Long Story Short: You stole my art, used it for commercial purposes, and won’t even…
Long Story Short: You stole my art, used it for commercial purposes, and won’t even…
From the Sinfest forums.
I find it fascinating that people seem to think that the only reason we hate Sinfest is because of its politics.
I - Essay Mod - can’t speak for the other mods, because we don’t actually communicate with each other (or even agree on very much. I for one don’t see the point of being trollish, but I’m not going to stop them), but I don’t hate Sinfest because it’s feminist, or even because it’s radical tumblr feminist. I hate it because it’s bad.
Gunnerkrigg Court is a good webcomic, and it’s incidentally far more feminist that Sinfest because it has complex and well-written female protagonists. It’s more gay friendly than Sinfest because it doesn’t treat homosexuality as a joke. It has more minorities than Sinfest, and they’re better written and have more to do than just be Token Black Girl like Clio in Sinfest is. And despite it having way more feminism and way more gayness and way more dark skin, I like it a lot. Because it’s good.
Homestuck has amazingly well-written female characters. An ounce of Vriska is a better portrayal of a female protagonist than anything in Sinfest, because she and all the other females are allowed to be flawed, and therefore interesting. Vriska is a sociopath asshole whose evil is the result of deep-seated insecurity. Feferi is a dumb chirpy moron who’s lazy and makes her boyfriend do anything she finds unpleasant, a trait that leads to her death. Jade’s breakdown when losing her powers is realistically well written. There’s a variety. Half the cast is some shade of gay, and while Hussie’s attempts to simultaneously pander to and mock the SJW movement lead him looking sad and pathetic at times-
(He briefly made whiteness a literal super-power, but changed it after it became a thing, like a pussy)
It’s still better at being feminist and being LGBT-friendly that Sinfest, which has paper-thin characters and a weird homophobic undercurrent.
And while Homestuck has a ton of fucking problems, as I’ve been chronicling, they’re almost entirely pacing related. There’s too much fucking around, and the comic could be amazing if about half of it was cut.
Or what about the evolved and perfected form of Homestuck, Prequel:
Look, let me be uncool for a minute (trigger warning: Totally lame): I got laid off a few weeks ago, and I haven’t been having the best of luck finding a job. This morning, two different places I interviewed with called me back saying they weren’t interested. One thought I had too much experience in technical shit, and that’d I’d bail the second I could find a QA job. The other was a QA job that thought six month’s experience wasn’t worth anything. It was an incredible downer, to be too qualified for anything but a job I wasn’t qualified for. I was really depressed about it. And, with nothing to do but go to my computer and write about webcomics, I read the latest Prequel update.
If I hate Sinfest because it’s feminist, I should positively loathe a story about a girl who’s life is a failure because everything about society is rigged against her.
And reading the latest Prequel gave me the strongest reaction I’ve ever had to a webcomic. I’m shit at those jumpy peg puzzles, and I kept getting it wrong. But between the writing, the interactivity, the music, and the sheer fact that I was in an usually poor emotional state, I empathized with Katia more than I’ve ever empathized with a character in a webcomic before. In any medium, or any story. I kept trying, and eventually I got it, and thus so did Katia. As she felt better for succeeding in some trivial thing, so did I. I didn’t even close the tab, I went straight to job hunting websites and started applying for shit. I combed through job listings, found half a dozen jobs I thought I fit, and applied for them. I contacted a recruiter directly to make my case as the best fit for some SQL DB job.
I felt good about myself, and after going through that days job listing on LinkedIn and Glassdoor, I knew I’d be looking again tomorrow. And maybe if I start getting rejections and feel depressed, I’ll solve that jumpy peg puzzle again, and try some more.
Half an hour after I submitted my last application for the day, I got a call for a phone interview. Maybe Prequel will actually get me a job. Maybe this’ll fall through like so many have in the past. But that interview wouldn’t have happened if I wasn’t inspired by some dumb cartoon about a slutty catgirl with a drinking problem.
And that’s specific to me, of course, but this is a story that succeeded at the ultimate goal all stories aspire to. It made me feel something (beside irritation at the shitty writing and missed opportunities, like Sinfest does). I was inspired to go out and do something to try to improve my situation, something I wouldn’t have done otherwise. That’s a success. It’s an emotion I’ve never felt from a story before, even though so many stories try (every day there’s a new “Cheer up!” post on Tumblr).
Prequel is a comic about women. It’s lead is a recovering alcoholic who tries and fails to get her life back in order despite being incapable of accomplishing even simple tasks. It’s biggest secondary character is a lesbian.
And it is the greatest webcomic ever made. These morals are pretty basic, even if I hadn’t heard the “go east to end up west” analogy before. But look how the ghost dude phrasing his life advice in such a stupid way causes Katia to agree with his point even when arguing with his analogy. That’s really fucking clever. This story is a bit more subtle in getting it’s message across than any of those Tumblr comics could ever hope to be. It’s well written, and that’s why it’s affecting. Fucking anybody could write a story of the person who failed a lot and eventually got it right, but Prequel simply does it better.
If Tatsuya was the slightest fraction as good a writer as Kazerad, then Sinfest could be great. Really, it could, even with the same politics. It’s problem isn’t that it espouses feminist themes, it’s that it does so with analogies that make no sense, paper thin characters, and scenarios that either don’t rank in the top 100 issues facing women, or are so ingrained into Sinfest land that they don’t correlate to anything in the real world. And I know there can be better feminist comics than Sinfest because there are. Homestuck, for all it’s pacing flaws. Gunnerkrigg Court. Girl Genius (for all it’s pacing flaws), Narbonic, Prequel. And those are just the one’s I’ve read! I’m still procrastinating on Ava’s Demon and Unsounded, but both of those have gotten off to strong enough starts that I’d be surprised if they weren’t.
And fuck, it’s not like being an anti-feminist comic about fuckin’ bitches and makin’ money is going to excuse you for being shit
(We’re all dumber for having read this)
Penny Arcade has gotten into all sorts of trouble with the Tumblr crowd, and we’ve been hating that more or less full time. When we attack Shredded Moose, we’re not turning on “our own”, because we’re opposed to lazy, shitty webcomics, regardless of creed. It’s bad in the same way Sinfest is bad.
It’s so fucking inept at being anti-woman that it’s mainly useful as something for feminists to pass around and get angry at or laugh at, just the same as Sinfest is so inept at being feminist it makes feminism look moronic.
There’s a reason we pick on Sinfest so much, or at least that I do. Of all the comics we look at, it’s got the most wasted potential. All it does is restate feminist themes in a way that only people already inclined to agree with it would care about. It’s just like a conservative trying to be funny. Unable to look at any issue past a knee-jerk way, it never makes you think, it never changes your mind, it never makes you feel something.
Tats would like you to believe that we hate Sinfest because it’s feminist. But in reality we hate Sinfest because it’s not.
This weekend I did a stupid and terrible thing. For a full explanation, all you have to do is search for “gunnerkrigg” right here on Tumblr to see that I essentially threw away 8 years or so of work by being an idiot on Twitter. It’s better to leave the description of events to external sources,…
GOOD WORK SOCIAL JUSTICE WARRIORS YOU ALMOST MADE A CLINICALLY DEPRESSED MAN KILL HIMSELF OVER A DICK JOKE.
Tumblr need to be deleted and SJW need to fuck off and die
All Tom did was make a small dick joke and he got harassed to the point where he wanted to kill himself.
Oh good. I’m glad I’m not the only person who was upset over people’s overreactions rather than the two tweets in question (the first tweet being in reference to a line from a movie.)
Geezus christ people.
PS: Tom you’re a good person who writes an amazing comic. Don’t ever stop being awesome.
Wow. For a person who frequently keeps up with Gunnerkrigg, this was shocking to learn. I hope Tom gets the support and help he needs, and knows that his fans and frequent readers still love him :3
damn valeera you cold blooded
Belves tho, for reals
My brother saved this document and everytime he gets angry at our neighbours for being loud he prints it to their wireless printer and you can hear the wife shout “Why the fuck would you print this AGAIN?!” to her son.
Reblog again because this is the greatest.
To make the word ‘chicken’ sinister is really a feat of art.
A+ would cite in all my academic papers
To see the crowd gathered before the Hall of Blood brought back memories.
Waves of nostalgia washed along Raynell’s wandering thoughts, matching the sound of the sea as she stood at Sun’s Reach Harbor that night. She hadn’t see a throng of that magnitude since the Dead Scar Restoration Project, at least a hundred strong of her fellow brothers and sisters in arms…in blood…all coming in honor of their Armed Forces. There were times where, if not for her resolve and her fear of upsetting Ina’thia, she would have openly wept at the show of support.
It was not just the gathering, either. The entire procession, lead across the streets of Silvermoon, then to the Isle of Quel’danas before the Monument of the Fallen. Memories flashed in her mind of the many times she led Thori’Anore to the Sunwell to pay homage. The monument was always one of their next to last stops on the way to the Plateau, and they always paid homage to it in some way or another. She could hear the sermons in her head, the soft voices of Lady Raine, of Adon’ee. Even her mentor, Diliandra, delivered a sermon on behalf of Raine in her absence.
The memories, all of them dear. The gatherings at the Hall, the Arrow of the Dawnstar still docked nearby. She saw the orange banners, the golden phoenix plastered upon the fine, fluttering cloth. She approached them, hands reaching out to feel along the length of the banner. Her eyes gazed at it…then a frown tugged at the corners of her lips.
"These banners were red, once."
The whisper seemed to carry into the quiet around her. She glanced around, taking in the silence and solitude, then closing her eyes.
"These banners were red…the emblem’s design of my choosing. At least that is still there."
She gulped hard, a breath caught in her throat.
"…When everything else has gone, naught but our banner shall fly, the symbols and ideals they carry as eternal as the Sun itself." She glanced over her shoulder. "Wasn’t that something Bren’thoren said?"
From the quiet night, a shadow appeared, wisps of smoke trailing around a feminine figure clad in gilded Thalassian leathers. Raynell recognized the woman as her Shadow of the Order, Vyn’allan, the woman brushing back a lock of her flowing red hair. “The words of a mentor turned traitor. A man who sought to use the Shadesworn as if it were but a dagger in his scabbard.” She narrowed her eyes. “Speaking of daggers, or maybe more appropriately, an arrow in one’s quiver…”
"More words of one who turned traitorous, or at least seems to be heading down that path…" Raynell peered back at Vyn, releasing the banner. "You seem to be implying something, Vyn. You know how I don’t like your manner of disguised speak. It may work upon the uninitiated, Shadesworn, but not on me." She stepped up to the rogue, staring her down. "Lay your thoughts bare."
The rogue tilted her chin up slightly, a sneer crossing her lips. “Look at you, the courageous captain decided to finally show up. It’s a wonder why you did not show the same conviction for your beloved, and -my- agent.”
"The decision was out of my hands, Shadesworn…" Raynell hissed through her grit teeth, leering at the woman. "You know better than I that I no longer command the tabard."
Vyn smirked immediately upon hearing the paladin’s last statement. “Really? Given all your work over the past few weeks, the contracting of Phynima for the Initiative, the organization of the Gala -and- the Forum, the very fact the tabard has any semblance of order left to it…” She leaned in closer, hissing out her own response. “It’s like you never -stopped- being the Captain.”
"Don’t you dare, Vyn…”
The rogue all too eagerly dared, continuing to hiss in a soft, sinister tone. “You didn’t even -see- what happened at the Gala, and I’m not talking about the issue with Oriel and Nikkitah. Pomped up lords are no longer my business, but your tabard is under attack and you don’t even know it! And the people in Thori’Anore who do know don’t care!” She scowled. “They never cared.”
The knight snapped, charging the rogue with fist drawn back. Vyn grinned, having done this dance many a time, and shifted at the last moment to dodge. To Raynell’s surprise, she was greeted at the other side by another familiar figure, and the very familiar feel of a steel fist colliding with her left eye. She staggered backwards, reeling against the ground as Belle Bruiser, her friend and once cell-mate of Black Grove, trying wail upon her, hands raised to block the warrior’s assault.
"You didn’t think I’d find out, did you!?" Belle shouted. "What your stupid tabard did to Claire!? Why she went and turned back to the Sentinels!?" Fists continued to flail wildly at the knight. "You bitch! You stupid bitch! She was my friend! And you betrayed her!"
"B-Belle, stop this!" Raynell threw up her own fists, trying to force the woman off of her. Vyn watched with folded arms as the two continued to scuffle, eventually separating, the paladin panting breathlessly, wiping blood from her lips. "I…I had no choice…the tabard did not recognize her as Sin’dorei, in spite of all her claims…"
"Then what is a Sin’dorei? If it’s anything like the person who denied Claire her chance at redemption…" She clenched her fists anew, staring down Raynell. "Then I don’t want any part of being a so-called Sin’dorei."
"You…you know nothing!" Raynell shouted, rousing herself once more to take down the warrior. Before she could even think of closing the distance, she heard the drawing of a blade, the very tip ever so gently prodding the back of her neck. She turned swiftly to try and deflect it with her plated hand, only to find it now at her throat. Looming over her with eyes of glimmering white, obscured by a inquisitor’s mask, was her longtime mentor, Diliandra Sunspeaker.
"That’s enough, Raynell."
Raynell’s eyes widened, trembling as she stood before her mentor. “They are trying to dishonor my tabard…to sully everything I’ve put forth in defense of it!”
"As well they should." Diliandra responded, a calm but resolute one. "The Thori’Anore you are defending now is not the Thori’Anore it once was."
Raynell stood slack-jawed. Here she fought her friends over the honor of her tabard. Now she had to fight the woman who raised her as well. “That’s not true! Thori’Anore has always been for the benefit of our people! We are their fury!”
Diliandra shook her head, removing her mask as wavy auburn hair draped about her shoulders. “My pupil…my daughter…how easily you forget. Was it not you who declared, in giving up your right to command the tabard, that it belonged to the people?”
Raynell fell silent. Her ears wilted upon hearing her words spoken back to her. Words she wrote in anguish when she failed in her duty to defend the tabard the first time. Now here she stood, defending it once more, and again, she felt the weight of her failures rest upon her shoulders.
"You relinquished the tabard, and your right to command it, in the hopes that it would be passed to the people. Look at it now! It is being used, Raynell!" Diliandra bows her head, her stoic expression suddenly forlorn. "…You, Raynell, are being used."
"N-no…" Raynell stammered, reeling backward. "Our command is united. We lead in unison…"
"You are leading, Raynell, but you lead from a leash, and a short one at that." Vyn chimed in, stepping forward.
"And how can someone lead when she can’t do a damned thing for the people who need her most?" Belle now stepped forward, making her own statement.
Raynell suddenly felt the weight nearly crush her, falling to her knees with eyes cast toward the ground. Tears welled in her eyes, her breaths harsh and unsteady. She knelt upon the ground, a moment lost in sorrow, and then, kneeling before her, her mentor outstretched a hand, tilting the woman’s head up gently.
"Raynell…long have I watched you grow. Long have my eyes seen the glory you’ve claimed, not only for yourself, but for your people…our people. Your courage here in Quel’danas, in Northrend, and all across Azeroth, have shown me that you were truly meant for greater things. I am here before you not as your master, but as your equal…”
The woman’s face, normally stern and unfeeling, bore a warm smile. She, herself, was on the verge of tears. Before Raynell could respond, Diliandra took her into an embrace.
"It is here that I beg you, Raynell. Do not give yourself to this obsession. To carry on will surely mean your demise…" She bows her head. "And I will not watch my last student…my adoptive daughter…" She looks back to Raynell, on the verge of weeping.
"I will not watch you give your life away in return for nothing."
Raynell broke down, collapsing and burying her head into her mentor’s shoulder. Belle and Vyn watched silently as the two wept, musing in their own sorrowful silence as thoughts of their future together hovered in all of their thoughts. Vyn looked to one of the nearby banners of Thori’Anore, sighing softly.
"These banners were red once…"
The Gala was just as I suspected. It was very elegant and the words were powerful. Priestess Sunvein, always so proper and perfect in her every movement, carried us all with her prayer. The rest of the ceremony went in a blur of faces and endless conversations. With my station, I should have been out there mingling and promoting the hospice. Suppose in the light of recent personal events, my heart just wasn’t in it. Something I should remedy really. I shouldn’t be letting myself get carried away by emotional attachment.
Lady Liyare Autach joined us last night for the Gala. She looked stunning and it was a wonder that she didn’t capture the attention of the male nobles and military personnel who were wandering around. Political parties are fickle things I suppose. Perhaps the more public appearances she makes mixed with her work at the hospice, she will catch someone’s eye. Regardless, her presence was much appreciated for it gave me another female’s company amongst the retainers.
Speaking of retainers, I met a new one last night. Ly’santhir Hawkcrest was his name and though his face was not familiar, I recognized the lineage. He seemed incredibly nice and well suited for his new position. Maybe a bit flirtatious though. He walked me back to the apartment and shared in a casual conversation with Senicuss and I. My instincts tell me that he will do his job well and keep my mother safe.
Senicuss was another matter I needed to address. Some of his actions point toward nobility, but others make me think he is only a mercenary through and through. He spoke of simply sleeping on a bench in the Bazaar and naturally, I would have no part in that. I invited him to sleep inside the foyer of my apartment. No one should have to go without some kind of shelter. Things changed though, when I offered him a pillow and blanket. The start of an emotional attachment that I cannot afford? I don’t know, and it’s not something I want to think about.
Aly walked to her room and forced the overly large dress to press through the door frame. She sat on the floor and played with the fabric as it spanned around her. She let out a heavy sigh as she slowly pulled the pins out of her dyed red hair and let the braids undo in to crinkled curls about her…
Syn sat on an ottoman in the Reliquary. Before him on a display stand was a set of Saronite armor that he had personally donated to the Reliquary when he had entered the Order. The dark greys and polished black glinted brightly in firelight, giving off their bluish luster. Syn couldn’t help…
On this day we remember those who fight and have fought for our people. We remember those who have fallen in battle, those who never came home. We remember the fallen who’s place is marked with a sword driven into the ground and helm placed upon the hilt. It is today that we remember the blood…