Episode 635 - Warcast

May 14, 2023

We're talking about WAR here! Trying to leave out politics, though that's really hard with war because it's basically ALL politics but on fire. So we're talking mainly about depictions of it or at least aspects of it, in art and the media. Both Tantz Aerine and myself work on war comics, Without Moonlight and Pinky TA respectively (plus Tantz also does Brave Resistance with Pitface), so we have some knowledge of the subject from a creator perspective.

Topics and Show Notes

There are a lot of approaches you can take from glorifying war to showing the horrible cost of it, you can show jumbled scenes and impressions or you can show purposeful actions where there's real strategy on show. Tantz depicts a the real historical events of WW2 in Greece using fictional characters (and real historical ones), while I depict totally fictional events with fictional characters.

Showing jumbled impressions and cool scenes to give you an idea of a battle being fought, as in a movie like The Return of The King, is a very poor way to do things. In that case it's an epic fantasy, so you're supposed to see the bigger picture; the movement of troops and the purpose of battles, movements and actions etc which you don't in that film. Rather it's just stylised action from a small scale and jumbled impressions from a large scale. In all the original Star Wars films we have great battle depictions because you can see exactly what the purpose of them is as well as looking cool, they don't need meaningless jumbled impressions to fool you into thinking continuity has happened while we transition to the character next scene.

Depicting war and battle in a comic is not easy, especially when you're trying to show it from a strategic perspective. You have to think about things very carefully so you can communicate the actions and the purposes behind them. It's far easier to go the jumbled impression route, which is why so many do it, but I would advise against it unless you specifically need to- i.e. the flashback scenes, or the chaotic first hand experience from a person involved in the conflict.

Depictions of war and battle don't have to make full logical sense, as long as it FEELS logical for the scene. Like the Battle for Hoth in the Empire Strikes Back - Giant war walker APCs are a silly idea but they seem to make perfect sense in the scene. The dog-fighting scenes with little space-fighters against giant space warships in Return of the Jedi are ridiculous; huge space battleships should have enough weaponry to wipe everything out of the surrounding space for thousands of kilometers in all directions and would never get closer to each other than a blip on radar, and yet when we see that movie the question never coccus to us.

Do you depict war and battle, if so how do you do it? What are your tips and tricks? And what are your fave depictions in the media and art? Can be positive or negative.

This week Gunwallace has given us a theme inspired by Elmwych - Mysterious, scene setting, classical, plotting, probing and prompting. This is a grand entrance into a cold, lofty manor house where all is not exactly as it seems… simulated strings and electronica spice.

Topics and shownotes

Future Quackcast: The cussing swearcast.


Featured comic:
Mercury Virus - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2023/may/09/featured-comic-mercury-virus/

Featured music:
Elmwych - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/Elmwych/ - by Ironscarf, rated M.

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

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Episode 632 - Star Wars

Apr 24, 2023

3 likes, 0 comments

We finally gave in to temptation and just started chatting about Star Wars. For our Patreon video we were talking about the idea of pivotal pop-cultural landmarks that changed the cultural landscape in various ways. Star Wars definitely qualifies… but instead of finding other examples we just decided to indulge in a Star Wars only cast. We didn't do more than scratch the surface unfortunately though. It's a cool cultural phenomena and it's something we always refer back to when we talk about story structure. SO please bear with us as we indulge!

Episode 628 - Cover me!

Mar 27, 2023

3 likes, 2 comments

We're talking about the importance of a good cover in this cast. Another technical comicscast! I love making coves, they're one of my fave things because I get to stretch my artistic muscles and get a little more flashy and creative with my art and graphic design. They can also be pretty dread things to work on when you've used up all your creative powers on your actual comic and have nothing left over…

Episode 621 - Live Laugh Love

Feb 6, 2023

1 like, 2 comments

Toxic positivity can take all sorts of forms, but I think it's most easily recognised by someone telling you to be happy about something when you just don't feel it. It's a really odd, nasty, weird feeling when a person tells you you're basically not allowed to be grumpy or even neutral, you MUST be happy. How many times have we all been told to “smile” by someone?

Episode 613 - 1930

Dec 12, 2022

3 likes, 0 comments

The 1930s were quite a uniquely influential time for a number of reasons. The 1930s were the very last days of the old world before the new one was born in the apocalypse of the 1940s. Old empires, kings, colonialism- forces that had shaped the planet for decades were about to be shattered for the good, thankfully. New technologies were on a rapid rise as things were spiraling closer and closer to global war, Air travel was becoming a reality even as the old ocean liners were still the main means of transportation connecting the continents, people were building cites around the realities of car travel. Cinema had changed drastically with the advent of the talkies. and so much more!

Episode 583 - Why is it bad?

May 16, 2022

2 likes, 0 comments

Spoiler- we don't actually talk much about Yu-Gi-Oh! But I feel it's a good example of a pretty bad a so-bad-it's-good story, but bad nevertheless. The idea we're talking about here is that it's useful to look at bad stories and stick with them because they can really help you write better. They're a lot more useful than good stories because you'd rather just enjoy those and it's a bit harder to examine them for technical details, but with “bad” stories the faults stand out strongly. Instead of simply dismissing a bad story or making fun of it, it's more useful and valuable to try and “fix” it: try and work out why it seems bad and think about what would be needed to make it better, then think about how that applies to your own work. Maybe you're actually making many of the same mistakes?

Episode 545 - tipping point to become a fan?

Aug 22, 2021

3 likes, 0 comments

We're all fans of something, but when does that happen? When do we transition from just following and liking something into being full on fans and is there even a difference? I think there definitely IS a difference. I became a fan of Star Wars after watching the first film but I'm not a fan of The Witcher even after watching the entire show. Henry Cavill as Geralt is super amazing but the show itself is just blah to me. I've seen about 200 or so episodes of One Piece but I don't think of myself as a fan. I became a fan of Ghost in the Shell after seeing a poster from the Manga. I became a fan of Farscape after watching reruns of the series over and over.

Episode 534 - Biting off more than you can chew

Jun 7, 2021

4 likes, 2 comments

Taking on more than you can handle - i.e. James Cameron and JJ Abrams are good directors and writers but neither could handle the demands of a complex Sci-Fi project that needs full world building and internally consistent logic etc (Avatar and Star Wars). They're great with more simple SciFi that's based on 21st century earth and simpler stories, but epic SciFi was clearly a long way beyond the capabilities of either. We're talking about when WE have been caught taking on stuff we couldn't handle, how we dealt with that and also how other creators dealt with it too.

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