I’d be interested in your opinion on different story arcs or characters in webcomics. Anything you’ve seen that was really great or maybe fell short in a few places? You see anything that can be used as an example good or bad?

One of my favorite story arcs in a webcomic is the finale to Narbonic, which is technically three “stories” that bleed into each other, “Professor Madblood and the Everlasting Ices of the North”, “Madness”, and “Genius”

I liked Narbonic a lot, but this is the storyline that made it great. It the the finale of Narbonic, and tied up every plot thread and character arc in a very satisfying way. Most webcomics don’t have good endings, they kind of peter out. But Narbonic had a great ending. Every major plot point is resolved. Years-old foreshadowing about the swimming pool paid off in a big way. There was romance, there was drama, I laughed, I cried, etc. It’s kind of hard to talk about without spoiling it, and Narbonic’s a fairly short comic worth a read.

While we’re on the subject of endings…..

I like the so-called “Murderstuck” arc of Homestuck, from [S] Wake to [S] Cascade. It’s a very good “darkest hour before the dawn” build, with everything just getting worse and worse for our protagonists, who get appropriately depressed. This is just a lot of good build. The less important trolls are faced with a situation where their life depends on overcoming their major character flaw, and all of them ail. The troll half finally pays off the Vriska vs Terezi showdown the comic’s been building towards for the better part of a year.

Vriska is a major character who’s main flaw is a need to always be the center of attention and the big hero and basically a parody sue. She’s given one last chance to change her ways, doesn’t, and is killed for it.

This meant a lot back before Homestuck started handing out extra lives. Vriska was a very divisive character. Some loved her, some hated her. She did a lot of bad things for what she could convincingly claim were good reasons, and this was a major character death that a lot of people were waiting on baited bredth to see.

The human side has fewer serial killers, but is notable just for how fucking bleak the conversations start getting, especially between Dave and Rose. All this makes Cascade the more satisfying.

And then….Act 6 happened. How to even start? The comic lost pretty much all fucking momentum, went on looooonnnnnggggg tangents about side-side-side characters who never appeared again (the dancestors), and slowly eliminated all stakes from everything. The retcon was the worst of this, but really the whole of Act 6 is Hussie running out of steam (I notice that all the sprites, who were completely fucking pointless, are conspicuously absent from the Act 7 animation. At best, they were a pointless subplot. At worst, Hussie was padding out Homestuck until the animations were done). It’s just….not very good. Aimless. No stakes. Pointless. There’s a reason Homestuck’s infamous fanbase kind of died down starting in 2012.

As for characters

I kind of like divisive characters who do bad things for good reasons, like Miko in Order of the Stick or Vriska in Homestuck (two characters who are actually pretty similar).

For a bad character, I actually think Jill in Legend of the Hare is a very weak character. Not in the sense that she doesn’t work out, but in the sense that she has vague goals. It makes her hard to write, and hard to grasp on to.

I got this ask a while back

Anonymous said to thewebcomicsreview:Ever come across a character that you think is awesome but also hate them? Someone like Gaston? Well Peggy is giving me those vibes, dawg. Good jorb

Thanks, Anon!

Peggy is a character who gets a much better response. Some of this is because she’s a villain, and can act a bit more freely than a hero can, and some of it is because it’s clear what she wants, not just the plot points but what she wants deep inside. This makes her much easier to write, and she’s a much stronger character as a result. I can put her in any situation and be able to write her.

Jill? Not so much. She’s soooo passive, and this is a really difficult character trait for a protagonists, because the whole story is pushing her to do things, and she doesn’t drive the plot the same way Peggy or even Riley does.

I might get more into detail about this tomorrow, but it’s 2:45am and I have work tomorrow, so…night!