Do you like comics but not the $3 to $4 you have to spend for 22 pages of content? Go online and get them for free. New webcomics pop up online every day. Many are awful—but many are not. The best webcomics take advantage of their online status to experiment with form and storytelling techniques. Check out the top five to get your online fix of sequential storytelling.
5 “Crawdads Welcome”
Talking animals have been a staple of comics since the art form originated. But those talking rabbits and turtles never quite talked like the ones in creator Ezra Butt’s “Crawdads Welcome.” These stand-alone web strips are fairly simple: They feature animals that swear, offend and, best of all, say the strangest, funniest things. If you like talking animals with bad attitudes, check out this strip.
Big-two comics companies Marvel and DC tend to dominate the superhero genre. But the webcomic world is home to at least one outstanding female-based superhero comic, and that’s “Dynagirl.” Creators Cary Kelley and Harold Edge bring the action, but they also bring drama, comedy and, best of all, real human emotions to the world of superheroics. One thing they don’t bring? Female characters with breasts the size of pumpkins.
3 “Hark! A Vagrant”
Need a laugh? Do you like famous literature? Then read “Hark! A Vagrant” by Kate Beaton. This webcomic operates much like traditional newspaper funnies in that each offering is a stand-alone joke. But the comic differs in its sharp-edged humor, relying on characters from such famous pieces of literature as “The Great Gatsby” and “Anne of Green Gables” saying things they’d never say in the original novels.
2 “San Hannibal”
“San Hannibal” would be perfect as a black-and-white movie. That’s because “San Hannibal” is a comic noir. Co-creators Dan Schkade and JD Smith chronicle the adventures of private investigator Ira Avery as he searches for photojournalist Savannah Loy. The plot for this comic—which is complete—becomes increasingly twisted as the story moves on. That’s fitting because that’s what we like about the best noir movies, too.
1 “Blue Milk Special”
If you can’t get enough of “Star Wars” movies, then you need to read “Blue Milk Special.” Creators Rod and Leanne Hannah are steadily working their way through every scene from every “Star Wars” movie. The jokes focus on storm troopers who can’t hit anything with their laser guns; Han Solo’s tendency to shoot aliens; and characters looking ahead to their appearances in top-selling video games.