Remember frantically flipping through newspapers in search of the funny pages? The childhood joy of hanging out with Garfield, Calvin and Hobbes, the Peanuts gang and Dilbert? For some, this happiness never ended.
To some the term webcomics is a foreign concept, but for others it can be like an addictive substance. Webcomics are, like the term suggests, comics that are published online. There are thousands upon thousands available for free browsing, with every genre conceivable and artists ranging from amateurs to professionals.
For this reason, it can be daunting to pick only a few to feature among the masses of amazing works. Here’s a list of four web comics that are great reads not only for beginners but for veterans as well:
1. Manly Guys Doing Manly Things http://thepunchlineismachismo.com/
Oh, it’s manly alright. Created by Kelly Turnbull (pseudonym: Coelasquid) only four years ago, Manly Guys Doing Manly Things (MGDMT) is about a temp agency that works to reintegrate “ludicrously macho guys” back into society. These macho men tend to be the fictional characters of popular videogames, such as Zelda, God of War, Dante’s Inferno, etc. MGDMT might not sound as appealing to readers who know little about videogames, but watching these macho men work in daycares, nurseries and offices, dealing with every day issues in their eternal manliness, is by far one of the funniest sights to behold – videogame enthusiast or not.
On top of Coelasquid’s hilarious and clever dialogue is an art style that has been consistently topnotch, with vivid colours and unforgettable facial expressions. If you’re looking for a good laugh MGDMT is definitely for you.
2. The Fox Sister http://thefoxsister.com/
If you’re looking for something a little more supernatural and suspenseful you should definitely consider checking out The Fox Sister. Beautifully drawn by Jayd Aït-Kaci and written by Christina Strain, the comic is set in 1968 Seoul, Korea. It’s based on a Korean folktale of the same title about a shape-shifting nine-tailed fox demoness.
The comic has its origins in trauma. As a child, Cho Yun Hee, the protagonist, witnessed the fox demon shape shift into her sister’s form and murder her entire family. We catch up with Cho Yun Hee seven years later, still on the hunt for the demon.
What’s really amazing about this comic is its characters. Cho Yun Hee’s serious and single-minded attitude is challenged by the gregarious Alex, an American ex-soldier she meets in Seoul. Their budding relationship is at times tense, to say the least, but it provides warmth and sprinkles of humour that complement the drama well.
3. JL8 http://limbero.org/jl8/150
Have you ever wondered what it would be like if members of the Justice League went to preschool together? Well, JL8 has got you covered.
Based on characters in DC Comics, Yale Stewart’s JL8 is, simply put, adorable. The comic is cleanly drawn with a style that nods to vintage comics of days passed.
The comic follows the day-to-day adventures of the still-innocent members of the League – such as Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, Martian Manhunter, as well as others. There’s a wonderful sense of humour, and the relationship between the JL8 kids is endearing. Stewart stays true to the spirit of the DC characters, exploring their growth into their superhero roles, as well as their personal struggles.
If you’re one to gush over cute cartoons or want to see an innovative take on DC’s staple superheroes, you will not be disappointed by JL8.
4. Girls With Slingshots http://www.girlswithslingshots.com/
Danielle Corsetto’s slice-of-life comic Girls With Slingshots (GWS) has been ongoing for the past ten years and has nearly 1,800 four-panel pages in archives online.
The hilarious and heartfelt comic follows the post-college adventures of two best friends: the exceedingly cynical Hazel and the loveable Jamie. With a diverse cast, the comic tackles friendship, relationships and talking houseplants with humour, sassiness and realism.
Despite having worked on GWS for a decade, Corsetto continues to weaves incredible story arcs driven by wonderfully human characters - with her art style evolving significantly along the way.
Although her talent as an illustrator was evident from page one, Corsetto’s style in recent years has come to truly complement her characters. Whether it’s busty Jamie, wholesome Carol or dominatrix Clarice, each character has a unique and dynamic build, with a range of facial expressions that only further sings praise of Corsetto’s creative abilities.
Whatever your interests, it’s guaranteed that there’s a webcomic out there for you. And to all you fellow procrastinators out there: you’re welcome.