Monday, March 7, 2011

Webcomic Review: Fey Winds, Footloose, FreakAngel, Fungus Grotto

Two fantasy parodies, one straight up fantasy, and one after the end kinda urban fantasy story, yep, sounds like my reading list!

Fey Winds
The story initially started off as a straight fantasy (Kit and gang are traveling the world searching for magical objects) but it very quickly (and by that I mean, within the first chapter) starts to become more of a parody of epic fantasies but parodies are very tricky to do* and this one just isn't quite working for me. I think it's because by now the story and the characters are going way out of their way to point out all strange things in an epic fantasy instead of presenting them in such a way that the reader notices and gets a chuckle without anything being said. As an example, the story makes a blatant twilight reference (sparkling in sunlight) yet there's no way for the characters to even know about Twilight, much less internet jokes about it, so why is it being played for laughs? The artwork is very nice (not a very noticeable art shift here but the shading has gotten much richer as the story goes on) so I will recommend this comic (heck, I'm still reading it) but it's not my favorite parody on the genre. The first volume is also in print for those of you who prefer flipping pages to clicking buttons.

Funny enough, this webcomic is also a parody but I didn't realize that until I reread it awhile back and started enjoying the story a lot more then. The story begins with Keti and her parents (the stars of some gigantic mash-up fanfiction called InubYAKash ) fleeing Earth where they had been living in hope that Keti wouldn't get caught up in her own life threatening adventures. Since that didn't work she's enrolled in the school of Kung Shoe, making friends and antagonists and going off to save the world! I like this series better than Fey Winds because it's much more over-the-top and generally insane. Some of the characters are aware they're in a story and will make jokes to that extent, the rest of them just make snarky comments about the weird things happening to them, even if some of the outrageous things that happen to Keit via "primary protagonist syndrome" make me roll my eyes. Don't believe that there is a print edition of this (and I'd buy a copy if there was, it's well worth a reread for more laughs) and there is also a currently updating side story called Magical Transvestite Cherry which I'd recommend once you catch up to the main comic. Actually, it looks like they have a few other side-stories I wasn't aware of, guess I know what I'm reading later!

Surprised that this is the first mature warning I've had to do so far^ but mature content warning for this comic. Lots of blood, gore, sexual situations, cusing, the whole shabang! So if you're under 16 you might want to avoid this comic, or at least be throughly prepared to explain when your parents come up behind you someday when you're reading it.
The FreakAngels are a group of twelve 23-year olds with physic ablities who caused the end of the world several years back and are now atoning for it by protecting and rebuilding the town of Whitechaple. However, a rather familiar antagonist has come back to cause more destruction for them and this reunion is going to reveal several big secrets about all of them. So it's a story about several severely messed up people and one normal person who seems to be getting dragged into all of this as well,  a more basic plot compared to some of the other stuff I read but the plots twists are all very good. Also, while all the gore tends to squick me out, the art for this series is gorgeous. Six full color pages each week with an incredible amount of detail on each page, it's really impressive art for any medium and I'd imagine it looks even better in person in the print editions. So, with the aforementioned warning, I would recommend this to fans of after the end/dystopia stories will probably love this.

Fungus Grotto
A younger webcomic that just cracked 100 pages, Vielle was a college bound human who took a nap under a tree while fretting if she should go to college or not and wakes up in a strange world. But, as is obvious to the reader but possibly not Vielle, it appears that she has merely shrunk and entered the world of the faeries and swiftly meets one named Myth (whom the story is currently focusing on). Like I said, the story is still in that introductory stage but I like it so far, partially because I like Vielle a lot (more than Myth sadly, sadly because the story has been focusing on him for a while) and because of the gorgeous art. Every page is full of vivid colors and great shading, I'd buy the print copies for the art but I'm waiting a little longer to see what the plot is going to do before I commit to buying them. Despite that last line, yes I recommend this comic to fantasy fans because it's good so far and has lots of potential for later on.

Over the past few days I've seen my pageviews go up (still not a lot of readers) but I'm still ridiculously excited over it, who would guess so many people would want to read reviews of webcomics?

*I'd argue even harder than the real thing many times.
^Well, I might have done one for a book a while back but still, it took me this long to get to something graphic? I feel like I'm failing as a college student....