Episode 421 - Dreamcast

Apr 8, 2019

Today we're talking about all the ways nightmares can be used in stories. This is based on a newspost by our very own dreamboat Tantz Aerine. Nightmares are great for foreshadowing through premonitions, forcing characters to confront things and change their minds, ratcheting up tension in a story and all sorts of other useful things that you'd never consider.

Topics and Show Notes

You can use symbolism and heightened reality, surrealism, fantasy and lots of experimental techniques that you couldn't do in your normal comic. Nightmares are an excuse to cut loose artistically, but also for your character to act out and go crazy too if you want since things are occurring in a dream reality and not your proper story. Listen to us chat more about it in the Quackcast… or become a patron and see our video about it ;)

This week Gunwallace has given us the theme The Last Sheriff: Metallic tumbleweeds trundle by singing a tune of plucked wire and steely resonance in this one rocket-horse town… This is the sound of an old west future, fully charged plasma blaster six-shooters and robot cowboys in a world of red rusted steel and dust.


Topics and shownotes

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Featured comic:
EDENTIA - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2019/apr/02/featured-comic-edentia/

Links:
Tantz Aerine newspost - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2019/mar/27/the-use-of-nightmares/

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

Featured music:
The Last Sheriff - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/The_Last_Sheriff/, by RecklessHero, rated E

Episode 401 - Stan Lee, a stupid comedian, and the new prudes

Nov 19, 2018

3 likes, 4 comments

This is Quackcast 401! Error, error! Pitface and Tantz were absent so Banes and myself were left to go quietly off the rails and expostulate all sorts of radical, half formed, badly articulated thoughts. This is an interesting one! We cover the death of the great Stan Lee, titan of the comics and superhero world. Then we sidestream into talking about comedians trying to be political commentators (re: Bill Maher)… I must apologise for my Ad Hominems. And lastly our focus is on a “new puritanism” in some aspects of pop-culture. It all ties together, if a little awkwardly.

Episode 375 - Categories, genres and rants

May 21, 2018

3 likes, 5 comments

In this Quackcast we chat about the categorisation of work by specific genres and how it makes it easier to promote your work to people, while for fans it makes it easier to find what you're into, but it can also be a bad thing when people categorise too specifically and narrow their audience to nothing or just pointlessly confuse the crap out of people. I came to this topic because I saw a post on Facebook which was very badly explaining “Steampunk” and “Dieselpunk” while introducing the two utterly superfluous sub-genre names of “Ray-punk” and Atom-punk“.

Episode 306 - Culture club

Jan 16, 2017

3 likes, 0 comments

Patriotism, flags, nationalism, religion, politics, national symbols hijacked by racists! These are some of the unique aspects of our cultural identity and national differences we chat about on this quackcast. I was inspired by HippieVan's newspost on Friday (about Cultural identity and how it defines our writing), to dive further into the subject of cultural differences. We all share the illusion of a single, global culture, but there are regional differences for all of us that mean we don't see things the same way, and often some of the stuff we mean in our comics is influenced by where we come from in a way that people from elsewhere would never quite get in the same way. We chatted about how the use and wearing of national flags is very different depending on what country you're in. For example, in the USA proudly displaying the national flag is seen as normal and mundane, while elsewhere displaying the national flag can be seen as a sign of extreme conservatism or militant nationalism. Wearing the US flag in most countries is seen as something of a fashion statement, a very commercial one; wearing the flag of the USSR is seen as a statement of ironic rebellion; wearing the Union Jack is punk; but wearing the flag of your own country in Australia, Greece, Canada, Cambodia etc (and many other places) is seen as a gauche statement of too-overt patriotism, even though wearing the flags of the USA, USSR or UK is perfectly acceptable. These and other interesting facets of culture are what we chatted about. Gunwallace's musical theme was for Ayla Speaker For The Dead, it's a sad, sepulchral, grieving dirge-like requiem, with an uncomfortable sting of evil jazzy trumpet.

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 257 - Accents in Comics

Feb 8, 2016

4 likes, 2 comments

Using accents and different languages in comics can be a challenge, or at least a challenge to represent. Some people will actually have their text IN a different language or even a made up language in the case of aliens, and they'll have translations in a footnote. Some will use pointed brackets to represent the different language, some will use different fonts, and some won't bother showing that there is a different language being spoken at all. We spoke to Tantz Aerine and Pitface about this because that's something they both have to tackle in Brave Resistance and Tantz's solo comic Without Moonlight because it's very central to the plot: Tantz uses different colours for the languages. Pitface phonetically represents different accents in her comic Putrid Meat quite expertly. However, there can be challenges to phonetic representation when you get it wrong, most frequently in the case of Irish and Scottish accents! This was inspired by a newspost by Hippievan! Listen ad enjoy Gunwallace's audio interpretation of Aidana. VERY Pink Floyd!

Episode 207 - A question of bodyshape part 2

Feb 22, 2015

5 likes, 7 comments

In Quackcast 207 we talk about bodyshapes in comics again; as a follow up from the chat we had about it in Quackcast 205 we thought we'd let the community weigh in with their thoughts... so Banes and I could get the chance to practice our voices. We wanted to know what others thought about the subject of about bodyshape in comics; Ones that they draw, read, or have just seen and think that it needs commenting upon. These Quackcasts were inspired of course by the images of athletes from the 2002 book "Athlete" by Howard Schatz. The photos show various athletes who're at the top level of their respective sports, it also shows that they have wildly different physical attributes: there IS no one ideal, and there IS no “normal”. This got us to thinking how body shape can define a character as much as facial features, hairstyle, clothing etc. Anyway, people had their say and it was enlightening! Also, Gunwallace's music this week was for FUNK! And funky it was, give it a listen.

Episode 205 - What about bodyshape?

Feb 9, 2015

6 likes, 6 comments

This week Banes and I were inspired to talk about body shape in the depiction of figures in comics, inspired by some famous images from photographer Howard Schatz's 2002 book, Athlete. In it there are photos of many athletes who're at the peak of their sports and yet their bodyshapes are vastly different, subverting the idea of an "ideal" bodyshape or what it means to be a top athlete or even fit. too often bodyshapes in comics follow a very narrow range, not getting much past what we think of as the current popculture ideal. We all know that idealised model shape is a problem and yet we all still perpetuate it, most of the time you can only tell most "realistic" characters apart by their hairstyle or costume, especially in superhero comics. And that invents a second problem: the myth of the "normal" shaped body as opposed to the ideal- there IS no such thing as normal, and even the ideal is always changing throughout the ages. There's even a lot more to body shape than the famous categories: Mesomorph, Ectomorph, and Endomorph, or Skinny, Pear, Athletic, Hourglass and Apple. We also have a beif mention of how stylised characters (Sponge Bob, Calvin and Hobbes etc) are exaggerations of these shapes and differences.


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