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Earthworming back into our hearts...
February 1, 2011 10:17 AM   Subscribe

It's Ratfist! (story started here, 17 updates ago) The webcomics world is semi-agog about this new daily entry by previous-master-of-other-media Doug TenNapel. Did somebody say "who?"? Just the well-warped mind behind landmark video games Earthworm Jim and The Neverhood, and unjustly forgotten toons Project GeeKeR and Catscratch, among other stuff.
posted by oneswellfoop (19 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

 
uh.
posted by clarknova at 10:18 AM on February 1, 2011


I like it! Adding it to my hit list.

Thanks for posting this!
posted by Pallas Athena at 10:30 AM on February 1, 2011


This is definitely better than his previous stuff:

We all pretty much know that most Democrats can’t be trusted and that’s reflected in this marriage poll. It’s not that Democrat women are ugly, because we’ve seen too many cute ones out there. The men aren’t hideous either, unless you think a soft, effeminate man hen-pecked his whole life by his domineering mother is hideous.
posted by Greg Nog at 10:32 AM on February 1, 2011


This is the third time I've seen this referenced. The webcomics world does seem to be agog.

I don't know why. I think it's kind of bad, so far -- way below the quality of the work of the people recommending it. The daily thing is impressive, though.
posted by gurple at 10:46 AM on February 1, 2011


Greg Nog: I'm mega-liberal and TenNapel's political opinions disgust me. And I have no idea why they were brought up. Considering this isn't a political cartoon I don't see any relevance whatsoever in bringing up TenNapel's political beliefs in the context of his artwork. I'll leave dismissing the talents of artists for their political beliefs to conservatives, thank you.

So, that all said, the talent: yeah, TenNapel is an amazing artist. Good lord does this comic need a better writer.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:49 AM on February 1, 2011


...TenNapel is an amazing artist. Good lord does this comic need a better writer.

Yeah. That.
posted by gurple at 10:54 AM on February 1, 2011


I intentionally avoided including his personal site in the post because of TenNapel's rather pathetic political opinions. But while they are not generally reflected in his storytelling (I don't think he intended obvious villain "Czar Ferrar" to come across more like a CEO than anything else, but he does), they appear to have influenced his handling of his creative properties - he has allowed his corporate masters to pretty much bury his best work without much protest; maybe the 'Unamerican Liberals' in the Independent Webcomics field will teach him a thing or two about business.

And the only reason I didn't post this here earlier was that I wanted to give the obviously teasing storyline some time to unfold... maybe I should've given it a couple more weeks.
posted by oneswellfoop at 11:20 AM on February 1, 2011


I keep feeling that so much of the hype about this new comic is manufactured. I looked through what has been published so far and we have: decent artwork + terrible writing. Hmm... how is this different from the other thousand webcomics created by artist students?
posted by introp at 12:12 PM on February 1, 2011


I liked the writing, and the art! But yes, the interjection about czars was a little Sims-esque. Hopefully he can avoid that stuff and focus on his strength: expression, energy, and tight artwork.
posted by Drexen at 12:15 PM on February 1, 2011


Like a lot of people, I found this via a blurb on Scott Kurtz's PvP. I like it enough to add to my regular webcomic list but n'thing the problem with the writing. But a lot of comics are rough in the beginning so I'm willing to give him a chance.
posted by tommasz at 12:35 PM on February 1, 2011


I keep feeling that so much of the hype about this new comic is manufactured. I looked through what has been published so far and we have: decent artwork + terrible writing. Hmm... how is this different from the other thousand webcomics created by artist students?

Because it's by the guy who made Earthworm Jim, the game that probably introduced wild and crazy art and humor to the new wave of internet webcomickers (Chris Hastings of Dr. Mcninja fame was the one who linked me to the site). And now he's making a webcomic, a new one, and it's online.

It's nostalgia for the sake of preserving and recognizing those sacred predecessors who inspired us to do what we do. It's David Bowie's crotch from Labyrinth, the Bean focused reboot of Ender's Game, and the antithesis of the new Battlestar Galactica series. And whether or not these things are actually good when made independent of its own heritage is entirely beside the point.

You didn't read the last three Harry Potter books because they were well written and enjoyable, nor do you read any of Stephen King's new novels because they are concise and edited to perfection. You did, and you do what you're doing because it's there and it was meaningful enough to help you in that long process of creating an individual or, at least satisfactory, identity all those long years ago, and recognition of the contributive factors is just one small process in the enormous and unconscious sustainment of that identity.
posted by dubusadus at 3:23 PM on February 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


Despite TenNapel's obnoxious political blog posts (about par for the course for Andrew Breitbart's sites, really), I was willing to give this a try, but man, you would have no idea from reading this that the guy is a seasoned comics and video game pro. Frankly, I'd expect better from any random college newspaper cartoonist.
posted by Halloween Jack at 3:28 PM on February 1, 2011


You didn't read the last three Harry Potter books because they were well written and enjoyable

Speak for yourself.
posted by Halloween Jack at 3:29 PM on February 1, 2011


I'd need no reason to love TenNapel other than his hiring of Terry S. Taylor, who created two of the best soundtracks ever written for games.
posted by jake at 3:35 PM on February 1, 2011


Nthing that this just isn't very... good. There are a few people that I'll sit through almost anything for in the acknowledgement of great past works -- I'll read anything Alan Moore writes, watch anything the Coen Brothers make, and listen to anything They Might Be Giants record -- but this is a case of drastically diminished returns. I don't owe Earthworm Jim enough in my life to keep reading this.
posted by Shepherd at 3:38 PM on February 1, 2011


I'm sure he has a rich history of doing stuff that video gamers think is cool, but as someone who is not familiar with his prior work, I find the writing on this pretty much excruciating. I do like his artwork, though.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:06 PM on February 1, 2011


The Neverhood was *magical* for me when I played it on my creakingly-old PC back in the mid-90s.
posted by LMGM at 5:10 PM on February 1, 2011


Ha ha, that is so funny how the bad politician with the box of money on his desk is wearing a pink tutu. I bet he is a Gay.
posted by fleetmouse at 5:24 PM on February 1, 2011


I used to be a fan of TenNapel's stuff until the day I googled my name and found a post on his forum. Doug was pointing directly to my website and trashing me for being (1) a furry who worked in animation and (2) a transwoman. I'd link to it but said forum has since vanished.

I didn't register on his forum to reply to that. I just quit giving him my money and attention, and I tell this story whenever his name comes up.
posted by egypturnash at 7:56 PM on February 1, 2011 [6 favorites]


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