Filed under: Film and Sequential Art, What is Sequential Art? | Tags: Comics, Leeds comic con, Leeds comic festival, Leeds Thought Bubble comic festival, Sequential Art, Small Press, Webcomics
Greetings fanboys and fangirls, welcome to the next installment in Thought Bubbles Best of the Web (or tuhbuhbuhohtuhwuh); chronicling the cream of the online-comics crop at the moment (or, at least, as it currently stands in my humble opinion). Acting as a companion piece to our ‘Friends of Thought Bubble’ series, these are works of sequential art which, while not necessarily created by persons appearing at this year’s festival, are well worth your time.
So without much further ado, and by the power of greyskull, let’s see what this week’s installment has on offer… (As always the links will take you to external websites and thus may contain material not suitable for youngsters, consider yourselves warned kids.)
Do you like thrilling tales of prohibition-era gangsters? Do you like gorgeous line art and shading to accompany said tales? Do you like characters to be portrayed by super-cute anthropomorphic cats? If the answer to any of those questions was yes (and let’s face it, who in their right mind doesn’t like cute cartoon cats dressed as peoples?) then Lackadaisy may be the comic for you. Created by Tracy Butler, and perhaps best described as Damon Runyon meets Blacksad, the comic mixes brilliant art with a thoroughly excellent sense of humour and narration to culminate in one of the best ongoing series on the web.
2) American Elf
Some of the sequential art fans amongst you may already be familiar with the work of the wonderful James Kochalka (Monkey vs Robot, and Superf*ckers to name a couple) but perhaps his most interesting work is the daily diary comic American Elf. Combining Kochalka’s unique artistic style, along with an unflinching ability to honestly portray snapshots of his everyday life, American Elf represents one of the bastions of online sequential art and can be generally relied upon to raise either a smile or a sense of pathos in the reader on a regular basis.
Order of Tales is the second of creator Evan Dahm’s ‘Overside’ stories and follows the adventures of wandering raconteur (and reluctant hero) Koark and his ward Bottle-Girl. Set in a fantastical land of otherworldly beings Order of Tales shows just how inventive independent sequential-art can truly be. Dahm’s first Overside story ‘Rice Boy’ first explored the delights of that particular universe and, in The One Electronic, featured possibly one of the most brilliantly cool characters ever conjured up from a human imagination. While the two tales can be enjoyed independently, read together (in increasingly large sittings) they demonstrate Dahm’s immense skill as a story-teller in the graphic medium.
MSPA represents the latest project from one of the most avant-garde creators currently working in online comics – Andrew Hussie – and shows what can happen when a ridiculously inventive artist comes up with a truly original idea and then runs with it. Presented in the style of classic text-based role-playing games MSPA represents not only one of the most regularly updated online comics, but also one of the most consistently hilarious. Start with the epic Problem Sleuth (a hard-boiled detective story which ends up bringing in elements of Chaos theory and quantum physics) before moving on to the newer story of Homestuck. I personally guarantee you will not be disappointed.
And with that we have reached the end of yet another post, but don’t fret, parting is such sweet sorrow and it won’t be too long until we have some new sequential-arty goodness to impart to you. The preparation for this year’s festival continues, and we should also have the names of a few more guests to whisper to you soon.
-edit- News hot off the TB press: Comics superstar Frank Quitely (Batman and Robin, New X-Men, We3, JLA: Earth 2) has just been confirmed as a guest for this year’s convention. Groovy.
Klaatu barada nikto y’all!
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