All my life I’ve collected a lot of comics. I still have a huge collection of both European comics and comics from the USA. However, the Internet did have an interesting impact on the world of comics, because today a comic can be published world-wide and all the costs is has are the time to draw the comic plus the costs of maintaining a web server. This is then compensated by income from advertisements on the web site and of course all kinds of merchandise that visitors will like to have. Like t-shirts with their favorite character, printed comic books or plushies.
So my interest started to shift from the paper comics to the web comics. I’ve bookmarked these and every evening I like to quickly check them all for the latest updates, just like I check my mailbox, Facebook messages, LinkedIn status and other online stuff. It’s part of my daily routine and keeps me away from viewing the boring television channels that we have here in the Netherlands. At least online, I’m not bothered by the many advertisements…
So, to start: Dilbert! I do think that everyone who reads my blog will know this comic too. It’s also one that’s heavily syndicated, appearing in many printed newspaper and magazines. Basically, it’s something I recognize personally, since Dilbert is an engineer and he has to deal with unrealistic demands and situations on a daily basis. It’s still amazing how he still keeps up trying to do his best, instead of giving up like Wally, another character from this comic. I often feel like Dilbert, not wanting to give up no matter the odds or the Elbonians who will imprison me and then fire me for working too hard… 🙂
Another favorite won’t be a surprise: Garfield. What’s not to like about a fat, lazy cat whose favorite dinner is food? Here’s a comic that’s been popular for decades, just like Dilbert. And the Internet has opened up a lot of extra revenue for its author, allowing them to explore all kinds of other options to make this comic even more popular. Of course, the Garfield movies and animated series also make this comic a great success.
But how about Garfield minus Garfield? This is an interesting concept based on the Garfield comics. The artist here picks some Garfield comic and will erase the cat from the comic, often leaving just Jon in the result. And interestingly enough, this often results in yet another fun situation.
Basic Instructions is a autobiographic comic where the artist draws himself in discussions with his wife, his friends, his employer and customers or his fantasy self. The fun is more in the texts than in the drawings, though.
Dinosaur Comics is even more about the texts than the artwork. Basically, the artwork is always the same, since the first comic it published. And yes, it’s about dinosaurs and it sometimes refers to God too. Which is funny, since Dinosaurs were created before creation itself. An interesting paradox.
Molly and the Bear is a comic about a little girl and her talking bear. Without the bear, she would have a normal life, like any other girl. But the bear adds some fun and a very strange perspective on the lives of children and adults.
Sandra and Woo is also a comic about a girl with a talking animal. This time, the animal is a raccoon who was raised as a pet, then escaped to the wild before becoming a pet again because he’s addicted to belly rubs. Of course, having talking pets always make for interesting stories.
I am Arg is also a autobiographic comic from a Canadian artist who just likes to create some funny strips about gaming, geeks, girls and more.
How about stick figures? The comic xkcd is definitely a must-read for geeks and comic lovers and is updated on an almost daily basis. The drawings are simple, but the humor often reflects personal feelings and often a deeper insight in things we normally don’t even think about…
What the Duck is a comic about a professional photographer in the shape of a duck. When you’re a professional photographer, this comic is a must-read.
Buni is a comic about intelligent animals. Basically, the main characters are bunnies and there are occasionally other animals in it, all drinking at the bar, experiencing life-like we all do. Often going beyond “normal” situations and exploring interesting thinks like the Leprechaun at the end of the rainbow. (Who tend to be mugged or eaten by flying unicorns…)
Marry me is a comic about a famous female singer who decides to just marry some random fan on the spot, less than a few minutes after seeing one another. What follows is a love story where they start to explore each other on a personal level before deciding if they should annul the marriage again or just continue it. And yes, at the end of the first book they decide to stay married and even have a child together. The second book provides background information about one of the main character, which makes it an even more interesting read.
Dork tower is a role-players comic. If you’ve ever played Dungeons and Dragons, then this is THE comic to read.
Looking for Group is a comic about an elven
woman warrior who is exploring his roots and who starts to build up his own kingdom. He’s accompanied by several strange friends including a wizard who seems to be the incarnation of pure evil, yet he seems to do his best to be good.
Goblins is a roleplaying story from the perspective of the characters themselves. Although it started a bit childish, with lot of referrals to the players and game master, it has turned out to become a very serious strip with a great story line.
Avengelyne is the story of a female angel who is cast out of heaven to the mortal world, where she will have to continue fighting the forces of Evil.
Another comic for role-players is Weregeek where being a geek is actually a superpower. It provides a real interesting view on the lives of fantasy role-players that’s actually not that far away from the truth.
Elven is a fantasy comic about the daily lives of elven fantasy characters. It’s more background information about how elven mages and paladins learn to become the warriors that are common in role-playing games. Unfortunately, it now seems to be updated once per year or so. I’m hoping it won’t stop, but the artist seems too occupied with other things to do.
PhD Comics is for students and professors and shows the fun side of the Academic World.
Cyanide & Happiness is a simple-artwork cartoon but with funny punch lines and interesting twists. The humor tends to be meant for adults, not minors, since talking about sex is a common topic.
Foreskin Man is more a protest site against male and female circumcision. This site is trying to enact legislation in the USA that should protect young boys from this kind of penis mutilation. Why? Because in most cases there’s no medical reason to do this kind of surgery. Parents often force this upon their young children for aesthetic or religious reasons. Like female circumcision in Africa, it’s a practice that should be stopped since the victims of these operations have this procedure forced upon them, instead of doing so out of their own free will, after being informed about the pro’s and cons of this procedure. Then again, I am glad my parents left my foreskin intact, which is common for many European men.
Faraday the Blob is about the adventures of a blob, a character with no torso, arms or legs. Yet somehow he seems to manage just fine as if nothing is wrong with him. And yes, this is a comic about an absurd world with absurd situations.
Two guys and Guy is about Guy, a young woman (surprise) and her two male friends. One friend is quite intelligent but also a ruthless scientist. The other friend is as dumb as the Monster of Frankenstein without his brain. And Guy herself is the connection between them.
Next, a set of Pixie Trix comics which tend to be slightly NSFW, but still very fun. Three of them rated PG-13 are about a fantasy world in the Harry Potter style, so there’s an academy for super-humans where they learn to handle their powers without betraying their existence to the real World. The two others are about a bunch of friends and are R-Rated because it tends to be sexually explicit, although it doesn’t really display genitals. (Tits, yes.)
Eerie Cuties is where the fantasy stories start. A young vampire girl will attend the academy for the first time, accompanied by her older sister. However, since this little vampire girl was born on Easter, she doesn’t drink blood. She lives on chocolate instead, making her an interesting character. But as the comic progresses, it will also focus on the lives of the other supernatural students in the academy, including the complex hormonal influences of puberty.
Magick Chicks is a spin-off of Eerie Cuties where a group of witches infiltrate a monster academy. After many episodes it’s still not clear why they had to infiltrate this academy, but they are on a secret mission that they don’t even know about.
Dangerously Chloë is another spin-off of Eerie Cuties. Chloë left the academy to become a full-fledged Succubus and is sent on her first mission. She’s to become the girlfriend of a boy who dropped some of his blood on a Satanic statue by accident. He is granted a wish, and wishes for a girlfriend. Thus, Chloë enters the scene and is to become his girlfriend, harvest his soul and then return to the Demon world, well-fed. Too bad Chloë feels sorry for the boy and now wants to help him to escape this contract with the Devil, without compromising her own work. She just has to find some other girl who wants to become his girlfriend and she happens to know the perfect candidate.
Menage a 3 starts as a story about three guys sharing the same house as roommates. But as it turns out, two of them are gay and are caught by the third friend, naked and ‘connected’. They also planned to leave the house but they had put an advertisement out for a new roommate. Knowing their roommate is straight, they asked for female roommates and as a result, two girls turn up to become the new roommates. From here on, the story is about the relationships that develop between these roommates and their friends. Plus, the straight roommate also turns out to be a virgin, so the new roommates are trying to change this.
Sticky Dilly Buns is a spin-off and is about one of the former male roommates, who decides to live together with a female (former) porn star. That too turns out to be very interesting, since they both share a similar interest in men.
Go Get a Roomie is about a hippy girl named Roomie since she just wanders around, sleeping with anyone who offers her a place to sleep. She’s an alcoholic, a bisexual nymphomaniac and at one point she ends up at the place of Lillian who is first just annoyed about her new roommate, yet tolerates her since she’s too lazy to kick Roomie out. Lillian tends to sleep a lot, having some spiritual-like dreams which she shares with Roomie and Roomie’s friends. And their relationship starts to develop to something stronger in a non-sexual way, although Roomie is definitely interested in making things more sexual.
Finally, Oglaf is a comic about a fantasy world with often some very adult content, yet always placed in a fun way. Occasionally, it will have a comic that is safe to view at work but most of it isn’t. It’s a world where men can become pregnant and where the fountain of doubt is doubtful.