The Webcomicker

Who watches the watchmen?

Monday, November 07, 2005

The "You Kinda Had Me and Then I Got Bored with You" List

So, apparently I'm pretty boring. Or at least, so I must conclude from the lack of comments on most of my posts, despite the fact that I know there are some people out there reading me. If people are reading me and no one is leaving a comment, I've pretty much got to conclude that I'm just not saying anything people feel is worth commenting on (i.e. it's somewhat mundane, so there's no need to really try to add any discussion to it).

But that's ok. In a way I'm kind of glad. I'm a big fan of Red vs Blue, but I absolutely cannot stand the users over there who leave the most inane comments for all the videos, stuff like "awesome video, thanks!" and the ever popular "I'm downloading it right now, can't wait to watch it!" ARGH! If you don't have anything to say, don't say anything, and freaking DON'T POST A COMMENT ABOUT SOMETHING YOU HAVEN'T EVEN WATCHED YET!!! I just want to grab people like that between my jaws and shake them until they stop moving. Seriously. So I am happy that I don't have the kind of people frequenting my site that don't just post "Wow, good review" or "Thanks for posting something today" or "Awesome, new post, I look forward to reading it!" (That person would be sooooooo banned). At least the people that read this site only post when they feel there is something to be said.

Also, I don't really ever post on anyone else's site, so why should I expect anyone to post on mine, right?

But I'm way off topic here. The actual intent of this post is to talk about those webcomics which I tried to read but eventually gave up on. Now, let me clarify this point somewhat. I don't officially have what Websnark would call a "You Had Me and You Lost Me" list at the moment because there haven't been any comics which I've followed for a considerable period of time and then stopped reading. There have been a couple which have just mysteriously stopped updating and one that has ended (Poppycock Circus), but none that I've actually quit.

But there have been a number of comics which I've started reading and stopped. And I'm not talking about "I visited the site and clicked through a few of the comics and just said 'this is dumb' and left the site." There have been HUNDREDS of comics which I've given that treatment. There's no way I could possibly hope to remember all these, much less to catalogue them. This short list is of comics in which I read through at least a year's worth of archives (usually much more, and in the case of Wondermark, the entire archive), before finally saying "You know, this comic really isn't interesting me. I think I'll just stop reading." I can't say with any definiteness that this is a complete list, but it's all I can remember, and I think it's a fairly complete list.

Don't expect any really in depth analyzation of why exactly I stopped reading any of these comics like Eric Burns has in his "You Had Me and You Lost Me". If I ever do truly "lose" a comic then I promise I'll write something salient and in-depth about it, but for all of these comics the experience in my head was something only slightly above "Man, this is boring. I think I could be spending my time on something more interesting." So here we go, in no particular order.

Sinfest: Honestly, this is the only one on the list that I can't pinpoint a specific reason for stopping on. I've heard lots of good stuff about Sinfest, and I think it's probably the most popular comic on Keenspot right now with so many others jumping ship, but it just failed to hold my interest. I didn't find the "poetry slam" or whatever strips to be terribly funny, and all the religion jokes just kind of wore thin after awhile. I know people will probably say "Oh you didn't read until it really started getting good," but I did read a solid two years, and it just... got boring.

Casey and Andy: I actually really enjoyed reading Casey and Andy for awhile. I especially liked Quantum Cop. But the strip started to lose energy the further through the archive I went. It was almost as if the strip itself, with so much science in it, were following the laws of physics and succumbing to non-conservative forces which were draining it's energy and grinding it to a halt. The sort of frenetic excitement that it carried at the beginning got lost somewhere along the way and it became just a strip about some mad scientists and their wacky friends. And it just wasn't as good anymore. so I stopped reading.

Wondermark: I already posted a detailed review of this comic here. I don't really have much else to say.

Chopping Block: Ok, listen. There's only so many jokes you can make about serial killers and have it still be funny. Chopping Block has a lot of good things going for it. The art matches the content PERFECTLY, probably more perfectly than any other comic I've ever read. And it's a clever premise. Looking at the human side of a sick and twisted killer as opposed to the monstrous side. And it's funny. But after awhile, I realized that every joke was just a variation on a theme. A rehashing of the joke before. And while you can keep that up for awhile, especially with a topic as unique as Chopping Block's, eventually it gets repetitive and a bit old. I actually think the creator has realized this now as well, which might explain why he's been going on hiatuses so much and might just end the strip altogether soon here.

Arthur, King of Time and Space: I wanted to like this strip. I still want to like this strip. I just don't. I still might try to pick it back up again someday and try to like it again, but for now, it's on the "got bored" list. I could blame the art, since the jaggies are kind of annoying, but I could get over that. I did get over it for the few hundred strips I read. But the strip, as interesting of a concept as it is, just doesn't sit well with me. The individual strips don't seem to be terribly well executed, and the overall plot is really hard to follow thanks to all the constant time traveling. Maybe if I were more of an Arthurian legend buff I'd be able to keep up, but as it is I can't. I can handle a confusing and hard to follow plot if the execution is good, and I can handle subpar execution if the plot is enough to keep me interested, but deficiencies in both areas are enough to make me bored enough to quit.

So there's the list of comics I've eventually abandoned midway through the archives. It's a fairly short list because in almost all cases when I get as deep into the archives as I did with these strips, I'll stick it out until the end, because once you actually finish an archive, even if the strip is not great overall , it's a very small time commitment. So for me to commit some good number of hours to reading an archive and ultimately decide not to finish it is quite a decision for me.


At 1:11 AM, Blogger Phil Kahn said...

I'll freely admit: I don't post much on the other critic sites because I rarely have anything significant to add to the conversation.

Although I'll definitely agree with you on Sinfest. It strikes me as repettitive. Which I guess is the way to go if the man wants to be syndicated. Which he does.

At 3:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's why I stopped reading it.

At 3:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, over my years of internetting, I found that only about 0.5% of your readers will be bothered to give you feedback. And 90% of them will only do it if they disagree with you.

Thing is, if you just say, "Fuck it! No one replies anyway" and kill the comments, you'll be angering them all because of the sense of entitlement all fan-folk have. They may not want to talk to you, but they find offensive if the option isn't there for them.

Anyway, I'm reading you because you're lacking my cynicism, Eric's gushing positivity, and Phil's server crashes.

At 6:28 AM, Anonymous Philippe Gaboury said...

You rule man!!!

;) Actually, I wanted to say that I find what you write mostly interesting. I say mostly because I'll admit I don't read everything. I only have a half hour of browsing each morning before heading off to work, so I'm really picky. Also, I haven't been around very long.

There are some subject that I feel I don't have to comment on because you've gone through it pretty thouroughly yourself such as the recent grammar post.

You may want to open up the floor to discussion in your last paragraph, ask for opinions. I have about a hundred regular readers on my site and pushing for them to join the forums i did manage to get 25 of them to post. That's a pretty good portion.

At 10:35 AM, Blogger Gilead Pellaeon said...

Inviting discussion at the end of the post is probably a pretty good idea. I have trouble figuring out how to end these posts most of the time anyways. For example, this one I spent probably fifteen minutes writing various endings that all sounded dumb and then finally said "screw it, I'm not going to write any ending" and left it as is.

At 12:13 PM, Anonymous Philippe Gaboury said...

For instance in this post you could have asked people what comics they dropped. I have dropped Chris Crosby's Superosity after reading through about a third of the archives. It's not really that I didn't enjoy the strips, it's that there is just WAY too many of them. Also, I dislike navigating by storyline. A date is much easier to remember for me.


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