Episode 402 - Audience expectations with characters

Nov 25, 2018

We're all back together this week and we're chatting about audience expectations for characters versus the intentions of the creator. Which is more important? Well it's a bit of a balancing act… You don't want to pander to your audience because that's not fun and they won't enjoy it anyway, but by the same token you shouldn't just do whatever you feel like regardless. As a creator you build up a contract between yourself and the audience; if you betray that by subverting their expectations with characters in ways that are very “OUT of character” just because you feel like it then you can start to lose their respect and attention. Killing off characters all of a sudden can be a big responsibility too, try not to take that lightly.

Topics and Show Notes

Taking characters in unexpected directions is fine and can energise your audience, but you should try and set it up or give plausible reasons for it after the fact. As the creator it's tempting to just think of yourself as the absolute monarch-god-emperor of the world you've created, with license to make any changes and do whatever you want, but if you want people to read, follow along with, and enjoy your work then you have to take a little more care. Don't abuse your audience because without them, what's the point?

This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to Froggtree Comics. Slip into the shadowy club, sidle into a booth and watch the action on the dancefloor. Quiet, subdued disco. This track wants to party but not be too obvious about it… till it gets up the courage to join the throng and strut its stuff!

Topics and shownotes

VIDEO exclusive!
Only for Patrons who donate $5 or more, here - https://www.patreon.com/DrunkDuck

Featured comic:
The Muscle Corps - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2018/nov/20/featured-comic-the-muscle-corps/

Links:
From Mks monsters forum thread here - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/forum/topic/178044/
Mks monsters - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/mks_monsters/

Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
kawaiidaigakusei - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/kawaiidaigakusei/
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/banes
Pitface - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/PIT_FACE/
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean

Featured music:
Froggtree Comics - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/Froggtree_Comics/, by Skreem, rated E.

Episode 285 - Ride the wave of the Anti-heroes

Aug 22, 2016

3 likes, 5 comments

Comedy anti-heroes are a great deal of fun. My faves are characters like Tankgirl and Flashman; they can be selfish, greedy, violent, lustful, out for their own needs first but they still manage to do the “right” thing and vanquish the bad guy along the way regardless, or a character like George Costanza from Seinfeld who's jealous, pathetic, cowardly and greedy but we still love him anyway because identify with him and root for him against the unloving forces of the universe. To be a GOOD comedy anti-hero you have to keep the audience on their side though and that can be a tricky balancing act, you have to surf a number of factors (especially in a long running project), since to actually BE an anti-hero they need to have things about them that an audience would normally despise, these need to be counteracted by things like sympathy and pathos, traits we strongly identify with, intelligence, luck, charm, humour, sexiness, coolness, allowing them to win sometimes, or even redeeming some of their anti-hero behaviours occasionally. Get that balance wrong and they can so easily completely lose audience favour and sour the rest of the story/show/film. Pitface, Tantz, and Banes weigh in on this with me. And there are more opinions in the forum thread from which this evolved. Gunwallace's musical theme this week was for Pestilent. It's thoughtful, haunting, reminds me a little of a classic horror film soundtrack. Pretty scary!

Episode 183 - Work Life balance

Aug 15, 2014

7 likes, 2 comments

This Quackcast topic was inspired by a newspost by Kawaiidaigakusei who described a short autobiographical account of her own experiences managing the difficult work/life balance of doing webcomics online and at the same time having a normal life otherwise. How do you balance those? What do you sacrifice to keep a comic going? Is it worth it? In this Quackcast we discuss those aspects, as well as some saucy banter to begin with...


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