Digital Strips Podcast 296 – Horizons Watch – Shiver Bureau and Zen Pencils

Hey, this episode worked! We celebrate a successful recording with Poo Talk! What do you like to do when you number two? Do your BMs come at inopportune moments? How about when you’re out for a nice stroll? Or working up a sweat with a few-mile run? What to do when you find yourself needing to squat, and over a mile from the homebase! Steve has even thought up a slogan for Nike, “Just do it where you want to do it”. Catchy, I think.

Eventually webcomics come back up in conversation, so we talk about those for a while, too. Here’s the quick version of what we’ve been reading and discussing in the last week.

This whole episode felt so casual, it felt only right to continue that easy, breezy mood with the music selection. “A Hint of Blue” (14:43 by Gibs and Mordi) from the smash-hit SNES title, Donkey Kong Country, chills things out for our upcoming discussion. I found it funny that the score for the water stages in DKC mellowed me out, but the action they contained was anything but serene. Trying to strike a balance, I suppose? We also chat about the possibilities the Wii U holds for us this November, for those who are up on the current gaming trends (mine is pre-ordered, you?)

Horizons Watch brings us two different webcomics to talk about, both in terms of where they’ve been thus far in their relatively short lifespan and where the promise of their quality might take them in the future. Our picks this time are:

Two promising, young comics, two very distinct personalities contained therein. Join our discussion as we ponder these other, important topics: Saved By The Bell and the WTF-iness of Tori, whether or not the famed boxer’s actual name was “Muhammedah Lee”, Lovecraft is Missing (23:13), a long-forgotten Michael Jackson classic, just who is this Gary, and your pick on the ballot in this election season (Steve’s voting for ( o )( o ) ). Discuss below!

Share

Digital Strips Podcast 290 – Review – Blue Yonder

News tends to pile up when we don’t get around to a new episode for a couple of weeks. Case in point…

  • (11:30) Penny Arcade Kickstarter (I tried to keep it brief, horribly failed at that)
  • (14:22) The Oatmeal raises funds to fight FunnyJunk, says F-U in the process
  • (14:43) Ryan Estrada’s The Whole Story now truly pay-what-you-want
  • (15:37) Battlepug wins Best Digital Comic at the Eisners

So many big stories, and then we mentioned more comics. Suckers, we are. Giant suckers.

If you’re looking for something game-related to groove to through the break that relates to a comic called Blue Yonder, what goes better than any of the thousands of remixes based on Capcom’s iconic blue bomber? This one is by Jakesnke17 and it’s called “Switchblade Fangs” (18:00).

American comic books (graphic novels?) have long been chastised for a look and feel that echoes everything that’s come before. Sure, if one were to stick to only the superhero, big tentpole books, that would likely be true. But there is so much available out there these days, such an assumption is, at worst, presumptuous. At best, it’s dangerous. Blue Yonder takes a look that not only harkens back to previous works, but does so all the way back to the early Marvel style started, and still emulated, by Jack Kirby.

But the story diverges from there, offering family drama and zeroes trying to become heroes. Is it enough to make the bright superheroics worth your time? Listen in and tell us what you think! If that doesn’t strike your fancy, then let me know what you think of Steve’s singing! Yeah, I’m… I’m sorry for that.

Share

Digital Strips Podcast 289 – Review – Super Brophy Bros.

The KindThis week, we’re holding nothing back. The kid gloves are off, all our cards are on the table, and we’re telling the whole story. And I mean The Whole Story (5:40).

So just what is The Whole Story? If you’re a gamer of any shape, size, or color, you know that there are various indie game bundles available now (examples of which you can find here and here), bundles that ask you to pay a price you determine. In return, you get access to DRM-free games. Simple as that, you pay more, you might get more, but mostly you’re just helping out a great cause (supporting the developers as well as giving to a number of gaming-centered charities).

All-star comicker and just all-around-awesome-dude Ryan Estrada has gotten together arguably the most illustrious group of comics people and put together seven books, all of which can be yours for various amounts of your generous giving. The names include (but are not limited to…)

We’ve got previews of all of the books on offer in our possession and will be bringing you our thoughts in the shows to come. In the meantime, stop by the site and get them for yourself. This would be a great thing to see continue for the good work that these creators have done.

Other comics mentioned in our first segment (because Steve didn’t already hate me enough…)

Our break ramblings consist of a sophisticated, detailed breakdown of the importance of giant, swinging robot testicles in Michael Bay’s filmography. I can think of nothing more fitting than a remix from the NES-born, classic Contra series to guide us through. This offering is Feeding Frenzy by goat (14:46).

Reviewing gag-a-day comics tends to be a task which hinges on one question: are the jokes funny? Without daily guffaws, tee-hees, and LOLs, a comic that relies on a punchline for entertainment will land flat and limp, no question. So what is the verdict for THIS buddy gag-a-day comic?

Our discussion yields a mixed bag, as well as a discussion of non sequiturs and why they sometimes just don’t work out. Also in our discussion, a comic is mentioned!

As always, we want to know what you thought about this comic. Did the jokes hit every time for you? Were you left wanting more? Leave a comment and find us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Soundcloud, and Audioboo. The conversation about webcomics never stops!

Share

Digital Strips Podcast 287 – Review – The Trouble And Dangerous

Unsolved Mysteries logoSo many, multiple mysteries to solve with this show. First and foremost, WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO THE NEWS SEGMENT IN THE FIRST PART OF THE SHOW?!? For the answers to these, and other questions… ask Steve.

Seriously though, we ramble on for three minutes plus about The Golden Girls, and then POOF! The show just kind of vanished. Files were corrupted, jokes were ruined, and someone WILL be held accountable. But until then, here’s the links to the stories we talked about, as promised:

  • Cameron Stewart’s Sin Titulo is back! There’s really nothing more that needs to be said, just go read it already!
  • Starslip, Kris Straub’s epic space comedy, has come to a conclusion. There’s a very good chance we’ll revisit this comic as a Book Club edition somewhere down the line.
  • F@NB0Y$ is… still a thing! That updates and which you should read.
  • Scott Kurtz and Frumph (PvP and the man currently behind Comicpress, respectively) had a spirited discussion about the banality of using the beloved webcomic WordPress skin as it comes out of the box and arrived at something resembling an understanding of one another’s positions. And to drive home this point of actually showing an effort with the small corner of the web that you decide to carve out for your online-hosted comic…
  • The System, by Ross Nover, has a new site. It is custom and features gorgeous design and navigation and takes to heart the modern web techniques and is everything we’ve ever wanted in a webcomic site and make us drool at it’s awesome abiliaggggaggghhhhhhhhh

We managed to retain every precious second of the review for The Trouble and Dangerous by Matt Zimmerman (until proven otherwise). For the first time in a while, we have no notes to accompany this review, as no other comics came into the discussion. I guess it speaks for itself!

Share

Digital Strips Podcast 284 – Review – Eleanor

Hey Digital Strippers! Consider this to be a placeholder post until Steve has time to work up some proper notes. In the meantime, though, enjoy the show, where we review Eleanor: The Girl Who Never Stopped Falling by Jason Gurley.

Share

Digital Strips Podcast 276 – Review – Briar Hollow

Teenage Mutant Ninja TurtlesAs the storm wails around me here in the Rocky Mountains, I like to picture you, some place, dry and warm, sitting by the fire in a cozy, red felt chair with your earbuds in, enjoying this latest episode of Digital Strips. This week we take a look at Briar Hollow, the least college-y college-based comic I think I’ve ever seen. The comic is created by Terry Blas with brilliant colors by Kimball Davis.

We also take several detours into other territories, talking about the X-Men and the Ninja Turtles and what makes them so different (and seriously people, comment on that topic, it’s for science and posterity).

Not too many comics mentioned this week, which makes for easy show notes:

Abaddon - 2:30
Questionable Content – 5:00
Next Town Over – 21:00
My Sister, The Freak – 22:30
Imagine This – 27:00

The music in the middle was L’espoir fait vivre by Bézèd’h

Share

Digital Strips Podcast 271 – Review – Mohagen

So, Steve notes that the theme of this episode, the first recorded in 2012, is “True Facts” (I think it should be “Rear of the Dragon”, but you’ll understand why at about the 5:00 mark). While I didn’t even bother to correct his repetitive title, I can throw out some statements that I certainly believe to be true.

Antagonizing Steve over the airwaves week in and week out is a true joy that lights me up when the day comes. Appreciating and building up has long been part of our mission statement at Digital Strips and I can guarantee we’ll be checking out at least one of the “next big things” in 2012. As we mention early on in this episode, it’s our job to find the good stuff for you, the diamonds in the really, really rough. Also, for those of our listeners who also like to play video games, either casually or with a more invested interest, we’ll be putting something up later this week on this very front page that we hope you’ll enjoy.

But why waste time right now, gazing into crystal balls and guessing at the future when you can be sure that we’ve got an amazing review for you right now! But first, some news items:

Other comics mentioned, either in reference or as part of what we’re reading, in the first segment:

Mixed in with some Rambletron silliness is our music break, provided, appropriately enough, by another tale of underwater fish tank hijinx, Pixar’s Knick Knack (14:50).

There are lots of comics that attempt the cut-and-paste method of creating comics, but few pull it off to as impressive a degree as Mohagen (15:50), a gag-a-day story-ish comic about a foul-mouthed fish and his decorative skull buddy, Grady. There are other characters who make appearances here and there, but if these two buddies don’t keep putting food in the tank, this comic goes belly up. Luckily, creators Kennon James and John Kipling are more than up to the task of making sure the writing is sharp enough to slice and the art is expressive enough to make watching this fish anything but boring.

Some other comics mentioned in our discussion:

Various other bits to toss in the Rambletron at show’s end include being terrible role models, bus stop warnings, horrible haiku and limerick-esque rhyming schemes, and the fact that, for some reason, we once wanted to be known as the “Dark Windowless Van of the Internet”.

Share