Thursday, May 29, 2008

Real Lazy Comic Strips

I'm a big fan of some of the comic strip review blogs that currently exist. These sites do a great job of pointing out the obvious through petty snarky means. And that truth is that most strips aren't about being funny, but more about capturing some kind of marketing scheme while trying to avoid as much complaining from the newspaper's readership as possible. These marketing schemes include, but are not fully represented by things like "keeping the old folks around reading our paper," "keeping an old and tired strip around just enough in the hopes that someone will want to buy the movie rights," and more recently "targeting a very specific marketing group."

The strip above falls into the latter case. Raising Hector is quite possibly one of the worst strips currently residing on the Chicago Tribune's comic pages. I believe that it's only sole reason for existence is that so they can court the Hispanic One-armed Hunchback market, because, by God, it has no inking of any humor whatsoever.

Not that all comic strips need to be funny; the strip that it replaced, Candorville, while only mildly amusing, actually had something to say about the condition of it's characters and made you think about things. Raising Hector jokes are obvious at best, and are just stupid at their worst. A running "joke" in the strip involves the older son trying to steal the baby's milk bottle for some unknown reason, and his utter failure to take it. Try opening the fridge.

Raising Hector makes bad sitcom writing look about to be on par with the writing of the great screwball comedies of the 30s on a daily basis. Yes, reading Raising Hector makes According to Jim feel like you are watching His Girl Friday.

Aside from that, yes, I'm not particularly impressed with the way it's drawn. But the sheer amount of laziness in today's feature just needed to be pointed out. Just look at that "craftsmanship" of the text on Hector's shirt. Not only does the artist not even bother trying to draw on the message, he doesn't even try to size the text correctly to the area of the shirt, as it slightly over-runs the edges. Sad. Click the image above to revel in all of it's laziness...

Anyway, for a daily dose of running comic strip commentary, I'd suggest the following:
Comic Curmudgeon
Amazing Spider-Blog
This Week in Milford
Stuck Funky

There are many more (as you can track down by various links from the sites I've listed above), but these are the ones that follow for my ration of sarcasm.

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