Archive Binge: End of Year Special
Since the year is nearly over and 2016 has been… less than ideal, I will be forgoing my usual best of the year ramble and just touch on a few of the brilliant webcomics that we didn’t get a chance to look at because they don’t quite fit with the format of Archive Binge.
The first up on the block is “Our Super Adventure.” Every year I treat myself to somebody’s diary comic and this time it just so happened to be Sarah Graley’s. The art style is cute, dynamic and a perfect fit for a comic that mainly revolves around Sarah’s bodily functions and cats. The honesty and humour that permeate every single page make it charming rather than disgusting, mostly.
“Manly Guys Doing Manly Things” by Kelly Turnbull revolves around a temp agency where all of the ridiculously masculine characters from film and video games go to seek employment in the real world. It has some vague plot arcs in the background of the gag a page format, mostly revolving around the operator of the agency, his history as a soldier in the future, his relationships outside of the agency and the Pokemon training teenager that he employs as an intern. Many of the jokes rely on understanding the references being made of course, but isn’t that true for 90% of humour?
“Whomp” by Ronnie Filyaw is a self deprecating gag-a-day comic revolving around the very sad life of the author’s inserted avatar. A grown man singularly fixated on anime and McDonald’s Chicken Nuggets. Some of the other characters are his long suffering room-mate, his father Santa Claus and the personification of his motivation, a bald, vicious tormentor who delights in bringing him suffering so that he will in turn produce more comics. Sometimes Whomp crosses the line between funny and sad, sometimes it shoots right past that line and so far over the horizon that it arrives back at funny again.
Many of the webcomics that I discuss in Archive Binge are ongoing at the time of their review, so here is a quick swerve by one of the absolute best of them that still needs more praise:
Strong Female Protagonist stunned me with its quality and depth, applying real world logic to superhuman problems and addressing some of the inherent paradoxes of “doing good” in a world where some of the people have impossible powers. It has gone even further along that same road in the last year, exploring the morality of forcing the right choice on others and generally blowing peoples minds wide open to political philosophy through a medium that has recently been under siege by a misogynistic and vicious minority whenever there is any slight variation from the status quo. Brennan Lee Mulligan and Molly Ostertag are doing great, and vital, work.