Episode 620 - losers are human too

Jan 30, 2023

My idea was to talk about social pariah characters, people who it's socially acceptable to laugh at, despise, or even hate. They can be the uncool people, the dorks, the dags, the idiots, the overweight, the ugly, the old, the out of touch, the over the hill… On the extreme end they could be monsters and criminals. Generally they're written pretty two dimensionally as a collection of cliches, but when the writing goes beyond that to lend them humanity is when it goes to the next level.

Topics and Show Notes

I'm not talking about underdogs or members of minority groups because people should already know better than to write them as stereotypes or to laugh at them for being what they are. I'm not talking about “punching up” or “down” or sideways either.
A good example would be one of those Mansplaining “M'Lady” characters: a fat, young white guy with a thin goatee beard, in a black stingy brim fedora hat and black trench coat, worn over a t-shirt and cargo shorts. It's socially acceptable to universally despise that person, and it can even feel good to have someone like that who everyone is allowed to laugh at. Other examples are the Boomer, the Karen, the angry vegan woman, nerds, pervs, trainspotters, Furries, Bronies, and Treckies.

My conjecture is that an ordinary or bad writer just uses them as is and leverages the popular social derision surrounding them for humour. While a really good writer goes beyond the cliches and gives the character some humanity. Dwight in the US version of The Office started out as a character we loved to hate, but as the show wore on and he gained more humanity he became an immeasurably better character. King of the Hill is a show entirely dedicated to the sort of people pop-culture gives us permission to mock and deride and yet it shows us their vulnerabilities which makes them so much better than the characters in Family Guy who are similarly despised people but with no other dimension.

One of the main faults of the second Knives Out movie, Glass Onion, is that the characters are mostly all built around cliches we're supposed to despise, and they don't go beyond that. I liked the film but it wasn't as clever it thought it should be.

By all means start off with a boomer, Karen, angry vegan lady or a Mainsplainer, pick the low hanging fruit jokes, get all the easy laughs, but then turn things on their head. Go deeper. Show them as more than a simple cliches, more than a cutout! That will enhance your story supremely, make your characters more interesting, the drama more effective and your jokes funner.


This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to Prince of the Moonlight Stone - Mysterious sounds of the cold, snowy, moonlit, pine-forest… Percussion heats up and leads us down into the steaming jungles in the valleys below, away from the cry of the wolf and the savage bite of the cold mountain winds.

Topics and shownotes

Links

Featured comic:
Explorer Chronicles - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2023/jan/24/featured-comic-explorer-chronicles/

Featured music:
Prince of the Moonlight Stone - - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/_Prince_of_the_Moonlight_Stone/ - by KillerSandy, rated M.


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

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Episode 617 - Adventuring we go!

Jan 8, 2023

3 likes, 0 comments

Adventure is a fun genre! Not as many things get made for it these days but it used to be hugely popular in the past. It's one of my favourite genres and this is what we're chatting about for the Quackcast. What IS adventure? I think it usually involves a whole lot of different things like exploration, action, discovery, heroic protagonists, rivals, travel, exotic places, fights etc. It can be set in the past or in the modern day. Good examples are The Mummy, Indiana Jones, the original Tomb Raider, the two new Jumanji films, Strange World, Pirates of the Caribbean, Ducktales, Tailspin, Jungle Cruise, Uncharted and so much more. I'd love to know your faves!

Episode 616 - Happy New years!

Jan 2, 2023

3 likes, 0 comments

Happy 2023! This was the last Quackcast of 2022 and the FIRST Quackcast of 2023! I was recording during 2023 while Tantz, Banes and Pit were still stuck in 2022 because of the time difference between us, so we straddled the years! We had the full crew here of myself, Banes, Tantz Aerine, and Pit Face! We chatted about what we did with comics in 2022, what movies we saw and the issue of “AI Art” and how it impacts actual artists. It was a really cool talk!

Episode 615 - Happy Christmas!

Dec 26, 2022

5 likes, 0 comments

Happy Life Day! Hahaha! Merry Christmas for 2 days ago… This week we're talking about the “Christmas specials” that populate entertainment media this time of year. No particular reason for it, it's just because it's seasonal! It's not always Christmas focused there are the occasionally hanukkah things as well, and in the northern hemisphere this is the season for traditional winter festivals afterall.

Episode 610 - Beauty!

Nov 21, 2022

3 likes, 0 comments

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, so the saying goes but it's absolutely true. There is a layered subjectivity to it based on personal preference, the cultural standards of your community, the ethnic traits of you and your peers, prevailing global fashions in appearance, the dominant archetypes in the media and so on. All these things combine to form our personal subjective ideas of beauty. You can see this yourself if you look at paintings, statues, masks, frescoes and other artifacts that have been produced by all the diverse cultures on earth over thousands of years: there IS no standard, eternal, objective of beauty.

Episode 608 - Lovers and other things

Nov 7, 2022

4 likes, 4 comments

There are all kinds of relationships and they're great fodder for stories. The most typical is when two characters are getting INTO a relationship- all that will they/wont they stuff. But characters could also be ending a relationship, or maybe ending one in order to get into another, they could even be in a stable, long term relationship, although those aren't quite as common in media. My favourites are the ones where sex and attraction isn't a factor: relationships between family members, co-workers, friends etc. For some reason when it's platonic I find that a lot more compelling than sexual tension, especially when there would normally be the potential for sex- i.e. two unrelated compatible people with the same sexual and gender preference.

Episode 607 - Horror Sci-Fi

Oct 31, 2022

3 likes, 0 comments

Happy Halloween! Our topic is horror Sci-Fi. Sc-Fi brings with it a whole lot more interesting things you can do with horror and scary stories and there are so many great examples, from the worlds of HP Lovecraft, Alien franchise, Dead Space, Doom, Warhammer 40K, Event Horizon, the Cell, the SCP universe and more. We were inspired by Bane's newspost about horror and technology and all the cool responses he had. What's your fave horror SciFi?

Episode 606 - Scary writing!

Oct 24, 2022

7 likes, 5 comments

How do you write scary scenes for comics? Banes loves horror so he come up with this subject, plus we're coming up to Halloween! Listen to find out what we come up with. How do YOU write scary scenes though, what are your tips and tricks?


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