Sep 28, 2020
This week we're talking about cultural appropriation, cultural adaption and adoption, also stereotypes and all sorts of related stuff. It was inspired by a newspost from Tantz discussing the recent live action Mulan movie by Disney. Cultural appropriation is when you take an aspect that is sacred or important to one culture and own it yourself: decontextualising it, stripping it off it's meaning, making a cartoon version of it, commodifying it, commercialising or cheapening it in some other way.
Topics and Show Notes
But not all borrowing from cultures is “appropriation”. Cultures mix and share things all the time quite freely and a lot of things that were once appropriated have long been mixed into a made a part of the adopting culture so they're as much of that culture now as anything else… Things like Yoga, which was a part of scared religious practices, was long ago appropriated and turned into an exercise fad. It's part of western culture now.
There's a power relationship involved: a community in a more dominant cultural position doesn't generally mind others “appropriating” aspects of their culture because their culture is everywhere. A community in a less dominant role usually does mind a lot because that's usually the only cultural identity they have, so stealing and misrepresenting it becomes an attack on their existence.
It's also extremely important to remember that you shouldn't really speak for another culture about appropriation. We can inform people that their cultural borrowing could possibly be an issue but it's not our place to criticise someone for appropriation and appoint ourselves as guardians and protectors of another group for two reasons: 1. That's paternalistic an dis-empowering to the people you're speaking for, 2. It might not be a case of appropriation at all, only they can speak for themselves whether it is or not.
The musical feature this week that Gunwallace has given us is theme to the Good Words with Sako, the Beautiful Heart of a Steggo Girl - A quiet, thoughtful, toe-tapper. This is a jazzy little techno number, bouncing away with a cool repeating theme. It’s gentle, intelligent, and elegant in its simplicity. Very Gorillaz.
Topics and shownotes
Tantz's newspost on cultural appropriation and Mulan - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2020/sep/25/cultural-significance/
The Impossible Family - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2020/sep/22/featured-comic-the-impossible-family/
Good Words with Sako, the Beautiful Heart of a Steggo Girl - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/Good_Words_With_Sako__The_Beautiful_Heart_of_a_Steggo_Girl/, by KaijuKid, rated T.
Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
Pitface - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/PIT_FACE/
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Banes/
kawaiidaigakusei - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/kawaiidaigakusei/
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Sep 14, 2020
Titles are surprisingly important for your comic! We don't often realise that when we first start them, but a title is one of the very first ways people come across your work. You have to sell it to them and give them an idea of what to expect in only a very few words. You can take a lot of different approaches to that, like teasing and intriguing them with a title that suggests something interesting or mysterious, character names are great for that. You can be completely literal and obvious. You can use a pun… you can take an existing popular title and alter it in a slight way… There are so many things you can do!
Aug 24, 2020
First up… HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO TANTZ! This Quackcast is about the topic of whether it's right to change an established character just to fit with the ideas and styles of a new creator or change them in accordance with an idea or political position you want to explore, OR should you instead create a whole new character or story to do that with? Bane's newspost gave the example of the ersatz justice league created for The Boys, where Homelander =/= Superman. The series was made to look at the dark side of superheros, but it doesn't ruin established and much loved heroes to do that…
Aug 17, 2020
This Quackcast is about the impermanence of online services and the lie that services are provided for fee and providers have no responsibility to the creators and viewers that use them. Hushicho posted in our forum about Tapas newly restricting nudity in comics which suddenly disenfranchises hundreds of creators who've built up followings on that site with comics that were well within the the Tapas content rules. With that one change these comics have been wiped out, destroying all the hard work by creators to build up their audiences over a long period of time. That can happen with ANY digital service, we are at the mercy of the corporations that provide them.
Aug 10, 2020
DD member Furwerk Studios posted in our forum about how annoying it was that movies try and do an 80s retro thing often get things totally wrong and end up looking dumb because of it: Not just superficial looks-wise but stylistically too in terms of the kinds of shots they do, lighting and story structure. I thought that'd make an interesting topic for a cast! Why do people often mess up retro stuff? We're not talking about historical accuracy here, that's slightly different, what we're talking about is setting something in an era and getting the “feel” of that era right. It pays off hugely when it works, but when it doesn't it comes off as superficial, disappointing and ignorant.
Apr 20, 2020
Certain tropes or stylistic ways of telling a story can get really, really popular and trendy very quickly and it seems like they're everywhere! Suddenly many story are all told with the same sort of stylistic flourishes. The first few times it's done that way it's clever and meaningful but after that people just use the same thing without understanding it properly and consequently usually do a really crappy job!
Feb 16, 2020
What happens to characters after the big action scene or climactic moment? This could be anywhere in the story but it's usually close to the end. Do they process any of the things that have happened to them to lead them up to that point or do they just forget about everything and simply act as if nothing except the last 4 seconds matter? The later seems to be the trend in a lot of badly written fiction, and it's a notable trope in 80s style action films. Death of family members or lovers are irrelevant when you have a hot action star standing next to you!
Feb 2, 2020
I recently had to upgrade my main computer because Windows isn't supporting Windows 7 any longer and I don't want to install Windows 10 on the perfectly functioning old one in case it ruins it and my main programs can't run any longer… SO I had to get a new PC. This got me thinking though: The barrier to getting into digital art is lower now than ever!