Monday, February 22, 2016

10th Anniversary Post

Looking through the archives of this little blog of mine I can see that my very first post on here was made on February 18, 2006.  So, that means that as of about today, this blog is now 10 years old.  Happy birthday, Bloggy!!!  In that time, my blog has been a showcase for my artwork, a place to plug the comic books I've created, my musings on any part of animation's history, and even sometimes as a soapbox for my unabashed opinions.  In that time, I also started my sister blog right here which I only use as an online soapbox.
I initially started this blog back then simply because I had heard that famed cartoonist John K. had just started one.  I had admired his work ever since I first saw Ren & Stimpy back around 1990 or '91 so I thought this would be a chance to express my appreciation for him in person.  I certainly did that.  I also had about 3 arguments with him, but if you've heard anything about his demeanour the you know that it's quite hard to NOT argue with him about anything.  Even his closest friends can attest to that.  In those early days, John's blog was always a beehive of fans giving their praise as well as non-fan trolls being irritants.  Some of his opinions on animation and society could really get the masses riled up on many occasions.  It was quite exhilarating to be a participant in all of that.
John doesn't update that blog of his as much anymore.  I suspect that's because he's finally found work. Conversely, with that drop in activity, so too I've found that the traffic for blogspot in general has dropped off somewhat.  But nonetheless I still find time to make posts here on my blog whenever I can.  Even though the traffic for this blog is at about a ghost town level I still like to update it whenever I can.  I feel an obligation to update because I still remember 2 trolls that attempted to silence me at some point.  My continued posting is in absolute defiance to them and any other haters lurking around.  But I also continue to blog for another reason that Nicole Arbor articulated when she answered a question of mine on one of her videos.  She said, "If I had 500,000 people mad at me and only 1 person that likes me, I would do it for that 1 person."  So that's what I'm doing here.  For that 1 person, whomever he or she may be in which ever country or territory on this planet, this post and this blog is for you.

Although I did notice that I got a huge amount of traffic from Russia back in January of this year.  I have no idea what could've caused that or what kept it going for the duration of January, but whoever the individuals were, thank you.  You could've left at least one comment though, maybe posted a borscht recipe or something.

The header at the top of this blog says "my art and anything else I like".  So, on this anniversary blogpost, I will now indulge in that very thing.  I intend to have lots of fun making sport of one of the stupidest online comics ever written and drawn.  Others have made fun of it elsewhere and now it's finally my turn.  It's the Adventures of Politically Incorrect Man by Alli Kirkham found on the web-site............. um......... Hooray for Estrogen or something like that.  Here is that comic in its entirety:

Yep, there is someone out there that thought making this was a good idea.  I won't be putting down the quality of the artwork here even though it is atrocious.  There are several comics, animated or otherwise, that do just fine with sub par artwork.  Dilbert's a good example.

Scott Adams would be the first to admit he's not tremendously skilled at drawing.  But at the very least the staging is still clear.  We can tell exactly what's going on and the dialogue flows naturally.  Not a trace of ambiguity.  In the PIC comic above there is much confusion.  In other people's criticism of it, they seem to be absolutely baffled by how the two opponents are even fighting each other.  Like this guy below:

I had to really examine the fight scene at the end myself to see what they were doing.  Eventually I figured out that PIC man is throwing things at the "Respectful" lady who is then deflecting them while she says her monologue.  When a reader sees your comic you have less than a second to grab their attention and present a scenario with your visuals.  If they have to squint and struggle for any length of time just to comprehend what's happening in a panel, they will get frustrated and bored and thus move on rather quickly.  When that happens, your audience is as good as gone.  The following panel is another example of poor staging:

No no no!  You can't just have a character say "you pushed me".  This is NOT ancient Greek theatre.  You can't just have actors describe the action in order to overcompensate for lack of ability to build elaborate sets or stage big action.  Show don't tell.  Comics are a visual medium with the ability to conjure up all sorts of fantastical environments where anything and everything is possible.  Don't just say it, DRAW IT!!!

Another major flaw I noticed is that the supposed menace of Politically Incorrect man doesn't seem all that menacing.  As you can see below, all he does is fly in and say stuff.

How is that a big threat in any way?  My guess is that this only feels threatening to anyone who actually equates words (most often found in critical tweets or facebook comments for example) to real physical violence.  If that were indeed the case, then why would someone such as Spiderman even bother to shoot webs or anything?  He could easily defeat his opponents like this:

OOOOOOOOOOOOH!!!! White-haired lady DESTROOOOOOOOOOOOOOYED!!!  Next Spiderman will defeat Dr. Octopus by saying some very mean things about Syrian refugees.

Now I have come to talking about the big elephant in the room that is my biggest objection to this comic,  which I'm certain would even be more than a little bit obvious to a blind hyena with a brain tumour in a cave on Mars and has been dead for 7 decades.   I am of course referring to the protagonist's attitude towards free speech.

I can't believe this needs to be explained at all but in this political climate it tragically must be done.  Look here:

That is the 1st Ammendment in the Constitution of the United States.  It states clearly its policies about keeping speech free.

This is from Canada's Bill of Rights.  It also lays the ground work for any laws about public speech in Canada.

The Council of Europe has a similar declaration.  These laws about free speech applies to every single country in Europe.

Here's what it says in Japan's constitution about free speech.  It is an absolute guarenteed right too.  You can find some iron clad law in every constitution of every free democratic nation on Earth.  Politically Incorrect Man has all of that on his side.  The only concepts that "Afro Lady" uses to combat PIC is "being rude" or "being a jerk".  Those are vague, nebulous ad hominums that mean different things to different people at different times.  There is no way that any concrete laws can be based on them.

She also condemns PIC Man for keeping these "rude" people free from consequences.  In her opinion, anyone who says "politically incorrect things" should fully receive all the consequences they deserve.  But, wait just a minute.  Just recently, noted 3rd wave feminist activist Anita Sarkeesian went to the actual United Nations begging for her to be able to post whatever opinion she wants WITHOUT CONSEQUENCES.  Another outspoken 3rd wave feminist type named Lena Dunham made a similar declaration.  She wants to be able to say anything she wants on Twitter without receiving any of the consequences and has even completely vacated Twitter until her demands are met.  So what exactly are you saying, Mx Cis Alli Kirkham?  Are you advocating the "consequences" for some speech but not for others?  That's rather anti-democratic I'd say.
 In fact,  here I fixed the comic's end so that it more adheres to what you're trying to accomplish:

Rat's all, folks!

You're welcome!

Now that that's done, I'd like to take Miss Kirkham to school once again.  This time I will show a comic of mine that I made many years ago.

You can find the full comic on this post right here.  Go ahead and put it through the same scrutiny I gave the PIC Man comic.  I triple dog dare everyone.  Comment on the artistry, the staging of the elements, the flow of the story, and the overall message.  I personally would say that my example is a better way to make a comic about "political correctness".

Well, that's my post.  It's been a fun 10 years.  I look forward to many many more.

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