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Mike Maihack

Comix Talk for Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cleopatra in Space! by Mike Maihack

I hope everyone had a great weekend.  I grilled the heck out of some meat on Monday and good times were had by all.  Speaking of food, the Portland Mercury offers up a ballsy cooking lesson from Achewood creator Chris Onstad. (h/t Waxy).  I challenge you to read that one all the way to the end.

AWARDS: The 2010 National Cartoonist Society's Reuben Awards were announced -- According to the NCS members Zits by Jerry Scott & Jim Borgman is the best comic strip and Rhymes with Orange by Hilary Price is the best panel in the newspapers this year... I actually think Rhymes does have some amazing work but Zits, while extremely well-crafted, feels like a bland family sitcom translated to the newspaper.  These are both very safe choices although given the glacial rate of change in newspaperland there's not really much in the way of dangerous choices the NCS could have made.

ANTHOLOGY:  A new webcomic collective - or maybe better to say online anthology?  Space Dock 7 is a science fiction themed hub for seven new webcomics that have strategically adopted an update schedule staggering their weekly updates so that each has its own day.

HYPIN THE HYPE

I Want You To Feel the Pressure by M. Thomas Harding is interesting.  The first thing you might notice however is how much the art and format of it look like Dresdan Codak. In fact the main character of IWYTFTP is kind of similar visually to a prominent character in Dresdan.  It's worth mentioning that similarity, but it's not like Harding is slavishly copying -- his comic is set-up to be about a super spy and her friends, but the first chapter was mostly about a night at a club -- we'll see what the second chapter winds up focusing on.  He's making progress with making the characters distinct and interesting, he's decently adept with the plot and there are some good beats in the individual comics.  And his artwork is improving so possibly he'll get to a point where it doesn't seem to ape Dresdan so much.

Clockworks by Shawn Gaston is a lot of fun.  It's not perfect but it has a lot of things going right. Visually, the comic is fantastic -- Gaston has a great sense of color and design.  The artwork is almost iconic at times where the characters can be submerged into the larger pattern of the panel.  The whole world of Clockworks isn't necessarily unique but it's a well-done mashup of steampunk and fantasy images.  Although there's a largely dark palette at work the use of color is really well thought out - it's often just very nice to look at.  Story-wise after 90+ comics there's a bit more of the overall world revealed and you have a better sense of the characters.  There's a lot of mystery and a bit of confusion as to motivation sometimes but give Gaston props for sticking (mostly) to the show not tell rule of story-telling.  If you read the about page you learn that the webcomic is based on a roleplaying game that Gaston is running with a group of friends (inspired by this Dork Tower comic).  I don't know how to feel about that -- on the one hand, I now know that there's a structure to the world we're reading about that Gaston is borrowing, but on the other hand, the characters in the webcomic come from the roleplaying which may or may not lead to narrative coherence as the thing plays out (what makes a satisfying role-playing experience does not necessarily equal a satisfying narrative experience for the reader).  I am going to give Gaston the benefit of the doubt and encourage you to as well (particularly if this is the type of story you'd already like).

Bat-Man (vs) Galactus

Bat-Man Meets Galactus

Gigcast 183, Interviews from Megacon 2009

Interviews from Megacon 2009

Guests:

Gigcast 182 - The Megacon 2009 Webcomics Panel

2009 Megacon Webcomics Panel

Thanks to the Webcomic Folks who were nice enough to take time away from their tables to help make the Webcomic  Panel such a success!

Megacon 2009

Megacon 2009 is in its last day, as I write this post. It’s my third year of attending, and it was a fun time as always. I met several very talented folks, saw my share of orcs, stormtroopers, Ghostbusters, Watchmen, Naruto, and people dressed in weird (or too skimpy) outfits, but hey - that’s all part of the convention experience, right?

calamityjon @ 2008-07-08T09:20:00

Oh man, the results of the Superman: Man of Style contest are up over at Project:Rooftop, both the Finalists and the Honorable Mentions.

The ComixTalk End of 2007 Roundtable

Our third annual virtual round table on the year in webcomics features comments from Gary Tyrrell, Dirk Deppey, Tom Spurgeon, Heidi MacDonald, Brigid Alverson, Derik A Badman, Reinder Dijkhuis, and JT Shea and Scott Gallatin.

Cow & Buffalo by Mike Maihack, reviewed by Justin Unrau

Cow & Buffalo by Mike Maihack has funny animals doing silly things. It's like the comics you loved when you were a kid. Wackiness prevails and it's fun.

Recent Lunchbox Funnies News

Just a little update on stuff from the Lunchbox Funnies world:

The March of the Collectives

A collective, loosely defined, is any sustained grouping of webcomic creators. What they do together varies greatly from group to group. Some are largely a peer group offering each other critical feedback and encouraging support. Others throw in cross-promotion for each others' work. Some build a collective brand with logos, advertising and a central website. Some share business experience and expertise in areas as varied as merchandise, books, conventions, hosting and website creation.

And what did I find from my research? There's a tremendous number of collectives out there (and that I never want to attempt another "survey" article again). And, oh yeah, checking out collectives can be a great way to find excellent new comics.