Friday, June 13, 2008

I will try to avoid spoilers if possible, but you gotta talk about these webcomics somehow

I've got to admit that after over 1200 comics, Ryan North's Dinosaur Comics sometimes seems like there's nowhere left for it to go. But I've also got to admit: this comic made me laugh out loud at Dinosaur Comics for the first time in awhile. T-Rex piles on all kinds of convoluted faux-academic high-school-paper-style jargon, and then there's the surprising twist at the end. Funny times, especially if you're a regular DC reader.

Today's Penny Arcade features none other than Mr. Period, imparting his grammatical wisdom to us all, especially reviewers of Metal Gear Solid 4. In characteristic style, Mr. Period slowly points out the painfully obvious in his patient, instructive tone, as if his viewers are five years old. And I'll be danged if the non-sequitur punchline (I'm not gonna spoil it for you!) didn't crack me up! I give it a 9.3.

In more serious news, Starslip Crisis this week has dealt with Curator Vanderbeam's voluntary reassignment to the Sai Kan. Highlights include the introduction of the concept of the "pirate divorce" and today's strip, which features a significant and awkward development for Meridian Holiday's crush on Vanderbeam. Straub has really been at the top of his game in writing recent storylines about Holiday's crush, so I'm looking forward to finding out what happens next.

In other news, Dr. McNinja continues to be awesome. Come on, Dark Smoke Puncher! They warned you about this!

I was thinking about Dr. McNinja the other night, and I realized that we don't just tune in for the ridiculous ghost-wizard-and-raptor-bandito antics, we tune in for Dr. McNinja himself. But what is it about the character of Dr. McNinja that we find so compelling? Is it the fundamental dichotomy of his identity, at once powerful to kill yet sworn to heal, the paradox of the doctor and the ninja? I was thinking how--apart from the aforementioned internal conflict, which I guess he kind of already dealt with--he's an extremely angst-free hero.

Take this illustrative example from last week. Dracula tries to coerce our hero into throwing the fight via threats on Gordito. Drac claims that he can enhance the ghost wizard's power to where he can and will kill Doc's sidekick. Doc's response? He doesn't waste a second worrying about what choice to make. He basically says, "Gordito may only be twelve, but he's got a BA in being BA, and if you think he's going to do anything but wipe the floor with your ghost wizard, you've got another thing coming!" And from time to time he expresses incredulity at the preposterous events of his life. There's a way in which superheroes take the ridiculousness of the world around them way too seriously, and Dr. McNinja treats shamrock shurikens and ninja zombie hordes with precisely the seriousness that they deserve. And that's one of the main reasons that I like him. Why do you like Dr. McNinja (the character)? Tell us with a comment.

And now it's time for...

Update Boxers and News Briefs:

And that's a wrap. See you next week!

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