|Web comic catching up
||[May. 27th, 2007|09:35 pm]
The main comic I've been working through lately has been Supernatural Law. This one I found out about quite a few months ago and only just got around to reading through the archive of. Said archive seems rather incomplete... it turns out that versions of the story have been published in various formats for at least the last couple of decades (and the earliest date I saw in the "about this comic" info. was as far back as 1979). Anyway, so far, in its current web comic incarnation, we've seen vengeful zombie ex-wives, incompetent ghosts and undiplomatic medusae, among other denizens of this particular underworld. I'm not sure how accurate the legal proceedings are, but that part of the story at least seems thorough and consistent. The art is good, if at times a little Archie-ish (particularly in anything involving Mavis, the office manager) and the stories flow all right. While neither of the lawyers Wolff and Byrd is anywhere near Horace Rumpole, they are showing distinct personalities (even though the stories seem to show them at arm's length from the storyteller). Basically it's just good fun.
Wolf is yet another werewolf comic, and this one is really still in its formative stages - if it was a dead tree comic it would still be on its first issue. The artwork is good, done in a manga style, but the style doesn't detract from the story so far. Which is looking like it's going to be interesting once the story really gets going. This soon, it isn't really easy to tell how good it's going to be, though. It's definitely in my "keep reading" list though.
I think I have finally found a web comic which takes the imitation of the manga style just too far. That comic is Blackbird. In its defence, it does look like it's going to be a good story. Another comic which hasn't got very far, yet, but is shaping up to be quite interesting. It's not obvious yet which of three main characters introduced so far is going to be the focus of the story itself: Veloce Visrin, a witch prohibited from practicing magic; Keritzel, a boy who thinks that the witch is being unfairly picked on; or the eponymous Blackbird, a mysterious assassin. It's a bit hard to pick the style this early in the story, but it's almost got the tone of "Girl Genius", except without the steampunk elements. And, in case anyone is wondering, the way in which this comic takes imitation of the manga style too far is in its right-to-left artwork. Now, I can just about put up with right-to-left artwork in a manga like "Rurouni Kenshin", which is a translation of a book written with the Japanese market in mind... but considering that "Blackbird" appears to be written Somewhere In Canada and is originally in English anyway, right-to-left artwork (and story flow) is just annoying.
Crikey Duck is an anthropomorphic comic (you can probably guess the main species of anthropomorphs represented here from the title) with its main distinguishing feature being that it's set in Australia (which could almost just about be guessed from the title). It seems to be on hiatus at the moment, but there's the occasional laugh in the archive. It's vaguely noir in style, although it probably has more in common with British "con" stories (or, for that matter, the Australian movie "Malcolm" - and if you don't know the movie, watch it, it's fun). Fairly average really. I'm still keeping an eye on it but not tapping my fingers impatiently waiting for it to resume - unlike others *cough "Black Tapestries" cough*
Cheer seems to be a spin-off of "The Wotch", following a group of minor characters from the story. It's decent but not spectacular (a lot of the interest generated from spotting the "Wotch" characters showing up is negated by the basic setting being one I'm not particularly interested in). OK artwork, reasonable story, nothing great though.
Ark the Improbable is yet another story that's still fairly new (as always, the positive being that it doesn't take long to read through the archive; the negative being that it's still too early to make much in the way of judgement about the story or characters). This time it's a monster-hunter story. Good as far as it goes.
And yet another werewolf comic, Werewolf Richard, has gone a bit further (after a long series of one-off vignettes, it's getting well into a long storyline) with a particularly "different" angle on the traditional story. Fairly primitive art (it looks like it's been done in Paint) and average dialogue (going by the site design, it looks like the writer's first language is Czech, not English) but the characters are interesting (although there are now a few too many all hogging the limelight at once) and the story has some intriguing moments.