What I’ve been Reading: Back to School 2013
Back To School: Well it had to happen eventually, I wish that it wasn’t so obvious on the site but I missed last week’s update and it’s gonna be tight this week. I DO have comics written and inked… I just need to have time to finish the production on the strips… that all needs to take place on a computer and these first two weeks of school have NOT been good for that… but I’m not admitting defeat here. (I’m stubborn like that…)
New Tank-Monkey IS on the way, it’s coming. I’m excited to release em. In the meantime you will be seeing at least 2 fun guest strips coming up! One is currently up at A Damaged Childhood! Soon one will also be up at Zombie Oaks as well! So be on the lookout, and trust that I’ll be tweeting and Facebook-ing about em for sure!
Webcomics: I mentioned last time that I will be reviewing some of my favorite webcomics from time to time. Well today I’m excited to review…
A Damaged Childhood: is the brainchild of Justin Voss. As taken from his about page “He’s a husband and father of four who works as an IT Professional.” So he works full time, has a big family, AND he’s seriously pumping out awesome ideas like it’s nobody’s business!
A Damaged Childhood, just ONE of those ideas, takes the time honored stories, songs, rhymes, poems, and general culture of our childhoods… and twists them into brilliant and sometimes horrific (but always entertaining) comics!
He puts the comics together using Sketchbook Pro and GIMP. I think this is awesome because, unless I’m totally wrong, the sketchbook pro he’s using is like a $5 app and GIMP is an open source software that is free… why is that impressive to me? Cuz look at his work! For a one time five dollar drop he’s putting out a product that is incredible! It’s got a unique and consistent look and he proves you can put out a professional product without having to break the bank to do it. That’s a testament to his talent.
He’s double duty on his strip, he’s the art direction and the writing direction. I know that’s not all that uncommon in the webcomic world but let’s think about this… being good at both? Is not as easy as it sounds… and Justin is EPIC at both. His ideas are fully realized when they hit the screen. They are concise, I never scratch my head and wonder “hey I don’t get this one… what’s he talking about?!” That kind of clarity is the product of good planning and clever use of familiar subject matter, it doesn’t happen by accident.
His artwork has a consistent style, I always know I’m looking at a Justin Voss piece even when he’s doing guest strips, which let me tell you he’s doing some incredible guest strips.
I’ve been lucky enough to network with Justin on several projects now including Webcomic Tag and #5thpanelguest… it’s no coincidence that I wanted to review his comic. He has been super kind with his blog posts and posts on popular forums talking about the various projects that we’ve worked on. He has been a super friend to the Tank-Monkey webcomic. (That’s right folks a “TANK-MONKEY SUPER FRIEND” hmmm… what would THAT cartoon look and sound like?…)
He was also kind enough to post a guest strip which I submitted as part of his AuGuest month! A month long series where guest pieces go up each Friday on his site.
He’s doing all of this AND he’s got several side projects that we haven’t even seen yet! I’m constantly impressed by Justin Voss. You’d be crazy not to follow him on Twitter and you’d be foolish not to like his Facebook… and you’d be guilty by reason of insanity if you didn’t stop reading this RIGHT NOW and go check out his site. (No seriously it’s okay go there now, then come back here, the rest of this blog post can wait… just don’t forget to come back)
Justin Voss Abridged List of Awesome:
- Webcomic Tag Blog!
- #5thpanelguest strip on Tank-Monkey
- Webcomic Tag Forum Review
- Justin on Twitter
- A Damaged Childhood on Facebook
- A Damaged Childhood on Tumblr
Gambit: I finally did it! I finally got caught up on Marvel Comic’s ongoing Gambit Comic series. My initial thoughts on it were mixed. The first year of issues really seemed to be about establishing the feel of the series. In that respect it did a decent job but it felt a little wonky at times like it wasn’t quite sure if it was a funny title or a serious title or if it was both… Sometimes’s it’s too serious, sometimes it’s not serious enough and sometimes it’s hard to tell what which way the book “should” feel.
Once we kinda get through those first 2-3 story arcs though it really gets fun.
Setting up Pete Wisdom as this snarky straight man against Remy’s swagger was really fun the second time around.
Seeing Gambit power a set of Iron Man armor using his kinetic mutant powers? Incredible. While WAR MACHINE is chasing him?! OMG!
The current story arc dipping into Gambit’s family history?! Awesome!
So yes the title was a slow and somewhat rocky start for me… I did consider dropping it… but now that everything is established? It’s an absolute joy to read.
From the point of view of a die hard Gambit fan and a cynical critic of poorly done solo books, I can honestly say that I feel like this book has found a good hand of card and is playing them well.
This might finally be the book that can bump Gambit out of supporting character-ville and give him the solo shot that could take him into big time Avengers territory. (I’m way biased but I’d love to see Remy on an Avengers team… I’d love to see him and Hawkeye as either good friends or bitter rivals… that just sounds like good times to me.)
Well kids! It’s back to school it’s time to sharpen pencils, hunker down, and get to work. More Tank-Monkey is on the way! Thanks so much for reading and supporting the comic!