Friday, August 21, 2009

Shrub Monkeys Review

Normally I'd feel obligated to apologize for the lack of updates but I think I have a decent reason - video games. The foul and addicting snake wormed itself around me again, constricting me and wrapping me. The more I struggled to escape, the harder it became especially as it was famished. I welcomed the beast eventually though as an old friend. For those unfamiliar with my life and such, my own Wii had been stolen last October and I was mostly disinterested in gaming since then. Previous attempts to enthrall me had been made unsuccessfully.

My personal demons of these weeks though have been varied and all in all, very good. Persona 3, Jet Set Radio Future and Fallout 3. Sadly my roommates PS3 crashed allowing me to not finish Persona 3. Curses. Then again, the Wikis did a good job of helping me deal with the loss by looking up the story online. Jet Set Radio Future, the old Xbox game was as enjoyable as ever which means I'd end up playing till 2 am, realize I was tired and then stay up another 2 hours. Luckily that is winding down as I embark on my quest to unlock all of the characters. Finally was the strongest of the addictions, Fallout 3. The art, the feel, the gameplay. I must confess that I had never played one of the original games so I cannot be a judge comparing it to the others in the series. I did play Morrowind (which I loved) and Oblivion (which I loathed) though and I can say that Fallout 3 was better than both. The inclusion of downloadable content is keeping my interest though I need to actually download it. Enough about video games though.

Now finally though after the weeks that you have waited, my Shrub Monkeys review.

But first, Amazingly Average is back up after a long hiatus. Go and give Ant some love. It is easily one of the most original webcomics out there on the internet. I owe the guy a large favor since he originally linked to my blog so this is payback along with a few forums posts.

And now...

Shrub Monkeys by Katie Shanahan

I've talked to Allan of Allan and Ryan from the 600 on the topic of journal comics. The fact is that thanks to one of the big webcomic powerhouses linking to Allan, almost every recently created blog/journal comic has been a stylistic rip off of Allan's comic. Heck, I even did it with most of my 40 Day Web Comic Challenge Art. It was nice finding a different artistically styled comic. Now before you go on to complain that Shrub Monkeys started before Allan (by several years) I am just pointing this fact out because YOU CAN COME UP WITH AN ORIGINAL IDEA AND STYLE FOR JOURNAL WEBCOMICS.

The art is high class stuff, the quality and caliber that you can come to expect from actual animators. Katie's art is amazing, energetic and you realize what one can learn in a college for cartooning. Long story short, the art is great. Not much more to say about it except that it can be minimalistic at times. No backgrounds, etc.

The jokes (where art students may fail at this point) are also great. Technically I should say "writing" but more or less, I am out of it (the review writing groove). The jokes mostly focus on real life humor but you don't feel alienated by inside jokes. The fact is that the main character is about as un-embellished as you can get, the non-Mary Sue factor comes off on occasionally almost Charlie Brown levels. The jokes do require a decent amount of prior knowledge though.

Overall, the comic is great. Great art, great writing. Not much more to say. Then again, I am rusty right now so what the heck do I know. A

1 comment:

Allen said...
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