Hall of Shame

The Webcomic Critic (he is very critical indeed!)
harkovast at 1:12PM, Oct. 21, 2009
(online)
posts: 5,197
joined: 10-12-2008
(Be careful what you wish for! I asked for a review and this is what I got…
Note that I had to reformat a few bits so some of the links and things might not be exactly as they once were, but you will get the idea!)

Hello I'm the WebcomiCritic, I do it because, well…Somebody has to!



Webcomic artists and writers tend to be a very niche category of people. we're all usually geeks. And in that niche category, we're usually the niche categories of anime and manga fans, furry fandom, comic book geeks, video gamers, and fantasy and sci-fi guys. Usually these don't mix, and when you do the audience tends to get even nicher.

Unfortunately, because of our limited scope, we tend to write stuff that's incredibly similar. We usually have our own spin on things but you can guarantee that we will usually tell a story of 2 gamers on a couch and one girl, a Tolkien/Dungeon and Dragons-esque story making fun of the system and cliches, a Tolkien/Dungeon and Dragons-esque story that plays every cliche and system flaw as straight as an arrow without irony, anime-esque things that either make fun of itself or play cliches straight, a furry comic involving either all of the above or a porn studio, a slice-of-life involving most of the above, I think you get the point.

So what was I trying to say? We geeks are very niche-y. Sometimes too much. I come to you with the poorly drawn and cliche-ridden display called “Harkovast” that has the gall to pass itself off as an epic war comic. When the truth of the matter is that it's just a large order of “Tolkien/Dungeon and Dragons-esque story that plays every cliche and system flaw as straight as an arrow without irony” with furries, hold the anime-style.

I'm reviewing this a the request of the reader and frankly, they couldn't have come to me sooner. The writer and artist (2 creators and they still do this poorly?) have been mucking about for nearly a year now and now they need a deep cleaning. It's time for their dosage of honest critque so things can start looking good around here. Daniel R. Stribley and Julie Anne Stribley, it's time you get what you deserve.

the story starts off with far too much exposition about some war we're supposed to care about but we get no context to make us care. There's just “light” and “darkness”.



http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main.SarcasmMode

And after we get a monologue from mystery panda, we que the war between the clearly European cat-people using their energy weapons “powered by courage”

They're nameless and faceless mooks? How convenient, now we can mow down as many as we want and as savagely as possible without consequences!





Or so I thought.. Wow, the good guys make great Red Shirts. They're dropping like flies to the Giant Mook there.

But wait, there's still their champion to avert all this. Someone to swoop in and save the day. the Deus Ex Machina who can avert this! Who can it be? His name is… SHOGUN!

Wait what? really? The champion is a one word title? The writer could've called him “Samurai” with the same effect. And that effect is “Silly, cliche, and boring.” And what's a Japanese-style fighter doing in a European Medieval setting? Did he get lost on his way to an anime convention? Did they run out of outfits knight's armor at the “Cliche Fantasy War Story” store?

Who is Lel? What's Technomancy? Nyumus? Why are they fighting? It's good to know the Stribleys explain everything without explaining anything. They provide walls of text that tell us nothing but ambiguous phrases that would've been as useful as nothing at all.

Also…

What kind of hidden Antagonist name is The Speaker Man? I create lame supervillains and superheroes and even my names aren't that bad!

So now we move on to Native Americans who are Foxes summoning some savior.

Yeah, I'm not touching that. Native Americans are nothing to be trifled with. I'd prefer not to make fun of them nor their portrayal. Make your own joke.

The scene changes to some old battle-worn soldier find a convent where he's attacked by some “nameless”. And of course, he'd prefer to fight honorably instead of smart.



Creative. Never seen that one before.

And while the Bird savior, one of the fox Indians, and the monologue panda form the beginning are just standing around watching. The bird wearing a stupid outfit. They're apparently after another poorly named character called the totally uncliched “Heretic”. The Stribleys should be writing superhero names for the Nineties…

we go back to the zealot old fighter who really is as stupid as he's portrayed as he attempts to fight three cavalrymen nameless without backup or being fully healed.

And then I found out why I in all 15 of my major story ideas why I never came up with courage-based weapons: Too frikkin' easy and even more too frikkin' god-moded.

Okay, save a damsel, go over her dully presented backstory, have the senile zealot and her try to find the shogun-wait! hold the phone! Here! Only NOW you tell us what Harkovast is? Aren't you a little LATE for that?

Whatever. I don't have enough faith in this comic to lose it.

And then before we can explore one of the more interesting team ups I've seen in comics (No sarcasm this time), we change scenes to this *snicker* Speaker man, whose name should've been “Preacher man” or “The One Voice.” But then his name suddenly makes sensewhen he tells someone to drownhimself, and he does it. Cool. Unfortunately it's offset by a wall of text I'm far too bored to read. Thanks a lot for your brilliant pacing, Stribleys, I really want to read this (Blatant sarcasm ^_^).

However, at this point, I'm far too bored to read the rest. I've seen enough here. Now that I've snarked at the content, time for the overviews:

The idea. If I could find out what it was, I'd be able to critique it, but I can't even find that. You have created a collection of cliches. the only thing original about Harkovast is its name. Find an original spin because this isn't it. This has more cliches played straight than Eragon, and Eragon was a horrid book series.

The story writing would put an English Professor to sleep. It's walls of boring text.Don't write me off as immature, I read books like the Incarnations of Immortality and I read Watchmen. But the point of comics is that it's VISUAL MEDIA. Didn't get that the first time? let me repeat.

COMICS, ESPECIALLY WEBCOMICS, ARE A VISUAL MEDIA!


Okay? Good, just so we're clear. I'm here to enjoy a story. But I'm also here to enjoy it in the form of a comic. If you put in too much text and exposition, lord, you're gonna bore us to death. I can barely bring myself to read what you put because there's so much of it, misplaced too. And haven't you ever heard of a speech bubble? This is a comic, it's pictures that tell a story by displaying it and then being supplemented with words. If you're gonna put walls of text, write a book. That's what I did.

The Art. Good god, how do I say this? Stribleys, your artists is great. Kinda. You're good at poses, views, scenery, backgrounds, coloring, settings, and textures (especially textures).

And you suck, at anatomy, at drawing furries, at drawing scenes that make them look dynamic. Don't believe me? I've seen your fight scenes, those are more static than my fresh-dried laundry. There's no feeling of movement, everything is a freaking still life and it bores me. I hear these things called “Speed lines” are still in high fashion.


Your anatomy, my god, would it kill you to study the human body before you did something like make a webcomic? You stink at drawing people. the good news is that, so did I. but I learned. I observed people and learned how they work so I can make anatomically correct people while still maintaining my manga-american art style.



Your furries, my god, would it kill you to learn how to do that before you made a furry webcomic? I mean, this is poor, mediocre, sad, and sorry excuse for furry people. If you need help, study, that's what I did. If you need help, than I'll provide exampels that'll help:

http://www.sabrina-online.com/archive.html Here's your beginner's class

http://www.furthiahigh.concessioncomic.com Here's intermediate class one

http://www.catenamanor.com two
http://www.theclassm.com
and three.

http://www.housepetscomic.com Here's your master class

http://www.missmab.com Here's your “same thing but with many years of success” master class

http://concessioncomic.com/index.php And here's your big book of DON'Ts.

So, now what? Stribleys, do as I saw, you NEED help. You're not original, your art isn't good enough, seek help. Learn what “original spin” means and use it.

I can't end with a quote, there's nothing funny or memorable about this comic.

-Read Or Die You Uneducated Buffoons
The WebcomiCritic

For more Harkovast related goings on, go to the Harkovast Forum
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
webcomics heh at 7:32AM, Oct. 23, 2009
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posts: 40
joined: 3-31-2009
Damn critix always gotta be harshin' on a brah.

Let's see how WebcommieRiddick fairs when he goes up against DA BONE…








…R.

Smug I Could Do
it's only the BEST webcomic. Heh.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
harkovast at 1:34PM, Oct. 23, 2009
(online)
posts: 5,197
joined: 10-12-2008
Hes playa hatin, theres no doubt about it!

For more Harkovast related goings on, go to the Harkovast Forum
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
Phillby at 9:07AM, Nov. 26, 2009
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posts: 195
joined: 3-12-2009
Please tell me those terrible crayon drawings are something the reviewer drew themselves.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
harkovast at 9:54AM, Nov. 26, 2009
(online)
posts: 5,197
joined: 10-12-2008
The crayon drawings are indeed the reviewers own art work.

You can write your own jokes….

For more Harkovast related goings on, go to the Harkovast Forum
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
Phillby at 11:12AM, Nov. 26, 2009
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posts: 195
joined: 3-12-2009
Comics are a visual medium!

Hmmm, these two-panel head-desk and computer breaking comics definitely need to have expalantory text. Also I should use them a billion times each.

This guy is amazing.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
harkovast at 12:02PM, Nov. 26, 2009
(online)
posts: 5,197
joined: 10-12-2008
Phillby, I think you are typing what a lot of people were thinking!

He actually did recant and do a more balanced review of Harkovast later on.

You can check it out here-
http://webcomicritic.blogspot.com/2009_10_01_archive.html

For more Harkovast related goings on, go to the Harkovast Forum
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
Plague Doctor at 1:46PM, July 26, 2010
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posts: 186
joined: 6-29-2010








Nice art comparition.Mr Harkovast,you could really learn a thing or two from that guy.
BTW-I remember stumbling upon his blog before,and I dont know what was funnier:his art or the hate comments he got





last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
harkovast at 6:10PM, July 26, 2010
(online)
posts: 5,197
joined: 10-12-2008
While I was happy to get the positive review from him afterwards, where he actually considered it properly rather than just hatin', in a way I would have respected him more if he had stood by the bad one.
People should be able to defend their own opinions and shouldn't throw stuff out there they are unable to justify.

For more Harkovast related goings on, go to the Harkovast Forum
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
Plague Doctor at 8:16AM, July 28, 2010
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posts: 186
joined: 6-29-2010
Well,it is obivious the kid got “loosley” inspired by Nostalgia Critic and John Solomon and tought he could milk out Internet fame by reviewing the easiest and most subjective target out there - webcomics
And he kinda got the idea that reviewing is the same as bashing and nitpicking but he didn't seem to grasp any humor,wit or class his idols posess.

I know what you are saying,but there was no respect for that kid to begin with.He felt embarassed by the crap he wrote when he didn't got the reaction he wanted.
I also doubt he read the wholl comic.It's a bit silly to complain that the villains aren't fleshed out in only a few pages that they appeared in person,and also a bit obivious clue comes from their name.It's like judging a book by first few chapters alone.

Artwise,I don't have any problems if someone who has worse drawing abilities than me to give me criticism.Infact,I welcome that.But,unfortunetly,a person with poor art skills can only notice flaws in art,but cannot really explain the problem or give a helpfull advice.
The critic here just linked to pictures of better art and basicly said-“Draw like this”.
That isn't really helpfull by any means.
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM
harkovast at 7:26AM, July 31, 2010
(online)
posts: 5,197
joined: 10-12-2008
Someone who cant draw is allowed to criticise someone else's art (in the same way I cant make movies but insult bad movies all the time!)
However, if you are going to say “My art is better than this person, they could learn a lot from being more like me”, it is probably a good idea to make sure you actually CAN draw better than the other person in question.

You do make a good point, Plague Doctor, regarding the way he judges the villains as one dimensional when they have only just arrived.
He has very high standards for how much character development he wants from an opening battle sequence!

For more Harkovast related goings on, go to the Harkovast Forum
last edited on July 18, 2011 10:15AM

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