Pro Grapplers Episode 39: Deputy Dango!

Deputy Dawg cartoonThere were many good things about Payback that the guys agree on. There was also one match that was Steve’s pick for Match of the Night. We will not talk about this match (but they totally talk about that match). Also, Braun continued his dominance, Sheamaro turned ugly (and amazing), and the Fashion Files were officially opened. Don’t worry, crying is absolutely ok here.

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Webcomics – for all, or for some?

Webcomics do so many things right. The way they engage with their audience and the medium of the web. The way they explore issues like gender, diversity, the more adult stuff, and the just plain rude. But there’s still one place webcomics (like pretty much every other web-based enterprise out there) has largely failed to push the envelope – accessibility to the blind and visually impaired.

In the past week, you might have seen the Instagram post by Chris Pratt, where the Guardians of the Galaxy star apologized for some comments that were insensitive to the deaf and hearing-impaired community. Now, being a pop culture troglodyte, I hadn’t heard of this until – predictably – it cycled back around to webcomics. Specifically, a Facebook post where Charles C. Dowd (of asked:

Saw this story in my feed… Are there examples of audio comics or services out there that could potentially appeal to the visually-impaired?”

The answer, as I found, was: yeeeaaaah…kinda. Continue reading

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Today I Learned (Nothing) Episode 33: Do Not Mouseover

A disclaimer for Toonami on Adult SwimSteve attended Sakuracon and wondered just how different we all are, really. He also discovered adaptive homeless people, which really sounds like some promising tech. Jason, meanwhile, besmirches anime and usually falls asleep before he can watch enough to form a cohesive argument.

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Searching for Strip Search – Part Two

Last week we looked at a few of the contestants who competed on Penny Arcade’s Strip Search in 2013 – what have they been doing for the past five years? Are they still in webcomics? Are they still creating art? What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

Today we’re going to continue that, scouring the interwebs for clues about the next four contestants eliminated from the competition: Mackenzie Schubert, Nick Trujillo, Amy Falcone and Erika Moen. Continue reading

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Pro Grapplers Episode 38: Payback-Per-View

Oscar the Grouch from Sesame StreetAlistair Black is an awesome kickboxing vampire, we think. There are other things to talk about that don’t matter as much, but we’ll run them down anyways. We do have questions, like: is a dumpster threatening when worn as shoes? Does Ziggler think owning a monkey and a ferris wheel is a bad thing? Are Breezango really the number one contenders for the SD Tag Titles? When will Jack Gallagher finally get his due? When will the Hardyz break, and will Cesarmus be the ones to do it? Does Steve think of Joe vs. Lesnar in bed? Will Jinder ever return the WWE Title? And just what ARE Great Balls of Fire?

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Today I Learned (Nothing) Episode 32: We’ve All Peed In The Mayonnaise

Scar from The Lion King sings "Be Prepared"When it comes to vomiting, it’s best to act like a Boy Scout and be prepared. Also, are all Target bathroom sinks designed to spray your crotch? Jason investigates. Also, Steve and his son are especially adept at finding dead men in bathrooms. Use this knowledge to determine when or if you will accompany them to the can.

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Digital Strips Episode 479: Three People Does Not A Bullpen Make

Jedidiah and Octavius fight the air in Night at the MuseumThere’s middle of nowhere, and then there’s the wide expanses of Idaho. Once Steve tells Jason all about the more colorfully-named parts of his home state, it’s on to a couple of comics that show their animal instincts proudly with Scurry and Ghosts of the Gulag.

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Pro Grapplers Episode 37: Home of the KFC Yum! Center

Topps trading card for WCW's LodiIf you’ve ever used one human being to hit another human being, you know how satisfying it can be. Nia Jax does it. Braun Strowman does it. Big people prefer to use smaller people as weapons, it’s canon. Also, Jason gets to educate Steve on the nuanced career of WCW’s Lodi, both guys freak out over Jinder’s current freaky body, the Colons could be a thing, Joe shouldn’t cut promos after matches any more, the perfect time to watch 205 Live, and why Strowman is STILL the best thing in WWE right now.

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Searching for Strip Search – Part One

The year was 2012. America said they could (again), I launched my own webcomic (oh God, the art!) and as if in response JPEG juggernaut Penny Arcade ran their very first Kickstarter campaign. This campaign was nominally for the removal of ads from their site, but the real reason we all backed it was hidden in the stretch goals – the promise they’d create the world’s first webcomic reality game show: Strip Search. Five years on I wondered, what happened to the twelve contestants on that show which was, perhaps, before it’s time? Here’s what I found.

For those of you unfamiliar with the single-season show produced by PATV and Loading Ready Run, here’s a quick run-down. Strip Search aired online between March and June 2013, running a familiar “reality TV” format: twelve artists were picked from a multitude of applicants (yeah, including me), and proceeded to battle their way through thirty-one episodes of coaching, industry experience, and tense elimination challenges. The prize? A year working in the Penny Arcade offices, hosting and advertising through the PA site, and access to all their internal resources.

Depending on what webcomics you read, those twelve names might be a bit unfamiliar these days. I know I found most of these guys – particularly the ones eliminated early in the competition – had fallen off my radar. I wanted to know what they’d been doing over the past five years, if they were still making webcomics, and how their art and writing had developed since the show. Today, I’d like to share a bit about the first three contestants who left the show: Alex Hobbs, Ty Halley, and Lexxy Douglass. Continue reading

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Today I Learned (Nothing) Episode 31: That Was Our Inside Joke, Google!

Grasshoppers are a favorite snack for Seattle Mariners fansAutocorrect is judging Jason, and he doesn’t appreciate the judgment. Steve is going out to the ballgame, and he only wants peanuts and … grasshoppers? Like, the insect? Also, priests might find it uncomfortable to take in an indie wrestling match. Shocker!

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