Thursday, December 15, 2016

Web Comic Recommendations

I am by no means a comic aficionado; I leave that stuff up to people like Patrick & Dad.  However, I do enjoy comics, every now and then.  I'm not sure yet whether I prefer the physical article or reading on a tablet - more and more lately, tablet is becoming much friendlier - but I've always liked web comics, for sure.  I've gotten out of reading them lately, which is unfortunate.

Anyway, a few months back I asked the aforementioned Patrick for some free comic recommendations and he turned me onto City of Walls, available via LINE Webtoon.  In addition to CoW, I've found a few other gems hidden in the app.  I find that the "popular" and "featured" comics on Webtoon generally do not have me in their target audience, so I've had to do some digging.

Here are my recommendations from LINE Webtoon, in no particular order:

City of Walls - 3.5/5
     I struggle with rating this one.  On the one hand, I really appreciate the art and level of detail; on the other, the writing leave me a little wanting.  Sometimes it's got bad pacing...other times it seems just right.  I like the overall story though.  I don't want to give away too much about it, so I'll just say that the protagonists are kids in a fictional Asian city.  The world building is just great as well.

Zen Pencils - 4/5
     Zen pencils is illustrated by Gavin Aung Than.  This is a series of stand-alone comics that are based on / inspired by actual quotes from real-life people.  Most of hte quotes seem to be about being creative or being true to yourself.  I do sometimes find it off-putting that lot of the advice about dropping everything and doing what you love doesn't present a realistic sense of balance...

The Strange Tales of Oscar Zahn - 3.5/5
     Author/Illustrator: Tri Vuong (works out of the RAID studio in Toronto).  This one has gorgeous artwork.  The story is only okay - I like bits and pieces of it, but I mainly stick with it for the beautiful art.  The current story - "The Last Soldier of Somme" - is set in WWI and seems to be going somewhere, but pacing can make it hard to follow.  Vuong is admittedly new to writing so I'm willing to cut some slack.  Either way - the character design for Oscar Zahn is fantastic.  It looks like Vuong has had this idea floating in his head for a while now.

There are more, but I feel like I need to get caught up with reading some of them before I can properly recommend them.  Until then - enjoy those three!

Monday, December 12, 2016


I need to get some of the writings I've got in my notebooks out there - not all of them, but I've got a few things that I'm hanging on to that I think people would like to read.  This one is ratings and reviews of podcasts I've listened to over the last week.  I'm keeping tabs on what I'm listening to on a daily basis and writing things down (giving them a rating out of 5) so this kind of thing will pop up again to be sure.

I think the next thing I'll put up here will be relating to web comics.  On to the podcasts for now.  I'll try to group episodes under the same podcast title where I can to reduce the size of the list.  Notes in italics are notes I've added after writing it in my notebook.