The End of (some) Webcomics
December 31, 2014 8:15 AM   Subscribe

K.C. Green's "Gunshow" has just ended. Christopher Baldwin's second sci-fi tale, "One Way" completed its one-year run today. Dale Mettam and Courtney Huddleston have just completed their tale of a little girl and her guardian angelsdemons, "Lucy Phir's Imps". Ryan Sohmer/Blind Ferret's 'metacomic' about the comic book biz "Gutters" has finished with a fantasy ending. It's been almost a year since David Willis pre-announced that "Shortpacked", the last ongoing tale in his original 'Walkyverse', 'will end on its tenth birthday' (which is next month). Christopher Bird and Davinder Brar's five-year fantasy epic "Al'Rashad: City of Myths" will publish its last page next Monday. And now, Danielle Corsetto has announced she'll be ending "Girls With Slingshots" 'in the next couple months'. It feels like everybody's calling it quits, right?

Wrong. Most of these comic artists are currently doing or about to start other webcomics.
K.C. Green is collaborating with Anthony Clark on a 'western/fantasy about the end of the world' titled "Back", and 'posthumously collaborating' with Carlo Collodi on a 'truer than Disney' version of "Pinocchio" (previously here).
Christopher Baldwin is collaborating with Don Ahé on the weird fantasy "Yontengu" and will be starting another space-based comic all his own next month titled "Anna Galactic".
Mettam & Huddleston are about to inaugurate a new comic, "Decoy", starring a little green alien guy.
For Sohmer's Blind Ferret Enterprises, "Gutters" was always a kind of side project to their longrunning "Least I Could Do" and "Looking for Group" (which now has two spinoffs).
David Willis already did a total reboot of characters from his previous comics to populate "Dumbing of Age" (previously here).

Less definite plans from:
Bird & Brar, who promise a Book 2 (and Book 3) of "Al'Rashad" sometime in the foreseeable future.
And Danielle Corsetto, who doesn't even have a set 'end date', will be rerunning the early strips (with color added) while considering various ways to continue the strip's characters, possibly in some other format(?)

Believe it or not, even old creaky newspaper comics are occasionally retired, most recently, "The Better Half", whose original artist, Bob Barnes, created it in the year that its last artist, Randy Glasbergen, was born. But even Glasbergen isn't retiring... his random daily single-panel "Glasbergen Cartoons" are doing better business than Better Half has for some time. So, Stanley & Harriet Parker have walked off hand-in-hand, leaving "The Lockhorns" to corner the remaining market for 'bickering couples' comics. (They always were more 'bickery'.)
posted by oneswellfoop (49 comments total) 43 users marked this as a favorite
 
As long as Namesake keeps going for a while, I'll be ok.

Also, Nimona ended this year but soon you can buy it in book form.

American Captain updates slowly, but it's still going.

Octopus Pie is still going, but now in color.

Johnny Wander and the Bell Blues are still going, too.

2015's gonna be ok.
posted by emjaybee at 8:27 AM on December 31, 2014


Sometimes, most times, things need to end. There are a handful of other webcomics that I still read mostly out of inertia that in reality should also close their doors.
I like GWS quite a bit, but it defiantly has been pairing up most of it's members and been on a long slow arc towards ending for a little while.
posted by edgeways at 8:31 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Ahem, MeFi's Own Christopher Bird.
posted by The Whelk at 8:34 AM on December 31, 2014 [3 favorites]


I'm always simultaneously glad to see that Anthony Clark's doing something and sad that it means less time for him to do Reginald and Beartato.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:36 AM on December 31, 2014 [3 favorites]


(I do love that gunshiw ended with its most famous, and most cited without attribution character, the "this is fine" dog.)
posted by The Whelk at 8:36 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Please don't promote Sohmer's work. The dude is deeply misogynistic and creepy, and a repeated kickstarter scammer.
posted by kafziel at 8:37 AM on December 31, 2014 [6 favorites]


Achewood hasn't updated since April, after an intermittent previous couple of years. I like to think it's just resting while it works up the strength to return. (Not unlike Ray in the morning.)
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 8:48 AM on December 31, 2014 [7 favorites]


John Allison's Bad Machinery ended rather abruptly, but in its place we have Bobbins, named after his first popular webcomic but really more of a continuation of his second webcomic Scary Go Round.
posted by infinitewindow at 8:50 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Sluggy Freelance (currently in a stick figure week) is still going as well, although I'm woefully behind on the storyline. It started in 1997, which is about as old as continuously-running webcomics get. It was still quite enjoyable from what I remember, having undergone a fair amount of Cererbus Syndrome, but not to the extent of removing all humor from the strip.
posted by Wandering Idiot at 8:59 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


And meanwhile, the romance between Marten and Claire over at Questionable Content seems to be progressing healthily. Claire's introduction was met with some raised eyebrows at first, but so far the fact that she's trans appears to be a complete non-issue, just as it should be.
posted by Faint of Butt at 8:59 AM on December 31, 2014 [5 favorites]




Faint of Butt - Healthily for Claire and Marten maybe... I have my doubts about Faye. And the little silly text next to the strip number for strip 2807 and 2808 still torments me. Does it refer to the plot or something else? Is Marten lying about something? AAAAHHHHGGGGG!
posted by Wretch729 at 9:07 AM on December 31, 2014


Maybe he was lying about having a big speech planned? Or maybe the speech he gave in 2807 WAS the big speech he had planned but he pretended he was speaking off the cuff? Because that would fit with Marten's character.

2808 I think just refers to the fact that they had a cute little DTR talk. They "hatched the plan" that they were just going to take things as they happen.

Faye's got problems. Which I guess is an ok distraction from Dora's problems?
posted by sparklemotion at 9:15 AM on December 31, 2014


Wandering Idiot:
"Sluggy Freelance (currently in a stick figure week) is still going as well, although I'm woefully behind on the storyline. It started in 1997, which is about as old as continuously-running webcomics get. It was still quite enjoyable from what I remember, having undergone a fair amount of Cererbus Syndrome, but not to the extent of removing all humor from the strip."
Sluggy is on it's last storyline, actually. Might actually finish up this year.
posted by charred husk at 9:15 AM on December 31, 2014


And we still haven't found a way to stop Randy Milholland from making more Something Positive.
posted by MartinWisse at 9:27 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


Believe it or not, even old creaky newspaper comics are occasionally retired

Really 4/5 of them should be sent out on an ice flow to die. I'm fifty and most of them had passed their sell-by date before I was born.
posted by octothorpe at 9:41 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


Please don't promote Sohmer's work. The dude is deeply misogynistic and creepy, and a repeated kickstarter scammer.

Seriously, Sohmer is a shitbag and a half whose main comic is basically THE AWESOME ADVENTURES OF SELF-INSERT MAN.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:43 AM on December 31, 2014 [3 favorites]


To be clear: AL'RASHAD was always envisioned as a trilogy of works. Right now Davinder and I are trying to figure out how to make the next two volumes feasible since drawing the pages is essentially a full time job that he does for free. It'll probably involve Patreon or something.
posted by mightygodking at 9:51 AM on December 31, 2014 [5 favorites]


Now that Gunshow's over maybe K.C. Green can bring back the Anime Club. I love that comic. Hmm, I wonder if it's collected anywhere. I'd buy it.
posted by I-baLL at 9:56 AM on December 31, 2014


Per Artw's link above, Danielle Corsetto has been doing Adventure Time graphic novels for at least a little while now. I'd like to see her bring at least Hazel's storyline to some sort of conclusion or at least a slightly more hopeful "resting state"; the character seems to have gotten into a vicious cycle of bitterness and isolation with no obvious resolution in sight.

Also, I'm not sure what Sohmer did WRT Kickstarter that counts as a "scam", but I've always found his work to be kind of crap, and at times Gutters seemed to be intentionally unfunny. (Even though Dave Willis' Shortpacked! strips that directly addressed comics issues were a tiny fraction of the strip's archives, they were much more to the point than anything from Gutters. See this one, for example.)
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:56 AM on December 31, 2014


The Perry Bible Fellowship, which I had long written off, just updated last week.

Somehow Megatokyo soldiers on after 14 years.
posted by meowzilla at 9:58 AM on December 31, 2014 [3 favorites]


Wooo! I just found a collection of the Anime Club strips!

http://www.topatoco.com/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=TO&Product_Code=RUMB-ANIMECLUB-BOOK&Category_Code=RUMB


Happy New Year's to me!
posted by I-baLL at 9:58 AM on December 31, 2014


Freefall is going strong.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 9:58 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Cat And Girl is still updating quasi-regularly.
posted by The Whelk at 10:01 AM on December 31, 2014


NEVAR FORGET: 2014 was the year The Oatmeal won an Eisner award.
posted by Artw at 10:08 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Jeff Rowland started a new comic over the summer, but I just found out about it this month!
posted by rikschell at 10:09 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


Gunnerkrigg Court is still going strong so all is right with the world.
posted by Blue Meanie at 10:26 AM on December 31, 2014 [5 favorites]


mightygodking, Yes! To use an old internet cliché, "I would like to subscribe to your newsletterPatreon." I was on the fence about including "Al'Rashad" with the 'endings' but thought you deserved the plug.

Also, Nimona ended this year but soon you can buy it in book form.
Soon? I'm already pre-ordered. I considered including other comics that ended their run earlier this year, but ran out of 2014 to finish the post. As for "Bad Machinery", its last story ended with "more next year", then a later blog post saying, no, let's just go with the "Bobbins" grownups, but it's all part of the scarygoround.com website in what I call the "Scaryverse". (I was kind of relieved he didn't go ahead with "Robert Cop", potentially funny but without any of the characters we've come to love)

Sluggy is on it's last storyline, actually. Might actually finish up this year.
I also could've gotten into maybe-soon-to-end series, but that would just get depressing, especially since Christopher Hastings has talked about having a planned end for "Dr. McNinja" (fortunately not at the end of the current flashback story).

Please don't promote Sohmer's work.
I considered excluding "Gutters", but it entertained me on two levels, first as an often-valid editorial statement on the state of the Comic Book Biz, and second for the irony of the Blind Ferret passing judgment on the 'Big Two'. Sohmer is indeed ONE of the worst real-life characters in the webcomics biz, but not THE worst (no I'm not telling you my first choice). And I admire his main artist, Lar DeSouza (whose Live Drawing Streaming Show improves my Friday Nights) more than I disdain Sohmer. But if you want to feel more comfortable, don't consider his SELF-INSERT MAN to be Rayne in LICD, it's Warlock Dick in LFG.

Other notes: I believe "Anime Club" was a subset of "Gunshow", but maybe K.C. can be cajoled into a standalone; "Megatokyo" and "Freefall" will probably both run as long as "Gasoline Alley" (there are some redeemable 'legacy strips' in the papers, but I agree that the category could be cut back by 4/5); the semi-revival of "Perry Bible Fellowship" (two new strips in two weeks!) deserves its own FPP; and, yes, it is good that Jeffrey Rowland could take time away from selling t-shirts for every other webcomicker to do a new comic starring Joanna the Undead Cat.
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:29 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Sam and Fuzzy is still moving right along, too.
posted by pemberkins at 10:31 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


And I admire his main artist, Lar DeSouza (whose Live Drawing Streaming Show improves my Friday Nights) more than I disdain Sohmer.

Even a handful of LICD strips should be all it takes to disabuse anybody of the idea that DeSouza's not a lazy hack.

...

Actually, after a quick look at the site, it looks like the last couple of months have seen Lar DeSouza figure out that faces can be drawn in other the 3/4! Pity it took him nearly a decade to figure that out. Maybe it won't take Sohmer eight years to learn how to write something that doesn't carry with it the mental image of him jerking off about how clever and funny and badass he is.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:38 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Evan Dahm's Vattu has racked up 600 pages of gorgeously illustrated fantasy. (It's set in the same world as Rice Boy, so Dahm's been working the same continuity since 2006.)
posted by Iridic at 10:39 AM on December 31, 2014


I considered excluding "Gutters", but it entertained me on two levels, first as an often-valid editorial statement on the state of the Comic Book Biz, and second for the irony of the Blind Ferret passing judgment on the 'Big Two'. Sohmer is indeed ONE of the worst real-life characters in the webcomics biz, but not THE worst (no I'm not telling you my first choice). And I admire his main artist, Lar DeSouza (whose Live Drawing Streaming Show improves my Friday Nights) more than I disdain Sohmer. But if you want to feel more comfortable, don't consider his SELF-INSERT MAN to be Rayne in LICD, it's Warlock Dick in LFG.

Lar DeSouza is not overtly horrible with his words, but as I recall he has this annoying habit of groping women at cons. There's a reason he's the only collaborator who could ever keep working with Sohmer long-term after realizing that it's not all an act.
posted by kafziel at 10:40 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


also

But if you want to feel more comfortable, don't consider his SELF-INSERT MAN to be Rayne in LICD, it's Warlock Dick in LFG.

In this comic by Ryan Sohmer, the character's name is Rayne Summers. C'mon.
posted by kafziel at 10:44 AM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


And I just realized I missed one!
Benjamin Dewey's "Tragedy Series" (previously here) was pre-announced as ending after #500 (because 500 tragedies are enough for anybody... except maybe Randy Milholland)

and yes, the main character in LICD is SUPPOSED to be Sohmer's doppelganger, it just makes me feel better to consider LFG's Chaotic Evil as a 'non-intentional self-portrait', okay?
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:49 AM on December 31, 2014


Oh, and in the spirit of contributing something positive instead of just raving about how Sohmer is the anti-Midas who turns everything he touches into rotting shit...

Kill Six Billion Demons is absolutely gorgeous fantasy.

Kris Straub's chainsawsuit is a MWF gag strip that's almost always outstanding.

Awkward Zombie is a weekly strip about video games that's pretty consistently good, though it tends to delve into Smash Brothers fanfic a bit readily.

Hamlet's Danish is a fairly new (maybe six monthsish?) weekly that's always worth a chuckle.

The crudely drawn Great Moments in Leftism is generally quite incisive commentary on the left from within.

Terminal Lance is a comic by a former Marine about the petty indignities and absurdities of military life.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:50 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


Terminal Lance is a comic by a former Marine about the petty indignities and absurdities of military life.

Terminal Lance is often good, but also frequently misogynistic and homophobic. So... it's very true to its source.
posted by Etrigan at 11:56 AM on December 31, 2014 [2 favorites]


And we still haven't found a way to stop Randy Milholland from making more Something Positive.

Aww, why the SP hate?

(Seriously - I'm sure I have rotten taste in comics, but I genuinely enjoy SP about 90% of the time.)

Personally, I wish Scott Kurtz would just stop with PvP. It's tired, inconsistent, no longer funny, and he's personally more than a bit of a jerk.

But I love Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal!
posted by dotgirl at 12:03 PM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Kill Six Billion Demons is absolutely gorgeous fantasy.

Well dammit, there went my whole afternoon.
posted by drivelmeister at 1:30 PM on December 31, 2014 [1 favorite]


Pope Guilty: I've been a huge fan of Awkward Zombie for years. Katie Tiedrich started it when she was in high school, kept it going all the way through college, from which she graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. And now she is working at a company that makes rocket parts.

It's mostly about video games, but sometimes she tosses in something autobiographical.

I particularly liked this one.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 2:01 PM on December 31, 2014


Oh, hey, as long as we're tossing out webcomics recommendations, even though it's not as long-lived as some of the others, Manly Guys Doing Manly Things by Kelly "Coelasquid" Turnbull is still in fine form. Also, Bob the Angry Flower has kept on keepin' on ever since--holy sheepdip--1992? Maybe it started out in print and went online later? I dunno.
posted by Halloween Jack at 3:14 PM on December 31, 2014


Aww, why the SP hate?

All in the spirit of the comic.
posted by MartinWisse at 4:26 PM on December 31, 2014


BaTF did indeed start as print -- the site was originally a place to share strips that'd appeared in print. I'm not sure if it's in print anymore, though.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 4:28 PM on December 31, 2014


The Fox Sister hasn't updated in ages, but the artist assures us that after school is over she'll be back.

The Girl from Hell City is confirmed to be dead. And just after it stared to get interesting, Runewriters took a year hiatus. I tend to be skeptical of webcomics that take extended breaks after a short existence. Likewise, Wake the Sleepers, Lost in the Vale and Nexus are pretty much dead.

The Becoming is, if not dead, on a long, nvluntary, possibly pernament hiatus. Goddamn hackers.

On the OTHER hand, the utterly gorgeous Blindsprings and Ava's Demon have gotten past some teething problems and are continuing. Both are really excellent reads.

Clockworks is dead, no it's not, yes it is, no it is NOT. See? New comics in this fun rpg-inspired steampunk and magic world.

Snow by Night was down for a while, but it's back, continuing it's story of a magical colonial-era Canada.

Order of the Stick got past the artist's injury and is back. Things seeming to be slowly heading toward the climax, in this rpg comedy comic that is so much better than what the source material would indicate.

Miamaska is continuing to be one of the best Science Fiction cross-dimensional alternate-universe stories out there.

Trial of the Sun, by the writer of Miamaska (how the hell can he be so productive?) continues to be an excellent bit of anthropological fantasy world building.

And hey! we have a BACK FROM THE DEAD AND READY TO PARTY webcomic! Thunderstruck is back with it's entertaining blend of mythology-based superheroics.
posted by happyroach at 5:44 PM on December 31, 2014


As long as Skin Horse keeps going, I'm good.
posted by sculpin at 8:00 PM on December 31, 2014


My long running favorites are still going:

Girl Genius is wrapping up it's 14th volume, and is such a fantastic series that I've been able to share it with my daughter.

Schlock Mercenary has been going strong for 14 years, updating daily for a number of those years.

GPF Comics is one that I continue reading, and lately the story has picked up.

Dumbing of Age, by the previously mentioned Shortpacked author David Willis, is probably the newest of the bunch to pull me in.
posted by kensch at 6:27 AM on January 1, 2015


Not to call anyone in particular out, but there's a clever Star Trek-based webcomic that is on an extended hiatus. It's about to leave my daily bookmarks as Achewood and Perry Bible Fellowship did.
posted by infinitewindow at 8:12 AM on January 1, 2015 [2 favorites]


Worried me for a moment, then I checked and KC Green is still making new stuff. Good for him for finishing and moving on to new stuff. I once commissioned a comic from him and treasured it until iut got ruined in a move when a box got soaked.
posted by GoblinHoney at 10:40 PM on January 1, 2015


Somehow Megatokyo soldiers on after 14 years.

And still with an empty fucking cast page. It's on purpose at this point, right? It's just a running joke?

Terminal Lance is often good, but also frequently misogynistic and homophobic. So... it's very true to its source.

Partly a reflection of the actual culture, partly actual prejudice or thoughtlessness on the part of the author, although he also pokes fun at those mindsets. I'm half interested in the strip as just an illumination of minor details about the military that I'm vaguely aware of having worked around it, but never been in. This one for example I had to pick up a lot from context and read the newspost to fully get, and it's still pretty funny.
posted by Wandering Idiot at 5:47 AM on January 2, 2015


Rev. Syung Myung Me: "BaTF did indeed start as print -- the site was originally a place to share strips that'd appeared in print. I'm not sure if it's in print anymore, though."

The web site says "Bob the Angry Flower runs weekly in VUE Weekly and Terminal City and some other papers I'm too lazy right now to detail, though the Buffalo Beast is one."

I read it before web comics were even a thing so I'm always a little taken aback when people think of it as a web comic instead of alt-weekly comic.
posted by RobotHero at 11:21 AM on January 3, 2015


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