DS Blog in September

Hey everyone! Terence (a.k.a the Average Joe) here – just popping in a quick note the blog will be on temporary hiatus (not “Temporary Hiatus”!! Every Webcomic reader knows what that means!!!) during September. My thesis is due, and I am writing this from the secret bunker where I’ve been ensconced until it’s finished at the end of the month.

See you all in October for some spoooooky webcomics articles!

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These Webcomics have CHANGED! Five great comics already using Jason Brubaker’s approach

It is the end of the world (as we know it) for webcomics.

Over the past few years, the Digital Strips podcast has highlighted time and again how the way we interact with, discover, and read webcomics has changed. And now, it seems others are listening as well! Jason Brubaker’s (reMIND, Sithrahrecent YouTube manifesto on the changes and challenges to webcomics has been making the rounds, so we’ve gathered here five of the best webcomics (and their creators) that have already embraced the five elements of change Brubaker highlights in his video. Continue reading

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How Mary Worth Beat Superman

Anyone on the street will tell you that “comics” mean “superhero comics.” With the rise of Batman, Captain America and the Avengers from the back of the dingily-lit comic store, to the summer blockbuster every year (forever) that person on the street might even be able to tell you everything about their favourite Hero, without ever having seen a comic book.

By Yale Stewart – JL8 #2

Online, it’s a different matter. Sure, superhero webcomics exist, but how many of them do you see in a given ‘Top 10″ or ‘best of‘ list? How many of them do you read?

Not many – because Superhero comics lack something special, something integral to digital success: something comics like Mary Worth figured out a long time ago. Continue reading

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[Edit: OMG! This is my first top comment! Ty, Ty (UwU)] The Psychology Behind a Webtoons Phenomenon

If you’ve been following the podcast’s recommendations over the past few years, then odds are you’ve ended up somewhere on Line Webtoon once or twice.

Webtoons offer a great reading experience for webcomics: posting multiple pages for each chapter means you can blitz through really meaty chunks of a comic each update, and the way the posts flow into one another (particularly on mobile devices) leads to a real sense of ‘just-one-more’ishness equalled only by a packet of crisps or free booze at a work Christmas party.

Many regrets were had. Photo credit: istolethetv

But as you’re scrolling to the bottom, waiting for that little arrow to bump and tick you over into the next strip, you go past the comments. And inevitably, you see some variant of the following:

Witty comment pertaining to the latest update. (Edit: OMG! This is my first top comment you guys! Thank you, thank you, please remember that [cartoonist] is the real hero here, please like and support their work. Who thought this little thing I dashed off with barely any thought would be so popular haha I love you alllllllllllllll)”

The psychology behind commenting on the internet has been subject to a number of investigations, articles and academic papers over the years – but it seemed to me that this phenomenon was a little different to the standard trolling or ‘First!’ comments that plague other creative platforms like YouTube. So why do people feel the need to edit their comments once the original achieves some popularity? Continue reading

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Danielle Corsetto and Monica Gallagher launch a new Webcomic

Greetings, Digital Strippers*!

Most of you who’ve been listening to the podcast or reading through the blog over the past few years will be familiar with the love and respect the show has for Danielle Corsetto’s Girls With Slingshots and Stuck at 32. And if you’ve stumbled down the Webtoons rabbit hole once or twice, chances are you’ll have come across Monica Gallagher’s Assassin RoommateYou might also be familiar with Monica’s work as an Indy artist/creator on Bonnie & Collide, Nine to Five or her slew of other comic projects.

Today, these two creators of comics about strong, independent women came together (with colourist Mae. S. Keller) to launch their new collaborative comic: Boo! It’s Sex.

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The End of Something Wonderful

Clicking through the world of webcomics any time since 2006 there has been one small bit of text, so omnipresent that you might not even have noticed it, that has been with you as surely as the pixels on the screen translating colour and shape into humour and drama:

These nine words (plus a price tag) have been the staple of every self-respecting cartoonist or comic artist who’ve placed their work on the web (and even some of the not-so-self-respecting ones). However, an announcement by Project Wonderful creator Ryan North on June 11 2018 that the service was shutting down for good has brought this experiment in independent advertising and democratisation of ad revenue to a close.

So if you only know of the service as someone seeing the ads, what even was Project Wonderful – and what made it so different to the other advertising options out there? Today, we’re looking back on the service, what it promised, and what it means for webcomic creators to see the service go extinct.

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Ready Player: Webcomics

Love it or hate it, there’s no denying that Steven Spielberg’s latest movie Ready Player One– based on the novel by Ernest Cline – was a commercial hit. In an age where the real-L.I.F.E immersive qualities of Virtual Reality are only beginning to be explored, Cline’s story of a digital Willy-Wonka-style Golden Ticket hunt clearly spoke to modern audiences.

Of course, Webcomics long pipped Parzival at the top of the leaderboard, having used their digital platform to explore life within simulations for almost as long as the medium has existed. Today, we’re looking at one of the clearest examples, and dissecting how it’s built its own Oasis for readers to escape to.

Not a Villainby Aneeka Richins Continue reading

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Talking *to* webcomics – Part 2

In our celebration around the show’s 500th episode, we looked back at some of the Digital Strips interview Alumni – people who, since their appearance on the show, had gone on to either great webcomics success, or [INDEFINITE HIATUS].

Today, we’re going to have another look back on some of the names and personalities that have graced the Digital Strips airwaves in times past, and examining what these creators are up to today. Continue reading

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Worth 1000 words…

We’ve spent the past month looking at words – podcasting webcomics is, after all, dependant on the hosts or interviewees talking (or else is dull listening, indeed).

My experimental podcast series “Enemy Mime” never got off the ground for some reason…
Image credit: Bandita

But webcomics are a vast and descriptive medium that doesn’t, itself, always rely on those words. We’re talking, of course, about the pantomime comic, and how they speak to us simply and effectively through their art – not their dialogue.

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The Big 500 – Thirteen years, above all, of: Webcomics

Over the past month, we’ve taken a retrospective look at the institution that is Digital Strips. We’ve looked at the people behind the magic, from the early days of Daku and Zampzon, to today’s fearless duo of The Geek and Midnight Cartooner. We’ve looked at some of the creators that have graced the Digital Strips airwaves to speak about their comics and their experiences as creators on the web. But we would be remiss if we didn’t look back on the core of the podcast, the very thing that gets the hosts coming back to the mic every week, what gives us the opportunity to write these incessant and sprawling articles. That is, of course – the Webcomics. Continue reading

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