunno if this is really John Constantine; looks more like David Bowie to me. It is probably a safe assumption that it is not David Bowie, though.
I just got finished reading a few of the Hellblazer TPBs that I never got around to looking at for whatever reason, and this one was pretty great. The nazi plot was a little eh, but the Bruce-Wayne-takeoff character was super fun (and he'd been introduced in an earlier plotline, too, so I got to feel all caught up). Good art, good writing, a bit of the old ultra-violence, some primo crazy eyes, and a small helping of Teh Gay. Although it is Teh Very Cynical and Manipulative Gay, but that is probably exactly what it should be. I will take it.

Semirelevantly, this is so true.

(I figured that Creeper was more appropriate for this entry than Nivlem, even though it's got a lot of Batman, because it's all about looking at stuff.)
zustifer: (comics: Karma)

I cruelly took away her little jacket. Ha ha.
zustifer: (comics: Philippe's Mouth)
Pretty goofy askmefi question (with way too much emphasis on the word 'panties' in the responses), but the notable part of it is that the boyfriend, from the quote, appears to be Roast Beef.


zustifer: (Default)
Karla Z

February 2012

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