Monday, April 17, 2006

Guilty Pleasures and Morning Coffee

OK, here goes: "I read webcomics." That's "reed" not "red" - active verb, present tense.

Not many of them, mind you. There are quite a few of them out there, but very few that have managed to keep my fancy despite introduction to a broad range. These are the ones which keep me coming back daily for the new installment:

Top on my list: SchlockMercenary.com - a far future sci-fi series with a comedic (and surprisingly clean) mercenary bent. As is typical the drawing starts off with... issues, but eventually the artist hits a stride and things flow easily thereafter. Howard Tayler has managed to hit that stride, so much so that he was able to leave Novell to pursue the comic full time. Aside from merely being envious of his ability to make that creativity a constant part of his life and spend time with his family, I am willing to make contributions of support to work of this caliber and have pre-ordered the first book to be produced. Should get here in a month.

The second, but not by much, is Sluggy.com. This one has a nice off-the-wall-but-still-somehow-attached-to-your-reality flavor to it which is familiar to me because of the many odd-balls I grew up with and around. The utterly outlandish escapades of the core character set do much to promote their ultimate sense of humanity despite the combination absurd/mundane universe they inhabit. Same issues with the earlier artwork, but Pete Abrams has been at it longer and became nicely refined some time ago (shortly after abandoning direct violations of the 4th Wall), and is also supporting his family full time. While I've not purchased any of the many Sluggy books, I have made direct donations via PayPal as appropriate.

These are what I have sometimes referred to as my "morning coffee." I don't actually drink any, but these suffice to form a bit of a daily routine as I boot up and log on to do productive work. I minor distraction (and thus guilty pleasure), but I think well worth it.

The worst was when I first stumbled onto them, and read the entirety of their archives to that point. For daily comics which comprise multiple years of history this does take a pretty sizable chunk of time, and at the end of it all the adaptation back to a daily flow (from the addictive geyser) is a tough transition. Well worth it though, and I continue to patronize these 2 regularly - a few others on the side here or there, but not enough to really give them a plug.

These ones I highly urge you to read deeply, panel for panel, all the way from the beginning (not necessarily in one setting, and I apologize ahead of time for just how long this may take - but urge it all the same). Support the authors if you enjoy them, to ensure the steady flow of new work and keep the habit satisfied.

1 comment:

Libbie said...

Ever read Achewood? (achewood.com)