Kii talks about webcomics and why you should be reading them
Webcomics is often a genre that gets popped in the same bin as fanfiction and passed off as ‘not real comics’. Yes, there are many out there that are fan works and parodies of existing properties (some of which are awesome) but there are also many originals that are just as fantastic as the comics you can pick up from the shelf. The only problem being that anybody can start up a webcomic and people are often terrified of having to wade through tonnes of crap before finding the good ones. Well never fear! Because that’s what we’re here for!
So here’s the backstory, I’ve been an avid webcomic reader for most of my ‘Internet’ life. I was probably around 14 when I discovered comics and especially at that age, when you like something you want to consume it all. However, pocket money could only go so far and the idea of having comic books in the library was nigh on laughable back in those days. So, I turned to the internet, which was still very much in the baby steps of dial up, to fill the void and thus I found webcomics. I didn’t have to spend any money on it and most of them updated at least once a week.
I’m really pleased to see that some of the webcomics that I started out reading are still going today (and I still read a high percentage of them). The genre has grown massively, some are complex coming-of-age stories, sci-fi romances with gun-blazing action, gag-a-day 4komas and even a temp agency for out of work videogame characters. Webcomics, in an odd way, are self-sufficient. The creator cares enough about something to make it, the readers enjoy it, the creator doesn’t have a wage from the comics without the readers (many only make money from ads and merch) and therefore keeps consistent in great content. There are now even more readers, rinse and repeat until said creator has built an empire from a webcomic. If you think this is hyperbole then google Penny Arcade who now run multiple conventions across America and even have one in Australia.
This industry is now huge and constantly growing. The generation that has always had the Internet is now old enough to seriously spend money and if consuming information was an impulse in my youth, the new batch of young ‘uns are addicted. Readerships are at an all-time high and will only continue to go skyward so long as creators are happy to put their pens to their tablets and keep giving us fabulous shit.
“Ok,” I hear you mutter at the screen, “But how do I find them?” There are many ways, dear webcomic Padawan, and I will show you. There are Top Webcomics lists online but the best method I’ve found is find one comic that you like, then look at their links. Most webcomic artists, funnily enough, also read webcomics and link from their own site to their favourites. Here’s some of what myself and Fenton read to start you off on your mystical journey.
Oh Joy Sex Toy – NSFW
Go Get a Roomie – Not quite nsfw but iffy if viewed over the shoulder out of context.
Sugar Bits –slightly nsfw
El Goonish Shive – Voluptuous cat lady warning
Grim Tales – eeeeh, check over your shoulder
Oglaf – NSFW
Sticky Dilly Buns – nsfw
Poke through and see if anything grabs your fancy. If you need me, I’ll be eyes-deep in Penny Arcade from 2005.