Wednesday Webcomic – Lost in the Vale

This week’s featured webcomic is Lost in the Vale by Julie Curtis and Alan Curtis, Jr.

What’s the Deal?: Lost in the Vale is a webcomic still in its first chapter, but the premise is intriguing enough that it caught my eye. A group of “Outrunners” (peacekeepers and servants of the common good) is working in the town of Scottsburg when they find a lost heirloom belonging to the royal prince who has been missing for eight years. As they start to follow the trail, who knows how deep this mystery truly goes?

The Characters:  Delicia, the female protagonist has a fierce and appealing personality, but so far I think the identical twin brothers Alex and Ander Salazaar would be anyone’s favorite character pairing. There is an excellent character narrative foundation in what has been published. While the characters might not be particularly original, they are well done.

The Art: I think the aesthetic is very interesting – Julie has a distinct style that reminds me of the work of Emma Rios.

Safe for Work?: Yes.

Frequency of Updates: They seem to be erratic, but large updates when they do happen. The most recent update was in early February.

– E.B.

Wednesday Webcomic – Unsounded

This week’s featured webcomic is Unsounded by Ashley Cope.

What’s the Deal?: Truthfully, it would be more fair to call Unsounded a graphic novel then a webcomic (even Cope uses the term.) This epic fantasy adventure features Sette Frummagem, daughter of the Lord of Thieves. The story follows Sette as she lies, cheats, and steals to accomplish her missions. Accompanied by odd companions, including a reanimated corpse, this is a high adventure worth reading.

The Characters:  Sette is a delightful young heroine, and her journey is filled with (necessary) growth. However, I think her zombie/wright escort, Duane steals the show. Their relationship is a driving force behind the series (as far as I’ve read) and one of my favorite parts of Unsounded.

The Art: Excellent work, Cope illustrates and writes at a high level.

Safe for Work?: Yes.

Frequency of Updates: Monday/Wednesday/Friday. Between each finished chapter, there’s a month long break.

– E.B.

Wednesday Webcomic – 2D Glasses

This week’s webcomic is 2D Glasses by Bert and Toni Johnson.

What’s the Deal?: 2D Glasses is a humorous movie-spoof webcomic in a similar vein of comedic hits like previously featured Virtual Shackles.

The creators have a dark sense of humor, but they usually hit on a resonant nerve when they poke fun at various movie tropes and silly plot devices. If you like movies or even just a good laugh at the expense of pop culture, this is a webcomic for you.

The Characters:  For the most part, the comic avoids reoccurring characters due to the fact each comic is a spoof on a particular film or aspect of movie culture. However, the authors each of alter egos and several characters have “schticks” they perform throughout the series.

The Art: The art is average – it gets the job done and conveys the humor necessary to make the comic work.

Safe for Work?: Yes, some of the humor is more mature but the imagery is appropriate.

Frequency of Updates: Formerly updated three times a week, but nothing new has been posted since last November. The 2D Glasses Twitter is still active though, so there’s hope it will pick up sooner rather than later.

– E.B.

Wednesday Webcomic – Little Guardians

This week’s featured webcomic is Little Guardians by Ed Cho & Lee Cherolis.

What’s the Deal?: Subira would have been the Guardian heir for her village, except she was born a girl. Girls cannot inherit the Guardian title, so the doctor switches Subira with the Item Shop owner’s newborn son Idem. None of the parents know, so the two children grow up living out each other’s destiny. However, new evils are brewing and they will challenge all of the ancient traditions. Perhaps Subira will come into her true destiny after all…

This webcomic is very funny – playing off numerous fantasy story tropes for great effect. Definitely one of the most delightful webcomics I’ve read in recent months.

The Characters:  The story is rife with hilarious bit-characters (Elk the Bard is a personal favorite) but both Idem and Subira make incredibly endearing protagonists.

The Art: The art consists of quality, stylized, black & white illustrations. This comic looks good and reads well on both browser and mobile platforms.

Safe for Work?: Yes

Frequency of Updates: Officially Monday, Wednesday and Friday – however the comic has been on an extended hiatus.

– E.B.

Webcomic Wednesday – Comic Chameleon

This week’s webcomic feature is a little different than usual. I wanted to take today’s slot to promote a great iOS app called Comic Chameleon (Droid users should look up Comic Rocket).

The app features a great lineup of webcomics, including some of my personal favorites xkcd and Girls with Slingshots.In my opinion, that app works pretty well for getting your daily webcomic fix, although trying to look through archives and backlogs can be awkward. No matter what, reading webcomics through this app is MUCH better than trying to read them on a browser app like Safari or Google Chrome. As the above video shows, it’s easy to check if your comic of choice has updated and scrolling through new comics can be a lot of fun too. 

This app is free and has the official support of the artists (unlike many other webcomic apps) – making it a must have for webcomic enthusiasts!

Webcomic Wednesday – Penny Arcade

This week’s featured webcomic is Penny Arcade, written by Jerry Holkins and illustrated by Mike Krahulik.

What’s the Deal?: Penny Arcade is quite possibly the most famous webcomic on the Internet. It has spawned its own convention (PAX) and has a serious following amongst gamers, comic nerds, etc. The comic features Krahulik and Holkins’ cartoon personas, John “Gabe” Gabriel and Tycho Brahe in a host of situations pertaining to the gaming world. It is topical and there’s not much of a continuing story line. It’s witty and funny and Penny Arcade has defined the much of the webcomic genre.

The Characters: Gabe and Tycho are not direct counterparts for Kahulik and Holkins – they are their own characters with their own lives. Typically Gabe is the central character and Tycho serves as the comedic foil. The humor the two share is snappy and delightful – their personalities are pretty endearing and distinct. 

The Art: If you start in the backlogs of the comic, you see definite improvement of line and style as time progresses. It features a crisp comic stylization and overall is visually appealing. 

Safe for Work?: Yes

Frequency of Updates: Monday, Wednesday and Fridays.

– E.B.

Webcomic Wednesday – Girls of Monster Paradise

This week’s featured webcomic is Girls of Monster Paradise by Stephanie Gladden.

What’s the Deal?: Have you ever watched a monster movie and thought “Huh, I wonder where that slimey swamp creature wants to take that blonde cheerleader? It’s an amorphous blob for Pete’s sake!” Gladden has an answer- these monsters take the women to Monster Paradise, a luxurious island filled with relaxation, parties and good times. The comic’s a fun take on a traditional “damsel in distress” narrative and Gladden does a good job of constructing characters and creating an interesting story world.

The Characters: The women and monsters alike are artful plays on common stereotype characters seen in cartoons and comics. I’m personally a big fan of Chevelle – a gruff technology guru who’s Monster Island’s resident mechanic. All of the characters are delightful and have their time in the sun (literally) to be enjoyed.

The Art: For those of you who don’t recognize the name, Gladden has worked on popular comics and cartoons franchises including Dexter’s Lab, The Powerpuff Girls and The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy. If you watched any Cartoon Network in the late 1990’s, early 2000’s – you’ve seen Gladden’s work before. Therefore it is not surprising that the webcomic is very professional looking and well illustrated. 

Safe for Work?: Yes.

Frequency of Updates: Weekly, typically Fridays.

– E.B.

Webcomic Wednesday – Irregular Webcomic!

This week’s featured webcomic is Irregular Webcomic! by David Morgan-Mar.

What’s the Deal?:  Once upon a time, there was a bored GM (Game Master) with a camera. Looking over at his set of role playing miniatures, he realized they were a webcomic waiting to happen. Thus, Irregular Webcomic! was born, embracing the idea of meta-humor and toy life. If you play any kind of role playing game, or if you had a rich imagination while playing pretend as a child – you will resonate with this webcomic. Morgan-Mar has also gone back through his archive and made commentary on his strips, which adds to the fun in my opinion.

The Characters: Personally, the GM (creator) appearances are my personal favorite. With smart facial expression choices and the occasional snarky comment, Morgan-Mar’s part in the webcomic creates much of the humor.

The Art: I like the photoset idea for webcomics and I think Morgan-Mar does a great job with this. He gets creative angles and close-ups to add both variety and an element of storytelling to the webcomic. 

Safe for Work?: Yes.

Frequency of Updates: Despite it’s self branding as “irregular” this webcomic tends to update daily.

– E.B.

Wednesday Webcomic – The Order of the Stick

This week’s featured webcomic is The Order of the Stick by Rich Burlew.

What’s the Deal?: If you have ever played Dungeons and Dragons, or if you are currently playing, this webcomic is guaranteed to make you laugh and possibly cry. The puns, rule jokes, running gags, and character development are a joy to behold and explain why this comic has such a faithful following.

The Characters: The featured rag-tag group of adventurers are super endearing. The beauty of this comic is that the reader finds themselves attached to the party as a complete whole, which encapsulates the point of Dungeons and Dragons in many ways.

The Art: The art consists of mostly stick figures, but the backgrounds and set pieces get more complicated as you progress through the archives. 

Safe for Work?: Yes.

Frequency of Updates:  Due to its creator’s unreliable health, it updates sporadically.

– E.B.

Wednesday Webcomic – Doodling in Class

This week’s featured webcomic is Doodling in Class by Mary Harner.

What’s the Deal?: Mary Harner, an aspiring writer and artist, created an experimental blog that slowly morphed into a webcomic. Inspired by a week of attempting to make a post a day, she found creative fuel for content in the margins of her notebooks where she had doodled. Soon those doodles morphed into full comics, which grew into a collection worth reading.

The Characters: Because these are non-sequential doodles, there are not reoccurring characters. However, the best thematic comics in her collection is the ‘As Told By’ series where she explains plots of popular television shows and games having never seen an episode. Above is an example.

The Art: If these are her doodles, I’m pressed. These are some high quality doodles y’all.

Safe for Work?: Yes.

Frequency of Updates:  Various times throughout the week.

– E.B.